ISLE OF THE DEAD Blu on hold

3 Stars

From Jameson281 over at Classic Horror Film Boards, this disappointing tidbit:

From Scream Factory:

**ISLE OF THE DEAD Update**

We regret to report that we have removed the title from our schedule as we’ve run into some special circumstances that will not allow us to meet our originally previously announced and planned Aug release date. Currently, we do not have an estimated time frame in which the title might return to our schedule. Should it return in the future, we will re-announce it again.

It is rare for us to have to pull a title as you know and we sincerely apologize for any inconvenience and disappointment. If you have already pre-ordered it directly from us, you should have received a cancellation email. If you have any further question specifically about the order, please contact our customer service department at [email protected]

Published by

Kevin Collins

administrator

29 Comments

  1. I have heard a rumor for weeks from insiders that THE BODY SNATCHERS was a real disappointment as far as sales were concerned therefore all the announced Lewton films are on hold. I preordered both this film and THE LEOPARD MAN. but ISLE OF THE DEAD is gone from Amazon. We'll see. I think a box set would have been the way to go for these films, but I have to think Warners licensing fee would be too high to support a set as the price would be so high to discourage potential buyers.

  2. Robert Crawford

    IMO, these titles are priced too high for many people especially when they're barely over an hour long. For $22-23 a pop for movies, even I, a big fan of these films has hesitated on that price point.

    I agree. On the other hand, I'm sure the licensing fee to Warners wasn't inexpensive and if Warners had released it themselves through their Archives program, they would have charged at least $20 a pop. Taking in the licensing fee into account, the $2 or $3 profit margin doesn't seem prohibitive in a case like that.

  3. Thomas T

    I agree. On the other hand, I'm sure the licensing fee to Warners wasn't inexpensive and if Warners had released it themselves through their Archives program, they would have charged at least $20 a pop. Taking in the licensing fee into account, the $2 or $3 profit margin doesn't seem prohibitive in a case like that.

    I'm just saying the pricing is too high for many folks especially those of us on fix incomes. At $29.99 MSRP it's $8 more expensive than a WA MSRP of $21.99. I can usually get WA titles for $17.99 sale price while Shout! Factory titles usually remain $22-25 at Amazon. As to the circumstances, I'm not going to debate that right now.

  4. I am not surprised. There have been a long list of titles re-released recently, especially from the film noir and horror genres. Every time there is an announcement I find myself going through my collection to see if I own it and if it is worth re-buying. Most often the answer is "No" – for both space and financial reasons. I even discover I have multiple versions due to box sets, single releases etc. due to previous blind buys. Those go to Ebay.

    In regard to the Lewton films, I bought all of the dvd releases when that superb TCM documentary aired years ago. Never once did I think to replace "Isle Of The Dead" on bluray, especially at that price point.

    I have not stopped buying, but Kino has released blurays of films not in my collection – like The House of Seven Gables or today's announcement of The Flame Of New Orleans. If they focus on the films not previously released – there are still a lot of them out there -especially Universal and Paramount musicals, comedies, dramas – then they'll get me to place my order.

  5. They should've done a Lewton set with their titles, and whether or not sales were the issue I think 14.99 to 19.99 would have been a better price. I really doubt it was the lack of sales, although the prices could have been less anyway

    But I think it could be film elements or something behind the scenes with Warner

    Rumors are just that – rumors.. and if they are on the internet they tend not be substantial

    And besides The Leopard Man is still coming, and hasn't been dropped as of this moment.

  6. Robert Crawford

    IMO, these titles are priced too high for many people especially when they're barely over an hour long. For $22-23 a pop for movies, even I, a big fan of these films has hesitated on that price point.

    Agreed they priced me out of the Lewtons. A box set would be great but I would have even bought them as double features. I find most of Scream Factories titles to be overpriced. The Hammers are too much but I am such a big fan I will spring for those if it is an improvement over the import I already have or previously unreleased. The Universal Sci-Fi's are also overpriced but many of these are being released in widescreen for the 1st time so I will get those but they are not day 1 purchases because of the high price.

