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Monday, July 21, 2014

NEW RELEASE UPDATE: Scream Factory/Anchor Bay Release Specs on Halloween Deluxe Box Set (ANNOTATED AND AMENDED By Fan Discussions)

They call New Year's Eve amateur night for drinking. I suppose this fall is amateur hour for Scream Factory buyers.  Let that not be a a condescending remark. Some of my finest memories are watching people get drunk out of their mind on NYE and in the end they always had a great time but perhaps another hangover wiser. Still I can't help but think that with some of the new releases that have been catering to a fanbase that needs ALL the extras possible and EVERY edition imaginable that we are missing the point. Movies are for watching. Special editions of all kinds are for collecting. We will always see another edition with something new in the future. (or maybe not in this particular licensing wizardry). Definitive editions are only as definitive as the next interview or commentary or historical observation or uncovered footage.  Fans watch movies. Fans buy discs and help to complete collections and hold sacred franchises that should be archived and compiled in beautiful packages. The world isn't always fair and we don't always get everything we want. I'm still waiting for them to uncover a London After Midnight reel so I can enjoy one of the creepiest Lon Chaney Sr. pictures out there. May not happen, but we try and companies try. Scream Factory and Anchor Bay are certainly trying with their new Halloween Deluxe set.

With the recent Nightbreed limited edition increase to 10,000 still fresh in their minds, Scream Factory released the full specs for their upcoming deluxe Halloween set. Let us just say that it drew praise, but there are those who had some insight into what they expected from this massive archive of material. Perhaps there could be no way to please all the fans all the time or maybe this gargantuan product wasn't full explained, but it has been now with footnotes and annotations and updates. 

When I first heard that the limited edition Nightbreed was doubling in run I was initially put out. A run of 10,000 isn't very limited right? But then I remembered that movies are for watching. Limited editions are for cherishing, like mementos and should be used to build memories upon and make better fans. They aren't for flipping. The price on this edition wasn't generated by a need to make it elite. It was out of necessity. So the more fans that have the Nightbreed limited edition, the more fans that have the Nightbreed set, the better fans we will have, and that is worth any price (the price of restoration and the price to license the product). 

Before we tackle the Deluxe Halloween set and the comments about, let us also remember that a set like this is going to make better fans. It does contain new material not previously available, and such a thing comes at a premium. Granted we would all like to see EVERYTHING in Halloween, but my dream edition of the Deluxe Halloween set comes with screen tests of PJ Soles doing lines from Carrie dressed as Linda (and that totally didn't happen). So let's not pretend that we can get everything. If there are mistakes in the initial release, they are accounted for an explained. If there are errors in this new release final spec update, they will be explained and clarified. Let's run down the release and some addendums provided by Scream Factory and Anchor Bay.

Fully release from Anchor Bay and Scream Factory (I've made some notes in ORANGE from the conversations on social media): 

Anchor Bay Entertainment and Scream Factory proudly announce the bonus features and technical specifications for the September 23rd HALLOWEEN Complete Collection Blu-ray™ set. This new set boasts a wealth of NEW bonus features including 7 brand NEW featurettes, 3 brand NEW commentaries, 4 brand NEW interviews – with many of the participants sharing their thoughts about the franchise for the first time -- and NEW transfers and audio specs on selected titles.

Please see full listing below for each disc in the 15-disc Deluxe Edition:

Disc 1 – John Carpenter’s Halloween (1978)

Bonus Features:
HD transfer supervised and approved by cinematographer Dean Cundey
NEW Audio Commentary With Director Of Photography Dean Cundey, Editor Tommy Lee Wallace And The Shape, Nick Castle
Audio Commentary with Co-Writer/Director John Carpenter and Actress Jamie Lee Curtis.
“The Night She Came Home” Featurette
“On Location: 25 Years Later” Featurette
TV Version Footage
Television Spots
Theatrical Trailer
TV and Radio Spots
COULD BE THE 35TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION TRANSFER. No confirmation. 

Tech Specs:
1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (2.35:1); Dolby TrueHD 7.1; Original 1978 Audio in Dolby TrueHD Mono
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish

Disc 2 – John Carpenter’s Halloween (1978) (Exclusive to Deluxe Edition)

Bonus Features:
Audio Commentary With Co-Writer/Director John Carpenter, Actress Jamie Lee Curtis and Co-Writer/Producer Debra Hill
Featurette: Halloween: A Cut Above The Rest
Theatrical Trailer
TV and Radio Spots
COULD BE THE ANCHOR BAY "COLOR CORRECTED" RELEASE. No confirmation.

