I'm torn about the winners. Like most already posting herein I think two John Wayne minor efforts from the 60s beating out Two For The Road is a bit overkill. But as a classic buff and avid historian I'm happy to see that classics of any kind are making their way to the hi-def format.
We've steadily seen the classic market in 1080p shrink to near nothing this past year. Warner Home Video in particular has been leaving classics by the waste side in hi-def. I mean, the Gangster box set not withstanding (and with zilch in the way of new clean up or transfers on The Public Enemy or Little Caesar) and a pending Oz 75th (a year ahead and if it ever materializes given the concerted delays thus far established), I mean...where is everything else.
Fox at least has some very good catalogue coming down the pipeline. Cannot wait for Blood and Sand (out next Tuesday) and Love Is A Many Splendored Thing (via Twilight same day and date, hopefully), and having my fingers crossed for Cavalcade, The Ghost and Mrs. Muir and Jesse James.
Yes, I would have loved to have seen Anastasia (1956) win this horse race. It's a personal fav I am desperate to acquire. But in the final analysis Fox is giving us a lot more classic movie viewing in 1080p than Warner is, or for that matter, any of the other majors this year so far.
I mean, can it really be 2013 and we still don't have hi-def versions of such immortal movies as Giant, Mary Poppins, Kiss Me Kate, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, The Student Prince, Swiss Family Robinson, The Parent Trap, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Out of the Past, Now Voyager, Jezebel, Mildred Pierce, A Woman's Face, The Prisoner of Zenda (1937), The Women (1939), Marie Antoinette (1938), The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1939), any of the Astaire/Rogers musicals, The Band Wagon, Mrs. Parkington, The Picture of Dorian Gray, Gaslight, Random Harvest and on and on. Notice I haven't singled out Fox titles still MIA - not because there aren't any I wouldn't love to see - but because I still think from all of the studios their output is by far the most impressive this last year.
Things could change. We still have 6 months to go. But I don't think so. WB usually is pretty savvy about announcing big surprises. We'll finally get The Big Parade from them in October. It'd be nice to have Greed from them too!
Fox could do us a big favor by releasing the rest of the Rodgers and Hammerstein collection: State Fair (both versions), Oklahoma! in Cinemscope and Todd A-O and Carousel and The King and I.
I'd also love some vintage Bette Grable and Alice Faye: That Night In Rio and Down Argentine Way are at the top of that list. Springtime in the Rockies, anyone?!? But on the whole I'll just bite my tongue for now and keep my fingers crossed that perhaps Shawn Belston is listening and reading and thinking similar 'happy' thoughts. He's clearly in a better position to do something about my daydreams than I am!