DVD releases: A pack o’ pix redux

'Added-value' items a key selling point

In the early days of DVD, many studios rushed their hit titles onto disc, with few, if any, bonus features. But those “added-value” items have now become a key point in selling the mini-platters.

As it turns out, there was not much downside to releasing movies early on DVD: Now that players are becoming more common, studios are beginning to re-sell some of their early releases in new and embellished special editions.

“DVD offers a much greater opportunity to sell multiple copies of related titles than VHS,” says Universal senior veepee of marketing Ken Graffeo.

That re-release strategy has caught on.

“Revisiting titles has been very good for us,” says David Bishop, president and chief operating officer of MGM Home Entertainment Group.

” ‘Platoon’ has already been a marketplace title, but we now have plans for a special edition. This also gives us the opportunity to repackage audience favorites, like ‘Raging Bull’ and ‘The Usual Suspects.’ ”

Other library titles on the Lion docket include special editions of “The Producers” “Blue Velvet,” “Thelma and Louise,” “Mad Max” and “The Princess Bride.”

Although Disney’s Buena Vista Home Entertainment included lots of extra features on the special laserdisc edition of “Tron,” few of those were included on DVD. But now the studio has decided that with the 20th anniversary coming up, a new version would be fitting.

Planned for release from MGM on Oct. 2 is the U.S. bow of “The Terminator.” Already released on disc internationally, pic has seen the DVD light of day in the U.S. thanks to Image Entertainment, which released it in 1997.

The Lion eventually secured the rights to it and has planned its re-release with a giant bells-and-whistles menu. Original has been remastered from a high-definition transfer and is accompanied by a new documentary, along with other bonus material.

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