Phantom of the Paradise (1974)
Wednesday 22nd January 2014
Arrow Video is thrilled to announce the release of Brian De Palma's seminal horror fantasy Phantom of the Paradise coming to Blu-ray for the first time in the UK on 24th February 2014. One of 2014's most hotly anticipated titles from the Arrow Video label, this feature-packed disc will be released as both a Limited Edition SteelBook and deluxe Blu-ray featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by The Red Dress. This exciting Blu-ray release will also include an exclusive collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by festival programmer Michael Blyth and an exploration of the film's troubled marketing history by Ari Kahan, curator of SwanArchives.org, illustrated with original stills and promotional material.
Featuring a bumper crop of bonus features such as Paradise Regained, a 50 minute documentary on the making of the film featuring director Brian De Palma, producer Ed Pressman and members of the cast, The Swan Song Fiasco, a new video piece exploring the changes made to the film in post-production plus alternate takes and bloopers from the cutting room floor, original trailers, a gallery of rare stills and most excitingly a newly filmed 70 minute interview where renowned director Guillermo del Toro interviews Paul Williams.
Brian De Palma's Phantom of the Paradise came hot on the heels of his early horror film Sisters. De Palma planned both films at the same time but the complex production design and sets forced Phantom into second place due to budgetary constraints. For those who found Sisters to be too much of a Hitchcock rip-off Phantom of the Paradise is a very different film and finds De Palma working with his most wicked sense of humour in this gothic masterpiece.
Phantom's devoted fans not only claim this to be De Palma's best film but also far superior to the Rocky Horror Picture Show for cult musical madness. Phantom of the Paradise also claims many celebrity fans including Edgar Wright, Guillermo del Toro and Quentin Tarantino.
Brian De Palma's inspired rock 'n' roll fusion of Faust, The Phantom of the Opera and The Picture of Dorian Gray boasts an Oscar-nominated score by Paul Williams, who also stars as an evil record producer who not only steals the work of composer/performer Winslow Leach (William Finley) but gets him locked up in Sing Sing - and that's not the worst that happens to him along the way.
Few revenge scenarios have ever been so amply justified, but the film is also constantly aware of the satirical possibilities offered by the 1970s music industry, exemplified by Gerrit Graham's hilariously camp glam-rock star. Jessica Harper (Suspiria) appears in her first major role as the naïve but ambitious singer, on whom Winslow secretly dotes.
Prodigiously inventive both musically and visually, this is one of De Palma's most entertaining romps, not least because it was so clearly a labour of love.
The super-deluxe package, which is available both as a standard Blu-ray and as a limited edition Blu-ray SteelBook, is full of special features and bonus material. The special features for this edition include:
- High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation of the feature, available in the UK for the first time!
- Original uncompressed Stereo PCM / 4.0 DTS-HD Master Audio options
- Isolated Music and Effects soundtrack
- Optional English SDH subtitles for the deaf and hearing impaired
- Paradise Regained - A 50 minute documentary on the making of the film featuring director Brian De Palma, producer Ed Pressman, the late star William Finley, star and composer Paul Williams, co-stars Jessica Harper and Gerrit Graham and more!
- Guillermo Del Toro interviews Paul Williams (72 mins, 2014)
- The Swan Song Fiasco: A new video piece exploring the changes made to the film in post-production
- Archive interview with costume designer Rosanna Norton
- William Finley on the Phantom doll!
- Paradise Lost and Found: Alternate takes and bloopers from the cutting room floor
- Original Trailers
- Radio Spots
- Gallery of rare stills including behind-the-scenes images by photographer Randy Black
- Collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by festival programmer Michael Blyth and an exploration of the film's troubled marketing history by Ari Kahan, curator of SwanArchives.org, illustrated with original stills and promotional material
- Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by The Red Dress [Amaray release only]
- Limited Edition SteelBookT packaging featuring original artwork [ SteelBook only]
- Booklet featuring new writing on the film by John Kenneth Muir, author of The Films of John Carpenter, as well as a re-print of an interview with production designer John Lloyd and make-up effects artist Steve Johnson on the design and effects of the film, illustrated with archive stills and poster
- None or TBC