  7. Hello all!

    No judgment on anyone–we all have our budgets and price points. Life doesn't always allow us the fun we want and deserve.

    That said, it's worth noting that none of us are privy to Shout's costs in bringing these Not Current, Limited Market titles to Blu-Ray. We don't know the outlays for getting acceptable transfers, or the usually top-notch extras. The licensing fees are also unknown to us. However, the fact that none of the license holders considered these titles worthy of BR release suggests the upfront costs are not inconsiderable.

    Shout's prices are too high for some, and I get that. They're often more than I would prefer to pay on a public educator's salary. But given the potential/probable difficulties with getting these titles out, the price may be the best Shout can do.

    And lest we forget: if people stop buying these classic genre films on Blu, companies will stop releasing them on Blu.

    That's enough for me to find the best possible price online, and then pay out.

    Again, if the price doesn't work for you, that's understandable. I would honestly wager that makes you smarter than me in this scenario.

    But for me, if a boutique label puts out some beloved genre film on Blu and I *know* there's no other way a BR release is ever happening in today's media market, I'll buy it.

    Thanks for reading–happy viewing to all!

  8. Hey, we all have purchasing decisions to make with this expensive HT hobby of ours. Nobody is saying Shout is a bad company, but what I think we're saying is that some of their releases are just too expensive for some of us to support them by purchasing all of their BD releases so we have to be selective in which titles we buy and which titles we have to pass on.

  9. Robert Crawford

    Hey, we all have purchasing decisions to make with this expensive HT hobby of ours. Nobody is saying Shout is a bad company, but what I think we're saying is that some of their releases are just too expensive for some of us to support them by purchasing all of their BD releases so we have to be selective in which titles we buy and which titles we have to pass on.

    True. There are some titles I want so bad I'll suck it up and pay full price. If Shout Factory releases one of these, I have no problem paying the MSRP. Others fall under the "I want it on blu but not at that price, I'll wait for a sale" category.

  10. You are seeing the future of our hobby, guys and girls. It's almost impossible to find catalogue titles in most cities these days, and the majors will be reducing their release schedules more and more to current hits and evergreen titles that can move units. In the golden years, someone could release a title like Isle of the Dead and sell enough units to price it under $20. Those days are GONE. These titles will continue to be farmed out to boutique labels, run by people who love the films and our hobby, but will only be able to stay solvent at price points that are never going to match the fire sale prices that titles would reach within a year of release by the majors. The sheer number of sales on Twilight Time product suggests that even this business model may not be sustainable for much longer.

  11. Rob W

    You are seeing the future of our hobby, guys and girls. It's almost impossible to find catalogue titles in most cities these days, and the majors will be reducing their release schedules more and more to current hits and evergreen titles that can move units. In the golden years, someone could release a title like Isle of the Dead and sell enough units to price it under $20. Those days are GONE. These titles will continue to be farmed out to boutique labels, run by people who love the films and our hobby, but will only be able to stay solvent at price points that are never going to match the fire sale prices that titles would reach within a year of release by the majors. The sheer number of sales on Twilight Time product suggests that even this business model may not be sustainable for much longer.

    Yes, it's just a matter of time before the party is over. Right now it's still good with Kino Lorber, Twiliight Time, Criterion, Shout Factory and the Warners Archives picking up the slack with catalog releases but for how long? Even in limited numbers, these titles aren't selling. Twilight Time has had only 1 of their titles (Mad Magician) sell out since 2017. Personally, I think they're going to lose their shirt on their Betty Grable titles but I hope I'm wrong but you can be sure if this batch of Grables don't do well, there won't be anymore. That's one of the reasons I'm sad to see the griping when the Warners Archives releases second tier titles on blu ray instead of the "classics". Those B titles are keeping the door open for those "classics" when they do get released.

