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    Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection

    8 Horror Masterpieces Hit Blu-ray...

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    For the first time ever, eight of the most iconic cinematic masterpieces of the horror genre are available together on Blu-ray as Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection released yesterday from Universal Studios Home Entertainment. Digitally restored from high resolution film elements in perfect high-definition picture and perfect high-definition sound for the first time ever, Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection brings together the very best of Universal’s legendary monsters—imaginative and technically groundbreaking tales of terror that launched a uniquely American movie genre.

    This definitive collection features eight films on Blu-ray, a collectible 48-page book featuring behind-the-scenes photographs, original posters, correspondence and much more. Each film is accompanied by an array of bonus features that tell the fascinating story of its creation and history, including behind-the-scenes documentaries, filmmaker commentaries, interviews, storyboards, photo galleries, and trailers. Especially appealing for fans are a never-before-seen featurette about the restoration of Dracula and the first ever offering of Creature from the Black Lagoon in its restored Blu-ray 3D version.

    From the era of silent movies through the present day, Universal Pictures has been regarded as the home of the monsters. Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection honors the studio’s accomplishments with the most iconic monsters in motion-picture history including Dracula, Frankenstein, The Mummy, The Invisible Man, Bride of Frankenstein, The Wolf Man, Phantom of the Opera and Creature from the Black Lagoon. Featuring performances by legends of the horror genre, including Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff, Lon Chaney, Jr., Claude Rains and Elsa Lanchester, these eight films also feature groundbreaking special effects and innovative makeup that continue to influence filmmakers into the 21st century.

    Dracula (1931)

    The original 1931 movie version of Bram Stoker’s classic tale has for generations defined the iconic look and terrifying persona of the famed vampire. Dracula owes its continued appeal in large part due to Bela Lugosi’s indelible portrayal of the immortal Count Dracula and the flawless direction of horror auteur Tod Browning. The Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection includes the original version of this chilling and evocative tale, as well as the rarely seen Spanish version of Dracula. Filmed simultaneously with the English language version, the Spanish version of Dracula is an equally ominous vision of the horror classic shot with the same sets and script. Cinematographer George Robinson and a vibrant cast including CarlosVillarias and Lupita Tovar deliver a chilling and evocative tale filled with the same terror, mystery, and intrigue.

    Bonus Features:
    Dracula, the 1931 Spanish version, with Introduction by Lupita Tovar Kohner
    The Road to Dracula
    Lugosi: The Dark Prince
    Dracula: The Restoration – New Featurette Available for The First Time!
    Monster Tracks: Interactive Pop-Up Facts About the Making of Dracula
    Dracula Archives
    Score by Philip Glass performed by the Kronos Quartet
    Feature Commentary by Film Historian David J. Skal
    Feature Commentary by Steve Haberman, Screenwriter of Dracula: Dead and Loving It
    Trailer Gallery

    Frankenstein (1931)

    Boris Karloff stars as the screen’s most tragic and iconic monster in what many consider to be the greatest horror film ever made. Dr. Henry Frankenstein (Colin Clive)dares to tamper with the essential nature of life and death by creating a monster (Karloff) out of lifeless human body parts. Director James Whale’s adaptation of the Mary Shelley novel and Karloff’s compassionate portrayal of a creature groping for identity make Frankenstein a timeless masterpiece.

    Bonus Features:
    The Frankenstein Files: How Hollywood Made a Monster
    Karloff: The Gentle Monster
    Monster Tracks: Interactive Pop-Up Facts About The Making of Frankenstein
    Universal Horror
    Frankenstein Archives
    Boo!: A Short Film
    Feature Commentary with Film Historian Rudy Behlmer
    Feature Commentary with Historian Sir Christopher Frayling
    100 Years Of Universal: Restoring the Classics
    Trailer Gallery

    The Mummy (1932)

    Horror icon Boris Karloff stars in the original 1932 version of The Mummy in which a team of British archaeologists accidentally revives a mummified high priest after 3,700 years. Alive again, he sets out on an obsessive—and deadly—quest to find his lost love. Over 50 years after its first release, this brooding dream-like horror classic remains a cinematic masterpiece.

