Clint Eastwood’s ‘Thunderbolt and Lightfoot’ to Make 4K Ultra HD Debut Sept. 26

The 1974 crime comedy-drama Thunderbolt and Lightfoot, starring Clint Eastwood and Jeff Bridges, is the latest big theatrical catalog film to be released on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray by an independent third-party distributor.

Kino Lorber will release the film, directed by Michael Cimino and distributed theatrically by United Artists, on Sept. 26 under its “Studio Classics” line. The film, one of Eastwood’s lesser-known titles, was last released on Blu-ray Disc in February 2014. Before that, it was issued on DVD in 2000 by MGM Home Video.

Thunderbolt and Lightfoot costars George Kennedy, Geoffrey Lewis, Catherine Bach, and Gary Busey.

Eastwood and Bridges star as a pair of modern-day outlaws. Thunderbolt (Eastwood) is a former thief whose razor-sharp wits and steely nerves made him a master of his profession, but he’s about to re-enter the criminal world with a new partner: Lightfoot (Bridges), a brash young drifter whose energy and exuberance give the veteran a new outlook on life. Their target: the seemingly impenetrable Montana Armored Depository.

After forming an uneasy alliance with Thunderbolt’s former partners in crime, Red Leary (Kennedy) and Eddie Goody (Lewis), they launch an amazing scheme that will test the limits of their endurance, and the power of their friendship.

Kino Lorber is packaging the film in a two-disc set. The first disc features the film in 4K Ultra HD, from a new HDR/Dolby Vision master created from a 4K scan of the 35mm original camera negative. The disc comes with an audio commentary by film critic Nick Pinkerton.

The second disc has the film on standard Blu-ray Disc, also from a new HD master, and also includes an audio commentary by Pinkerton, as well as a featurette on the film’s characters with director Cimino, radio and TV spots, and the original theatrical trailer.

Three Clint Eastwood Spaghetti Westerns Being Re-released on Blu-ray June 6

Kino Lorber on June 6 will re-release on Blu-ray Disc three classic 1960s “spaghetti Westerns” starring Clint Eastwood, from Italian director Sergio Leone.

The three films — A Fistful of Dollars, A Few Dollars More and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly — are collectively known as the “Man With No Name” trilogy.

A Fistful of Dollars (1964) finds Eastwood portraying a lean, cold-eyed, cobra-quick gunfighter who arrives in a grim and dusty border town where two rival bands of smugglers terrorize the impoverished citizens. Though he receives lucrative offers of employment from each gang, his loyalty cannot be bought. He accepts both jobs — and sets in motion a deadly plan to destroy the criminals, pitting one against the other in a series of brilliantly orchestrated setups, showdowns and deadly confrontations. A Fistful of Dollars costars Marianne Koch and Gian Maria Volontè.

The film’s restoration included over 24 hours of extensive shot-by-shot color grading of the logarithmic restored 4K files provided by L’Immagine Ritrovata. Bonus features include audio commentary by novelist and critic Tim Lucas and film historian Sir Christopher Frayling, an interview with actress Koch, then-and-now location comparisons, and a featurette with Eastwood on the experience of making the film, among others.

The sequel For a Few Dollars More (1965) stars Eastwood and Lee Van Cleef as two rival bounty hunters who join forces to bring murderous bandit El Indio (Gian Maria Volontè) and his vicious gang of criminals to justice. But all is not as it seems as their quest erupts in blistering gun battles, jailbreaks and bank holdups. The film also features a  score by Ennio Morricone  and co-stars Mario Brega, Luigi Pistilli, Aldo Sambrell and Klaus Kinski.

This film also was color edited, with the Blu-ray Disc including such bonus features as audio commentaries by Lucas and Frayling, a visit with filmmaker Alex Cox to location settings in Almería and Granada; Eastwood’s remembrances; and the original Amerian release version of the film.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) concludes the “Man With No Name” trilogy. Eastwood returns as the anonymous lead character, this time teaming with two gunslingers to pursue a cache of $200,000 and letting no one, not even warring factions in a civil war, stand in their way. Hailed as “the best directed movie of all time” by Quentin Tarantino, the film co-stars Van Cleef as Angel Eyes and Eli Wallach as Tuco.

