UltimateDisney.com: The Ultimate Guide to Disney DVD
MAY 1-15, 2005: NEWS ARCHIVES
May 15, 2005 - Just last week, "Scrubs" had its fourth season finale on NBC, but now you can return to the beginning with this week's newly-reviewed DVD release of "Scrubs" The Complete First Season. This 3-disc set delivers a bit of everything, from the show's trademark bizarre comical asides and sincerity to lots of bonus features. From the cast participation in commentaries and a new documentary to outtakes, deleted scenes, inspired menus and packaging, Buena Vista has succeeded in making the debut of this popular half-hour medical series its finest TV comedy DVD to date.
Tuesday's New Touchstone Television DVD Releases
May 14, 2005 - "The Golden Girls" is significant for being the Walt Disney Company's first successful primetime sitcom. Twenty years after its launch, the show's fanbase remains strong. Today, Aaron Wallace has a 2-page review of "The Golden Girls": The Complete Second Season, which delivers a set of episodes he deems even more entertaining than Season 1's but again fails to provide the type of deluxe DVD treatment that fans may be hoping for. Light on extras, heavy on laughs, this 3-disc set is available Tuesday. Read more...
May 13, 2005 - A first review of this month's new Classic Cartoon Favorites has just been posted. Volume 5: Extreme Sports Fun disappointingly lacks "Soccermania", but it does contain eight fun shorts centered on athletics. More than half star Goofy and these successfully plug in variables from different sports into his time-tested "How to" formula. Collectors will still stick with Treasures, but as a low-priced alternative, this is not a bad collection for those who just want a sampling of enduring vintage Disney animation.
Tuesday's New Releases
The press release thread for The Pacifier has been updated with a newly-released picture of the June 28th DVD's Main Menu.
Six screencaps from the upcoming direct-to-video film Kronk's New Groove have been posted here. A 30-second promo for this Emperor's New Groove follow-up can be found in the Sneak Peeks menu of May's Classic Cartoon Favorites. No release date has been set, but it now appears the DVD will arrive this December, close to but before the January 2006 launch of the Disney Channel series "The Emperor's New School."
After a two-month hiatus, the UD newsletter is back. Even if you visit the site regularly, it's a good idea to sign up to have a summary of the latest news delivered to your e-mail address for free. You never have to worry about ads or spam, and subscribers gain access to the UD Newsletter vault, dating back to May 2003. To subscribe, send an e-mail to UltimateDisneyemail@example.com.
Disc art has been added for the rest of June and July's Disney DVDs, namely the two Disney Channel Original movies and remaining Disneyland 50th Anniversary titles.
A new write-up has been added to our Coming to Theaters page on Goal!, the first film in a European soccer trilogy that Disney has picked up and is expected to release to U.S. theaters early 2006.
May 12, 2005 - We have an exciting feature for you today - an interview with Irene Bedard, the speaking voice of Pocahontas. The actress reflects on voicing Disney's animated heroine, sharing her memories from production and her thoughts on the just-released 10th Anniversary Edition DVD. Renata Joy reports in this special interview.
We can now confirm that the upcoming "Special Double Trouble Edition" of 1998's The Parent Trap does contain a new transfer which is enhanced for widescreen televisions. You can expect an in-depth review of this, Lindsay Lohan's Disney Channel telemovie Get a Clue, and more of May's Disney DVDs in the days and weeks ahead. For now, see the Lohan DVDs Press Release for more information.
May 11, 2005 - Disney has just issued the press release that many have been clamoring for: Cinderella: Platinum Edition. This extensive announcement details the expected mix of flashy fluff and classic stuff the 2-disc October release will deliver. Among the highlights are a tribute to Walt's Nine Old Men hosted by Joel Siegel, a new four-part making-of featurette, a piece on Disney's longtime art director Mary Blair, a barrage of trailers from over the years, two deleted scenes, demo recordings of 7 unused songs, three vintage radio programs, and Disc 1's flimsily-related ESPN Classics featurette on "Cinderella Stories." Numerous features seem tailored to young ones, including "The House of Royalty" makeover, 2 pop music videos, and a trio of "The Royal Life" DVD-ROM activities. For more details, you'll probably want to see the full press release.
Last Saturday's Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch fact sheet has been upgraded to an ever-so-slightly more detailed press release.
Our latest DVD review looks at Pooh's Heffalump Movie, a slight film from DisneyToon Studios that wound up in theaters last winter and continues the trend of making Winnie the Pooh strictly fare for the kiddies. Older viewers will likely be disappointed by how thin and uneventful this latest outing is, but preschoolers will understandably take to Lumpy the Heffalump, a charismatic young character introduced here. Like the feature, the DVD is light on excitement.