Tech Specs:
1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (2.35:1); Dolby Surround 5.1; PCM 5.1; Original 1978 Mono Audio
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish

Disc 3 – Halloween II (1981)

Theatrical Version

Bonus Features:
Audio commentary with director Rick Rosenthal and actor Leo Rossi (Theatrical version)
Audio commentary with stunt co-ordinator/actor Dick Warlock (Theatrical version)
“The Nightmare Isn’t Over: The Making Of Halloween II” Featuring Rick Rosenthal, Lance Guest, Dick Warlock, Alan Howarth, Dean Cundey, Leo Rossi and Moore...
“Horror’s Hallowed Grounds: The Locations of Halloween II” - Host Sean Clark revisits the original shooting locations of the film
Deleted Scenes with Optional Audio Commentary from director Rick Rosenthal
Alternate Ending with Optional Audio Commentary from director Rick Rosenthal
Theatrical Trailer
TV and Radio Spots
Still Gallery

Tech Specs:
1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (2.35:1); DTS-HD MA 5.1
MAY NEED UPDATING REGARDING THE AUDIO SPECS. MOST LIKELY WILL MIRROR THE PREVIOUS SCREAM FACTORY DISC.
WILL NOT INCLUDE TERROR IN THE AISLES - that was on the Universal release... the one where the dropped Moustapha Akkad's name which drove everyone crazy.

Disc 4 – Halloween II TV Cut (1981) DVD (Exclusive to Deluxe Edition)

Television Cut With Added Footage Not Seen In The Theatrical Version

Tech Specs:
Standard Definition Full-frame 1.33:1; Dolby Digital Mono

Disc 5 – Halloween III: Season of The Witch (1982)

Bonus Features:
Audio Commentary with director Tommy Lee Wallace
“Stand Alone: The Making Of Halloween III: Season Of The Witch” featuring Tommy Lee Wallace, Tom Atkins, Stacey Nelkin, Dick Warlock, Dean Cundey and more
“Horror’s Hallowed Grounds” - Revisiting the original shooting locations
Still Gallery
Theatrical Trailers
TV Spots
THE DISC WILL ALSO INCLUDE THE ATKINS COMMENTARY FROM THE PREVIOUS SCREAM FACTORY RELEASE OF HALLOWEEN III... This was simply a type-o.

Tech Specs:
1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (2.35:1); DTS-HD MA 5.1; Dolby Digital Stereo 2.0
MAY NEED UPDATING REGARDING THE AUDIO SPECS. MOST LIKELY WILL MIRROR THE PREVIOUS SCREAM FACTORY DISC.


Disc 6 – Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988)

Bonus Features:
Audio Commentary with Actors Ellie Cornell and Danielle Harris
Audio Commentary with Director Dwight H. Little and Author Justin Beahm
Theatrical Trailer
REGARDING THE LACK OF INCLUSION OF THE UNMAKSING THE TERROR would have required additional music and clip licensing that would have gone over budget
REGARDING THE DISCUSSION PANEL FOR 4/5 - not included. Could be budgetary reasons.
NO NEW INTERVIEW WITH DANIELLE HARRIS BUT THERE IS A COMMENTARY TRACK WITH HER. See Disc 15.
Tech Specs:
1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (1.85:1); Dolby TrueHD 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish

Disc 7 -- Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989)

Bonus Features:
Audio Commentary with Actor Don Shanks and Jeffrey Landman
Audio Commentary with Director Dominique Othenin-Girard and Actors Danielle Harris And Jeffrey Landman
Halloween 5: On The Set
Halloween 5: Original Promo
Theatrical Trailer
REGARDING THE DISCUSSION PANEL FOR 4/5 - not included. Could be budgetary reasons.
NO NEW INTERVIEW WITH DANIELLE HARRIS BUT WE DO HAVE A COMMENTARY TRACK WITH HER. See Disc 15.
THE AUDIO COMMENTARY WITH DON SHANKS WAS ACTUALLY DONE WITH JUSTIN BEAHM AND NOTE JEFFREY LANDMAN

Tech Specs:
1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (1.85:1); Dolby TrueHD 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish

Disc 8 -- Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995) Theatrical Cut

Bonus Features:
Theatrical Trailer
TV Spots
Still Gallery

Tech Specs:
1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (1.78:1); Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English

Disc 9 – Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995) Producer’s Cut (Exclusive to Deluxe Edition)

