Well, about time! The list has certainly reduced in size as far as unreleased classic "A" films released on dvd. However, there are still many that need a release like "The African Queen", but the number is still shrinking in total.
This is really good news. This was one of the great classic films of Hollywood's golden age, and a DVD release has been long overdue. I hope the issuance of this film signals a turn around in Sony's policy of not releasing the old time classic films in their Columbia, United Artists and Goldwyn libraries which seemed to have been in effect for about a year and a half or so. If it does, then that will be great news indeed.
It's been reported (although I don't have independent confirmation) that Miss Keyes suffers from Alzheimers so unfortunately this is not likely to happen.
This underscores the reason why it is important to pre-record these interviews/commentaries for future use. Warners has long had such a program in place. I'm not sure what the other studios have done in this regard.
Ultimately it is up to the participant also. For example, Richard Widmark is not only still alive, but very well. However he has apparently expressed no interest in reliving his movie career and has thus has not appeared on any of the DVDs of his movies.
Last week, TCM showed four rarely-shown Lucille Ball films: THE FULLER BRUSH GIRL, HER HUSBAND'S AFFAIRS, MISS GRANT TAKES RICHMOND, and THE MAGIC CARPET. It would make a great collection a la their recent Boris Karloff collection. They also have several important Joan Crawford films yet to be released on dvd: HARRIET CRAIG, AUTUMN LEAVES, THE STORY OF ESTHER COSTELLO, THEY ALL KISSED THE BRIDE, BESERK that need to be released.
I always think of TCM as sort of an audition for potential dvd releases ("testing the waters," so-to-speak, and if you look at the January 2007 schedule, there vis a remarkable cornucopia of Columbia products which I have not seen since the glory days of Cinemax in the eighties. Their Star of the Month is Jean Arthur (with rare films like THE IMPATIENT YEARS and TOO MANY HUSBANDS). It may be evidence that Columbia is beginning to take their catalog titles seriously.