The 162-minute theatrical cut was restored through 30 hours of extensive shot-by-shot color grading from a 4K scan of a 1967 IB tech print. Bonus content on the disc includes audio commentary by Lucas; a making-of documentary; deleted and alternate scenes; a Civil War documentary; and various other featurettes. 

‘Escape From Alcatraz’ Gets 4K Ultra HD Treatment From Kino Lorber

The 1979 Clint Eastwood classic Escape From Alcatraz is the next big Hollywood movie to get the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc treatment from independent film distributor Kino Lorber.

The disc will be released on Nov. 8 at a suggested retail price of $39.95. 

The film finds Eastwood and director Don Siegel reteaming for their fifth and final joint venture. Escape From Alcatraz tells the fascinating story of the only three men ever to escape from the notorious maximum-security prison at Alcatraz, an island in the middle of San Francisco Bay. In 29 years, the seemingly impenetrable federal penitentiary, which housed Al Capone and “Birdman” Robert Stroud, was only broken once — by three men never heard of again.

Eastwood portrays Frank Morris, the cunning bank robber who masterminded the elaborately detailed and, as far as anyone knows, ultimately successful, escape. Patrick McGoohan portrays the suspicious warden. Filmed on location in Alcatraz, this reenactment of a true story also co-stars Fred Ward, Roberts Blossom, Jack Thibeau, Paul Benjamin and Larry Hankin. The screenplay is by Richard Tuggle,  based on a book by J. Campbell Bruce.

The two-disc set features a new HDR/Dolby Vision Master by Paramount Pictures from a 4K scan of the original camera negative, as well as a standard Blu-ray Disc edition of the film.

There’s also a new audio commentary track by film historians Steve Mitchell and Nathaniel Thompson, as well as new interviews with screenwriter Tuggle and actor Hankin.

Eastwood’s ‘Cry Macho’ Available for Digital Purchase Nov. 5, on Disc Dec. 7

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release Cry Macho for premium digital ownership Nov. 5, followed by a release on Blu-ray Disc, DVD and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Dec. 7.

Cry Macho is directed by and also stars Clint Eastwood as an aging former rodeo star and washed-up horse breeder in 1979 who takes a job from an ex-boss (Dwight Yoakam) to bring the man’s young son (Eduardo Minett) home from Mexico. Forced to take the backroads on their way to Texas, the unlikely pair faces an unexpectedly challenging journey, during which the world-weary horseman finds unexpected connections and his own sense of redemption.

The cast also includes Natalia Traven, Fernanda Urrejola and Horacio Garcia Rojas. The screenplay was written by Nick Schenk and N. Richard Nash, based on the novel by Nash.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

It earned $10.2 million at the domestic box office during a theatrical run in which it was also available concurrently on the HBO Max streaming service for 31 days.

The disc editions include the featurette “Back in the Saddle: The Making of Cry Macho.” The Blu-ray editions also include the featurette “Macho and the Mustangs.”

The year 2021 marks the 50th year of Eastwood’s partnership with Warner Bros., starting with Dirty Harry.

Warner Celebrating Clint Eastwood on His 50th Year of Partnering With the Studio

As Clint Eastwood enters his eighth decade in the movies, WarnerMedia and Warner Bros. are celebrating the actor/producer/filmmaker with a series of initiatives, including Blu-ray and digital releases, a nine-episode docuseries, an HBO Max spotlight page, a curated exhibit of props and costumes spanning his 50-year association with Warner Bros., a theatrical re-release of select Eastwood films, and Clint Eastwood programming on Turner Classic Movies (TCM).

This year marks the 50th year of Eastwood’s partnership with Warner Bros. (“Dirty Harry”). Eastwood’s most recent film Cry Macho was released theatrically and on HBO Max on Sept. 17.

From Sept. 9 through Oct. 31, HBO Max will launch a spotlight page featuring select Clint Eastwood films, including the recently-released Cry Macho and seven episodes of the “Clint Eastwood — A Cinematic Legacy” docuseries.

WarnerMedia will launch “Clint Eastwood — A Cinematic Legacy” in Dallas, an exhibition of props and costumes from 50 years of filmmaking at Warner Bros. along with memorabilia from Clint Eastwood’s personal collection. Items include the Gran Torino car from the 2008 film Gran Torino, boxing gloves from 2004’s Million Dollar Baby, Bradley Cooper’s costume from 2014’s American Sniper, the saxophone from 1988’s Bird, Clint Eastwood’s director’s chair, and more.  The exhibition runs from Oct. 6 until Nov. 29 at the AT&T Global Headquarters Showcase in Dallas.

