Warner Home Video has made the following announcement about the upcoming “Superman” DVDs:
On November 28, in celebration of the year of Superman, Warner Home Video will release a host of DVDs, all starring the late Christopher Reeve in his landmark portrayal of the Man of Steel. Leading the way will be the long-awaited Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut ($24.98 SRP), directed by Donner and representing Superman II as it was originally conceived and intended to be filmed. An overwhelmingly requested title, the movie features Donner’s original footage, shot but never used before, including a never-before-seen beginning, a never-before-seen resolution, with 15 minutes of restored footage of Marlon Brando as Jor-El and much more.
Other titles to be released include Superman: The Movie Four Disc Special Edition ($39.92 SRP) which features both the DVD debut of the 1978 theatrical version as well as the 2001 extended edition with commentary from director Richard Donner and Tom Mankiewicz, archival footage of additional scenes and screen tests.
Richard Lester’s ever-popular Superman II will be available in a new Two Disc Special Edition ($26.99 SRP) including a new featurette, vintage television specials and additional vault elements; and Superman III and IV Deluxe Editions ($19.97 SRP). Finally, The Christopher Reeve Superman Collection ($79.92 SRP) will be offered in an 8-disc boxed set including all the above (except Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut).
Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut
Superman II will delight fans who, for years, have been imploring Warner Home Video via voluminous numbers of petitions, letters, phone calls and e-mails to release the Donner cut.
In fact, Donner had already shot most of the Superman II footage during Superman: The Movie. But as production on the sequel continued, creative differences between the director and the film’s producers became irreconcilable and Donner left the project. Although Richard Lester was hired to finish production, he chose to make major changes to the film, leaving only vestiges of Donner’s original vision and concepts in the version of Superman II that was ultimately released to theaters.
Now, nearly thirty years later, Warner Home Video is honored to grant the wishes of countless Superman fans. With this DVD release, Richard Donner has become the first director in history to be able to complete a film he left during production with nearly all his footage “in the can.” Adding back a substantial amount of that unused footage, the director has seen his original vision restored and brought to fruition.
Most notably, the “Donner cut” restores the Marlon Brando role, filmed for, but not included in the final theatrical release version of Superman II. The legendary Brando’s performance as Jor-El has finally been restored in key scenes that amplify Superman lore and deepen the profound relationship between father and son.
With so many other changes, large and small, including a variety of Lois Lane (Margot Kidder) schemes to unmask Clark Kent as Superman, this Superman II will prove to be an eye-opening experience and an important addition to film history.
Superman: The Movie (1978/2001) Four-Disc Special Edition
A box-office smash, an Academy AwardÂ® winner and a fan favorite since it first flew into theatres in December 1978, Superman: The Movie assembles an “A List” cast and creative contingent. At its heart is Christopher Reeve’s intelligent, affectionate portrayal of a most human Man of Steel.
The movie’s legacy was amplified when director Richard Donner revisited this beloved adventure 22 years later and integrated eight minutes into the film. Enjoy more footage of the Krypton Council, a glimpse of stars of prior Superman incarnations, more of Jor-El underscoring his son’s purpose on Earth and an extended sequence inside Lex Luthor’s gauntlet of doom.
Superman II Two-Disc Special Edition (1980)
Unwittingly released from Phantom Zone imprisonment, three super-powered Kryptonian criminals (Terence Stamp, Sarah Douglas and Jack O’Halloran) plan to enslave Earth – just when Superman (Christopher Reeve) decides to show a more romantic side to Lois Lane (Margot Kidder). Gene Hackman (as Lex Luthor) also returns from the first film with a top supporting cast, witty Richard Lester direction and visuals that astound and delight.
Superman III Deluxe Edition (1983)
Meet Gus Gorman (Richard Pryor), a half-witted computer programming wiz. Reeve reprises his role, deepening his character’s human side as Clark Kent reunites with old flame Lana Lang (Annette O’Toole) at a Smallville High class reunion. When Superman becomes his own worst enemy after Kryptonite exposure, Reeve plays both roles with dazzling skill.
Superman IV The Quest For Peace (1987)
Christopher Reeve not only stars as the title hero again but also helped develop the movie’s provocative theme: nuclear disarmament. To make the world safe for nuclear arms merchants, Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman) creates a new being to challenge the Man of Steel: the radiation-charged Nuclear Man (Mark Pillow).
Creative forces behind Superman: The Movie bring another DC Comics hero to life with this fun- and effects-packed adventure about the Girl of Steel. Helen Slater plays the title role, battling a sorceress (Faye Dunaway) for control of an alien power orb. Peter O’Toole and Mia Farrow add more starpower.
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Source: Warner Home Video