Last week, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment had a flurry of DVD and Blu-ray film library announces that peppered their release calendar during the month of July. Counted among these were new Blu-ray product offerings that included Village of the Damned (July 31), Billy Budd (July 10) and The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean (July 17).
It appears that the PR people over at Warner Bros. Home Entertainment guessed correctly in their assessment that the Blu-ray debut of Village of the Damned would be the default lead title and all of the others in the mix would be lumped in as “also on the calendar for the month of July are …” titles.
If you’ll notice, the 10th, 17th and 31st street-date Tuesdays on the July release calendar each got one of the new Blu-ray titles and the 24th of July was skipped. That now appears — and very smartly so — deliberate as word arrived this week that director Jeannot Szwarc’s Thanksgiving (turkey) of 1984 film release of Supergirl, starring Helen Slater as Kara Zor-El and Faye Dunaway as the evil Selena, will be making its Blu-ray debut on July 24.
Yes, it is a member of the “Superman” pantheon of films, but even Christopher Reeve took flight from Supergirl — it was a rushed job by the Salkinds to cash in on the success of the first three films in the series — Superman (1978), Superman II (1980) and Superman III (1983) — and in the end, it would take over 20 years to get the franchise back on track after this box office dud.
If Warner Bros. Home Entertainment would have announced all four new Blu-ray releases at once, the default position would have still been Village of the Damned and Supergirl would have been an also ran. Instead, by holding Supergirl back one week they at least get a separate focus on the title … good or bad, the film is nevertheless a member of the DC comic empire.
At least genre fans will enjoy the Blu-ray release of Supergirl, which includes the bonus goodie of a copy of the “director’s cut” of the film as a companion DVD.
Way, way out on the horizon is a new 4K presentation of director Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 sci-fi masterpiece, 2001: A Space Odyssey. New 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray Combo Pack and Blu-ray editions will be available on Oct. 30.
Bonus features include commentary by Keir Dullea and Gary Lockwood, a vintage audio interview with Kubrick (11/27/1966) and six featurettes — “The Making of a Myth,” “Standing on the Shoulders of Kubrick: The Legacy of 2001,” “Vision of a Future Passed: The Prophecy of 2001,” “2001: A Space Odyssey: A Look Behind the Future,” “What is Out There?,” “Look: Stanley Kubrick!,” and “2001: FX and Early Conceptual Artwork.”