May 10, 2005 - As usual, Tuesday means a new Weekly Video Update (912 kb, WMV). UD's on-screen personality snowhite8 comes to you bearing news of this week's DVD releases.
Aaron Wallace has a review of today's new Disney DVD release, Kim Possible Movie: So the Drama. He offers much praise for the made-for-TV finale to the popular Disney Channel animated action/comedy series, recommending both the film and the DVD which delivers an extended cut, 2 deleted scenes, 2 music videos, and "Gorilla Fist", a never-before-seen episode of the show.
May 9, 2005 - Three exciting Disney DVDs to close out summer have just been listed for preorder at Amazon.com (each at 30% off): Toy Story: 10th Anniversary Edition (press release), and the next two Studio Ghibli releases Pom Poko and My Neighbors the Yamadas (fact sheet).
Larger and clearer artwork for "Boy Meets World" Season 3 and new artwork for "Once and Again" Season 2 has been posted. Both of these television box sets are released on August 23rd.
We've got a first look at the planned cover art for the Complete Third Season sets of "The Golden Girls" and "Home Improvement" right here. Disney promises these 3-disc box sets of two of the studio's most popular sitcoms are "coming soon" and they'll likely be out before the year's end. The Second Seasons of both shows come to DVD in the next few weeks.
May 8, 2005 - Our newest DVD review looks at Touchstone's R-rated comedy/adventure The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, which offers more of the quirky humor and pathos that has come to be expected from writer/director Wes Anderson. Despite the presence of Bill Murray in the title role, an elaborate and skillful production and some inspired moments, the film doesn't work quite as well as Anderson's past efforts. Nonetheless, the 2-disc Criterion Collection DVD is an emphatic success, bringing viewers onto the set for amusing and insightful inside looks at production and much more in hours of great bonus material. The Life Aquatic comes to DVD on Tuesday.
AOL Moviefone now has the impressive U.S. teaser trailer (with an unnecessary intro by director Andrew Adamson) for The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe available for download in high-quality Quicktime format. This highly-anticipated adaptation of C.S. Lewis's beloved fantasy novel opens in American theaters on December 9th.
May 7, 2005 - We've just gotten in news on more Studio Ghibli DVDs making their Region 1 debut this August 16th! My Neighbors the Yamadas and Pom Poko will arrive the same day with the type of treatment we've come to expect from Buena Vista's releases of the Japanese studio's animated films. Each DVD will feature the film in anamorphic widescreen with both the original Japanese audio and a new English dub featuring noteworthy American casts. Extras on each will include trailers and the original storyboards. Only Pom Poko is specified as a 2-disc set, but Yamadas will also contain a "Behind the Microphone" featurette on the English voice cast. At this point, it's not clear if a third DVD (be that the beloved My Neighbor Totoro or Miyazaki's "last" film Howl's Moving Castle) will be accompanying these two, as Buena Vista's past Ghibli DVDs have come in waves of three. More on both films/DVDs can be seen here.
Not much new information arrives in two other announcements, but there has been a fact sheet issued for August's DTV sequel Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch which elaborates a bit on bonus features (including "animated menus") and a press release for this month's Lindsay Lohan DVD promotion which includes the debuts of Get a Clue and The Parent Trap: Special Edition. It still does not clarify if The Parent Trap will now be enhanced for 16x9 televisions, so you'll probably have to wait for reviews to know. Speaking of Lindsay Lohan, her latest update on vintage Disney material Herbie: Fully Loaded has been pushed up two days and will now open in theaters on Wednesday, June 22nd.
The DVD reviews just keep coming! Aaron Wallace puts Miramax in Focus for their latest release, The Chorus. This French boarding school drama was nominated for the Best Foreign Film Oscar and enjoyed a limited run in American theaters last January. It arrives on DVD with no bells and whistles, but may still be one to check out based on the film.
The first teaser trailer for The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe makes its official worldwide debut today. The website AlloCinι Vision has just posted a high-quality streaming Windows Media file of the the French trailer (titled and subtitled in French). It refers to the film specifically as the first chapter; sequels are to be expected.
May 6, 2005 - Yahoo! Movies now has Disney's US trailer for Valiant, complete with '80s music. This leaves just two of Disney's 2005 films lacking any kind of trailer at this point: Sky High and The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. The Narnia trailer will make its legitimate premiere tomorrow night. Links to all the rest are available on UD's Coming to Theaters page.
