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Warner and MK2 to Launch Chaplin Collection

16 May, 2002 By: Hive News

Warner Home Video and France-based MK2 jointly announced they have entered into an exclusive deal to distribute worldwide newly remastered versions of 18 classic Charlie Chaplin films. The DVDs will include never-before-seen outtakes, backstage glimpses and family home movie footage. The deal was announced during the Cannes Film Festival.

The Chaplin Collection will be launched on DVD spring 2003, and its release should be accompanied by cinema retrospectives of Chaplin's work in many major cities around the world. In France, MK2 plan to relaunch The Great Dictator in 200 cinemas on October 16 and release the film on DVD in November.

The titles in The Charlie Chaplin Collection will range from the 1925 silent classic The Gold Rush to A King in New York,” which debuted in 1958. The films are all being digitally remastered by the film preservation specialists at the world-famous Bologna Cinematheque.

“It is a true honor for Warner Home Video to be able to bring the work of one of cinema's true geniuses to DVD,” said Warren Lieberfarb, president of Warner Home Video. “This new partnership with MK2 reconfirms our commitment to commercial marketing of cinema in the video media, particularly DVD. It also reinforces our objectives to restore and preserve great cinematic works and aids in the education and understanding of cinema.”

The Cannes announcement was made by Lieberfarb and Marin Karmitz, founder and president of MK2. Helping to launch the new venture was Chaplin's actress daughter Geraldine, who gave her support for the program.

“On behalf of the family, I am personally delighted that my father's legacy is in the hands of such enthusiasts as MK2 and Warner Bros,” she said. “We are, and will continue to be, intrinsically involved with the enhancement of the films that [Chaplin] created. By having access to these films on the latest DVD format, the public will be able to experience, at first hand, never-before-seen archive materials, as well as enjoy the films themselves in pristine condition, as my father intended.”

MK2 will produce individually tailored half-hour documentaries to accompany each of these eighteen classics. Leading modern-day figures in the world of film will present a personal look at Chaplin and his work. A special bonus included on the DVD of The Great Dictator will be a 47-minute tribute by the distinguished film historian Kevin Brownlow.

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