‘Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes’ Due on Regular Digital Jan. 30, Disc Feb. 13

The “Hunger Games” franchise prequel The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes arrives for regular digital purchase Jan. 30 (after a premium run) and 4K Ultra HD (plus Blu-ray plus digital), Blu-ray (plus DVD plus digital), and DVD Feb. 13 from Lionsgate.

The film has earned more than $325 million at the box office worldwide.

Based on the Suzanne Collins novel of the same name, the film stars Tom Blyth (Benediction), Golden Globe winner Rachel Zegler (Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, West Side Story, 2022), Emmy Award winner Peter Dinklage (Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series, “Game of Thrones,” 2019), Hunter Schafer (“Euphoria”), Josh Andrés Rivera (West Side Story), Jason Schwartzman (Asteroid City), and Viola Davis (Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series, “How to Get Away with Murder,” 2015; Grammy for Best Audio Book, Narration, and Storytelling Recording, Finding Me, 2023; Oscar for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role, Fences, 2017; Tony for Best Actress (Leading Role – Play, Fences, 2010).

In The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes, three-time Grammy Award winner and six-time nominee singer-songwriter Olivia Rodrigo joins the franchise, co-writing and performing the preeminent original song “Can’t Catch Me Now.”

Set 64 years before Katniss Everdeen volunteered as tribute, and decades before Coriolanus Snow became the tyrannical President of Panem, The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes follows a young Coriolanus as he unites with Lucy Gray Baird in the 10th Hunger Games, and battles his instincts for both good and evil.

Also on Feb. 13, Walmart will have an exclusive 4K Ultra HD (plus Blu-ray plus digital) Steelbook with special artwork.

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4K UHD / BLU-RAY SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Audio Commentary with Producer-Director Francis Lawrence and Producer Nina Jacobson (Not Included on Digital)
  • “Predator or Prey: Making The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes” eight-Part Documentary (Not Included on Digital)
  • “The Hanging Tree” Song by Rachel Zegler
  • A Letter to the Fans
  • Theatrical Trailers (4K Only)

 

DVD SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Audio Commentary with Producer-Director Francis Lawrence and Producer Nina Jacobson
  • Featurettes: “Welcome Back to Panem,” “The Music of The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes,” “The Costumes of The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes” and The Casting of The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes”
  • “The Hanging Tree” Song by Rachel Zegler
  • A Letter to the Fans

APPLE TV SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Finding a Different Sound: The Music of The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes
  • Featurettes: “Welcome Back to Panem,” “The Music of The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes,” “The Costumes of The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes” and The Casting of The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes”
  • “The Hanging Tree” Song by Rachel Zegler
  • A Letter to the Fans

AMAZON BLU-RAY EXCLUSIVE SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Imagining a Retro Future: The Look of The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes
  • The Arc of a Tyrant: Creating Coriolanus Snow in The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes

‘TMNT: Mutant Mayhem’ Disc Release Party

Paramount celebrated the Blu-ray Disc and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem with a pizza party at Pizzeria Mozza in Los Angeles Dec. 14. The party followed an LA Tastemaker screening of the film, which grossed nearly $120 million at the domestic box office. Among the celebrities in attendance were Seth Rogen, who co-wrote the story and screenplay. A reboot of the “Turtles” film franchise, TMNT: Mutant Mayhem follows the four Turtles as they encounter an army of mutants while on the hunt for a mysterious crime syndicate.

Classic 1984 Film ‘Footloose’ Headed to 4K Ultra HD Feb. 13

Paramount Home Entertainment will release the 1980s classic Footloose — about a city boy whose rebellious love for music and dancing shakes up a small town — on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc Feb. 13. 

In the film, which was originally released on Feb. 17, 1984, city-boy Ren McCormick (Kevin Bacon) is new to an uptight small town where dancing has been banned. Ren quickly makes a new best friend in Willard (Chris Penn) and falls fast for the minister’s daughter (Lori Singer), but his love for music and dancing gets him into hot water.

Directed by Herbert Ross and written by composer and writer Dean Pitchford, the film earned $80 million at the domestic box office.  The supporting cast also includes Dianne Wiest, John Lithgow and Sarah Jessica Parker.

The soundtrack features Kenny Loggins, Shalamar, Deniece Williams, Bonnie Tyler, Quiet Riot, John Mellencamp, Foreigner, and more.  Both the songs “Footloose” and “Let’s Hear It for the Boy” were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Music, Original Song.

