Final ‘Maze Runner’ Installment Due on Digital April 10, Disc April 24

Maze Runner: The Death Cure, the final installment in the series based on the books, will be released on digital and Movies Anywhere April 10 and 4K Ultra HD Disc, Blu-ray Disc and DVD April 24 from Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.

The film earned $57.4 million at the box office.

Fans who purchase Maze Runner: The Death Cure on disc will get an exclusive 24-page prequel origins comic book written by screenwriter T.S. Nowlin. The trilogy boxed set, also due April 24 on Blu-ray and DVD, includes the three films in the series and the exclusive comic book. The Blu-ray trilogy will include an exclusive bandana chosen by fans.

In the conclusion to the “Maze Runner” saga, Thomas leads his group of escaped Gladers on their final mission. To save their friends, they must break into the legendary Last City, a labyrinth that may turn out to be the deadliest maze of all.

Release special features include:

  • Four featurettes, “The Final Run,” “Dystopia,” “Allies Reunited,” “A Look Back” and “Going Out on Top” (Blu-ray and digital only);
  • Deleted and extended scenes with optional audio commentary by Wes Ball, T.S. Nowlin and Joe Hartwick Jr. (Blu-ray and digital only);
  • A gag reel (Blu-ray and digital only);
  • Visual effects with optional commentary (Blu-ray and digital only);
  • Audio commentary by Wes Ball, T.S. Nowlin and Joe Hartwick Jr. (on DVD, Blu-ray, UHD, and digital, but not boxed set); and
  • Picture gallery of more than 300 images (Blu-ray and digital).

Movies Anywhere Adds FandangoNow

Digital movie collection service Movies Anywhere has added FandangoNow, Fandango’s on-demand video service, as its fifth digital retail partner.

Amazon Prime Video, Google Play, iTunes and Vudu were partnered with the service at launch last year.

FandangoNow is available on more than 200 million connected devices. The deal allows consumers to incorporate digital movies purchased and redeemed through FandangoNow alongside their titles from other participating digital retailers.

“FandangoNow is a top retailer in the space. We think they are doing some really cool and innovative things,” said Karin Gilford, GM, Movies Anywhere. “It marks the progress that Movies Anywhere is making to continue on our path

of launching the service on more platforms, adding retailers and content over time.”

“Movies Anywhere provides a great mechanism to further advance the move from physical disc to digital home entertainment by just reducing friction, reducing barriers for consumers to try digital,” said Fandango’s Adam Rockmore. “They can try it out at different retailers and then know that their library can be used on Movies Anywhere or any retailer of choice.”

Movies Anywhere has made digital movie collection easier than have past services, such as UltraViolet, he said.

“Interoperability is what UltraViolet tried, and I think this is a better direction ultimately,” Rockmore said. “We’re pleased to be part of it.”

Cloud-based movie collection service Movies Anywhere offers consumers access to a library of nearly 7,500 digital movies.

Consumers have used the app to store more than 100 million movies to date, Gilford said. At CES in January, the service, which launched in October 2017, had tallied 80 Million movies.

“I think it’s just a testament to the high-quality nature of what we launched and obviously to the demand for this sort of functionality,” Gilford said.

Movies Anywhere includes titles from Sony Pictures Entertainment, The Walt Disney Studios (encompassing Disney, Pixar, Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm), Twentieth Century Fox Film, Universal Pictures (including DreamWorks and Illumination Entertainment) and Warner Bros. Paramount and Lionsgate are not yet participating studios.

“We continue to talk with all the additional content providers in the space,” Gilford said, adding that she’s “optimistic that they’ll join.”

Likewise, Movies Anywhere is talking to other digital retailers about joining the service.

“We are in talks with other retailers,” Gilford said. “We’re not ready to announce anyone else, but you can expect additional announcements in the retail space this year.”

To celebrate the partnership, Movies Anywhere has added profile picture options. Consumers who purchase Star Wars: The Last Jedi (due on digital March 13) can choose from the Rebel Alliance Starbird, a Stormtrooper or the First Order emblem as their avatar on the service.

