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DVD Releases for April 22, 2008

VFX and special feature-packed CLOVERFIELD, Aaron Sorkin drama CHARLIE WILSON'S WAR and a very special episode of THE WONDER PETS! arrive on DVD today.


Academy Award winners Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, and Philip Seymour Hoffman star in CHARLIE WILSON'S WAR on DVD and HD DVD from Universal Home Ent. It tells the true story of how a playboy congressman (Hanks), a renegade CIA agent (Hoffman), and a beautiful Houston socialite (Roberts) joined forces to lead the largest and most successful covert operation in history. Together, the three of them would travel the world to form unlikely alliances among the Pakistanis, Israelis, Egyptians, arms dealers, lawmakers, and a belly dancer, and their efforts would contribute to the fall of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War.

VFX supervisor was Richard Edlund and vfx was done by Whodoo EFX and 4Ward Prods.

The DVD release of CHARLIE WILSON'S WAR includes two featurettes: "The Making of CHARLIE WILSON'S WAR" and a profile of the real man behind the movie, "Who Is Charlie Wilson?"


On Tuesday, April 22, Nick Jr. will release a new DVD titled THE WONDER PETS!: SAVE THE BEETLES!, created by Nickelodeon Home Entertainment and distributed by Paramount Home Entertainment. The DVD will feature the title special episode, in addition to three other THE WONDER PETS! Adventures: "Save the Chameleon/Save the Platypus," "Save the Duckling/Save the Kitten" and "Save the Sheep/Save the Hermit Crab." Bonus features on THE WONDER PETS!: SAVE THE BEETLES! include the music video "Kelp!" from the "Save the Beetles!" episode.


Discover more clues and unravel the mystery of producer J.J. Abrams' and director Matt Reeves' monster hit when CLOVERFIELD smashes its way onto DVD and Blu-ray April 22, 2008 from Paramount Home Entertainment with vfx by Tippett Studio and Double Negative. Earning over $80 million at the domestic box office, CLOVERFIELD thrilled critics and audiences alike with its shocking, first-person video account of a horrifying attack on Manhattan by an unknown -- and seemingly unstoppable -- force.

While the gimmick of a first person POV witnessing a monster attack is compelling, CLOVERFIELD's success lies in the execution and visuals of the monster. Visual Effects Supervisor Kevin Blank says they were gratefully given enough money to get the right vendors to do the job. "Even though the movie was low budget, the visual effects budget we had was a good size. We were dealing with big movie vendors and we hired Double Negative in London [under the supervision of Mike Ellis] and Tippett Studio [under the supervision of Eric Leven]. Tippett has a terrific reputation as a creature house and they made the monster. They brought it to life. But the thing I was trying to do, though, is that I've always had a philosophy of matching the talent with the task. Tippett is a full-service visual effects company capable of doing lots of things and, obviously, we went to them for their creature work but they ended up doing a lot more. With Double Negative, I was really impressed with their work on BATMAN BEGINS and CHILDREN OF MEN."

But the tight budget also meant that more vfx had to be utilized to fill the production gaps. "We were trying to shoot on a small set with a bunch of greenscreen and make everyone believe it," Blank continued. "I give a lot of credit to Production Designer Martin Whist because he had the least amount of resources to produce something believable. We kept saying to him, give us the front 10 or 20% in front of camera for real and we'll do the rest. A lot times you would expect on a movie like this for the set to comprise 50 to 60% of what is going on and visual effects is completing the lower half. But visual effects were doing a lot more than that. For example, we had a very large sequence on the Brooklyn Bridge. What was created was basically a 150-foot stretch for the board planks, a few benches and then lighting fixtures were in place where they would be on the bridge, but the railing, the lamps and everything is CG. In New York, we shot helicopter plates on the side of the Brooklyn Bridge to make the environment, but the actual structure of the bridge was 99% visual effects. The only thing that was not was the ground these people were walking on."

The CLOVERFIELD DVD features revealing bonus material including alternate endings, deleted scenes, "The Making of CLOVERFIELD." a look at the visual effects, commentary by director Matt Reeves and more.

Available for $29.99, the CLOVERFIELD DVD is presented in widescreen enhanced for 16:9 TVs with Dolby Digital English 5.1 Surround, French 5.1 Surround and Spanish 5.1 Surround and English, French and Spanish subtitles. The DVD includes the following special features:

--Commentary by director Matt Reeves--The Making of CLOVERFIELD--CLOVERFIELD Visual Effects--I Saw It! It's Alive! It's Huge!--Clover Fun--Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary--Alternate Endings with Optional Commentary

Special editions are also available at different retail locations:

--Suncoast and FYE - Limited edition swank steel book collectible packaging.--Best Buy - Bonus Disc entitled "TJ Miller's Video Diary," containing almost 30 minutes of exclusive behind-the-scenes footage with "Hud."--Kmart and Sears - Get a free Cloverfield ringtone.--Target - Target Deluxe Edition includes "Rob's Goin' To Japan Party Mix" music CD. The track list for the music CD includes: OK GO - HERE IT GOES AGAIN, Goldfrapp - OOH LA LA, Coconut Records - WEST COAST, Scissors for Lefty - GOT YOUR MOMENTS, The Vapors - TURNING JAPANESE, Parliament - GIVE UP THE FUNK, Of Montreal - WRAITH PINNED TO THE MIST, The Blood Arm - DO I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION? and Bright Eyes - FOUR WINDS.


On April 22, SHOUT! Factory brings OBAN STAR RACERS to DVD so that U.S. audiences can finally experience the groundbreaking, seamless combination of 2-D and 3-D animation. Watch as the Whizzing Arrow defends Earth against annihilation by the greatest foe the world has ever seen -- the menacing Crog Imperium -- as they face off in the ultimate race.


ONE MISSED CALL, the remake of Japanese hit CHAKUSHIN ARI, is out on DVD now. Zoic Studios did the vfx for the Warner Home Video release to DVD, HD-DVD/DVD combo and Blu-ray.

Although visual effects played a very important role in adding suspense and terror, it was not planned that way. "He (Director Eric Valette) wanted to be very, very subtle about the effects," vfx supervisor Randy Goux explains. "He didn't want to overpower it with CG. He wanted to use the characters to build the suspense. But with that said there are some key moments where he needed visual effects to tell that story. In the climax is where we really kicked in, but all throughout the movie there were points where visual effects added to that just ever so slight creepy moment."