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page created: 2/25/99

Artisan Studio News -
Artisan Entertainment (Live)

Here's the text of Artisan's new press release, announcing the first use of DVD-18 discs:


Stephen King's THE STAND To Be The First Title Offered In New Format

SANTA MONICA, CA (February 25, 1999) - Artisan Home Entertainment, the leading independent DVD and home video distributor, today announced a major DVD Industry breakthrough with start of production on the world's first ever dual-sided, dual-layered disc to be called DVD 18. According to Jeff Fink, President, Sales and Marketing, Artisan Home Entertainment, Stephen King's The Stand will be the first title offered in the new format.

"With the first DVD 18 title, we are achieving an eagerly-awaited technical breakthrough in the world of DVD technology," said Fink. "We were the first to pioneer DVD 9 within the home entertainment industry with the launch of James Cameron's Terminator 2: Judgment Day and plan to do the same with the new DVD 18 to the benefit of retailers and consumers alike. DVD 18 enables Artisan to offer our extensive library of compilations and mini series on a single, high-quality disc.

With multiple layers on each side which can hold up to eight hours of digital information at high quality, DVD 18 eliminates the need for multiple discs for a single title and the special packaging they require. In addition, DVD 18 economizes shelf space by allowing double the currently available duplication area on a single disc.

The first DVD 18 title, Stephen King's The Stand, will feature a continuous six-hour special edition of the critically acclaimed television miniseries. Stephen King's The Stand is the powerful film version of King's best-selling novel of the same name. Starring Gary Sinise, Molly Ringwald, Jamey Sheridan, Laura San Giacomo, Ruby Dee, Ossie Davis, Miguel Ferrer, Corin Nemec, Matt Frewer, Adam Storke, Ray Walston and Rob Lowe, the film is about the end of civilization and the ultimate battle between good and evil.

The specialized DVD 18 replication will be handled by Warner Advanced Media Operations (WAMO), with processing scheduled to begin by September 1, 1999.

Artisan Entertainment Inc., headquartered in Santa Monica, California with satellite offices in New York and Dallas, is the leading independent entertainment company specializing in the domestic and international marketing and distribution of feature-length motion pictures. In addition, Artisan controls a library of more than 6,300 titles, including Terminator2: Judgment Day, Reservoir Dogs, Dirty Dancing, Total Recall, The Piano and the Rambo series of films. The company distributes to the theatrical, non-theatrical, home video and television markets around the world through its subsidiaries, including Artisan Entertainment; Artisan International; Artisan Television; Artisan Pictures; and Artisan Home Entertainment and its children's label Family Home Entertainment, which jointly distribute Hallmark Home Entertainment under an exclusive, long-term domestic sales servicing agreement. The company recently licensed home video sell-through rights for the US and Canada to all films in Spelling Entertainment Group's Republic Entertainment subsidiary, representing a collection of more than 3,000 titles. The library includes such classic films as It's a Wonderful Life, High Noon, Rio Grande and John Ford's The Quiet Man. Also include are such modern titles as Tender Mercies, Highlander and Highlander 2 and several Stephen King pictures including Stephen King's The Stand, Stephen King's Thinner and Stephen King's The Langoliers.

PREVIOUS NEWS (10/13/98)

Artisan Entertainment has released information about their forthcoming DVD releases of Earth Girls Are Easy and Weekend at Bernie's. The discs will be released on December 15th, and will include the following features:

Earth Girls Are Easy - anamorphic widescreen, Dolby Surround 2.0, additional scenes, production notes, Earth Girls TV, karaoke songs, Spanish subtitles, 99 mins, SRP $29.98

Weekend at Bernie's - widescreen, Dolby Surround 2.0, production notes, Spanish subtitles, 101 mins, SRP $24.98


Artisan has issued a series of press releases, indicating the disc features and release dates for some upcoming DVD titles.

First of all, Artisan is re-releasing a DVD version of Dirty Dancing. The new release has been digitally enhanced and remastered. It will include both widescreen and pan & scan, and will feature English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound. A 2.0 soundtrack will be provided in French, and also 1.0 mono Spanish. There will be subtitles in all three languages, as well as English captioning. The disc will also include interactive menus, scene access, production notes, cast and crew bios and a theatrical trailer. The SRP is $24.98, and the title streets October 13th.

NOTE: I'm also told it will be re-released in Amaray keep case packaging.

On October 20th, look for new DVD versions of First Blood, Rambo: First Blood Part II and Rambo III. All have been digitally remastered for 16x9 widescreen. Each disc will contain the 25 minute, behind-the-scenes documentary, An American Hero's Journey. First Blood will also contain a unique featurette First Blood: A Look Back, and Rambo III will include a similar featurette, Rambo III: Full Circle. All three will include unique commentary tracks as well, (with David Morrell, George Cosmatos and Peter MacDonald respectively). All will feature Dolby Digital 2.0 sound, theatrical trailers, trivia games, interactive menus, scene access, cast & crew bios, Spanish subtitles and Close Captioning. SRP is $24.98 each. Amaray keep case packaging.

NOTE: I've been told that a 5.1 mix was originally planned, but unfortunately the original audio stems could not be located to create one.

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