  12. Rob W

    You are seeing the future of our hobby, guys and girls. It's almost impossible to find catalogue titles in most cities these days, and the majors will be reducing their release schedules more and more to current hits and evergreen titles that can move units. In the golden years, someone could release a title like Isle of the Dead and sell enough units to price it under $20. Those days are GONE. These titles will continue to be farmed out to boutique labels, run by people who love the films and our hobby, but will only be able to stay solvent at price points that are never going to match the fire sale prices that titles would reach within a year of release by the majors. The sheer number of sales on Twilight Time product suggests that even this business model may not be sustainable for much longer.

    Most of us have seen what's coming for a long time now. One of the reasons why people like me changed my mind about streaming.

  13. Robert Crawford

    Hey, we all have purchasing decisions to make with this expensive HT hobby of ours. Nobody is saying Shout is a bad company, but what I think we're saying is that some of their releases are just too expensive for some of us to support them by purchasing all of their BD releases so we have to be selective in which titles we buy and which titles we have to pass on.

    Hello–this public educator feels any and all money concerns! 🙂

    I just feel it's worth mentioning that not buying pricey titles we otherwise want puts the future of all classic genre Blu-Ray in jeopardy. Again, we all spend what we can, and I *totally* get that. But there's an added potential cost to not buying–less classic genre releases on Blu.

    As a Deep Space 9 fan who'll never get that show on Blu because the TNG Blu-Rays tanked, I can attest it's a lesson that stings.

    Thanks for the reply–happy viewing, everyone!

  14. Christopher McG

    Hello–this public educator feels any and all money concerns! 🙂

    I just feel it's worth mentioning that not buying pricey titles we otherwise want puts the future of all classic genre Blu-Ray in jeopardy. Again, we all spend what we can, and I *totally* get that. But there's an added potential cost to not buying–less classic genre releases on Blu.

    As a Deep Space 9 fan who'll never get that show on Blu because the TNG Blu-Rays tanked, I can attest it's a lesson that stings.

    Thanks for the reply–happy viewing, everyone!

    As a retiree on a fixed income I feel money concerns very much so.:)

    Who's not buying pricey titles? Many of us, if not, all of us pick and choose which of these pricey titles we can fit into their respected budgets. It's not like we're not supporting bringing out classic genre Blu-rays because we are, by buying the titles we absolutely have to have in our collection now despite their higher price points and then try buying some more titles later down the road. Furthermore, you're speaking to the choir as most of us are well aware that not buying any of these classic genre Blu-rays affects their future availability. We get it!

  15. Robert Crawford

    As a retiree on a fixed income I feel money concerns very much so.:)

    Who's not buying pricey titles? Many of us, if not, all of us pick and choose which of these pricey titles we can fit into their respected budgets. It's not like we're not supporting bringing out classic genre Blu-rays because we are, by buying the titles we absolutely have to have in our collection despite their higher price points and then try buying some more titles later down the road. Furthermore, you're speaking to the choir as most of us are well aware that not buying any of these classic genre Blu-rays affects their future availability.

    Well, we in academia do go on a bit. 🙂

    And best wishes to you, good sir!

  16. Rob W

    You are seeing the future of our hobby, guys and girls. It's almost impossible to find catalogue titles in most cities these days, and the majors will be reducing their release schedules more and more to current hits and evergreen titles that can move units. In the golden years, someone could release a title like Isle of the Dead and sell enough units to price it under $20. Those days are GONE. These titles will continue to be farmed out to boutique labels, run by people who love the films and our hobby, but will only be able to stay solvent at price points that are never going to match the fire sale prices that titles would reach within a year of release by the majors. The sheer number of sales on Twilight Time product suggests that even this business model may not be sustainable for much longer.

    Eventually (and sadly), yes physical media will go away in favor of streaming, but Criterion has said that they have seen their blu-ray sales go up over the past two years. No doubt a big part is the bigger studio titles that they have been able to license, but it is still a good sign that that the boutique labels have some life left.

