Fandango is celebrating the arrival of the iconic “Godfather” movies in 4K on its transactional VOD service Vudu with an exclusive “before and after restoration” video clip.
The clip shows a scene from The Godfather Part II with Al Pacino.
For the 50th anniversary of The Godfather, Francis Ford Coppola’s remastered and restored “The Godfather Trilogy” arrives on digital for the first time in 4K Ultra HD with Dolby Vision.
The classic film is available as a standalone or as part of the “Godfather” trilogy, featuring The Godfather Part II and The Godfather Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone. The Godfather is available on Vudu in 4K Ultra HD for a limited time for $12.99, while the trilogy is available in 4K Ultra HD for $29.99. Fans who previously bought the movies on Vudu prior to March 22 can upgrade to 4K Ultra HD with special pricing.
Filmmaker Mode — an Ultra HD TV setting designed to reproduce movie and TV content the way the creator intended — will get a new consumer education push in 2022, according to UHD Alliance president Michael Zink.
Introduced by the UHD Alliance in August 2019, Filmmaker Mode allows viewers to enjoy a more cinematic experience on their UHD TVs when watching content by disabling all post-processing (e.g. motion smoothing, etc.) so a movie or television show is displayed as it was intended by the filmmaker, preserving the correct aspect ratios, colors and frame rates. Among its supporters are Hisense (which highlighted the feature at CES), Panasonic (which also highlighted the feature on its flagship OLED TV), Samsung, LG, Skyworth, BenQ, Kaleidescape, Philips/TP Vision, and Amazon Prime Video, which was the first streaming service to announce support for Filmmaker Mode in 2020 and was the first streaming service to implement automatic switching to the Mode on all LG Smart TVs.
Filmmaker Mode is also supported by the Director’s Guild of America, the American Society of Cinematographers, the International Cinematographers Guild, the Film Foundation, and several top Hollywood directors, including Martin Scorsese.
“We are in this unique position of having a relatively comprehensive ecosystem,” Zink said.
The concurrent theatrical and streaming release of many films during the pandemic has increased creative support for Filmmaker Mode, he noted.
As part of the new focus on education, the UHD Alliance recently got a video assist from Dune director Denis Villeneuve, who discussed Filmmaker Mode as the best way to view the film in the home. Due to the pandemic, Dune was released concurrently in late October in theaters and on HBO Max, where a large audience would see the film for the first time streamed at home. The Alliance pushed the filmmaker’s video on social media in October in concert with the WarnerMedia, HBO Max and Dune promotional teams.
In another online education move, the Alliance enlisted professional TV calibration expert Vincent Teoh to release a YouTube video called “5 TV Settings That Should Be Illegal,” explaining the downsides of TV settings that harm picture quality and emphasizing the benefits of Filmmaker Mode. The YouTube video was viewed more than 800,000 times in two weeks, Zink said.
Meanwhile, the UHD Alliance continues to enlist more companies to adopt Filmmaker Mode. In recent developments, MediaTek will support Filmmaker Mode auto-switching (which employs the setting automatically on applicable content) on its chipsets. This makes it easier for manufacturers using the chipsets to implement the feature, so they “don’t have to reinvent the wheel,” Zink said.
Also, the new specification from APEX (the Airline Passenger Entertainment eXperience Association) was approved in 2021 with Filmmaker Mode as a mandatory requirement for in flight entertainment systems, meaning new systems on planes will offer flyers the setting on movies and TV shows viewed on flights. American Airlines in December 2021 announced implementation of the new system on transcontinental and international flights in 2023.
The UHD Alliance is continuing to work on expanding the Filmmaker Mode ecosystem.
“We’re talking to a number of other OTT services [to enlist support],” Zink said.
Also on the Alliance’s plate for the future are further interoperability testing and ambient light recommendations for Filmmaker Mode to offer the best picture in different viewing situations.
The drama Two Yellow Lines will be released on 4K digital Nov. 9 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.
In the film, veteran smokejumper Jack Elliot fells trees on a steep mountain slope high in the Montana wilderness when his phone rings. His estranged ex-wife can’t pick up their teenage daughter from camp in Wyoming. Jack hasn’t seen her in four years, ever since he lost his entire unit to a rogue wildfire.
Over the next five days, Jack and his daughter battle as they ride across the wild Montana landscape and sleep beneath a bounty of stars. Watching his baby grow into a woman, and seeing her hero shrink to a man, a battle that starts off face-to-face, slowly turns back-to-back.
