Just when you thought it was safe to take a dip in the water again…they’re baaaack! This summer, rediscover two enduring Roger Corman underwater thrillers filled with unstoppable action and edge-of-your-seat suspense as Joe Dante’s Piranha and Humanoids from the Deep, directed by Barbara Peters, debut August 3, 2010 for the first time on Special Edition Blu-ray and DVD from Shout! Factory, in association with New Horizons Picture Corporation. These two definitive Special Edition home entertainment releases from Roger Corman’s Cult Classics are sure to cause a feeding frenzy among thrill seekers and loyal fans of Roger Corman and Joe Dante. Piranha Special Edition offers 2 highly collectible covers: the Blu-ray and DVD both feature the iconic vintage cover art from the film’s original 1978 movie poster and the spectacular art from the original international poster for the reverse cover; and the Special Edition DVD is further sparkled with a visually stunning 3-D lenticular exterior packaging. Humanoids from the Deep Special Edition also boasts a reversible cover featuring vintage art from the U.S. and international movie posters.
Both Special Edition Blu-ray and DVD releases of Piranha and Humanoids from the Deep feature anamorphic widescreen presentation of the movie and a spectacular array of special bonus content, including all-new in-depth interviews and commentaries with cast and crew, rare behind-the-scenes footage, reversible cover and more. Each Blu-ray and DVD is sold separately. Blu-ray is priced to own at $26.97 and $19.93 for the DVD. Dare you to take the plunge with the original Piranha andHumanoids at home before you put on those 3-D shades for the remake of Piranha in 3-D coming to theaters nationwide late August. See where the phenomenon began!
Lost River Lake was a thriving resort until they discovered … Piranha!
In 1978, audiences discovered Piranha, widely considered one of the very best films “inspired” by the success of Jaws, and for more than 30 years Piranha has been one of the true cult gems in the Roger Corman canon.
For the first time in anamorphic widescreen, Piranha is being seen the way it was meant to be seen: Bigger, badder, bloodier and more BITING than ever! This summer at Lost River Resort, the fish are most certainly biting!
While searching for missing teenagers, rookie skip-tracer Maggie McKeon (Heather Menzies) and booze-soaked river rat Paul Grogan (Bradford Dillman) stumble upon a top-secret military laboratory conduction genetic research on piranha fish for the purpose of developing the most lethal form of biological warfare imaginable.
When the deadly eating machines are accidentally released from the compound, they’re soon headed downstream, consuming everything — and anyone — in their path. With Paul and Maggie in hot pursuit, the piranha’s next stop is the children’s summer camp, where Paul’s young daughter is vacationing, and then the newly-opened, multi-million-dollar water resort. Time is running out, and the piranha are hungry!
Piranha marked the solo directorial debut of Joe Dante (The Howling, Gremlins and Gremlins 2: The New Batch), after a long apprenticeship under Roger Corman’s tutelage at New World Pictures, and also marked the first produced screenplay of future indie-film icon and two-time Academy Award® nominee John Sayles (Lone Star, Passion Fish, Eight Men Out). Sharp-eyed viewers will also spot cameo appearances by both Dante and Sayles in this film!
The film also featured one of the most star-studded casts ever assembled for a Corman production: Daytime Emmy® and Golden Globe® winner Bradford Dillman (The Way We Were, Compulsion, Escape from the Planet of the Apes), Heather Menzies (TV’s Captain America and Logan’s Run), Academy Award® nominee and Golden Globe® winner Kevin McCarthy (Death of a Salesman, Invasion of the Body Snatchers) and Emmy® nominee Keenan Wynn (Dr. Strangelove, Robert Altman’s Nashville), as well as Emmy® winner Barbara Steele (The Pit and the Pendulum, Caged Heat, Mario Bava’s Black Sunday), Dick Miller (A Bucket of Blood, The Terminator, Martin Scorsese’s After Hours), Paul Bartel (Death Race 2000, The Usual Suspects), Belinda Balaski (The Howling, Small Soldiers, Explorers), Richard Deacon (TV’s The Dick Van Dyke Show and The Mothers-in-Law) and, in his final screen appearance, Barry Brown (Bad Company, Daisy Miller, The Ultimate Thrill).