Rockmore said FandangoNow wanted to tie the launch of the partnership to a big title, making the digital street date of Last Jedi the perfect opportunity. FandangoNow will be promoting the Movies Anywhere partnership on its site and via communications with consumers.


South Korea’s ‘A Taxi Driver’ Coming to Blu-ray April 17

A Taxi Driver, South Korea’s official entry in the 2018 Academy Awards best foreign language film category, debuts on Blu-ray April 17 from Well Go USA Entertainment.

Based on a true story, the film follows a taxi driver from Seoul who accidentally gets involved in a German journalist’s reporting of the events of the Gwangju Uprising in 1980. They arrive to find a city under siege by the military government, with the citizens, led by a determined group of college students, rising up to demand freedom. What began as an easy fare becomes a life-or-death struggle in the midst of the Gwangju Uprising, a critical event in the history of modern South Korea.

The title retails at $29.98.

‘Gunsmoke,’ ‘Jericho’ and ‘The Invaders’ Sets Coming to DVD

CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount Home Media Distribution will release Gunsmoke: The Thirteenth Season, Volumes One and Two on DVD May 22, and Jericho: The Complete Series and The Invaders: The Complete Series on DVD June 5.

Gunsmoke: The Thirteenth Season, Volume One and Volume Two, starring Emmy Award nominee James Arness as the legendary Marshal Matt Dillon, follows Dillion as he corrals dangerous outlaws and deals with problems of the Wild West: epic gunfights, brawls, cold-blooded murderers and bank robbers. The set feature 26 full-color episodes from the 1967-1968 season, alongside original episodic trailers.

Jericho: The Complete Series is a drama about what happens when a nuclear mushroom cloud suddenly appears on the horizon, plunging the residents of a small Kansas town into chaos, leaving them completely isolated and wondering if they’re the only Americans left alive.

In The Invaders: The Complete Series, architect David Vincent (Roy Thinnes) has stumbled upon the secret that aliens from a doomed planet are infiltrating the Earth. After witnessing their spaceship land, Vincent tries to warn the authorities, who believe he’s crazy or have already been compromised by the Invaders, who take on human form. The set features all 43 episodes of the original series, plus special features and commentary by the series creator.


‘Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’ Due on Disc and Digital April 24 from Sony

Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool, starring Annette Bening as aging 1950s-era movie star Gloria Grahame, will hit digital and DVD April 24 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

The film, based on a true story by Peter Turner, follows the 1978 romance that sparked in Liverpool, England, between a young actor (Jamie Bell) and Grahame. It also stars Julie Walters and Vanessa Redgrave.

Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool received three BAFTA Film Award nominations, including Best Leading Actress (Bening), Best Leading Actor (Bell) and Best Adapted Screenplay (Matt Greenhalgh), in addition to four British Independent Film Award nominations, including Best Actor (Bell) and Best Supporting Actress (Walters). The San Francisco Film Critics Circle and London Critics Circle Film Awards each nominated Annette Bening’s performance, with her winning Best Actress at the AARP Movies for Grownups Awards.

The DVD release includes the music video for “You Shouldn’t Look at Me That Way” by Elvis Costello; film commentary with director Paul McGuigan, producer Barbara Broccoli and Turner; and four featurettes: “Elvis Costello Performance & Conversation,” “Making of the Music Video: ‘You Shouldn’t Look At Me That Way,’” “In Conversation with Annette Bening, Jamie Bell, Paul McGuigan & Peter Turner,” and “Annette Bening on Gloria Grahame.”

‘Carol Burnett Show’ Lost Episodes to Be Released Digitally for the First Time

Time Life will release The Carol Burnett Show: The Lost Episodes, Volumes 1-3 on both iTunes and Amazon March 9.

The three “Best of” compilations have never before available on any digital platform and feature rarely-seen episodes from the first five years of the series.

The compilations will be specially priced the first week of release at $9.99, with individual episodes available at $1.99 each. Following that, the compilations will be available at $14.99.