The Shawshank Redemption will debut on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray combo pack and digital Sept. 14 from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.
The 1994 film received seven Oscar nominations, including Best Picture, Best Actor (Morgan Freeman), Best Original Score and Best Screenplay, and marked the feature directorial debut of its screenwriter Frank Darabont, nominated for his adapted screenplay.
Based on Stephen King’s novella Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption, the drama tells the story of Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins), a prominent banker unjustly convicted of murder and sentenced to life imprisonment at Maine’s Shawshank Prison. He is befriended by longtime convict Red (Freeman) who’s been in long enough to know the ropes and helps him cope with the frightening realities of prison life. As the two men grow closer, so does the sense of hope that can truly set them free.
In 2015, the United States Library of Congress selected The Shawshank Redemption for preservation in the National Film Registry.
The Shawshank Redemption Ultra HD Blu-ray combo pack contains the following previously released special features: commentary by Frank Darabont; “Hope Springs Eternal: A Look Back at The Shawshank Redemption”; “Shawshank: The Redeeming Feature”; “The SharkTank Redemption”; still galleries; “Bogs Takes a Fall” storyboards; and “New Fish Arrive” storyboards.
The Underworld 4K Ultra HD Collection will be released on Oct. 26 by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. The limited-edition gift set includes all five vampire films on 4K Ultra HD disc with high dynamic range and Dolby Atmos audio.
The films will also be available digitally in 4K with HDR.
The collection includes Underworld (in both theatrical and extended versions), Underworld: Evolution, Underworld: Rise of the Lycans, Underworld: Awakening and Underworld: Blood Wars, as well as hours of standard-definition and HD bonus content for all five films, including the “Underworld: Endless War” animated shorts.
Chronicling the eternal battle between vampires and Lycans, the series stars Kate Beckinsale as the vampire Selene.
The action film Mortal Kombat will be available for “premium” digital purchase at $24.99 on June 11, and on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD as well as for standard digital purchase on July 13 from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.
The film previously debuted in theaters and on streaming service HBO Max concurrently.
Directed by Simon McQuoid, the actioner stars Lewis Tan (TV’s “Into The Badlands”) as Cole Young, Jessica McNamee (The Meg) as Sonya Blade, Josh Lawson (The Little Death) as Kano, Tadanobu Asano (Battleship) as Lord Raiden, Mehcad Brooks (“True Blood”) as Jax, Ludi Lin (Power Rangers) as Liu Kang, with Chin Han (The Dark Knight) as Shang Tsung, Joe Taslim (The Raid: Redemption) as Bi-Han and Sub-Zero, and Hiroyuki Sanada (The Wolverine) as Hanzo Hasashi and Scorpion. Also featured are Max Huang as Kung Lao and Sisi Stringer (Bloody Hell) as Mileena.
In the film, MMA fighter Cole Young, accustomed to taking a beating for money, is unaware of his heritage — or why Outworld’s Sorcerer Shang Tsung has sent his best warrior, Sub-Zero, an otherworldly Cryomancer, to hunt him down. Fearing for his family’s safety, Cole goes in search of Sonya Blade at the direction of Jax, a Special Forces Major who bears the same strange dragon marking Cole was born with. Soon, he finds himself at the temple of Lord Raiden, an Elder God and the protector of Earthrealm, who grants sanctuary to those who bear the mark. Here, Cole trains with experienced warriors Liu Kang, Kung Lao and rogue mercenary Kano, as he prepares to stand with Earth’s greatest champions against the enemies from Outworld in a high stakes battle for the universe. But will Cole be pushed hard enough to unlock his arcana — the immense power from within his soul — in time to save not only his family, but to stop Outworld once and for all?
The Blu-ray, DVD and 4K combo pack will include deleted scenes.
The Blu-ray and 4K editions will also include the featurettes “From Game to Screen: The Making of Mortal Kombat,” “Mortal Kombat: Fan Favorite Characters,” “Fight Koreography,” “Into the Krypt: Easter Eggs of Mortal Kombat” and “Anatomy of a Scene.”
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release the family film Space Jam on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray combo pack and digital July 6 to celebrate the film’s 25th anniversary.
In the 1996 film, six-time NBA champion Michael Jordan and Looney Tunes’ Bugs Bunny collide in a future universe with Jordan as a live-action hero entering an animated world. Captured by Bugs Bunny to foil a ghastly gang of space creatures, Jordan must play the basketball game of his life to save the beloved cartoon heroes from a hideous kidnapping scheme.
