Saturday, February 28, 2015

"Into The Woods" Coming to DVD & Blu-ray March 24th

This is on my to-get list. I'm aware of some of the challenges of bringing a musical to screen and how impossible it is to please everyone. Considering the "small" budget (relatively speaking) for this movie and the decision to do as much as possible "in camera", I think this is an overall better-than-we-expected result. The casting was good to great and the music, complete with symphony-sized orchestra, is wonderful. I just wish there was more to this take-it-home package. Considering how beloved a musical it is in general I think they could have easily had a special edition with book and lyrics that included pre-production designs, as well as nods to previously great productions. I would have considered getting it and I know I'm not alone...

Listed below are the special features from the Blu-ray. Disney has a track record of only putting the best features on the Blu-ray, not the DVD, so if you want the behind the scenes extras the Blu-ray is the way to go.
They still haven't put everything currently available to view online on the discs though! (Seems crazy to me.) I wish there was more from Sondheim and Lapine, a comparison to the original screenplay, a shout-out to the original Broadway cast, some development artwork and story research notes... Anyone who is interested in this as a play, who is looking at tropes or as a lyricist is going to feel frustrated (including me).

There is a filmmaker commentary though and Rob Marshall isn't just a technical conductor with regard to his films. He's very involved in the "how" and "why" of each scene and moment, so hopefully there will be some great gems from him on here.

There's also the newly written, then deleted song. Disney released an excerpt of it late Friday as a DVD teaser (it was filmed for the movie, not just recorded and was cut late in editing so it's a fully produced version).
The clip features Meryl Streep as The Witch performing ‘She’ll Be Back,’ an original song written by Stephen Sondheim for the film. In the song, The Witch laments Rapunzel’s decision to leave her and run off with the prince, but she is convinced Rapunzel will return once she comes to her senses. (The) full length of the bonus feature/song (which also features an introduction by director Rob Marshall) is just over 4 1/2 minutes long. (via StitchKingdom)
Take a look:

Additional bonus features are as follows:
  • Streep Sings Sondheim – ‘She’ll Be Back’ (4:35) – Meryl Streep performs a compelling new song that sheds a little more light on the Witch’s relationship with Rapunzel. This never-before- seen composition was penned especially for this movie by Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine, and is seen here exclusively on Blu-ray and EHV. With introduction by Director Rob Marshall.
  • There’s Something About the Woods (12:46) – Journey into this mysterious forest to discover how this compelling, new musical was made. Meet Director Rob Marshall and his award-winning team of artists and craftspeople, see how the woods were brought to life…and what they represent to the story… and to all of us.
  • The Cast as Good as Gold (9:42) – Emily Blunt. Anna Kendrick. Chris Pine. James Corden. Johnny Depp. Meryl Streep. Meet the remarkable cast of this musical movie, and hear of their affinity for this Broadway classic.
  • Deeper Into the Woods – Journey even further into the development of the film in these 4 segments:
  • Deeper Into the Woods – From Stage to Screen (8:10)
  • Deeper Into the Woods – The Magic of the Woods (7:03)
  • Deeper Into the Woods – Designing of the Woods (6:48)
  • Deeper Into the Woods – The Costumes of the Woods (6:35)
  • Get direct access to the musical song segments from the film, with optional sing-along lyrics.
  • Easter Eggs – Meryl Climbs (:21), Witch Riser (:46), Sneakers (:12), Jack and the Bean Stalk Rehearsal (1:30), Bird Attack (:19)
  • Into the Woods Audio Commentary with Director Rob Marshall and Producer John Deluca

You can pre-order via Amazon (they've updated with the proper images now) or through the official Into The Woods movie site.

1 comment:

  1. For those interested in doing their own comparison between the Into The Woods film and screenplay, Disney has provided the screenplay as a PDF to download: I haven't looked closely myself, but presumably this version is closer to the final film than the earlier drafts floating around the internet.