From 1967 to 1978, “The Carol Burnett Show” aired on CBS with a blend of comedy, song and dance. Burnett and her cast of comic actors — Harvey Korman, Vicki Lawrence, Lyle Waggoner, and later Tim Conway and Dick Van Dyke — entertained millions each week, joined by some of the biggest stars in the business. Ad-libs and the occasional flubbed line brought a spontaneity to the screen that was absent from most other variety shows. The Emmy Award-winning show survived the changing tastes of TV audiences to run 11 seasons and become one of the most iconic TV variety shows in history.

Volume 1 includes such classic sketches as “Carol and Sis,” “The Charwoman,” and “As the Stomach Turns”; among the guest stars featured are Lucille Ball, Eddie Albert, Chita Rivera, Bob Newhart, Jim Nabors, Paul Lynde, Bing Crosby, Don Adams, Phyllis Diller, Andy Griffith, Bernadette Peters and Cass Elliot.

Volume 2 features a “Salute to Warner Brothers” with Mel Tormé and Soupy Sales, Carol’s impersonation of Joan Crawford and the classic sketch, “The Ham Actors.” Showbiz icons and performers appearing include Jonathan Winters, Dionne Warwick, Joan Rivers, Sonny & Cher, Nanette Fabray, Shirley Jones, Ken Berry and a special cameo by Ronald Reagan.

Volume 3 includes more “Charwoman”; Harvey, Carol, Lyle and Lucille Ball lampooning modern morality in their version of the hit movie Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice; and Tim Conway’s “Oldest Man” masterminding a jewelry heist. Guest stars featured in this volume include Ray Charles, George Carlin, Mike Douglas, Martha Raye, Lana Turner and Ricardo Montalban.

Time Life has also released The Best of the Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts: Volumes 1-3 on iTunes, and plans more digital releases for 2018.

FilmRise’s Ad-Supported Roku Channel Adds Classic Carsey-Werner TV Shows

FilmRise has launched several classic Carsey-Werner TV shows on its ad-supported Roku streaming channel, including the “3rd Rock From the Sun.”

The FilmRise channel ranks at No. 15 among top free channels on the platform, according to a release from the company. The channel generates more than 300 million monthly ad impressions and reaches nearly 20 million users who can watch movies and TV on demand for free, according to the release.

FilmRise will soon launch ad-supported channels on Amazon Fire TV, Xbox, Apple TV, and smart TVs such as Vizio, among other platforms, and is currently in development on iOS and Android for mobile viewing via worldwide apps.

Other Carsey-Werner sitcoms available on the Roku channel include “Cybill,” “Grace Under Fire” and “Grounded for Life.”

“FilmRise’s tremendous growth on Roku sheds light on the power of ad-supported free digital streaming,” said Danny Fisher, CEO of FilmRise. “By bringing our vast library of quality content to viewers who don’t wish to pay a transactional or subscription fee, we’ve unlocked the potential to reach new and diverse audiences who want to experience the best in film and TV — including timeless TV series and iconic movies.”

Apple, Disney and YouTube Top Millennial Brands in New Report

Apple, Disney and YouTube, respectively, ranked as the top three most “intimate” brands among millennials, according to MBLM’s Brand Intimacy 2018 Report, which is the largest study of brands based on emotions. Brand intimacy leverages and strengthens the emotional bonds between a person and a brand.

“We were surprised and pleased to see YouTube as an addition to the top three most intimate brands for millennials this year,” stated Mario Natarelli, managing partner, MBLM. “We believe its rise is due to our culture’s continued need for escape and the brand’s immediate, diverse content, personalities and growing offerings in movies and live TV. YouTube is clearly an established ritual in the lives of many millennials today.”

By comparison, in MBLM’s 2017 report, Disney placed first, followed by Amazon and Netflix.

The other brands that rounded out the top 10 were Target, Amazon, Nintendo, Google, Xbox, Netflix and Whole Foods.

The age group of 18-24-year-olds had a slightly different mix of top companies. The top 10 for that group were Apple, Amazon, YouTube, PlayStation, Starbucks, Nintendo, Google, Netflix, Coca Cola and Walmart.

