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Blackstar, Space Sentinels, Freedom Force Fly on DVD

BCI is set to release Filmations animated adventure series BLACKSTAR as well as 70s sci-fi animation series SPACE SENTINELS and THE FREEDOM FORCE on DVD.

Originally aired in 1981, BLACKSTAR follows the tale of an astronaut sucked through a black hole, who finds himself stranded on a faraway planet, facing enchantment and danger. This two-disc, 13-episode set, from BCI's Ink & Paint brand, and media company and underlying rights owner, Entertainment Rights Plc will be available on Aug. 22, 2006, for $19.98.

Filmation released an eclectic array of animated titles throughout the 80s, and BLACKSTAR was one of the more cult-type series adored by fans, said Jeff Hayne, director of acquisitions, BCI. Mixing sword-and-sorcery elements with science fiction, the show was very popular during its original run in 1981, and its creators at Filmation credit it as a direct precursor to the popular series HE-MAN AND THE MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE. Were fortunate to be able to release the entire BLACKSTAR series on DVD for its loyal fan base.

In BLACKSTAR, when his space shuttle is pulled through a black hole, astronaut John Blackstar finds himself crash-landing on the distant planet Sagar. There, he is rescued by the gentle Trobbits, a race small in stature but big in courage. Sagar's inhabitants are threatened by the brutal tyranny of the Overlord, a dark magician who possesses the Power Sword, one half of the powerful Powerstar. Blackstar soon gains the other half of the weapon, the Star Sword, and allies himself with others the shape-shifter Klone, the sorceress, Mara, and a dragon named Warlock to bring freedom and peace to Sagar.

Special features include:* Interviews with creators Lou Scheimer, Michael Swanigan, Marc Scott Zicree, Michael Reaves, Robert Kline, Robby London and Ted Field.* "The Magic of Filmation" documentary tracking the history of Filmation* Full episode audio commentary track for Episode 2 - Search for the Starsword featuring producer Lou Scheimer and animator Mike Bennett. Hosted by Andy Mangels.* Full episode audio commentary track for Episode 13The Zombie Master featuring creators Michael Reaves, Marc Scott Zicree and Michael Swanigan. Hosted by Andy Mangels* Image gallery of original heroes and villains model sheets and sketches, plus a gallery of presentation artwork and backgrounds uses in the series* Spanish-language tracks for all 13 episodes* DVD-ROM features scripts for all 13 episodes, 5 complete storyboards* Trivia* Digital restoration

Also from Entertainment Rights Plc, all episodes of both SPACE SENTINELS and THE FREEDOM FORCE will be available from BCI's Ink & Paint brand in a special two-disc collection Aug. 22, 2006, for $19.98.

While Filmation made a name for itself with the iconic series HE-MAN and SHE-RA, there is a tremendous fan base that also remembers these classic sci-fi and super-hero programs, said Jeff Hayne, director of acquisitions, BCI. Were looking forward to sharing these titles not only with those fans looking to reminisce about shows from their younger days, but also with a new, younger audience that will surely appreciate the creativity and nostalgia of these shows.

SPACE SENTINELS stars super-strong Hercules, shape-changing beauty Astrea and lightning-fast Mercury, three young Earthlings who were transported to an otherworldly domain centuries ago. There, the cosmic computer entity known as Sentinel One granted them astounding powers and eternal youth. Now, they protect the human race from super-villains, marauding aliens, tampering time-travelers and vengeful deities. The trio of heroes has become legend, guarding mankind as the Space Sentinels.

The serieswhich aired in the 1977-78 television season featured a racially diverse cast of a Nordic male (Hercules); an African-American woman (Astrea) and an Asian male (Mercury). During the 1978-79 television season, an equally diverse set of heroes was created as THE FREEDOM FORCE. That show included an animated version of ultra-popular live-action super-heroine Isis, star of THE SECRETS OF ISIS.

THE FREEDOM FORCE features five legendary heroes. Joining the returning strongman Hercules are the magician Merlin, super-adventurer Sinbad, armored giant of the East, Super Samurai, and the beauteous Egyptian heroine known as Isis! Headquartered in the sandswept Valley of Time, this powerful quintet defends humanity, using their awesome powers to defeat magical menaces, rampaging robots and mythological threats.

The two-disc collection features all 13 episodes of SPACE SENTINELS as well as all five episodes of THE FREEDOM FORCE.

Special features include:* Interviews with creators Lou Scheimer, Buzz Dixon, Darrell McNeil, Michael Reaves, Robert Kline and David Wise.* "The Magic of Filmation" documentary tracing the history of Filmation* Young Sentinels audition tapes* Original Young Sentinels presentation storyboard with narration* Model Sheet Galleryfeaturing original images from SPACE SENTINELS and FREEDOM FORCE* Young Sentinels gallery early presentation images for the cartoon that would become SPACE SENTINELS* Spanish language tracks for all 13 Space Sentinels episodes* DVD-ROM features scripts for all 13 episodes of SPACE SENTINELS and 3 episodes for THE FREEDOM FORCE* Trivia for both series* Digital remastering of sound and video

BCI, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Navarre Corp., is an independent entertainment video and audio supplier. Its collection of titles represents both exclusively licensed titles from around the world, as well as in-house produced CDs and DVDs. Under its Ink & Paint brand, it releases animation on DVD sets. For more information, visit www.InkAndPaintDVD.com.

Navarre Corp. is a publisher and distributor of a broad range of home entertainment and multimedia products, including PC software, CD audio, DVD video, VHS video, video games and accessories. Since its founding in 1983, the company has established distribution relationships with customers across a wide spectrum of retail channels which includes mass merchants, discount, wholesale clubs, office and music superstores, military and e-tailers nationwide. Navarre has recently expanded its business to include the licensing and publishing of home entertainment and multimedia content, primarily through the acquisitions of Encore Software Inc., BCI Eclipse Co. Llc., FUNimation Prods. Ltd. and The FUNimation Store Ltd. For more information, visit www.navarre.com.

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Rick DeMott
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