Not only was Piranha a box-office hit – becoming one of New World Pictures’ biggest worldwide hits – but it also earned rave reviews from critics, who appreciated its fast pacing, energetic cast, clever conspiracy satire, inventive special effects and, of course, the scares. Many critics considered it second-best only to Jaws but far superior to the “official” Jaws sequels — including Jaws 2, which opened the same year. Piranha won the Saturn Award for Best Editing (shared by Dante and Mark Goldblatt) and was nominated as Best Horror Film.
Like so many Roger Corman productions, Piranha served as a career springboard for many of its participants, including director Dante, screenwriter Sayles, and producer Jon Davison (Airplane!, Robocop and RoboCop 2). Future Academy Award® winner Rob Bottin (Total Recall, The Thing, Se7en) provided special makeup effects in what marked his first screen credit, and the visual effects team boasted not one, but two, future Oscar® winners: Phil Tippett (Jurassic Park, Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back) and Chris Walas (The Fly, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Gremlins).
Perhaps the greatest tribute to Piranha’s sustained popularity is that this summer will see the release of Piranha 3-D to the nation’s movie screens. While the big-budget remake will undoubtedly put the bite on moviegoers, true fans know where it all began … with the original, classic Piranha.
PIRANHA SPECIAL EDITION BLU-RAY AND DVD SPECIAL FEATURES:
- New anamorphic widescreen presentation (1.78:1)
- Audio commentary with director Joe Dante and producer Jon Davison
- Behind-the-scenes footage
- “The Making of Piranha” featurette with new interviews from Roger Corman, Joe Dante, Dick Miller, Belinda Balaski and many More
- Bloopers and outtakes
- Piranha trailer with commentary by producer Jon Davison – Courtesy of Trailers From Hell (www.trailersfromhell.com)
- Stills gallery with photos and posters from around the world
- Behind-the-scenes stills gallery featuring photos from Phil Tippett’s personal collection
- Additional scenes from the network television version
- Radio and TV spots
- New World trailers
One good bite deserves another!
Two years after the success of Piranha, Corman and New World Pictures went back to the water and came up with a winner. Humanoids from the Deep was yet another box-office bonanza.
In the sleepy fishing village of Noyo, the fish aren’t biting — and that’s the problem. The town’s faltering economy, dependent entirely on the fishing industry, has exacerbated ongoing, racially-charged tensions between the local fishermen, who want a cannery to be constructed in the town, and the Native American population, who most definitely don’t.
But something else is biting — and worse. A genetic experiment on salmon has produced a species of aquatic monstrosities that are half-man and half-fish … and constantly on the rampage! The body count is rising. Men are being mauled to death, but the female victims suffer a far worse fate: The monsters are mating with them, trying to propagate their horrific species.
Local fisherman Jim Drake (Doug McClure) and scientist Susan Drake (Ann Turkel) join forces to investigate the cause of this insidious invasion, but time is running out. Noyo’s annual Salmon Festival is about to take place on the town’s boardwalk, and some uninvited guests are planning to crash the party in bloodthirsty fashion, culminating in a bloodbath that pits man against monster.
Amid the film’s non-stop action and carnage, however, are also subtle messages about corporate corruption, preservation of the underwater ecology (years before Greenpeace hit the headlines!), and the importance of community. If the residents of Noyo are to survive, they will have to put aside their cultural and political differences and band together. If not, Noyo is doomed.
Humanoids from the Deep proved to be expectedly commercial, but also proved unexpectedly controversial. Credited director Barbara Peters (billed as Barbara Peeters) contended that many of the film’s gorier scenes had been added to the film after principal photography. That may be true, but some of these scenes are the ones most fondly — and fearfully — remembered by the film’s legion of followers. Then the MPAA (Motion Picture of America) threatened to slap the film with an X rating unless some of its more shocking moments were edited down or eliminated altogether. Nevertheless, these controversies didn’t count where it mattered the most — at the box-office, asHumanoids from the Deep became one of New World Pictures’ most popular releases up to that point.
