A beloved character actor passed away this week, and Paramount has found another way to frustrate Blu-ray fans. What do these stories have in common? Nothing, really. Sometimes miscellaneous news items just get tossed together into hodgepodge posts like this.
R.I.P. Eli Wallach
Found at: L.A. Times
With over 160 film and TV credits to his name (not to mention extensive stage work), Eli Wallach was a legend, especially at playing lovably devious scoundrels, thieves, bandits and gangsters. He’s perhaps best remembered as the “Ugly” portion of ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly‘ (recently remastered on Blu-ray). Wallach’s last film was the Oliver Stone sequel ‘Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps‘.
98 years is a good, long life that anyone should covet, but do you wonder if perhaps he was a little chuffed in his final moments to realize that he wouldn’t make it to 100? I think I would be.
To Boldly Double-Dip
Found at: Trek News
Do you remember how upset fans were last year when Paramount made the infuriating decision to split up the bonus features for the Blu-ray release of ‘Star Trek into Darkness‘ among a host of retailer exclusives? Target got some exclusive featurettes, Best Buy got some others that could only be viewed via CinemaNow streaming, and the only way to watch the movie with the “Enhanced Commentary” was to buy a Digital Copy from iTunes.
Does it surprise you at all to learn that Paramount now plans to double-dip the movie in a new release that finally compiles all the extras into one package? Of course not.
This September, the ‘Star Trek: The Compendium’ box set will consolidate all of the existing supplements for the movie, plus add a bunch of new items, including a new video transfer with the alternating aspect ratio gimmick previously only seen in IMAX theaters. (Portions of the movie were shot on IMAX film stock, like ‘The Dark Knight’.)
Naturally, this comes with a couple of catches: 1) To get this, you’re forced to rebuy the 2009 ‘Star Trek’ as well. (There will be no separate release for ‘Into Darkness’.) 2) ‘The Compendium’ does not contain the 3D version of ‘Into Darkness’. 3D fans will have to hold onto their existing Blu-ray copies for that.
If you want to watch the movie in 3D with the alternating aspect ratio (as it was seen in IMAX 3D theaters), I suppose you’ll have to wait a couple more years for the inevitable triple-dip.
I should also point out the futility of buying a box set with two movies in it when another sequel is already in pre-production. You can absolutely expect a “trilogy” box set somewhere down the line.
Blah Blah Blah…
Found at: Washington Post
“Go ahead, ask the internet,” Gary Oldman instructs viewers in a series of commercials for the HTC One smartphone that you’ve probably seen on television a lot lately. Unfortunately, the internet has not been too kind to the actor this week.
In yet another case of a celebrity putting his foot firmly in his mouth, Oldman gave an interview to Playboy magazine in which he made some ill-considered remarks about Jews, homosexuals and other minorities. These were then excerpted elsewhere, causing the internet to explode in outrage, as the internet is prone to do.
In their original context, the actor’s comments were intended as a rant against political correctness and the (as he sees it) hypocritical, unfair treatment that fellow stars like Mel Gibson and Alec Baldwin have received for their indiscretions. Honestly, I kind of sympathize with Oldman a little bit on that. However, the examples he gave were not good ones, and some of the things he said in the interview were genuinely offensive, regardless of intent. I’m sorry, but no, Gary Oldman, not everyone uses the n-word in private when there aren’t any black people around.
Oldman promptly issued an apology, which many people have complained is either incomplete or possibly even sarcastic and insincere.
I don’t know Gary Oldman personally. I choose to believe that he’s not a bad person, and that he just got caught up in the moment and said some things that he later regretted – as we all have done to some extent.
Still, when will public figures learn to just keep their damn mouths shut? Oldman should have known better than to open up like this during a publicity interview to promote his upcoming movie, ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’. He has enough experience at this game to know that the interviewer was not his chum, and would absolutely take the opportunity to exploit and sensationalize his comments for page views. So, at least in that respect, Oldman deserved the censuring that he has received, and I hope he learns a lesson from it.