Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection Blu-ray Announcement

Even before Universal announced that it would be releasing Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection on Blu-ray, September 25th was already shaping up to be one of the biggest release dates of the year. Also arriving that day is the billion-dollar hit Marvel’s The Avengers, Blu-ray debuts for David Fincher’s The Game from Criterion, The American President and Dave from Warner Bros., and Bond 50, a new Blu-ray set that collects all twenty-six James Bond films.

Whew.

Now add this new 15-film release from Universal to that list. Pretty impressive, huh.

This limited edition box set compiles fifteen titles from the filmmaker’s career, thirteen of which make their U.S. Blu-ray debut through this package.

The films include (* denotes new-to-Blu-ray):

Saboteur (1942)*, Shadow of a Doubt (1943)*, Rope (1948)*, Rear Window (1954)*, The Trouble with Harry (1955)*, The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956)*, Vertigo (1958)*, North by Northwest (1959), Psycho (1960), The Birds (1963)*, Marnie (1964)*, Torn Curtain (1966)*, Topaz (1969)*, Frenzy (1972)*, Family Plot (1976)*

Looking at these fifteen titles it’s interesting to note the inclusion of Warner Bros. North by Northwest. Apparently the studio didn’t want to allow Universal to include Strangers on a Train, which WB will release in October along with a Blu-ray 3D release of Dial M for Murder. It would have been nice if Paramount would have allowed To Catch a Thief to be added to the package as well, but you can’t always get the most comprehensive of box sets.

In addition to these fifteen films, the set includes a collectible 50-page book featuring storyboards, costume sketches, correspondence, photographs, and much more. Plus a treasure trove of over 15 hours of documentaries, filmmaker commentaries, interviews, screen tests, trailers and a new documentary “The Birds, Hitchcock’s Monster Movie.”

Saboteur

  • Saboteur: A Closer Look behind-the-scenes featurette
  • Storyboards for the “Statue of Liberty” setpiece
  • Alfred Hitchcock’s sketches
  • Production photographs
  • Theatrical trailer

Shadow of a Doubt

  • Beyond Doubt: The Making of Hitchcock’s Favorite Film behind-the-scenes featurette
  • Production drawings by art director Robert Boyle
  • Production photographs
  • Theatrical trailer

Rope

  • Rope Unleashed behind-the-scenes featurette
  • Production photographs
  • Theatrical trailer

Rear Window

  • Commentary with Hitchcock’s Rear Window: The Well-Made Film author John Fawell
  • Behind-the-scenes featurettes:
    • Masters of Cinema
    • Rear Window Ethics: An Original Documentary
    • A Conversation with Screenwriter John Michael Hayes
    • Pure Cinema: Through the Eyes of The Master
    • Breaking Barriers: The Sound of Hitchcock
  • Hitchcock-Truffaut interview excerpts
  • Production photographs
  • Theatrical trailers
  • Re-release trailer narrated by James Stewart
  • Blu-ray exclusive BD Live and Pocket Blu functionalities

The Trouble with Harry

  • The Trouble with Harry Isn’t Over behind-the-scenes featurette
  • Production photographs
  • Theatrical trailers

The Man Who Knew Too Much

  • The Making of The Man Who Knew Too Much behind-the-scenes featurette
  • Production photographs
  • Trailers

Vertigo

  • Two audio commentaries:
    • Associate producer Herbert Coleman, restoration team Robert A. Harris and James C. Katz, and other Vertigo participants
    • Filmmaker William Friedkin
  • Behind-the-scenes featurettes:
    • Obsessed with Vertigo: New Life for Hitchcock’s Masterpiece
    • Partners in Crime: Hitchcock’s Collaborators
  • The Vertigo Archives feature
  • Hitchcock-Truffaut interview excerpts
  • Foreign censorship Ending
  • 100 Years of Universal featurette: The Lew Wasserman Era
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Restoration theatrical trailer
  • Blu-ray exclusive BD Live and Pocket Blu functionalities

North by Northwest

  • Commentary by screenwriter Ernest Lehman
  • Behind-the-scenes featurettes:
    • Destination Hitchcock: The Making of North by Northwest
    • North by Northwest: One for the Ages
    • The Master’s Touch: Hitchcock’s Signature Style
    • Cary Grant: A Class Apart
  • Music-only audio track
  • Stills gallery
  • Theatrical trailers and TV spot

Psycho

  • Commentary with Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho author Stephen Rebello
  • Behind-the-scenes featurettes:
    • The Making of Psycho
    • Psycho Sound
    • In The Master’s Shadow: Hitchcock’s Legacy
  • Breakdowns of the “Shower Scene” setpiece:
    • With and without music
    • Storyboards by Saul Bass
  • The Psycho Archives feature
  • Vintage newsreel: The Release of Psycho
  • Hitchcock-Truffaut interview excerpts
  • Posters and Psycho ads
  • Lobby cards
  • Behind-the-scenes photographs
  • Production photographs
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Re-release trailers

The Birds

  • Behind-the-scenes featurettes:
    • Blu-ray exclusive The Birds: Hitchcock’s Monster Movie
    • All About The Birds
  • Vintage Universal International newsreels:
    • The Birds Is Coming
    • Suspense Story: National Press Club Hears Hitchcock
  • Tippi Hedren’s screen test
  • Hitchcock-Truffaut interview excerpts
  • Deleted scene
  • Original ending
  • Storyboards
  • Production photographs
  • 100 Years of Universalfeaturettes:
    • Restoring the Classics
    • The Lot
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Blu-ray exclusive BD Live and Pocket Blu functionalities

Marnie

  • The Trouble with Marnie behind-the-scenes featurette
  • The Marnie Archives feature
  • Theatrical trailer

Torn Curtain

  • Torn Curtain Rising behind-the-scenes featurette
  • Selected scenes scored by Bernard Herrmann
  • Production photographs
  • Theatrical trailer

Topaz

  • Alternate endings
  • Topaz: An Appreciation with film historian and critic Leonard Maltin
  • Storyboards for “The Mendozas” setpiece
  • Production photographs
  • Theatrical trailer

Frenzy

  • The Story of Frenzy behind-the-scenes featurette
  • Production photographs
  • Theatrical trailer

Family Plot

  • Plotting Family Plot behind-the-scenes featurette
  • Storyboards for the chase scene
  • Production photographs
  • Theatrical trailer

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