Swell cover art for Disneyland documentary and much more Secrets, Stories & Magic of the Happiest Place on Earth has just been posted here.
Nearly three months ago, we promised you a review of Who Framed Roger Rabbit and today we're finally delivering on that promise. Joe Jarvis makes his UD review debut with a look at the reasonably-priced 2-disc Vista Series release. Though the film was released under the Touchstone label, it features a number of Disney and other cartoon characters blended seamlessly with a live action world. Moviegoers made it the top grosser of its calendar year and some cite it for getting the public excited about animation again. In spite of some flaws, the reviewer concludes that this "excellent" DVD of an "innovative, near-perfect" film is well worth your time.
Fans of period golf dramas have something to be excited about tonight as Disney has just unveiled the theatrical trailer for The Greatest Game Ever Played. Like the poster, it plays up the studio's recent tradition of making sports movies based on real life triumphs. This film stars Shia LaBeouf as working class caddie-turned-champion Frances Ouimet and is slated to open in theaters on September 30th. (More on the film...)
Another sign that Pixar and Disney may be moving closer to extending their partnership: a listen to Pixar's first quarter conference call for investors reveals that Pixar CEO Steve Jobs had nothing but nice words to say about the studio who not long ago he put down. Jobs stated, "I've been getting to know (Robert Iger, Disney's CEO-to-be) a little bit, and he seems like a terrific guy. If Disney wants to strike a new deal with us, we'll see how things go." Later this year, Pixar is expected to announce their next three films slated for summers 2007, 2008, and 2009. Meanwhile, Pixar's chief financial officer Simon Bax announced that a DVD re-release of Toy Story 2 will likely follow September's Toy Story 10th Anniversary and could be out by the end of the year.
Valiant, the British CGI comedy which will open in American cinemas under Disney distrbution this August, enters its 7th weekend of theatrical play in the UK today. MyMovies.net has four clips from this G-rated film, plus two brief but amusing interviews with voice cast members Ricky Gervais and Ewan McGregor.
May 5, 2005 - These months of spring have been a popular time for Disney DVDs. March kicked off with the release of Bambi, which sold 1 million units on the first day of its DVD. Just two weeks later, customers bought 5 million copies of The Incredibles within its first 24 hours of availability. Now, National Treasure has become the studio's third clear-cut fan favorite of the year so far, with an impressive 3 million units sold on its opening day. The Incredibles handily remains 2005's best seller, having sold 17.7 million units to date which Pixar accounts for their particularly strong first quarter performance.
The 1997 direct-to-video film Pooh's Grand Adventure: The Search for Christopher Robin is finally coming to DVD in Region 1. Disney will promote this feature, one of their earliest DTVs, as coinciding with the 80th anniversary of A.A. Milne's fluff-stuffed creation (which occurs on Christmas Eve, to be precise). No release date has been set, but it could possibly be paired up with the two new Pooh Disney Learning Adventures due in October or the DisneyToon Studios production Pooh's Heffalump Halloween Movie that arrives in September. Either way, Grand Adventure will be accompanied at the very least by "Pooh Skies", the "New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh" episode that already appears on Growing Up with Winnie the Pooh: Friends Forever.
"Classic" may be something of a subjective term, but Disney appears to be labeling all of their new catalogue debuts as such. This includes the just-unveiled cover art for the The World's Greatest Athlete. Slated to arrive on disc August 2nd with 16x9 widescreen treatment, outtakes and original trailer, this 1973 comedy is rather being treated like a "classic" too, especially in comparison to the mostly barren and often reformatted DVDs that many of the studio's other vintage live action films have been met with.
May 4, 2005 - Rediscovered how precious Pocahontas can be? Think that putting the deleted song back into the film was a good idea? Share your thoughts on all aspects of the just-released 10th Anniversary Edition DVD of Disney's 33rd animated feature in this discussion thread on the UD Forum.
More August catalogue artwork has just popped in, revealing a stately but inaccurate front (count the stars!) for Johnny Tremain and a rather plain cover for The Boatniks.
May 3, 2005 - Cover art has come in for the first of August's four catalogue debuts: Toby Tyler, or Ten Weeks with a Circus. Noticeably absent from the cover are the Disney DVD logo and the film's subtitle. But it's got the Moochie.
Part 2 of snowhite8's Weekly Video Update (918 kb, WMV) is now available and highlights two major Disney DVDs which are too.