The report analyzed the responses of 6,000 consumers and 54,000 brand evaluations across 15 industries in the United States, Mexico and the United Arab Emirates. The full report will be released on March 13, 2018.

Fandango Survey Finds Women Prefer Action to Romance and Want More Diversity in Film

Women like action movies more than romances and prefer diversity in casts and filmmakers, according to a Fandango survey of more than 3,000 female moviegoers, ages 18-54, released to celebrate International Women’s Day and the start of the SXSW Film Festival,

Fandango correspondent Alicia Malone will discuss the survey results on her SXSW panel, “The Female Voices of Film Twitter,” March 11 the Austin Convention Center.

“It’s clear from our survey that women want more female-driven stories told by female writers and directors on the big screen,” said Malone, author of the new book, Backwards & In Heels: The Past, Present and Future of Women Working in Film, in a statement. “Contrary to the age-old Hollywood belief, women are not just looking for romance at the cinema. In fact, our survey shows that female moviegoers prefer action movies to romantic comedies as their genre of choice.”

The majority of women surveyed chose action movies (with 22% of the vote) as their favorite movie genre, while only 9% chose romance or romantic comedy as their favorite genre. Also, 82% said they were more inclined to see a movie with dynamic female characters, 75% said they prefer to watch movies with diverse casts and 57% said they prefer female-driven stories to be told by female filmmakers/writers.

Survey results on women’s moviegoing habits were:

  • 85% are the decision-makers when picking movies for friends and family.
  • 73% prefer to watch movies on the big screen.
  • 68% prefer to buy their movie tickets in advance.
  • 64% choose to go to the movies for their girls’ nights out.
  • 62% look for reserved seating when buying tickets.
  • 60% get their movie information from social media.
  • 57% purchase the tickets for their movie dates.

Views on women in film, according to the survey:

  • 79% believe the “Time’s Up” movement will have a tangible impact on women working in Hollywood.
  • 77% contend that female characters are often stereotyped in blockbusters.
  • 75% would like to see more female ensembles in the movies.
  • 62% feel that women are not equally represented in big screen roles.

Separately, Fandango analyzed its ticketing data, which showed:

  • 52% of Fandango’s overall tickets are purchased by women.
  • 49% of Fandango’s Black Panther tickets to date have been purchased by women.
  • 41% of Fandango’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi tickets were purchased by women.
  • 56% of Fandango’s Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle tickets were purchased by women.

To celebrate International Women’s Day, FandangoNow, Fandango’s premium on-demand video platform, is launching Alicia Malone’s curated list of classic movies directed by female filmmakers, from Lady Bird to Lost in Translation and inspired by Malone’s new book.

Steven Spielberg’s ‘Saving Private Ryan’ Due on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray May 8 for 20th Anniversary

Saving Private Ryan, the five-time Oscar winning World War II epic directed by Steven Spielberg, celebrates its 20th anniversary this year with a new 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo release on May 8 from Paramount Home Media Distribution.

Saving Private Ryan’s five Academy Awards included an award for Spielberg for Best Director. It also won two Golden Globes, Best Director and Best Motion Picture—Drama, and was named by the AFI as one of its 100 greatest American films. The film stars Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Edward Burns, Tom Sizemore, Ted Danson, Giovanni Ribisi, Vin Diesel, Paul Giamatti and Barry Pepper.

The film’s realistic recreation of the D-Day invasion is rendered in 4K Ultra HD with four times the resolution and more than double the number of colors available with full HD. The release also boasts a Dolby Atmos soundtrack remixed specifically for the home theater environment to place and move audio anywhere in the room (along with the original English 5.1 Dolby Digital mix), as well as Dolby Vision high dynamic range (HDR), which delivers greater brightness and contrast, as well as a fuller palette of rich colors.

The 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray Combo pack includes the film on both 4K Ultra HDand Blu-ray Disc, access to a digital copy, and a second Blu-ray with more than three hours of previously released bonus features that offer viewers a look at the real-life events that inspired the film and behind-the-scenes footage.