    Bonus Features:
    Mummy Dearest: A Horror Tradition Unearthed
    He Who Made Monsters: The Life and Art Of Jack Pierce
    Unraveling the Legacy of The Mummy
    The Mummy Archives
    Feature Commentary by Rick Baker, Scott Essman, Steve Haberman, Bob Burns and Brent Armstrong
    Feature Commentary by Film Historian Paul M. Jensen
    100 Years Of Universal: The Carl Laemmle Era
    Trailer Gallery

    The Invisible Man (1933)

    Claude Rains delivers an unforgettable performance in his screen debut as a mysterious doctor who discovers a serum that makes him invisible. Covered by bandages and dark glasses, Rains arrives in a small English village and attempts to hide his amazing discovery, but the drug’s side effects slowly drive him to commit acts of unspeakable terror. Based on H.G. Welles’ classic novel and directed by the master of macabre, James Whale, The Invisible Man fueled a host of sequels and features revolutionary special effects that are still imitated today.

    Bonus Features:
    Now You See Him: The Invisible Man Revealed
    Production Photographs
    Feature Commentary with Film Historian Rudy Behlmer
    100 Years of Universal: Unforgettable Characters

    Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

    The acclaimed sequel to the original Frankenstein has become one of the most popular horror classics in film history. The legendary Boris Karloff reprises his role as the screen’s most misunderstood monster, now longing for a mate of his own. Colin Clive is back as the proud and overly ambitious Dr. Frankenstein, who creates the ill-fated bride (Elsa Lanchester). The last horror film directed by James Whale features a haunting musical score that helps make The Bride of Frankenstein one of the finest and most touching thrillers of its era.

    Bonus Features:
    She’s Alive! Creating The Bride Of Frankenstein
    The Bride Of Frankenstein Archive
    Feature Commentary with Scott MacQueen
    100 Years of Universal: Restoring the Classics
    Trailer Gallery

    The Wolf Man (1941)

    Originally released in 1941, The Wolf Man introduced the world to a new Universal movie monster and redefined the mythology of the werewolf forever. Featuring a heartbreaking performance by Lon Chaney Jr. and groundbreaking make-up by Jack Pierce, The Wolf Man is the saga of Larry Talbot, a cursed man who transforms into a deadly werewolf when the moon is full. The dreamlike atmospheres, elaborate settings and chilling musical score combine to make The Wolf Man a masterpiece of the genre.

    Bonus Features:
    Monster by Moonlight
    The Wolf Man: From Ancient Curse to Modern Myth
    Pure in Heart: The Life and Legacy of Lon Chaney, Jr.
    He Who Made Monsters: The Life and Art of Jack Pierce
    The Wolf Man Archives
    Feature Commentary with Film Historian Tom Weaver
    100 Years of Universal: The Lot
    Trailer Gallery

    Phantom of the Opera (1943)

    This lavish retelling of Gaston Leroux's immortal horror tale stars Claude Rains as the masked phantom who haunts the Paris Opera House. A crazed composer who schemes to make beautiful young soprano Christine DuBois (Susanna Foster) the star of the opera company, the Phantom also wreaks revenge on those he believes stole his music. Nelson Eddy, as the heroic baritone, tries to win the affections of Christine as he tracks down the murderous, horribly disfigured Phantom.

    Bonus Features:
    The Opera Ghost: A Phantom Unmasked
    Production Photographs
    Feature Commentary with Film Historian Scott MacQueen
    100 Years of Universal: The Lot
    Theatrical Trailer

    Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954)

    Captured and imprisoned for scientific study, a living “amphibious missing link” becomes enamored with the head researcher’s female assistant (Julie Adams). When the hideous creature escapes and kidnaps the object of his affection, a crusade is launched to rescue the helpless woman and cast the terrifying creature back to the depths from which he came. Featuring legendary makeup artist Bud Westmore’s brilliantly designed monster, Creaturefrom the Black Lagoon is an enduring tribute to the imaginative genius of its Hollywood creators.

    Bonus Features:
    The Creature From The Black Lagoon in 3D
    Back to The Black Lagoon
    Production Photographs
    Feature Commentary with Film Historian Tom Weaver
    100 Years of Universal: The Lot
    Trailer Gallery

    Source: Universal Studios PR

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