Production Diary: Halloween

The Beginning

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Last week Bill Lustig met with John Carpenter to record the segments needed for the new documentary called “Unmasked 2000” and he tells me that things went very well during the shoot. “We have recorded about 1 hour of footage with John”, Bill recalls, “and we are now starting to edit it all together.” The new featurette will run about 30 minutes, and to accommodate this, all the material that has been recorded so far, needs to be tightened and arranged to give the featurette a proper editorial flow. As we covered earlier, the final documentary will contain interviews with Irwin Yablans, Tommy Lee Wallace, P.J. Soles and Brian Andrews, apart from John Carpenter himself. We should be able to bring you pictures from the various recording sessions soon.

“Finally the transfers are all THX approved, too”, Lustig informs me on the phone. The last time we talked, they had just approved the letterboxed transfer, and Bill and his folks were still wrapping up the remaining fixes for the other transfers. Now, after working over the remaining pan & scan transfer and the TV version of the film, THX has put its seal of approval on all three versions of the film that will be featured on this DVD release!

“We are now working on the actual DVD”, Lustig tells me enthusiastically. So far, everything they did was related to the restoration of the actual film for use on DVD, but nothing for the physical DVD had been done yet. So currently, Bill Lustig and the folks at Crest National are messing around with the discs’ menu designs that will take you through the content of this spectacular special edition. There are a few ideas floating around regarding the presentation of the menus, but unfortunately we can’t really put these ideas into words. As soon as substantial visual content is available however, we will of course show you what these menus will look like on the final disc.

H4Menu1Some time ago we had also pointed out that we had access to early test discs from Anchor Bay’s “Halloween 4”, which will be released simultaneously with the “Halloween Special Edition” in August. While we are not able to fully review the disc at this point—as I pointed out, it is an early test disc that is incomplete and still has some minor glitches that need to be ironed out—we will give you an exclusive early look at some of the disc’s content.

H4Menu2Right here, is the disc’s main menu. As you can see there are unfortunately not a lot of extras on this disc, but in all honesty, we should all be happy that Anchor Bay has been able to actually acquire the rights to this film against all odds. Many of you have certainly noticed, that the film has been on and off release schedules for well over a year now, as a number of legal issues kept throwing stepping stones into the production path of this particular DVD. Finally all issues are resolved and “Halloween 4” will see that day of light on DVD in August.

The film looks spectacular on this DVD, that I’d like to point out. To me, “Halloween 4” has always been the best of all sequels, as it stays very true to the original theme, the mood and tension. The image on the disc is sharp and the colors are very well reproduced with every little detail clearly visible. All the cool backlit shots from the film are gorgeously presented on this disc. I know, it is unfair to tease you like this, but hopefully these screenshots will help you pass the time a little easier.
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