Even more surprising is that the film received good reviews. Although he called it “fast, occasionally hilarious gutter trash,” esteemed film critic Leonard Maltin also awarded it three out of four stars!
This release of Humanoids from the Deep will truly be something spectacular. This version has never been seen before in the United States, as it was taken from the inter-positive from the uncut international version in high definition.
The cast of Humanoids from the Deep is headed by genre favorite Doug McClure (Warlords of Atlantis, The Land That Time Forgot and The People That Time Forgot), Golden Globe® nominee Ann Turkel (The Cassandra Crossing, 99 and 44/100% Dead) and Emmy Award® nominee Vic Morrow (Blackboard Jungle, The Bad News Bears, 1990: The Bronx Warriors).
Future Oscar® winner Rob Bottin again provided the film’s spectacular — and spectacularly gory — special effects, including a climactic birth scene that rivals the one in the original Alien! The film’s menacing and foreboding score was composed by James Horner (Titanic, Aliens, A Beautiful Mind), himself the future recipient of two Academy Awards®. Production assistant Gale Anne Hurd would go on to become one of the most successful female producers in Hollywood history, with such blockbusters as The Terminator, Aliens, Armageddon and Terminator 2: Judgment Day to her credit.
HUMANOIDS FROM THE DEEP SPECIAL EDITION BLU-RAY AND DVD FEATURES INCLUDE:
New high-definition transfer of the Uncut international version presented in anamorphic widescreen (1.78:1)
- Never-before-seen deleted scenes
- Trailer, TV and radio spots
- Leonard Maltin’s interviews with Roger Corman on the making of the film
- “The Making of Humanoids From The Deep,” featuring new interviews with composer James Horner, second unit/assistant director James Sbardellati, editor Mark Goldblatt and more!
- New World trailers
With the release of both Piranha and Humanoids from the Deep on Special Edition Blu-ray and DVD, this is sure to be a shocking summer. But remember: Stay out of the water!
Shout! Factory will continue to present Roger Corman’s Cult Classics home entertainment releases on a monthly basis. Upcoming highlights include Starcrash, Slumber Party Massacre: The Collection, The Evil, Twice Dead, Not of This Earth, Time Walker, Dead Space, among others.
Independent filmmaker-producer Roger Corman’s illustrious career ranks as one of Hollywood’s most amazing success stories. Having produced more than 350 films and directed 50 others, his influence on American film goes far beyond his own energetic, creative low-budget movies. He is arguably one of Hollywood’s most gifted and masterful filmmakers. In 2009 he was the recipient of an honorary Academy Award® for his contribution to the medium of film.
Noted for his keen ability to spot young talent, Corman’s most lasting legacy will undoubtedly be the legion of producers, directors, writers and actors he has fostered, among them: Jack Nicholson, Francis Ford Coppola, Robert De Niro, Martin Scorsese, James Cameron, Ron Howard, Peter Fonda, Jonathan Demme, Gale Anne Hurd, Diane Ladd, Tommy Lee Jones, Sandra Bullock, Bruce Dern, Talia Shire, Charles Bronson, Joe Dante, Peter Bogdanovich, Dennis Hopper, Bill Paxton, Carl Franklin and Sally Kirkland.
Shout! Factory is a diversified entertainment company devoted to producing, uncovering and revitalizing the very best of pop culture. Founders Richard Foos, Bob Emmer and Garson Foos have spent their careers sharing their music, television and film faves with discerning consumers the world over. Shout! Factory’s DVD offerings serve up classic, contemporary and cult TV series, riveting sports programs, live music, animation and documentaries in lavish packages crammed with extras. The company’s audio catalogue boasts GRAMMY®-nominated boxed sets, new releases from storied artists, lovingly assembled album reissues and indispensable “best of” compilations. These riches are the result of a creative acquisitions mandate that has established the company as a hotbed of cultural preservation and commercial reinvention. With its fingers on the pulse of pop culture, Shout! Factory continues to impact the entertainment media landscape through acquisition of top quality programming for home entertainment releases. Shout! Factory is based inSanta Monica, California. For more on Shout! Factory, visit www.shoutfactory.com
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