More Turtle Man in <I>Master of Disguise</I> DVD27 Jan, 2003 By: Fred Topel
Comedies are the perfect movies for humorous DVD extras. There's almost always a gag reel of mistakes and crack-ups. But what is a film to do when they've already used all their outtakes in an extensive montage over the end credits, as was the case with Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment's release of Revolution Studios' The Master of Disguise?
“We just repeated them,” star Dana Carvey said. “We put the same outtakes [on the DVD], but they repeat over and over again in a loop. But there's at least a new hour on that DVD.”
The new hour of material comes from studio-produced, behind-the-scenes featurettes. Carvey and crew couldn't design their own extras because of budgetary restrictions. “The studio was taking behind-the-scenes footage and stuff. On such a low-budget movie they wouldn't let us shoot much extra,” he said. But Carvey did go back to record new introductions in the guise of his character, Turtle Man.
“The Turtle Man evolves into a completely different character for the DVD. Now he talks and he's articulate and everything. So that's kind of a fun character to do. It was all improvised,” he said.
“I just thought it would be funny if he had a butler and he was in a library and just treat him erudite and then have his butler occasionally feed him. My notion was the funny juxtaposition of an intellectual who then still ate like a reptile. And I guess it stayed in there. The fact that the Turtle Man is in the movie in one scene but he's on the DVD as a commentator at least 20 minutes, that would be a selling point for the kids who like the turtle. They'll get a lot more turtle.”
Carvey recorded a commentary track for the DVD as well, but approached it light-heartedly in light of the subject matter. “We didn't even think about it. I mean, I used to collect laserdiscs, and you'd have some college professor analyzing It's a Wonderful Life or Citizen Kane, and now it is pretty funny, the idea of commentary for a silly kid's movie. So it's just better to make jokes for a silly little movie like this.”
The film began as a small project where Carvey just wanted to make a movie his kids could see. It was the film's surprise box office take that prompted the DVD special edition.
“I've met a lot of little kids that love it, and I'm still stopped by little kids. I was happy about that. That it made $40 million and it only cost $15 [million], that was gratifying.”
The video streets this week, with the DVD priced at $27.96 and the VHS priced to rent.