The film also features Wayne Knight, Theresa Randle and the voice of Danny DeVito. Bill Murray, Larry Bird, Charles Barkley and Patrick Ewing appear as themselves.
Space Jam received an Annie Award for Best Individual Achievement: Technical Achievement and a Grammy Award for Best Song Written Specifically for a Motion Picture or for Television (1997).
The Space Jam Ultra HD Blu-ray combo pack contains previously released special features, including commentary from director Joe Pytka, Bugs Bunny (voiced by Billy West) and Daffy Duck (voiced by Dee Bradley Baker); the featurette “Jammin” with Bugs Bunny and Michael Jordan; and music videos including Seal’s “Fly Like an Eagle” and Monstars’ anthem “Hit ‘Em High.”
The 4K re-release is also timed for the sequel, Space Jam: A New Legacy, with LeBron James, which will be released July 16.
Godzilla vs. Kong will come out on “Premium Digital” May 21 and on DVD, 4K Ultra HD combo pack and Blu-ray combo pack June 15 from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.
The May 21 “Premium Digital Ownership” release will be available at $29.99.
The film was previously released concurrently in theaters and on the streaming service HBO Max. It has earned more than $415 million at the global box office.
From Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros. Pictures, the film stars Alexander Skarsgård (The Legend of Tarzan, TV’s “Big Little Lies”) and Millie Bobby Brown (TV’s “Stranger Things”). In this installment in the MonsterVerse, Kong and his protectors undertake a perilous journey to find his true home, and with them is Jia, a young orphaned girl with whom he has formed a unique and powerful bond. But they unexpectedly find themselves in the path of an enraged Godzilla, cutting a swath of destruction across the globe. The epic clash between the two titans — instigated by unseen forces — is only the beginning of the mystery that lies deep within the core of the Earth.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray disc will feature both Dolby Vision and HDR10+ dynamic metadata HDR formats, as well as Dolby Atmos sound.
Special features include “Kong Discovers Hollow Earth”; “Kong Leaves Home”; “Behold Kong’s Temple”; “The Evolution of Kong, Eighth Wonder of the World”; “Godzilla Attacks”; “The Phenomenon of GŌJIRA, King of the Monsters”; “Round One: Battle at Sea”; “Round Two: One Will Fall”; “Titan Tag Team: The God and the King”; “The Rise of MechaGodzilla”; and commentary by Wingard (only on 4K and Blu-ray).
The science-fiction thriller Voyagers will arrive on digital and digital 4K Ultra HD June 8, and on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray combo pack, Blu-ray combo pack, DVD and VOD June 15 from Lionsgate.
Written and directed by Neil Burger (Limitless, The Illusionist), the film stars Colin Farrell, Tye Sheridan (X-Men franchise), Lily-Rose Depp (The King), Fionn Whitehead (Dunkirk), Chanté Adams (Roxanne Roxanne), Isaac Hempstead Wright (“Game of Thrones”), Viveik Kalra (Blinded by the Light), Archie Madekwe (Midsommar), Quintessa Swindell (“Trinkets”) and Madison Hu (“Bizaardvark”).
In the film, with the future of the human race at stake, a group of young men and women, bred for intelligence and obedience, embark on an expedition to colonize a distant planet. But when they uncover disturbing secrets about the mission, they defy their training and begin to explore their most primitive natures. As life on the ship descends into chaos, they’re consumed by fear, lust and the insatiable hunger for power.
Special features include:
“Born for This: The Cast of Voyagers” featurette;
“Against Type: Unlearning Human Nature” featurette;
“Survival of the Fittest: The Physicality of Voyagers” featurette;
“On the Surface: The Visual Style of Voyagers” featurette; and
The family classic Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory will be released on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray combo pack and 4K digital June 29 from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment for its 50th anniversary.
Directed by Mel Stuart from a screenplay by Roald Dahl, Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory is an adaptation of Dahl’s 1964 novel “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory stars Gene Wilder as Wily Wonka, Jack Albertson as Grandpa Joe, Peter Ostrum as Charlie Bucket, Roy Kinnear as Mr. Salt, Julie Dawn Cole as Veruca Salt, Leonard Stone as Mr. Beauregarde, Denise Nickerson as Violet Beauregarde, Dodo Denney as Mrs. Teevee and Paris Themmen as Mike Teevee.
The musical follows a boy named Charlie who wins a whirlwind tour of Willy’s incredible, edible realm of chocolate waterfalls, elfish Oompa-Loompas and industrial-sized confections.