Disney has confirmed that May 31st's Special Double Trouble Edition of 1998 remake The Parent Trap will in fact be presented in its original 1.85:1 widescreen aspect ratio and with Dolby Digital 5.1 tracks in English and French. One might assume that this reissue will be enhanced for 16x9 televisions, but there's still no press release.
To infinity and beyond! We've just posted the full press release for the unexpected Toy Story: 10th Anniversary Edition which arrives on September 6th. This two-disc set retains many of the extras from The Ultimate Toy Box pertaining to Pixar's first film and adds "the highest bit-rate ever used for a Disney/Pixar film", the "Legacy of Toy Story" featurette, a new making-of featurette (replacing "The Story Behind Toy Story" from the UTB), mini-documentary "Designing Toy Story", a "You've Got a Friend in Me" music video, and a new sneak peek at Cars, the next and potentially last Disney/Pixar film which lands in theaters June 2006.
To celebrate the DVD release of National Treasure and raise money for the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, a number of Hollywood celebrities turned out for "Runway for Life" on Sunday night in Burbank. Some pictures from the fashion show/DVD launch can be seen here. Among those appearing were National Treasure director Jon Turteltaub and actor Justin Bartha, Ashton Kutcher, Demi Moore, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Kobe Bryant, and Ray Romano.
USA Today has an interesting article on The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. It discusses the film at length and includes some new pictures. Making Narnia seem so different from past Disney films ignores many live action productions in the canon, particularly the label-stretching early '80s fantasy/suspense works. Nonetheless, the piece reveals that Disney indeed hopes to launch December's film as the first of a 7-part franchise based on C.S. Lewis's Narnia books. Wardrobe will have its first trailer officially debut this Saturday worldwide.
Ten years ago, Disney fans looked forward to seeing Pocahontas in theaters. Today, Disney fans can stop looking forward and simply pick up the long-awaited Pocahontas: 10th Anniversary Edition DVD!
News from Variety on Kronk's New Groove suggests that this follow-up won't land on DVD until January 2006, to more closely coincide with the launch of the Disney Channel series "The Emperor's New School", now in production. Nonetheless, 2005 sees a record level of direct-to-video output from the studio and that trend looks to continue in the years ahead. Besides what's already slated for release in the next twelve months, DisneyToon Studios is said to currently have on its drawing boards the following projects: Cinderella III, The Little Mermaid III, Brother Bear II, The Aristocats II, The Tinker Bell Movie, Mickey in Space, and The Fox and the Hound II. Clearly, there is no end in sight for the divisive but profitable line of animated DTV sequels and spin-offs.
Amazon.com now has Ice Princess up for preorder at 30% off. This single-disc release arrives on July 19th with commentary, deleted scenes including an alternate opening, and two music videos.
May 2, 2005 - Two new DVD reviews have just been posted. Dean Jones signs in and Hayley Mills signs off in That Darn Cat!, Disney's winning 1965 comedy caper about a precocious Siamese who helps the FBI solve a confounding criminal case. Meanwhile, Aaron Wallace touches on Touchstone for a look at the studio's just-released Beaches: Special Edition, the "overall satisfactory" reissue of the moving PG-13-rated Bette Midler tearjerker.
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, the offbeat intergalactic comedy from Touchstone Pictures, came atop the box office over the weekend with an gross of $21.1 million. Here are a new TV spot (QuickTime) and Sing-Along of the Dolphin number "So Long and Thanks for All the Fish" (Flash).
|April's Most Popular DVDs on UltimateDisney.com
Recent Disney DVD Reviews:
Summer Magic - Slow but sweet, this 1963 musical drama boasts Hayley Mills and a 16x9 widescreen transfer.
In Search of the Castaways - Okay '60s adventure blends Disney and Verne; minimalist DVD.
Pocahontas: 10th Anniversary Edition - A digital remastering, not unnecessary extended cut of the film, and hours of bonus features make this 2-disc set worth an upgrade. As a fictionalized period drama, the film still has flaws but it holds up rather well.
National Treasure - Substance in addition to style allow this blockbuster to succeed in spite of a bizarre premise. Room for improvement among extras, but the DVD satisfies, and the film is one of Disney's most entertaining live action entries in recent memory.
To subscribe to UltimateDisney.com's free weekly newsletter and gain access to past issues, send an e-mail to UltimateDisneyfirstname.lastname@example.org or visit here.
E-mail UltimateDisney.com: tsdvd at yahoo.com
PAST NEWS UPDATES
April 16-30 Archives
April 1-15 Archives
March 16-31 Archives
March 1-15 Archives
Archives Index (goes back to July 2003)