Thursday, September 07, 2006

Donner Gets His Day!

Over at DVDActive.com (here) they have the full details on the November re-release of the Superman collection. This collection will include the reconstructed "Richard Donner Cut" of "Superman II." Donner, who directed "Superman" and most of what became "Superman II" was fired and replaced by Richard Lester, who had a more camp view and in my opinion, ruined the sequel, with unexplained powers, confusing cuts and dreadful diologue. Below, is the rundown on a few of the new editions that will be coming your way. If you want to know about Supergirl, Superman III and some of the other sad excuses for franchise building, check it out at DVDActive.com (here) .

Released: 28th November 2006


Further Details:
On November 28, in celebration of the year of Superman, Warner Home Video will release a host of DVDs, all starring the late Christopher Reeve in his landmark portrayal of the Man of Steel. Leading the way will be the long-awaited Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut ($24.98 SRP), directed by Donner and representing Superman II as it was originally conceived and intended to be filmed. An overwhelmingly requested title, the movie features Donner’s original footage, shot but never used before, including a never-before-seen beginning, a never-before-seen resolution, with 15 minutes of restored footage of Marlon Brando as Jor-El and much more. Other titles to be released include Superman: The Movie Four Disc Special Edition ($39.92 SRP) which features both the DVD debut of the 1978 theatrical version as well as the 2001 extended edition with commentary from director Richard Donner and Tom Mankiewicz, archival footage of additional scenes and screen tests. Richard Lester’s ever-popular Superman II will be available in a new Two-Disc Special Edition ($26.99 SRP) including a new featurette, vintage television specials and additional vault elements; and Superman III and IV Deluxe Editions ($19.97 SRP). Finally, The Christopher Reeve Superman Collection ($79.92 SRP) will be offered in an 8-disc boxed set including all the above (except Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut).

Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut (1980/2006)
Superman II will delight fans who, for years, have been imploring Warner Home Video via voluminous numbers of petitions, letters, phone calls and e-mails to release the Donner cut. In fact, Donner had already shot most of the Superman II footage during Superman: The Movie. But as production on the sequel continued, creative differences between the director and the film’s producers became irreconcilable and Donner left the project. Although Richard Lester was hired to finish production, he chose to make major changes to the film, leaving only vestiges of Donner’s original vision and concepts in the version of Superman II that was ultimately released to theaters. Now, nearly thirty years later, Warner Home Video is honored to grant the wishes of countless Superman fans. With this DVD release, Richard Donner has become the first director in history to be able to complete a film he left during production with nearly all his footage “in the can.” Adding back a substantial amount of that unused footage, the director has seen his original vision restored and brought to fruition. Most notably, the “Donner cut” restores the Marlon Brando role, filmed for, but not included in the final theatrical release version of Superman II. The legendary Brando’s performance as Jor-El has finally been restored in key scenes that amplify Superman lore and deepen the profound relationship between father and son.With so many other changes, large and small, including a variety of Lois Lane (Margot Kidder) schemes to unmask Clark Kent as Superman, this Superman II will prove to be an eye-opening experience and an important addition to film history.

* All new introduction by director Richard Donner
* Commentary by director Richard Donner and creative consultant Tom Mankiewicz
* New featurette Superman II: Restoring the Vision
* Additional scenes
* Subtitles: English, Français & Español (feature film only)


Superman: The Movie (1978/2001) Four-Disc Special Edition
A box-office smash, an Academy Award winner and a fan favorite since it first flew into theatres in December 1978, Superman: The Movie assembles a cast and creative contingent as only a big movie can. At its heart (just as in three sequels) is Christopher Reeve’s intelligent, affectionate portrayal of a most human Man of Steel. Watching Superman again isn’t just like being a kid again. It’s better. The movie’s legacy soared even higher when director Richard Donner revisited this beloved adventure 22 years later and integrated eight minutes into the film. Enjoy more footage of the Krypton Council, a glimpse of stars of prior Superman incarnations, more of Jor-El underscoring his son’s purpose on Earth and an extended sequence inside Lex Luthor’s gauntlet of doom. Reeve, Marlon Brando (Jor-El), Gene Hackman (Luthor) and Margot Kidder (Lois Lane) give indelible performances that fuel the film’s aura of legend.

Disc One

* Original 1978 theatrical version with soundtrack in Dolby Digital 5.1
* Commentary by producer Pierre Spengler and executive producer Ilya Salkind
* Theatrical trailers
* TV spot
* Languages: English & Français
* Subtitles: English, Français & Español (feature film only)


Disc Two

* 2000 expanded edition movie with commentary by director Richard Donner and creative consultant Tom Mankiewicz
* Music-only audio track
* Subtitles: English, Français, Español & Português (feature film only)


Disc Three

* Three documentaries: Taking Flight: The Development of Superman, Making Superman: Filming the Legend, The Magic Behind the Cape
* Restored scenes
* Screen tests
* Audio-only bonus: additional music cues


Disc Four

* Vintage TV special The Making of Superman: The Movie
* 1951 Movie Superman and the Mole-Men, starring George Reeves
* Nine Fleischer Studios Superman cartoons mastered from superior vault elements: Oscar nominee Superman, The Mechanical Monsters, Billion Dollar Limited, The Arctic Giant, The Bulleteers, The Magnetic Telescope, Electric Earthquake, Volcano, Terror on the Midway


Some of the 3rd and 4th discs seem a waste of time, I have all those
Fleischer Studio Superman cartoons. To me that seems like filler. I do love "Superman" and I am really excited to see the Donner version of "Superman II." If I feel anything from watching "Superman Returns," it's that I miss the Christopher Reeve movies all the more.

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