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Newly remastered, Footloose will be available in a two-disc 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray set or a collectible Steelbook with artwork designed to look like an ’80s Walkman.  Both sets include access to a digital copy of the film and the included Blu-ray includes the legacy bonus content below:

  • commentary by Craig Zadan and Dean Pitchford
  • commentary by Kevin Bacon
  • “Let’s Dance! Kevin Bacon on Footloose
  • “From Bomont to the Big Apple: An Interview with Sarah Jessica Parker”
  • “Remembering Willard”
  • Kevin Bacon’s screen test
  • Kevin Bacon costume montage
  • Footloose: A Modern Musical – Part 1″
  • Footloose: A Modern Musical – Part 2″
  • Footloose: Songs That Tell a Story”
  • the theatrical trailer

‘Five Nights at Freddy’s’ Headed to Digital Nov. 28, Disc Dec. 12

Blumhouse’s Five Nights at Freddy’s, a horror film based on the video game series created by Scott Cawthon, will be available on digital Nov. 28 and on Blu-ray Disc, DVD and 4K Ultra HD Dec. 12 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.

The film, which has earned $272 million at the global box office, streamed simultaneously on Peacock.

In the film, recently fired and desperate for work so that he can keep custody of his little sister, Mike (Josh Hutcherson, “The Hunger Games” franchise) agrees to take a position as a night security guard at an abandoned theme restaurant: Freddy Fazbear’s Pizzeria. But Mike soon discovers that nothing at Freddy’s is what it seems. Mike’s nights at Freddy’s will lead him into unexplainable encounters with the supernatural and drag him into the black heart of an unspeakable nightmare.

The film also stars Matthew Lillard (Scream, Scooby-Doo), Elizabeth Lail (“You,” “Once Upon a Time”), Kat Conner Sterling (A Week Away, “The Gifted”), Piper Rubio (“Unstable”) and Mary Stuart Masterson (Fried Green Tomatoes, Benny & Joon).

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Bonus content includes a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the animatronics and recreating the immersive world of the game.

Football Classic ‘Varsity Blues’ to Debut on 4K Ultra HD Jan. 9

Paramount Home Entertainment will release the 1999 football classic Varsity Blues for the first time on 4K Ultra HD on Jan. 9.

In the coming-of-age story originally released on Jan. 15, 1999, at first backup quarterback Jonathan “Mox” Moxom (James Van Der Beek) is nowhere close to being a star athlete. Perfectly content to stay on the bench, he has no time for coach Kilmer’s (Jon Voight) win-at-all-cost strategies. But when the starting quarterback (Paul Walker) is injured, Mox is in the game and confronting the pressures and temptations of gridiron glory. Soon everyone will realize there’s not just a new star quarterback in town, there’s a new kind of hero.

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Newly remastered from the original camera negative, Varsity Blues will be available in a two-disc 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray set that also includes access to a digital copy of the film. The Blu-ray includes legacy bonus content, including commentary with director Brian Robbins and producers Tova Laiter and Mike Tollin; “Football is a Way of Life: The Making of Varsity Blues“; “Two-A-Days: The Ellis Way”; “QB Game Analysis”; “Billy Bob with No Bacon”; and the theatrical trailer.

Horror Flick ‘Count Dracula’ Among Titles Coming to Disc Nov. 28 From Severin and MVD

The 1970 horror flick Count Dracula, starring Christopher Lee, and the 1980 gorefest Doctor Butcher M.D./Zombie Holocaust are due Nov. 28 on 4K Ultra HD from Severin Films and MVD Entertainment Group. The making-of documentary double feature Vampir-Cuadecuc/Umbracle will also be released on Blu-ray Disc Nov. 28.

In early 2023, a Madrid film archivist made a startling discovery: the uncut camera negative of Count Dracula, in pristine condition and untouched for more than 50 years. The gothic masterpiece from writer/director Jess Franco features Christopher Lee as the Count, Herbert Lom as Van Helsing, Soledad Miranda as Lucy, Maria Rohm as Mina and Klaus Kinski as Renfield with an eerie Bruno Nicolai score. With the film newly scanned in 4K, the release includes more than five total hours of special features, including the U.S. premiere of Carles Prats’ 2017 documentary Dracula Barcelona, which chronicles the simultaneous filming of Vampir-Cuadecuc by Pere Portabella and Franco’s horror classic. Special features on the Ultra HD disc include audio commentary with horror historian David Del Valle and actress Maria Rohm and the trailer. Special features on an included Blu-ray Disc include the same audio commentary; an illustrated 1973 Christopher Lee audio interview with filmmaker Donald Glut; “Beloved Count,” an interview with director Jess Franco; “Handsome Harker,” an interview with actor Fred Williams; an interview with actor Jack Taylor; “Stake Holders,” an appreciation by filmmaker Christophe Gans; and the trailer. On another Blu-ray are “Dracula Barcelona,” a 2017 documentary (90 mins); “Jess Franco’s Bram Stoker’s Count Dracula —Stephen Thrower on Count Dracula”; the “In the Land of Franco” bonus sequence with Alain Petit and Stephen Thrower; and alternate title sequences. The final disc is a soundtrack CD.

