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Sony’s New Harryhausen DVD Gift Set

Sea
Since the holidays are just around the corner, I thought I’d mention the new, six-disc Ray Harryhausen gift set, Ray Harryhausen In Color, which hits shelves on December 4. There are a bunch of cool things in this set, including

-A Ymir figurine, based on Ray Harryhausen’s original 1957 hand-crafted design
-The ability to see the colorized versions along with the black and white version
-Tons of featurettes, including Tim Burton chatting with Harryhausen

If you don’t think these movies should be redone in color, think of what Harryhausen himself has to say: “I am thrilled these films are finally being seen in color.  I
had wanted to do them in color in the 1950s, but the budgets were not large
enough to accommodate that luxury.  Now, thanks to the marvelous advances made
in the colorization process by San Diego’s Legend Films and others, audiences
will be able to see the movies as I originally intended.”  Hit the jump for the skinny on each film.

20 Million Miles to Earth: 50th Anniversary Edition
The 20 Million Miles to
Earth: 50th Anniversary Edition contains extensive new bonus features including
audio commentaries by Ray Harryhausen, visual effects artists Dennis Muren and
Phil Tippett; featurettes such as Remembering 20 Million Miles to Earth, with
Harryhausen and others discussing the film’s production and influence; The
Colorization Process, a look at Legend Films work; Interview with Joan Taylor;
Tim Burton Sits Down with Ray Harryhausen; David Schecter on Film Music’s Unsung
Hero; plus a video montage of the film’s marketing and advertising materials by
producer Arnold Kunert; and video photo galleries. 

Though special
effects techniques today have been dramatically transformed by CGI, Ray
Harryhausen’s highly imaginative and incredibly detailed work continues to hold
audiences spellbound today.  A disciple of stop-motion pioneer Willis O’Brien
(King Kong), Harryhausen adapted O’Brien’s techniques. O’Brien developed and
created his own genre of film from the 1950s to the 1980s utilizing his
stop-motion process (eventually identified as “Dynamation”).  His memorable
films include The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (1953), It Came from Beneath the Sea
(1955), The 7th Voyage of Sinbad (1958), Jason and the Argonauts (1963),
One
Million Years, B.C. (1966), The Valley of Gwangi (1969), The Golden Voyage of
Sinbad (1974), and Clash of the Titans (1981).  His amazing body of work
continues to inspire many of today’s special effects
wizards.

SYNOPSIS
Upon its return from a mission to Venus, an American
spaceship crash lands in the sea near Sicily. The rescue party discovers that
the astronauts have brought back a curious gelatinous mass that soon hatches and
evolves into a strange bi-ped creature which rapidly increases in size.  While
being subjected to laboratory experimentation, the creature, now 20-feet tall,
escapes its confines, goes on a destructive rampage through Rome, battles a zoo
elephant and swims in the Tiber.  It eventually takes refuge in the Colosseum,
where the film’s pyrotechnic finale occurs during a climactic showdown with the
military.

DVD Special Features Include:
* Featurette: Remembering 20
Million Miles to Earth
* Audio Commentary by Ray Harryhausen and Other Visual
Effects Specialists
* Featurette: The Colorization Process
* Featurette:
David Schecter on Film Music’s Unsung Hero
* Featurette: Tim Burton Sits Down
with Ray Harryhausen
* Featurette: Interview with Joan Taylor
*
Advertising Artwork video montage of film’s ad materials by Producer Arnold
Kunert
* Video Photo Galleries
* Sneak Peek of Digital Comic Book 20
Million Miles More
* Audio: English
* Subtitles: English

  1. It Came
    From Beneath The Sea

Directed by Robert Gordon (Tarzan and The Jungle Boy),
the newly colorized film, depicting a giant octopus attacking San Francisco
stars Kenneth Tobey (The King From Another World), Faith Demergue (Earth Vs. the
Flying Saucers), Donald Curtis (Earth Vs. The Flying Saucers) and Ian Keith (The
Ten Commandments). The two-disc DVD contains all new video and audio commentary
by Ray Harryhausen, visual effects artists Dennis Muren and Phil Tippett; video
photo galleries; original artwork video montage by Arnold Kunert; a sneak peek
at the digital comic book, plus the film music (Film Music’s Unsung Hero) and
Tim Burton featurettes (Tim Burton Sits Down with Ray Harryhausen) also included
on the two other titles in the collection.

SYNOPSIS
A giant
stop-motion-animated octopus attacks San Francisco. A pair of scientists and a
nuclear sub captain try to stop the monster before it tears down the Golden Gate
Bridge.

DVD Special Features Include:
* Featurette: Ray Harryhausen on
It Came From Beneath The Sea
* Audio Commentary by Ray Harryhausen and Visual
Effects Specialists
* A Video Discussion of It Came From Beneath the Sea’s
1955 marketing and advertising campaign by producer Arnold Kunert
*
Featurette: A Present Day Look at Stop Motion
* Featurette: David Schecter on
Film Music’s Unsung Hero
* Featurette: Tim Burton Sits Down with Ray
Harryhausen
* Still and Production Art Gallery
* Sneak Peek of Digital
Comic Book It Came from Beneath the Sea…Again!
* Audio: English
*
Subtitles: English

Earth vs. The Flying Saucers
Earth vs. The
Flying Saucers, with its ground breaking visual effects techniques, was the
first of several collaborations between producer Charles H. Schneer and special
effects wizard Ray Harryhausen. The film about the invasion of earth and
destruction of Washington D.C. was masterfully directed by Fred F. Sears (Crash
of Silence) and stars Joan Taylor (20 Million Miles to Earth), Hugh Marlowe
(Another World), Donald Curtis (The Ten Commandments) and Morris Ankrum
(Invaders from Mars). The two-disc DVD features new commentary by Harryhausen,
the featurette A Present Day Look at Stop Motion, video photo galleries,
original artwork video montage, a sneak peek at the digital comic book; plus the
Interview with Joan Taylor, Music and Tim Burton featurettes included on the
other films in the collection. 

SYNOPSIS
Dr. Russell Marvin heads up
Operation Skyhook, which is tasked with sending rockets into the upper
atmosphere to probe for future space flights. Unfortunately, all the rockets are
somehow disappearing. While investigating this strange occurrence, Russell and
his new assistant/wife Carol Marvin are abducted by a flying saucer. The aliens
claim to be from Mars and demand to meet with certain people in order to
negotiate. But it was a trick; the Martians only wanted to kill them. The
invasion has begun and if Russell and Carol can’t find a way to get past their
defenses and stop these creatures, it may be the end of the human
race.

DVD Special Features Include:
* Featurette: Harryhausen on Earth
vs. The Flying Saucers
* Audio Commentary by Ray Harryhausen and Other Visual
Effects Specialists
* Featurette: A Present Day Look at Stop Motion
*
Video Photo Galleries
* Featurette: Tim Burton Sits Down with Ray
Harryhausen
* Featurette: Interview with Joan Taylor
* Advertising Artwork
video montage of film’s ad materials by Producer Arnold Kunert
* Featurette:
David Schecter on Film Music’s Unsung Hero
* Featurette: The Hollywood
Blacklist and Bernard Gordon
* Sneak Peek of Digital Comic Book Flying
Saucers vs. the Earth
* Audio: English
* Subtitles: English

20
Million Miles to Earth: 50th Anniversary Edition has a run time of 82 minutes
and is not rated.
It Came From Beneath the Sea has a run time of 79 minutes
and is not rated.
Earth vs. The Flying Saucers has a run time of 83 minutes
and is not rated.

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