Oct. 16 and Oct. 23, Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will air Clint Eastwood programming including feature films and two episodes of the docuseries per night.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

This fall, CNN will feature editorial content highlighting Eastwood’s career and the docuseries.

Also this fall, in select theaters, Warner Bros. will re-release six of Eastwood’s classic films theatrically, each one paired with an episode from the docuseries that highlights the feature film. The films include American Sniper, Gran Torino, Dirty Harry, The Outlaw Josey Wales, Unforgiven and The Bridges of Madison County.

Follow us on Instagram

On Nov. 5, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release “Clint Eastwood — A Cinematic Legacy,” a nine-episode docuseries exploring Eastwood’s 50 years of filmmaking at Warner Bros. Episodes include:

  • Episode 1 –      “A Director’s Vision”
  • Episode 2 –      “The Heart of a Hero”
  • Episode 3 –      “Witness to History”
  • Episode 4 –      “Reinventing the Western”
  • Episode 5 –      “An Actor’s Director”
  • Episode 6 –      “No Holds Barred”
  • Episode 7 –      “Fighting for Justice”
  • Episode 8 –      “Courage Under Fire”
  • Episode 9 –      “Triple Threat”

 

The “Clint Eastwood – A Cinematic Legacy” docuseries will be available digitally and will also be available in select Blu-ray collections, including:

  • “Clint Eastwood 50th MGM 4-Film Collection” (A Fistful of Dollars, For a Few Dollars More, The Good, The Bad and the Ugly, Hang ‘Em High)
  • “Clint Eastwood 50th 5-Film Collection” (Dirty Harry, Magnum Force, The Enforcer, Sudden Impact, The Dead Pool)
  • “Clint Eastwood 50th 4-Film Collection” (The Mule, Gran Torino, American Sniper, Sully)
  • “Clint Eastwood 50th 2-Film Collection” (The Outlaw Josey Wales, Pale Rider)
  • “Clint Eastwood 50th 10-Film Collection” (Kelly’s Heroes, Where Eagles Dare, The Outlaw Josey Wales, Pale Rider, Heartbreak Ridge, Unforgiven, Dirty Harry, City Heat, Gran Torino, American Sniper)

Fox Nation Inks Warner Bros. Distribution Deal Featuring Clint Eastwood Titles

Fox Nation, Fox News Media’s conservative-leaning subscription streaming video-on-demand platform, has signed a distribution deal with Warner Bros. Pictures showcasing Clint Eastwood movies and documentaries.

In August, Fox Nation will begin to offer six movies from the 91-year-old actor/director icon, in addition to two original Eastwood-themed documentaries. In January 2022, the platform will also feature five Warner Bros. films in a “Who Can Forget The ’80s” catalog package.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Movies streaming on Fox Nation include Dirty Harry, The Enforcer, Sudden Impact, The Dead Pool, Pale Rider and Heartbreak Ridge.

Eastwood gained legendary status among conservative voters after speaking at the 2012 Republican National Convention. The actor also criticized former President Trump for his social media posts and personal attacks.

“I would personally like for him to not bring himself to that level,” Eastwood told The Wall Street Journal in 2020.

“Clint Eastwood is somebody that our audience holds in very high esteem and is very iconic. … It’s all about the data,” Jason Klarman, Fox Nation president, said in a media statement. “We know when they are watching us and what they are going to watch.”

Is Clint Eastwood Closing the Book on 60+ Year Career?

NEWS ANALYSIS — Clint Eastwood, the uniquely American cultural and cinematic icon, put out a cryptic social media post Sunday (July 18) evening that suggests the 91-year-old actor, Oscar-winning director and producer could be winding down a 60+ year career in the public eye.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Eastwood, who started his career in the 1950s on television, has more than 65 movies to his credit, ranging from spaghetti westerns A Fistful of Dollars and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, the “Dirty Harry” franchise, and action comedies Every Which But Loose and Any Which Way You Can. He cemented his critical legacy in 1992, winning Best Director and Best Picture Oscars for Unforgiven.

In 2003, Eastwood directed Mystic River, which won Oscars for co-stars Sean Penn and Tim Robbins. Eastwood won again in 2004 with Million Dollar Baby, co-starring Hilary Swank, who also won an Oscar. The actor’s personal box office clout soared again in 2008, starring in and directing Gran Torino.