Sparking riots on 42nd Street, the film was originally known as Zombie Holocaust until a notorious American distributor would then re-edit and re-title it as Doctor Burcher M.D. and and re-release it. Ian McCulloch (Zombie), Alexandra Delli Colli (The New York Ripper), Sherry Buchanan (Tentacles) and Donald O’Brien (Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals) star in this unabashed EuroTrash orgy of gut-munching, eyeball-gouging and face-chopping. Severin Films now presents both films scanned in 4K from original vault elements discovered in Manhattan and Rome with four hours of archival and new special features. Special features on Doctor Butcher M.D. include an interview with Aquarius Releasing’s Terry Levene; Rue Morgue’s Michael Gingold tours New York Locations of Italian horror; a nostalgic tour of 42nd Street with Temple of Schlock’s Chris Poggiali and filmmaker Roy Frumkes; “Tales That Tore Our Heart Out,” in which filmmakers Frank Farel and Brendan Faulkner discuss Unfinished Anthology Film; an interview with Gore Gazette editor and Butcher Mobile Barker Rick Sullivan; and an interview with editor Jim Markovic. Special features for Zombie Holocaust include an interview with star Ian McCulloch; an interview with SFX master Rosario Prestopino; “Filmmaker Enzo G. Castellari Remembers His Father, Director Marino Girolami”; an interview with SFX artist Maurizio Trani; an interview with actress Sherry Buchanan; and “New York Filming Locations: 1980 & 2015.”

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Vampir-Cuadecuc/Umbracle are having their North American Blu-ray premieres. Pere Portabella has been a pioneering movie producer and celebrated Spanish statesman, denounced by both the Franco dictatorship and The Vatican. But it’s his subversive work as a director that has rewritten the rules of genre narrative. In 1970, Portabella was invited by Jess Franco to make a behind-the-scenes documentary on the filming of Count Dracula. Instead, Vampir-Cuadecuc became a dreamlike deconstruction of myths, monsters and moviemaking featuring Christopher Lee, Herbert Lom and Soledad Miranda. Christopher Lee also stars in Portabella’s companion piece Umbracle, an unsettling journey through dread, violence and discontinuity with Lee at his most candid. Both films are now scanned in HD from Portabella’s own vault elements for the first time ever in America. Special features include “A Cinema of Vampires: Pere Portabella, Jess Franco and the School of Barcelona,” an interview with Spanish film scholar Dr. Álex Mendíbil; the Vampir-Cuadecuc trailer; and a booklet featuring text by Pere Portabella and film critics Jonathan Rosenbaum and Federico Karstulovich.

Actioner ‘Gran Turismo’ Headed to 4K UHD, Blu-ray and DVD Nov. 7

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment will release Gran Turismo: Based on a True Story on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and DVD Nov. 7.

It is already available on digital.

The film follows a team of underdogs — a struggling working-class gamer (Archie Madekwe), a failed former racecar driver (David Harbour), and an idealistic motorsport executive (Orlando Bloom) — who risk it all to take on the most elite sport in the world.

Special features on 4K, Blu-ray and digital include deleted and extended scenes; “The Engine: Driving the Visuals”; “The Pit Crew: Action and Stunts”; “The Garage: The Amazing Automobiles”; “The Plan: The True Story of Jann Mardenborough”; and “The Wheels: The Fast-Acting Cast.”

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Special features on DVD include “The Plan: The True Story of Jann Mardenborough” and “The Wheels: The Fast-Acting Cast.”

 

Lionsgate to Bow Walmart-Exclusive ‘Expendables’ Four-Title 4K Steelbook Collection Nov. 21

Lionsgate will release a Walmart exclusive “Expendables” Steelbook collection in 4K Ultra HD (plus Blu-ray and digital), including The Expendables, The Expendables 2, The Expendables 3 and Expend4ables, on Nov. 21.

The “Expendables” films star Sylvester Stallone (who also directed the first entry in the series) along with a cadre of action heroes. The series follows a group of combat vets turned mercenaries delivering justice the only way they know how. Featured stars in the films include Jason Statham, Jet Li, Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Harrison Ford, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Megan Fox and Dolph Lundgren.

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Each title includes special features.