Bonus Features:
NEW High Definition Master from the original inter-negative
NEW Audio Commentary with Screenwriter Daniel Farrands and Composer Alan Howarth (Producer’s Cut)
NEW “Jamie’s Story” – An Interview With The Original “Jamie” Actress Danielle Harris
NEW “The Cursed ‘Curse’” – An Interview With Producers Malek Akkad And Paul Freeman
NEW “Acting Scared “– A Look At The Film’s Cast With Actresses Mariah O’Brien And J.C. Brandy
NEW “The Shape Of Things” – A Look At Michael Myers’ Murders And Mayhem With Special Make-Up Effects Artists John Carl Buechler And Brad Hardin And Actor George P. Wilbur (Michael Myers)
NEW “Haddonfield’s Horrors” – The Sights of Halloween The Curse of Michael Myers With Director of Photography Billy Dickson And Production Designer Brad Ryman And Director of Photography (Additional Scenes) Thomas Callaway
NEW “Full Circle” – An Interview With Composer Alan Howarth
NEW Cast And Crew Tribute to Donald Pleasance
Archival Interviews And Behind-The-Scenes Footage
Behind-The-Scenes Footage (approx. 30 Minutes)
Alternate And Deleted Scenes (Not Present In Either Cut Of The Film)
Teaser Trailer: Halloween 666: The Origin Of Michael Myers
DOES NOT APPEAR THAT PAUL RUDD HAD ANY INVOLVEMENT
YOU CAN ONLY GET THE PRODUCER'S CUT HERE FOR NOW. Maybe this will change in the future if Anchor Bay or Scream Factory decide on individual releases, but this is a nice selling point. 
Tech Specs:

1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (1:78:1); DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Subtitles: English

Disc 10 -- Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998)

Bonus Features:
Presented in the correct 2.35:1 Aspect Ratio
NEW Commentary With Director Steve Miner And Jamie Lee Curtis, Moderated By Sean Clark
NEW “The Making of Halloween H20” Featuring Jamie Lee Curtis, Josh Hartnett, Jodi Lyn O’Keefe, Nancy Stephens, Adam Hann-Byrd, Tom Kane, Editor Patrick Lussier, Producer Malek Akkad, Producer Paul Freeman, Composer John Ottman, Chris Durand (Michael Myers), Writer Robert Zappia, Stunt Co-Ordinator Donna Keegan, Make-Up Brad Hardin And Cinematographer Daryn Okada
Vintage Interviews And Behind-The-Scenes Footage
Theatrical Trailer
REGARDING THE LACK OF INCLUSION OF THE MUSIC VIDEO would have required additional music and clip licensing that would have gone over budget
DOES NOT CONTAIN DELETED SCENES. Could be due to budgetary restrictions. 
MAY BE THE STUDIO CANAL RELEASE OUT OF EUROPE since it does not appear to be a new transfer (this could be speculation). Echo Bridges 2.0 and the Canadian release was interlaced. 
DOES NOT INCLUDE THE JOHN OTTMAN SCORE version however there will be mention of it and use of it in the extras. The release would require a new cut of the movie (per Scream Factory). This was not in the budget.
WILL BE IN THE ORIGINAL ASPECT RATIO. NEW TRANSFER. NOT ECHO BRIDGE.  
Tech Specs:
1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (2.35:1); DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1

Disc 11 -- Halloween: Resurrection (2002)

Bonus Features:
Audio Commentary With Director Rick Rosenthal And Editor Robert A. Ferretti
Alternate Endings
Deleted Scenes
Featurette: “Head Cam”
Storyboard Analysis
Set Tour With Production Designer Troy Hansen
Set Interview With Jamie Lee Curtis
Vintage Interviews And Behind-The-Scenes Footage
Theatrical Trailer
Home Video TV Spots
MOST LIKELY NEW TRANSFER NOT ECHO BRIDGE (though I haven't seen this officially confirmed). The quality of the Echo Bridge release would not be coming of Scream Factory in one reliable sources words.

Tech Specs:
1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (2.35:1); DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Subtitles: English

Disc 12 – Rob Zombie’s Halloween (2007)

Bonus Features:
Unrated Director’s Cut With Audio Commentary By Writer/Director Rob Zombie
Deleted Scenes With Optional Commentary
Alternate Ending With Optional Commentary
Bloopers
Featurette: “The Many Faces Of Michael Myers”
Re-Imagining Halloween
Meet The Cast
Casting Sessions
Scout Taylor-Compton Screen Test
Theatrical Trailer
WILL NOT INCLUDE THE THEATRICAL CUTS OF ROB ZOMBIE'S HALLOWEEN. Could not secure the rights. They were not made available, and my understanding is that they theatrical versions would have required new scans that would have made this cost prohibitive. 

