Released last week in the USA, Pixar's A BUG'S LIFE was the week's bestselling video and DVD title, selling enough copies to already put it at No.4 on the list of the year's best selling videos, and No. 10 on the list ofthe year's best selling DVD's. (There are no plans to release the Pixarfilm on laser disc.) It is already ahead of ANTZ and just behind THERUGRATS MOVIE, but farther behind MULAN. Other best selling VHS titles forthe week include THE RUGRATS MOVIE, which finished third; SCOOBY-DOO'S
Category: Home Entertainment
The Cinema Guild has released the animation cult classic, VAMPIRES IN HAVANA! Juan Padron, best known in the US for his QUINOSCOPO shorts, directed the 1985 Cuban film which was released theatrically in the USA in 1987. VAMPIRES IN HAVANA! is a spoof of horror and gangster movies, presented in a style reminiscent of FRITZ THE CAT. It features Professor von Dracula, a vampire scientist who leaves Transylvania for Cuba where he invents "Vampisol," a potion that allows vampires to live in sunlight.
The new Paramount Home Video release of THE RUGRATS MOVIE was the bestselling video in the US for the week ending April 4, 1999. RUGRATS out soldits nearest rivals, TAE-BO WORKOUT and MIGHTY JOE YOUNG, by about four toone. However, MULAN, which debuted on video in the US earlier this year,sold about 38% more copies during its debut week than RUGRATS sold duringits first week. RUGRATS was also released on DVD last week where it debutedat #2, just behind Buena Vista's THE WATERBOY with Adam Sandler.
The Ottawa International Animation Festival and Canadian Film Institutehave acquired the North American video rights to all Estonian animationfilms produced by the studios,Tallinnfilm, Eesti Joonisfilm, and Nukufilm.The collection includes award winning films by Priit Parn, ("Hotel E,""Breakfast on the Grass," and "The Night of the Carrots"); Rao Heidmets("Hell"); Mati Kutt ("Underground," "Smoked Spout Baked in the Sun"); JannoPoldma ("Birthday"); Rein Raamat ("Hell"); and many more.
George Pal's first feature film, THE GREAT RUPERT (1950), is being released on DVD by Image Entertainment. The film, which has never been released on home video before, is an Arnold Leibovit Entertainment Presentation, and will be released on May 7 for a retal price of $24.99. It stars the legendary Jimmy Durante, Tom Drake and Terry Moore (Jill from the 1949 film MIGHTY JOE YOUNG); as well as Rupert, a dancing squirrel brought to life using Pal's trademark Puppetoon animation technique. The rarely seen film was transferred from one of the few 35mm nitrate prints in existence.
Walt Disney Home Video is re-releasing 101 DALMATIONS (1961) on video on March 9, for 101 days only. The fully restored, digitally remastered and THX Certified release also features a new 90-second MOUSEWORKS short, STREET CLEANER, featuring another Disney canine star, Pluto. In addition, the video is accompanied by an exclusive offer for a free Dalmation puppy beanbag toy. The video will be available at $26.99 (S.R.P.).
Disney's 36th animated feature, "Mulan," is released on video on February 2 at $26.99. It will receive a simultaneous release in Disney's Spanish-language collection, Disney En Espanol. As a special bonus, the video will feature an exclusive five-minute behind-the-scenes look at Walt Disney Pictures' upcoming animated film, "Tarzan." DreamWorks will release "Antz" on home video on February 9 only four months after its theatrical release at $26.98.
On Friday, January 8, the Walt Disney Company recalled 3.4 million copies
of "The Rescuers" video release due to two objectionable non-consecutive
frames in the 110,000-frame movie. The frames in question feature a
live-action naked torso of a female in a background image inserted as a gag
by a cameraman when the movie was originally filmed in the 1970s. The 1992
home video release of the animated film didn't use the original print and
therefore didn't have the objectionable images. Under ordinary viewing
A.D.V. Films has announced the acquisition of "Queen Emeraldas," a new film from Leiji Matsumoto (creator of the '70s animated series "Space Cruiser Yamato," a.k.a. "Starblazers"). The film features Matsumoto's unique sense of character design utilizing traditional and computer animation. The story takes place in the far future when humanity has expanded into space and colonized the stars. Since pirates ply the space routes preying on the weak and helpless, the rebel Emeraldas sails the Sea of Stars fighting evil using her array of futuristic weapons.
Columbia Tristar Home Video and the Harvey Entertainment Company willrelease "Baby Huey's Great Easter Adventure," a live-action, feature-lengthmusical comedy, starring the classic oversized, diapered duck in his firstmovie ever. The direct-to-video film, which will be released on March 2,1999, stars Joseph Bologna, Maureen McCormick, Harvey Korman, David Lander,and David Leisure. The song-filled film also includes a bonus Baby Hueycartoon, "Daycare Duckie," packaged with the film. The film is about how
CBS/Fox, Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment and DIC Entertainment are producing a direct-to-video title based on the life of Martin Luther King Jr., called Our Friend, Martin. The one-hour film will combine new animation with live-action archival footage of the late civil rights activist. Several celebrities are lending their voices to the production, including Whoopi Goldberg, Samuel L. Jackson, James Earl Jones, Susan Sarandon, John Travolta, Jaleel White and Oprah Winfrey.
