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The big Blu-ray news today is this: Warner Home Video has just officially set The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies – Extended Edition for release on 3-disc Blu-ray and 5-disc DVD on 11/17 as we expected (SRP $35.99 and $34.99), with a digital release on 10/20. The film is R-rated (presumably for added violence) and will be 20 minutes longer than the theatrical cut. There will also be The Hobbit Trilogy: Extended Edition 9-disc Blu-ray and 15-disc DVD box sets that same day (SRP $99.98 and $78.92). All of these will include UltraViolet digital copies.

Now…  Warner’s press release doesn’t really mention a Blu-ray 3D release of either, so I called and asked for clarification. Here’s the deal: The Blu-ray 3D versions of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies – Extended Edition and The Hobbit Trilogy: Extended Edition are going to be Amazon-exclusives. That’s why they’re not listed in the press release.  [Read on here…]

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We’ll be back later with our regular post, but this is just a quick heads-up: Amazon’s Blu-ray Deal of the Day is terrific one – none other than Criterion’s amazing 25-film Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman Blu-ray/DVD box set! As you know if you’ve read our review here, this set is one of our all-time favorite releases on either format. And now you can get your hands on a copy for just $97.99 – 56% off the regular SRP! That's a great deal for a whole bunch of great films, so act fast if you want to take advantage. Today only! Click on title above, here, or on the image below to order on Amazon…  [Read on here…]

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All right, we’ve got a few things for you today...

First, I’ve posted a new Blu-ray review of the Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways recently released by RCA. This is the 8-episode series that aired on HBO earlier this year. I’ll have a few more new BD reviews for you this week, including Warner’s Mad Max: Fury Road (possibly as soon as tomorrow), so be sure to check back.

Also today, Tim has posted a new installment of his Pick-Ups column, featuring the first two of several new Scream Factory horror Blu-ray reviews – Ghost Town and Stigmata. He’ll have more each day all this week.  [Read on here…]

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All right, it’s been slow news-wise the last couple of days, so I’ve been working on new Blu-ray and DVD reviews. Be sure to watch for those over the next day or two...

In announcement news, Universal has officially set Studio Ghibli’s When Marnie Was There for Blu-ray and DVD combo release on 10/6. Both versions will feature trailers and TV spots, plus a behind-the-scenes featurette on the voice talent. The Blu-ray will exclusively add 2 more documentaries (The Making of When Marnie Was There and Yohei Taneda Creates the Art of When Marnie Was There) and feature-length storyboard version of the film. [Read on here…]

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We’ve got a couple title announcement odds and ends for you today…

First up though, our own Russell Hammond has updated the Release Dates & Artwork section with all the latest Blu-ray and DVD cover artwork and Amazon.com pre-order links. As always, a portion of any order you make from Amazon after clicking through our links goes to help support our work here at The Bits and we greatly appreciate it.  [Read on here…]

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