The Expendables:

  • introduction to the film by Sylvester Stallone
  • Spike TV’s “Action: The Expendables
  • “Inferno: The Making of The Expendables”
  • “Sylvester Stallone: A Director in Action” featurette
  • “Sinner’s Prayer” music video by Sully Erna

The Expendables 2:

  • audio commentary with director Simon West
  • “Gods Of War: Assembling Earth’s Mightiest Antiheroes”
  • “Big Guns, Bigger Heroes: The 1980s and the Rise of the Action Film”
  • “On the Assault: The Real-Life Weaponry of The Expendables”
  • “Guns for Hire: The Real Expendables”
  • deleted scenes
  • gag reel

The Expendables 3:

  • theatrical version
  • unrated edition of the film (Blu-ray only)
  • The Expendables 3 documentary
  • “New Blood: Stacked and Jacked” featurette
  • “The Total Action Package” featurette
  • gag reel
  • “Christmas Runs the Gauntlet” extended scene

Expend4bles:

  • audio commentary with director Scott Waugh
  • “Bigger, Bolder, Badder: The Expendables in Action”
  • “More Than a Team: New Blood Meets Old Blood”
  • theatrical trailer

‘The Color Purple’ Debuting on 4K Ultra HD Disc and Digital Dec. 5

As part of the year-long celebration for the 100th anniversary of Warner Bros. Studio, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release the period drama The Color Purple (1985) from Academy Award-winning director Steven Spielberg (Schindler’s List, Saving Private Ryan) on 4K Ultra HD disc and digital for the first time Dec. 5.

The film, based on Alice Walker’s 1982 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name, stars Danny Glover, Adolph Caesar, Margaret Avery, Rae Dawn Chong, Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey in her film debut. It follows Southern Black woman Celie from 1909 to 1949 as she gradually gains self-respect and strives to educate herself and to find love — despite an abusive spouse and a society biased against her race and her sex.

The film was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actress (Whoopi Goldberg), Best Supporting Actress (Margaret Avery, Oprah Winfrey), Best Screenplay — Based on Material from Another Medium, Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, Best Makeup, Best Original Score and Best Original Song. 

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The release includes an Ultra HD Blu-ray disc with the theatrical version of the feature film in 4K with HDR and a digital download of the film. Extras on the disc include:

  • “Conversations with the Ancestors: The Color Purple from Book to Screen”
  • “A Collaboration of Spirits: Casting and Acting The Color Purple”
  • “Cultivating a Classic: The Making of The Color Purple”
  • “The Color Purple: The Musical”
  • teaser No. 1
  • teaser No. 2
  • the trailer

 

The digital release includes those extras plus “The Color Purple: A Bold New Take,” a featurette on the 2023 The Color Purple film.

James Cameron’s Remastered ‘Titanic’ to Bow on 4K Ultra HD Disc for First Time Dec. 5

Paramount Home Entertainment will release James Cameron’s 1997 blockbuster Titanic — the first movie to earn more than $1 billion at the global box office — for the first time on 4K Ultra HD disc Dec. 5.

The two-disc set will include the film on 4K Ultra HD and a Blu-ray Disc with more than five hours of new and legacy bonus content, including new interviews with Cameron, star Kate Winslet and producer Jon Landau. The set also includes access to a digital Ultra HD copy of the film.

Titanic will also debut in a limited-edition collector’s boxed set that includes all of the above along with the following exclusive collectibles in a slipcase:

  • A hardcover coffee table book detailing the making of the film’s most iconic scenes
  • A detailed schematic inspired by the actual ship blueprint, highlighting locations of key scenes
  • Movie prop reproductions of a boarding pass, launch viewing ticket, ship menus, and notes from Jack to Rose and Rose to Cal
  • Sheet music for the multi-award-winning hit “My Heart Will Go On”
     

The film follows the story of star-crossed lovers Cal and Rose (played by Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet) set against the backdrop of the legendary and ill-fated maiden voyage of the “unsinkable” ship Titanic. The film has generated more than $2.2 billion at the global box office to date.

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Bonus features on the Blu-ray Disc include:

  • “Titanic: Stories From the Heart” (new): Director James Cameron, producer Jon Landau and star Kate Winslet share memories and favorite moments and recount the challenges of making the film with film clips, photos and behind-the-scenes moments.
  • “Titanic: 25 Years Later with James Cameron”: Cameron explores the enduring myths and mysteries of the shipwreck, and mounts tests to see whether Jack could have fit on that raft and survived.
  • behind-the-scenes presentation hosted by Jon Landau (new): Jon Landau introduces a series of behind-the-scenes segments showcasing the making of the film.
  • trailer presentation hosted by Jon Landau (new): Landau shares an inside glimpse into the marketing of the film with a story of how a 4-minute trailer overseen by the filmmakers was delivered to theaters, instead of the original “action” trailer.
  • fan poster art (new)
  • “Reflections on Titanic” (four parts)
  • deleted scenes with optional commentary by Cameron
  • additional behind-the-scenes
  • deep-dive presentation narrated by Cameron
  • “$200,000,001: A Ship’s Odyssey” (the Titanic crew video)
  • videomatics
  • visual effects
  • music video “My Heart Will Go On” by Celine Dion
  • still galleries

 

Extras on the 4K Ultra HD disc include:

  • director commentary by Cameron
  • cast and crew commentary
  • historical commentary by Don Lynch and Ken Marschall