Tech Specs:
1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (2.35:1); DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1; Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, Spanish

Disc 13 – Rob Zombie’s Halloween (2007) Bonus Disc (Exclusive to Deluxe Edition)

Bonus Features:
Documentary: “Michael Lives: The Making of Halloween (4 ½ hours)

Tech Specs:
Dolby Stereo
Subtitles: English

Disc 14 – Rob Zombie’s Halloween 2 (2009)

Bonus Features:
Audio Commentary With Writer/Director Rob Zombie
Deleted And Alternate Scenes
Audition Footage
Make-Up Test Footage
Blooper Reel
Captain Clegg And The Night Creatures Music Videos
Uncle Seymour Coffins’ Stand-Up Routines
WILL NOT INCLUDE THE THEATRICAL CUTS OF ROB ZOMBIE'S HALLOWEEN 2. Could not secure the rights. They were not made available, and my understanding is that they theatrical versions would have required new scans that would have made this cost prohibitive. 

Tech Specs:

1080p Anamorphic Widescreen (1.85:1); DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1;
Subtitles: English

Disc 15 – Bonus Features (Exclusive to Deluxe Edition)
John Carpenter’s HALLOWEEN – The Extended Version (In HD - TV Inserts Are In Standard Definition)
Interview with Moustapha Akkad about origin of HALLOWEEN
Featurette: HALLOWEEN UNMASKED 2000

· Featurette: The Making Of HALLOWEEN 4: FINAL CUT
NEW The Making Of HALLOWEEN 4 Featuring Actors Danielle Harris, Ellie Cornell, Kathleen Kinmont, Beau Starr, Raymond O’Connor, Erik Preston and Sasha Jensen, Stuntmen Tom Morga (Michael Myers) And George P. Wilbur (Michael Myers), Composer Alan Howarth, Writer Alan B. McElroy, Producers Malek Akkad And Paul Freeman, Special Make-Up Effects Artists John Carl Buechler And Ken Horn
Featurette: Inside HALLOWEEN 5
NEW The Making Of HALLOWEEN 5 Featuring Interviews With Actors Danielle Harris, Ellie Cornell, Wendy Kaplan, Jeffrey Landman, Jonathan Chapin, Frankie Como, Tamara Glynn, Matthew Walker, Don Shanks (Michael Myers), Producer Malek Akkad, Line Producer Rick Nathanson And Composer Alan Howarth
NEW Interview With Make-Up Effects Artist Tom Burman On HALLOWEEN III: SEASON OF THE WITCH
HALLOWEEN III: SEASON OF THE WITCH Radio Spots
TV Spots – HALLOWEEN 4, HALLOWEEN 5, HALLOWEEN (2007) and HALLOWEEN II (2009)
Photo Galleries -- HALLOWEEN, HALLOWEEN 4 and HALLOWEEN 5
CONTAINS NEW MAKING OF FEATURETTE ON 4 AND 5 THAT INCLUDE DANIELLE HARRIS (This is most likely why we don't see a separate interview track on the Halloween 4 and 5 discs separately)

Tech Specs:

1080p, 520p Full Frame, Anamorphic Widescreen 1:85:1, 2.35:1;
DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, Stereo, Mono

A general note and commentary was that the features are "double dips" and that certain discs didn't include Spanish tracks or Spanish closed captioning. 

Concerning the double dips, my only comment is that it would be incredible difficult to imagine a set of discs that didn't include a fairly sizable double dip ratio. There's plenty of goodies previously unreleased (especially in the US). Also there was comment on the Anchor Bay page about securing a release there. It's not in the cards right now. Different rights holders and such. Could also be that Anchor Bay doesn't wish to pursue a UK product. Chief problem on the Scream Factory Facebook page is some inconsistency with expectations regarding extras and editions to be released. Anchor Bay side... mostly issued about Spanish tracks and subtitles. 

UPDATE:  There has been rumors concerning the footage that exists in Don May Jr's possession. Don May Jr. owns Synapse Films. It will not be included, but he is going to try to approach Malek Akkad to discuss potential use in a future release (perhaps a 4k edition which is inevitable for a movie of this caliber). While they don't know completely what they've got, they meniton the scene where Michael kills his sister sans clown mask overlay! The idea would be to see what the scene could have looked like and feel how effective it is with and without. That's just the tip of the iceberg. This should not discourage you from picking up this release. It simply means that Halloween fans will always have something to look forward to. Thanks to Don May Jr. for setting the record straight about what exists and the misinformation that has surrounded it's release and rights. To recap... footage does exist. It is awesome, and we could see it soon with an Akkad stamp of approval pending more discussion.
***Details from discussions based on commentary from Anchor Bay, Scream Factory and knowledgeable fans and readers who ask good question and make solid observations. Info subject to change and with a release of this size we may expect other type-o corrections. It's a mammoth release. Cut 'em some slack. Also, note that Scream Factory is not in the habit of putting out crap. They put out good products for fans because they are fans. 

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