On October 27, Walt Disney Home Video releases "The Lion King II: Simba's Pride," a direct-to-video animated feature sequel to the 1995 blockbuster theatrical feature, "The Lion King." Disney hopes to achieve similar success to that of the film's predecessor, which has made history as both the number one animated movie and best-selling video of all time.
On October 13, Columbia TriStar Home Video released "Buster & Chauncey's Silent Night," a direct-to-video animated musical based on the true story of "Silent Night." The 48-minute film was produced by Buzz Potamkin and is Columbia TriStar's first in-house direct-to-video animated feature. Voice talent, directed by Susan Blu, includes the late Phil Hartman, Tom Arnold and Marie Osmond.
DreamWorks animated feature film, Antz has grossed over $36 million in the past 10 days since its U.S. theatrical release, topping two weeks box office charts. Reeling from this success, DreamWorks is developing a direct-to-video sequel to Antz. The film would, like its predecessor, be produced by computer animation studio Pacific Data Images (PDI). It is also being considered for theatrical release. Either way, a studio spokesperson confirmed that if the production is green lit, it would be 18-24 months before its release.
On October 8, McDonalds restaurants in the U.S. will start distributing a new animated video series starring the company spokes-clown, Ronald McDonald. All three of the productions were produced by Los Angeles-based animation studio, Klasky Csupo. Just in time for Halloween, the first release is a 40-minute video titled Scared Silly (directed by John Holmquist), featuring Ronald and friends on a camping trip to a haunted house. It will be available for $3.49 with any purchase.
Warner Bros. Family Entertainment has released a new, direct-to-video animated title, Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island. The production was done at Hanna-Barbera (now a part of the Warner Bros. family), executive produced by Jean MacCurdy, produced by Cos Anzilotti with supervising producer Davis Doi, directed by Jim Stenstrum and written by Glenn Leopold. The video was released today and is priced at U.S. $19.96. A huge promotional push for the video includes tie-ins with 1-800-COLLECT, Wendys Restaurants, Cartoon Network, LEGO and Nascar.
Golden Books Family Entertainment has signed a deal with animation production company Varga tvc Ltd. (formed last year between Hungarian Varga Studios and TVC London) to produce animated video specials based on the Golden Books titles: "The Poky Little Puppy," "Saggy Baggy Elephant" and "Scuffy the Tugboat." The three videos will be available by Spring 1999. All animation production will take place at Varga tvc's London studio, with a production team that includes writer Bruce Talkington, creative director Dave Unwin and director Ramon Modiano.
On September 1, Buena Vista Home Entertainment released the English-language dubbed video of Hayao Miyazaki's animated feature, "Kiki's Delivery Service." The family film tells the story of a 13-year-old witch named Kiki. The English voice track features Kirsten Dunst, Phil Hartman, Matthew Lawrence, Debbie Reynolds and Janeane Garofolo. The film is 104 minutes, rated "G" and priced at U.S. $19.99. The Walt Disney Company will distribute several more of Miyazaki's films, including "Princess Mononoke" (theatrical release by Miramax, summer 1999) and "Castle in the Sky" (video release 1999).
Fall is upon us, and so is the season of many video releases. Following is a list of upcoming U.S. video releases of Japanese anime films. A.D.V. Films and their label Urban Vision will release "Tekkamen Blade II - Stage 3: Final Encounter" (9/22/98), "Dark Warrior" (10/06/98), "MAPS 1 & 2" (10/06/98), "Dark Warrior - First Strike" (10/06/98), "Cutey Honey Volume 2" (10/13/98), "Delinquent in Drag" (10/20/98), "Ruin Explorers 2" (10/27/98) and "Slayers: Dragon Slave!" (11/10/98).
Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainmentis flooding the kids home video market with eight new releases priced atU.S. $5.98 (Canadian $7.98) each. The titles being released on April 7 arere-releases of the TV series episodes and vault films: "The Adventures ofRaggedy Ann & Andy: The Mabbit Adventure," "Bobby's World: Roger 'n Me,""Cinderella," "Life With Louie: For Pete's Sake," "Life With Louie: TheMasked Chess Boy," "Snow White" and "The Tick: The Tick vs. Arthur." In
Disney-owned DIC Entertainment will provide fivehours of animation programming a week to Paxson Communications' new U.S.family entertainment network, Pax Net. An exclusive, two year agreementreached between the two companies names DIC as the sole provider ofchildren's programming for the television network group, which will launchon August 31, 1998. Much of the programming will be from DIC's existinganimation library, packaged as an educational program block called"Freddy's Firehouse," which will air for three hours on Saturday and two