Eastwood’s latest effort, the Warner Bros. neo-western Cry Macho, in which he co-stars and directs, is set to debut theatrically and on HBO Max Sept. 17.

Clint Eastwood Film ‘In the Line of Fire’ Coming to 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray June 15

The 1993 Clint Eastwood film In the Line of Fire will come out on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc, remastered with high dynamic range, on June 15 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

In the film from director Wolfgang Peterson, Eastwood stars as Frank Horrigan, a veteran Secret Service agent haunted by his failure to protect John F. Kennedy from assassination. Thirty years later, he gets a chance to redeem himself when a brilliant psychopath threatens to kill the current president and take Horrigan with him. Taunting him by phone and tantalizing him with clues, the assassin (John Malkovich) lures Horrigan into a battle of wits and will that only one man can survive. The film co-stars Rene Russo as Horrigan’s risk-taking field chief.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

The release features Dolby Atmos audio, original theatrical 5.1, and original theatrical stereo. Special features include audio commentary with Petersen, five deleted scenes, several featurettes and a theatrical teaser. The release does not include a regular Blu-ray copy but does come with a digital copy, for a limited time.

Dish: Smoking Scenes Decline in Movies

Actors lighting up cigarettes (or vaping these days) in movies seems to be common, but new data from Dish Network contends just 6% of feature films today depict characters smoking. That’s down from 39% in 1970. The percentage skyrockets going back further to the Golden Age of Hollywood when characters were so often seen with cigarettes, cigars, pipes, and alcohol, it almost seemed like extensions of their bodies.

Back then smoking was viewed as a status symbol, and tobacco brands often sponsored film studios. Some actors even had their own endorsements. Since smoking was such an accepted practice in society, the habit easily made its way onto the big screen.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Dish took to IMDb and analyzed movies from 1950 to September 2020, sticking to titles with a rating of 3 stars or more (out of 10) and at least 1,000 votes by IMBb users to ensure the film’s quality. The result was more than 3,000 movies tabulated.

Interestingly, Clint Eastwood topped the list of actors smoking in scenes largely due to his spaghetti westerns at the beginning of his career — a habit the actor apparently stopped after playing vigilante cop Dirty Harry and every movie character thereafter. Betty Davis topped the list of female characters lighting up

Cigar smoking was the overall most popular smoking category (see Eastwood) in films — reaching a peak of 24% in 1973. Pipe smoking was consistently more popular than cigarette smoking, probably due to the 1964 Surgeon General’s report that claimed pipe smokers lived longer than cigarette smokers. Hint: They don’t.

While John Wayne admitted to a six-pack-a-day habit during his cancer-shortened life, contemporary actor Jon Hamm actually smoked fake cigarettes in his breakout role in “Mad Men,” including inhaling 74 cigarettes alone in the pilot episode.

Other facts: Smoking was most commonly (54%) found in movies with an ‘R’ rating, and comedies (29%), while largely absent in Disney and Netflix original titles, reflecting changing societal norms and more assertive healthcare campaigns.

Eastwood’s ‘Richard Jewell’ Heading to Home Video in March

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release director Clint Eastwood’s Richard Jewell through digital retailers March 3, and on Blu-ray Disc and DVD March 17.

Based on the true story of events surrounding the bombing of the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, the film stars Paul Walter Hauser (I, Tonya) as Richard Jewell, the security guard who discovers a bomb in Centennial Olympic Park. Despite saving numerous lives by moving people away before it detonates, he becomes the FBI’s top suspect and is vilified by the press and public when details of the investigation are leaked.

The cast also includes Sam Rockwell as Jewell’s attorney, Watson Bryant; Olivia Wilde as Atlanta-Journal Constitution reporter Kathy Scruggs, who broke the story; Jon Hamm as the lead FBI investigator; and Kathy Bates, who earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress for her performance as Jewell’s mother.

Follow us on Instagram

The film earned $22.3 million at the domestic box office.

The Richard Jewell DVD and Blu-ray will include the featurette “The Real Story of Richard Jewell.” The Blu-ray will also include the behind-the-scenes featurette “The Making of Richard Jewell.” The Blu-ray and DVD will also contain a redeemable code for a digital copy of the movie from participating retailers.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!