my two cents 1000

We’ve got a couple things for you to enjoy today after your turkey and stuffing…

First, our own Tim Salmons has turned in a new Dailies column with reviews of a pair of great Blu-ray titles from Criterion featuring the legendary Charlie Chaplin: The Great Dictator and Modern Times!

Also, Russell has updated the Release Dates & Artwork section with all the latest Blu-ray, DVD and Video Game cover artwork and Amazon.com pre-order links. As always, a portion of anything you order from Amazon after clicking to them through our links goes to help support our work here at The Bits and we really do appreciate it.

Now then… hope you’re having a great day with family and friends, eating lots of food and enjoying a ton of excellent movies on Blu-ray, DVD and in your local theater. Happy Thanksgiving!

- Bill Hunt

Afternoon, folks! We've got a couple good news items to report for you today…

First, our friends over at Shout! Factory have announced a terrific batch of new Scream Factory titles coming on Blu-ray and DVD in 2013. Some have already been revealed but there are great new titles as well.  Look for The Island and Death Valley on 12/11, Deadly Blessing on 1/22, The Nest, Prison and a TerrorVision/The Video Dead double feature on 2/19, and From Beyond and Phantasm II in March (street date TBA). And here’s the great news: There are LOTS more great titles coming later in 2013 (street date TBD) including Vampire Lovers, Town that Dreaded Sundown/The Evictors, The Incredible Melting Man, X-ray (aka Hospital Massacre), Schizoid, The Godsend, Scanners II, Scanners III, The Horror Show, The Vagrant, The Fog, The Howling, Lifeforce, Night of the Comet, The Burning and Day of the Dead! Watch for more details on those TBD titles in the weeks ahead.

Also, here’s something interesting: As we’ve reported previously, Sony is gearing up to start selling 4K Ultra HDTVs in 2013 and the company is now promising that it will make free Sony 4K theatrical films available for viewing on them as a way of solving the “chicken and egg” content problem. Presumably these would be delivered digitally but specific details haven’t yet been revealed. More here at ars technica.

In other news, this was interesting: Paramount Pictures’ EVP of Operations Mark Christiansen told theatre owners at the Showeast conference recently that they should make the switch to digital projection as soon as possible because the various manufacturers of physical film stock are gradually stopping production. The implication is that at some point in the near future, digital will be the only option for film production and distribution. Interesting. More here at Digital Trends.

Finally today, a quick shout out: As it happens, our friend Guido Henkel of DVD Review is also a video game producer. He’s just started a new Kickstarter to fund his latest game project – an RPG called Thorvalla! Do check it out.

Here's a look at a couple of those upcoming Shout!/Scream BD titles, as well as the 2D Blu-ray of Sony’s Hotel Transylvania (due 1/29)...

From Beyond (Blu-ray Disc)    Prison (Blu-ray Disc)    Hotel Transylvania 3D (Blu-ray Disc)

All right, we’ll probably still check in regularly over the next few days, but we know a lot of your are traveling to visit family for the Thanksgiving holiday. So from all of us here at The Digital Bits, we’d like to wish you and yours safe travels and a wonderful holiday!

Stay tuned!

- Bill Hunt

All right, we’ve got a couple more bits of announcement news for you today on a couple major titles...

First up, Sony has set the sci-fi action thriller Looper for release on Blu-ray and DVD on 12/31 (SRP $35.99 and $30.99). Both versions will offer audio commentary with director Rian Johnson and actors Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Emily Blunt, 2 featurettes (Looper: From the Beginning and Scoring Looper), 5 deleted scenes with optional commentary (by Johnson and actor Noah Segan) and an animated trailer. To this, the Blu-ray will add an additional featurette (The Science of Time Travel) and 17 more deleted scenes with optional commentary (by Johnson and Segan). You’ll find BD cover art below.

Sony has also set Hotel Transylvania for release on Blu-ray 3D Combo, Blu-ray Combo and DVD on 1/29/2013  (SRP $55.99, $40.99 and $30.99). Extras will include audio commentary with director Genndy Tartakovsky, producer Michelle Murdocca and VFX supervisor Daniel Kramer, 4 featurettes (Goodnight Mr. Foot, Prologue, Cast and Making the Hotel), 3 Progression Reels (Genndy Blur, Mavis Ventures Out and Look of Picture), a music video, making of the music video and links to online content. You’ll find cover artwork for the BD3D version below.

For you MOD fans, Sony will release the following titles on DVD-R on 1/1/2013: Dead by Sunset, How to Save a Marriage (and Ruin Your Life), I Dream of Jeannie: 15 Years Later, Love Walked In, Once More, With Feeling, Who Was That Lady?, It’s All Gone Pete Tong, Love and Pain and the Whole Damn Thing, Flight Into Nowhere, Charlie’s Angels: The Complete Fifth Season and The Three Stooges: Rare Treasures from the Columbia Pictures Vault.

And Sony has set Pan Am: The Complete First Season for release on standard DVD on 1/29/2013 (SRP $30.99).

Also, HBO and Warner have set Game of Thrones: The Complete Second Season for release on Blu-ray and DVD on 2/19/2013 (SRP $79.98 and $59.99). Extras on both versions will include 3 featurettes (Creating the Battle of Blackwater Bay, Game of Thrones: Inner Circle and The Religions of Westeros), 7 Character Profile clips and 12 audio commentaries with the cast and crew (including David Benioff, D.B. Weiss, George R.R. Martin, Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington and more). The Blu-ray will exclusively add the War of the Five Kings interactive guide, 19 Histories & Lore clips, an In-Episode Guide to characters, locations and histories and hidden Dragon Eggs (aka Easter eggs). See the BD cover artwork below.

