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Warner Bows First Premium Video Line

3 Jul, 2002 By: Kurt Indvik

Warner Home Video is launching its first premium line of home video releases with the introduction of some of its classic films in “Two-Disc DVD Special Editions,” priced at $26.99 DVD/$19.95 VHS MAP.

The new editions are all remastered digital transfers featuring an extensive offering of newly produced extras, including commentaries, documentaries, and never-before-seen extended and deleted scenes.

Warner bows this new video line Sept. 24 (prebook Aug. 27, Aug. 20 for merchandiser orders) with a number of high-profile titles, including: Amadeus Director's Cut, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Unforgiven (10th Anniversary Edition), Singin' in the Rain (50th Anniversary Edition), True Romance Unrated Director's Cut, and a repricing of Citizen Kane (60th Anniversary Edition) and Dr. Zhivago.

All films come in widescreen format except Singin' in the Rain, which comes in full screen (it was not shot in widescreen originally), and all feature Dolby 5.1 audio. The first disc of the two-disc set typically carries the film and director's commentary, while the second disc contains many of the extras created expressly for the DVD.

The genesis for the new line came with the success last year of the special editions releases of Citizen Kane in September and Dr. Zhivago in November, according to Michael Radiloff, Warner Home Video VP of DVD marketing. “Both of them did exceedingly well. We clearly saw that there was an audience out there … willing to pay a premium for classic films on fully loaded DVDs,” Radiloff said.

Warner Home Video will release about 12 high-profile titles a year in the new premium two-disc line, Radiloff said, with the next group of films slated for early next year.

Warner plans its largest ever national advertising campaign for a catalog release, according to Radiloff, including television, print and online placements. Mixed merchandisers are available in 24-, 48- and 60-unit configurations.

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