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‘Sideways’ spins to DVD

Fox sets an early release for aud favorite

Fox has set a DVD release date of April 5 for “Sideways.”

Although the studio was prepared to increase the theatrical run of the film and delay the DVD date if it won best picture Sunday, it went ahead with marketing plans and notification of retailers and is making its official announcement today.

Fox Video expects “Sideways” to sell more copies than a typical movie with a $53 million box office gross.

Marketing campaign will target customers who’ve heard the good reviews but couldn’t easily see the film during its limited release with TV and radio ad campaigns touting the pic as a fun comedy.

The studio is also teaming with wine lovers and that lifestyle demographic to capitalize on the movie’s theme and impact on tourism in central California. Among the studio’s partners will be the Santa Barbara tourism board, Mondavi Wine and upscale food and wine magazines.

The “Sideways” DVD includes audio commentary by Paul Giamatti and Thomas Haden Church, eight deleted scenes and a behind-the-scenes featurette.

Other studios moved even more quickly on DVD plans for their Oscar noms and winners. Disney/Pixar’s “The Incredibles” debuts on DVD March 15, while DreamWorks released “Shrek 2” last fall and “Shark Tale” Feb. 8.

Universal released “Ray” Feb. 1 amid all the wins Jamie Foxx was collecting from early kudofests.

Disney/Miramax set “Finding Neverland” weeks ago for a DVD release on March 22, the same date Sony recently announced for “Being Julia.” Sony also recently announced a March 29 DVD release for “Closer” and an April 5 release for “Spanglish.”

MGM is releasing “Hotel Rwanda” on April 12.

Warner has been mum about DVD plans for “Million Dollar Baby” and “The Aviator,” but industry sources believe the studio is targeting May 24 for both.

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