The staff and management over at 20th Century-Fox Home Entertainment have been dealt some tasty cards of late courtesy of their theatrical (and acquisition) counterparts.
Last week they were trumpeting the arrival of Skyfall on Feb. 12 and Parental Guidance on Mar. 26. Next, the remake of Red Dawn was dropped in on Mar. 5 (for the record, the ARR comes in at 102 days and the box office take was better than expected at $44.5 million … that’s a pretty amazing number for a dopey remake).
Now comes the Mar. 12 three-SKU home entertainment debut of director Ang Lee’s technical-achieved and skillfully-delivered film presentation of Yann Martel’s “unadaptable” adventure novel, Life of Pi.
The ARR for this dark horse Best Picture nominee is 109 days and the box office take (and growing) currently stands at a very solid $103.4 million.
In a year where you can start by filling in your “Oscar Ballot” with wins for Daniel Day-Lewis and Anne Hathaway ... they are, as they say, “in the bank.” Trying to figure out the Best Picture winner is a horse of a different color.
In an Oscar derby featuring Argo and Zero Dark Thirty (which could likely split votes), Les Misérables (a brilliantly-delivered film adaptation of the beloved stage musical, but … iffy) and Lincoln (marked by a stunning performance by Day-Lewis, but tedious in its telling), there is the not-so-unlikely possibility that a film such as Life of Pi could slip in as the Best Picture winner.
It is a strong field this year and lots of elbows will be thrown. Academy voters are going to be split seven ways from sundown on trying to ferret-out which film deserves the gold. You won’t get any clues from the track record for this group, which at times can be a bit sketchy on getting it right — Shakespeare in Love over Saving Private Ryan; The Greatest Show on Earth over High Noon? Please!
And with the rush that Silver Linings Playbook is a making at the box office (all generated by word of mouth) in the past three weeks, you can’t even count that one out.
As to Fox’s SKU configuration, there are two Blu-ray SKUs — a three-disc Combo Pack featuring the 3D theatrical experience on Blu-ray, a 2D Blu-ray companion and a DVD edition of the film and a Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack (both of these SKUs include UltraViolet) — and a stand-alone DVD edition.
As to bonus features, those are limited to the Blu-ray SKUs. Included are a pair of featurettes — “A Remarkable Vision” and “Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright” — the feature-length documentary titled A Filmmaker's Epic Journey and a multi-part stills gallery. Exclusive to the 3D SKU are four deleted scenes and two examples of 3D/2D VFX Progressions — “Tsimstum Sinking” and “The Wave Tank.”
To download this week's complete edition of the DVD and Blu-ray Release Report: DVD & Blu-ray Release Report