By the way, Amazon currently has a deal for $8 off Disney’s Peter Pan: Diamond Edition on Blu-ray Disc (due 2/5/2013). Just click on the link and look for the “Save $8.00 with this Coupon” text.

Here’s a look at the BD cover art for Looper, Hotel Transylvania 3D and Game of Thrones: The Complete Second Season. All three titles can now be pre-ordered on Amazon.com by clicking on the covers...

Looper (Blu-ray Disc)    Hotel Transylvania 3D (Blu-ray 3D0    Game of Thrones: The Complete Second Season (Blu-ray Disc)

Stay tuned!

- Bill Hunt

Morning, folks! All right, the Thanksgiving holiday is nearly upon us. As you know, that means this is Black Friday week! And that means that you’ll find all kinds of crazy great deals on Blu-rays and DVDs and other goodies over on Amazon.com - at prices up to 70% off on many items! Some examples: You can get Thor, Monty Python and the Holy Grail for just $10 each, E.T. and Prometheus (2-disc) for just $13 each, Jaws for $14, Titanic, Prometheus 3D and Avengers (2-disc) for $15 each, Alien Anthology and Brave for $19 each, Looney Tunes Platinum: V1 for just $25, The Dark Knight Trilogy for $30, Indiana Jones: The Complete Adventures for $49, the Star Wars Saga for $70 (etc, etc - click on the links to order). You get the idea. Hell, Bond 50 is just $129 - 57% off! If there’s a title you’ve been wanting, now’s the time to buy because the prices will never be better!

There are new deals going up each hour throughout the entire week, so we’ve created a couple of links for you to use to make it easier to take advantage of all the savings. First of all, you can check out Amazon’s Black Friday page for Blu-ray and DVD here...

Amazon Black Friday Deals on Blu-ray and DVD

And here’s a link for you to check out the home theatre deals as well...

Amazon Black Friday Deals on TV, Video and Audio Gear

Remember, any time you purchase something from Amazon after clicking through to them from our links, not only will you get a great deal but a portion of the sale goes to help support our work here at The Bits. It really makes a difference and we surely do appreciate it! 

Get great BLACK FRIDAY WEEK deals on Amazon and support The Bits in the process!

We’ll be back later this morning with our regular news update, so we’ll see you then. In the meantime, happy deal hunting!

- Bill Hunt

All right, we’ve got some exciting (and as yet unofficial) Disney Blu-ray news. Retail sources have informed us that not only are they preparing to announce the Blu-ray and DVD release of Frankenweenie, they’re also gearing up to release Pixar’s Monsters, Inc. 3D in Blu-ray 3D Combo format. Street date and details on features are still TBA, but we have a sneak peek at the cover artwork below.

Also today, 20th Century Fox has set Taken 2 for release on Blu-ray Combo and DVD on 1/15 (SRP $39.99 and $29.99). No word yet on extras. Fox has also set French Kiss and One Fine Day for Blu-ray release on 1/8 (SRP $16.99 each).

Meanwhile, MGM has set Sleeper and Hannah and Her Sisters for Blu-ray release on 1/15 (SRP $24.99 each).

Lionsgate will release Brothers Grimm (2005) on BD on 1/8.

Shout! Factory has set Joshua Tree for release on Blu-ray/DVD Combo on 2/26/2013 (SRP $19.93). They also have a Prison: Collector’s Edition and The Next (we’ve mentioned that one before) due on BD on 2/19.

And Kino will release 15-disc The Ultimate Buster Keaton Collection Blu-ray Box set for release on 12/22 (SRP $299.95). It’s set to include(BD - includes Buster Keaton: Short Films Collection - 1920-1923, The Saphead, Our Hospitality, Sherlock Jr., Three Ages, The Navigator, Seven Chances, Go West, Battling Butler, The General, College (exclusive to this set until next year), Steamboat Bill, Jr. and Lost Keaton) on 12/11.

In other news, don’t forget there’s a new installment of the Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome web series on Machinima today.

Also, Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln arrives in theaters today, as does the final Twilight film Breaking Dawn. I wonder how many parents today are going to drop their kids off at Twilight and then sneak in to see Lincoln...

Finally, here’s something cool: Our friends at Trek Movie have confirmed that the first trailer for next year’s Star Trek into Darkness is going to be attached to non IMAX screenings of The Hobbit on 12/14, while IMAX screenings of The Hobbit will have the first 9 minutes of the Trek film as a preview. That’s a twofer right there. Count us in!

We’ll leave you this week with a look at the BD cover artwork for Disney’s Frankenweenie, Disney and Pixar’s Monsters, Inc. 3D, Fox’s Taken 2, Kino’s The Ultimate Buster Keaton Collection and Baron Blood (due 12/11), and Warner Archive’s Deathtrap (available online on 11/20)...

Frankenweenie (Blu-ray 3D Combo)    Monsters, Inc. 3D (Blu-ray 3D)    Taken 2 (Blu-ray Disc)

The Ultimate Buster Keaton Collection (Blu-ray Disc)    Baron Blood (Blu-ray Disc)    Deathtrap (Blu-ray Disc)

Have a great weekend and we’ll see you back here on Monday!

- Bill Hunt

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