Box Set Full of Kryptonite
Warner Bros.’ 2007 Superman Ultimate Collector’s Edition DVD set is now
on sale at Amazon for an astounding $24.99. List price is $99.98 (per Amazon, a little higher or lower at other sites). You’ll still be a penny shy of free shipping, which is surely intentional.
As there were problems with the release of an almost identical set in 2006, when this Ultimate Collector’s Edition came out in 2007 I waited until it had a clean bill of health in online reports and then splurged the moment Borders held one of its very occasional 40%-off sales on DVD sets — knowing that if the set sold out we might not get another such package until there was another Superman movie to promote. I’ve still yet to watch everything in the set but no fan of the character or any part of the compilation should pass up this opportunity.
On 14 discs, packaged with a lenticular hologram of the Man of Steel in flight inside a tin case sporting both the 1978 and 2006 film versions of the big S, you get...
• the 17 Superman animated shorts produced by the Fleischer and Famous studios
from 1941 to 1943, with a featurette on the series;
• 1943’s Bugs Bunny short “Super-Rabbit”, as well as 1944’s Private Snafu short “Snafuperman” and 1956’s Daffy Duck short “Stupor Duck”;
• Superman and the Mole Men, the 1951 feature film starring George Reeves that
served as a springboard for TV’s Adventures of Superman;
• the infamous 1958 pilot The Adventures of Superpup;
• the 1978 theatrical version of Superman, with optional commentary from executive producer Ilya Salkind and producer Pierre Spengler, plus theatrical and television trailers;
• the expanded edition of Superman released in 2000, with optional commentary from director Richard Donner and script doctor / creative consultant Tom Mankiewicz, plus a music-only audio track;
• the 1980 theatrical version of Superman II, with optional commentary from executive producer Ilya Salkind and producer Pierre Spengler, plus deleted scene and trailer;
• 2006’s long-awaited Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut, with optional introduction from Donner, commentary from Donner and script doctor / creative consultant Tom Mankiewicz, and deleted scenes;
• the 1983 theatrical version of Superman III, with optional commentary from executive producer Ilya Salkind and producer Pierre Spengler, plus deleted scenes and trailer;
• the 1987 theatrical version of Superman IV: The Quest for Peace, with optional commentary from co-screenwriter Marc Rosenthal, plus deleted scenes and trailer;
• television specials on the making of the first three Christopher Reeve films, plus Making ‘Superman’: Filming the Legend and other documentaries on the Salkind era, restored scenes, screen tests, and more, including a tribute to Reeve;
• the 1988 TV special produced by Lorne Michaels for Superman’s 50th anniversary;
• the 2006 theatrical release of Superman Returns, plus deleted scenes and trailers;
• Superman Returns director Bryan Singer’s video production journals, as well as the documentary Requiem for Krypton; and
• the 2006 documentary Look, Up in the Sky: The Amazing Story of Superman, focusing on Superman’s animated and live-action adaptations.
Of course the set leads off with the 1978 film, but I decided that rough chronological order might be more helpful than order of presentation on disc. There’s also a keepsake Daily Planet booklet listing the set’s contents by disc and a small comic that reprints a fairly random John Byrne Superman story from 1987 plus a select gallery of art from recent covers, topped by Ed McGuinness’s cover to the 2006 collection of Superman: Our Worlds at War.
[Update: Although the deep discount ended shortly after this post was published, I’ve left it intact for reference should there be another occasion to describe the collection.]
Related: El on Earth • Panel to Frame • NCC-1701-DVD