  17. Aaaand, once again, the picture on the HTF home page has nothing to do with the title being discussed in the forums. Is there a reason this continues to happen and cannot be fixed? It's embarrassing for a forum dedicated to cinema and home theater that the pictures very often don't match the subject film.

    View attachment 59605

  18. This is tragic news. I love the Val Lewton titles. Maybe they would do well to do the rest as double or triple features. That might help them sell. I am surprised THE BODY SNATCHER didn’t sell well. CURSE OF THE CAT PEOPLE looks amazing and all the extras on it are great. I can watch these over and over and never get tired of them.

  19. Personally, I can't help but feel that anytime a single, short-ish, B&W, Academy ratio film with mono audio toplines a BD it's something of a missed opportunity. It doesn't come close to exploiting the possibilities of the format; among my fave releases are those which include a whole extra film in HD.

    The 14 restored Rathbone/Bruce Sherlock Holmes films were released all in one go, with a decent amount of cheap-to-produce but high value extras. One shot, on a handful of discs, and no concerns about whether the run will be completed. It's easily my fave box set for films of the era. The Lewtons would have been a perfect candidate for similar treatment.

  20. warnerbro

    This is tragic news. I am surprised THE BODY SNATCHER didn't sell well..

    I have not read anything from Shout Factory saying that The Body Snatcher did not sell well.

    I only read a random comment from someone not connected to Shout Factory.

  21. aPhil

    I have not read anything from Shout Factory saying that The Body Snatcher did not sell well.

    I only read a random comment from someone not connected to Shout Factory.

    I am sure companies like SHOUT! Factory do not expect huge sales numbers from these classics. They have shown that they are willing to invest in their preservation, nonetheless, frequently acquiring new scans, and providing historian commentaries that even Criterion isn't doing anymore. They are not going to make a profit on every one of their incredible roster of releases, but enough of them will to support those that do not, same as the Twilight Time model. Even if (the operative word being "if") Shout! / Scream did not see any monetary gain from their superlative BODY SNATCHER release, I just cannot see them cancelling all future Lewton titles, or even just ISLE OF THE DEAD, for that reason alone. In my opinion, this is something else again.

  22. Dick

    I am sure companies like SHOUT! Factory do not expect huge sales numbers from these classics. They have shown that they are willing to invest in their preservation, nonetheless, frequently acquiring new scans, and providing historian commentaries that even Criterion isn't doing anymore. They are not going to make a profit on every one of their incredible roster of releases, but enough of them will to support those that do not, same as the Twilight Time model. Even if (the operative word being "if") Shout! / Scream did not see any monetary gain from their superlative BODY SNATCHER release, I just cannot see them cancelling all future Lewton titles, or even just ISLE OF THE DEAD, for that reason alone. In my opinion, this is something else again.

    I believe you'll find that Shout! is not actually spending a lot of money on restorations but merely taking advantage of restorations the studios are doing themselves as they migrate their libraries to DCP for theatrical use, home video, cable and streaming. Pretty much every classic catalogue title over the last three years has become available for theatrical DCP bookings around the same time as the new restorations hit blu-ray, including most of the Criterions from Sony, MGM, Universal and Warner.

  23. Robert Crawford

    It's been delayed to July 30th according to Shout's site.

    Hello, good sir!

    I can't find a mention of it at their site. Would you share a link, please?

    I ask because the original announced date was 20 August, making 30 July…well, not a delay.

    And Amazon just sent me an email telling me my preorder will arrive on 22 August.

    TY in advance for any clarity you can provide!

  24. Christopher McG

    Hello, good sir!

    I can't find a mention of it at their site. Would you share a link, please?

    https://www.shoutfactory.com/product/the-leopard-man?product_id=7096

    warnerbro

    What about LEOPARD MAN. I just checked my Amazon order and it still shows Release date: Tuesday, July 16, 2019

    Same for me. Shout Factory titles have a tendency to get bumped a few weeks as it gets closer to the release so I'm sure The Leopard Man is still on its way.

Leave a Reply