We get a lot of press releases for upcoming DVDs and Blu-rays here at FSR, as does every movie site with more than a handful of readers (a criteria we only just passed last week), and we basically ignore the vast majority of them. Sure sometimes it’s because reading is hard, but it’s usually because most of these announcements are pretty damn boring. The movies are expected releases, the extra features are slight and generic,and they’re just not worth the virtual ink it would take to report. But once in a while we get word of something special. Maybe it’s a movie long overdue for a remastered DVD or Blu-ray debut. Maybe it’s a fun flick arriving loaded with extras we never would have expected. Or maybe it’s just an awesome feeling to find you’re not alone in your love for a forgotten genre classic.

It seems more and more these days that the label behind many of the releases that excite us is the one with the exclamation point… Shout! Factory that is. They’ve long been a fine purveyor of pop culture, but their recent foray into the world of Roger Corman has earned them a place in our hearts (and wallets) for the foreseeable future. Over fifty Corman-produced titles are being released to Blu-ray and/or DVD, many for the first time, and all with the extra care and attention we’ve come to expect from a label staffed by movie-lovers. Titles released so far include Rock ‘n’ Roll High School, Death Race 2000, Forbidden World, and others, and the list of what’s still to come is growing every day. And really, who else would offer a blood-splattered, limited edition pillow case with pre-orders of The Slumber Party Massacre Collection due out this October?

Check after the jump for Shout! Factory’s official announcement and DVD/Blu-ray specs for three new releases hitting shelves next week including Piranha, Humanoids From the Deep, and a double feature release of Deathsport and Battletruck

From Shout! Factory:

“Just when you thought it was safe to take a dip in the water again…they’re baaaack! This summer, rediscover two enduring Roger Corman underwater thrillers filled with unstoppable action and edge-of-your-seat suspense as Joe Dante’s Piranha and Humanoids from the Deep, directed by Barbara Peters, debut August 3, 2010 for the first time on Special Edition Blu-ray and DVD from Shout! Factory, in association with New Horizons Picture Corporation. These two definitive Special Edition home entertainment releases from Roger Corman’s Cult Classics are sure to cause a feeding frenzy among thrill seekers and loyal fans of Roger Corman and Joe Dante.  Piranha Special Edition offers 2 highly collectible covers: the Blu-ray and DVD both feature the iconic vintage cover art from the film’s original 1978 movie poster and the spectacular art from the original international poster for the reverse cover; and the Special Edition DVD is further sparkled with a visually stunning 3-D lenticular exterior packaging. Humanoids from the Deep Special Edition also boasts a reversible cover featuring vintage art from the U.S. and international movie posters.

Both Special Edition Blu-ray and DVD releases of Piranha and Humanoids from the Deep feature anamorphic widescreen presentation of the movie and a spectacular array of special bonus content, including all-new in-depth interviews and commentaries with cast and crew, rare behind-the-scenes footage, reversible cover and more. Each Blu-ray and DVD is sold separately. Blu-ray is priced to own at $26.97 and $19.93 for the DVD.  Dare you to take the plunge with the original Piranha and Humanoids at home before you put on those 3-D shades for the remake of Piranha in 3-D coming to theaters nationwide late August.  See where the phenomenon began!

Lost River Lake was a thriving resort until they discovered … Piranha!

In 1978, audiences discovered Piranha, widely considered one of the very best films “inspired” by the success of Jaws, and for more than 30 years Piranha has been one of the true cult gems in the Roger Corman canon.

For the first time in anamorphic widescreen, Piranha is being seen the way it was meant to be seen: Bigger, badder, bloodier and more BITING than ever! This summer at Lost River Resort, the fish are most certainly biting!

While searching for missing teenagers, rookie skip-tracer Maggie McKeon (Heather Menzies) and booze-soaked river rat Paul Grogan (Bradford Dillman) stumble upon a top-secret military laboratory conduction genetic research on piranha fish for the purpose of developing the most lethal form of biological warfare imaginable. When the deadly eating machines are accidentally released from the compound, they’re soon headed downstream, consuming everything — and anyone — in their path. With Paul and Maggie in hot pursuit, the piranha’s next stop is the children’s summer camp, where Paul’s young daughter is vacationing, and then the newly-opened, multi-million-dollar water resort. Time is running out, and the piranha are hungry!

Piranha marked the solo directorial debut of Joe Dante (The Howling, Gremlins), after a long apprenticeship under Roger Corman’s tutelage at New World Pictures, and also marked the first produced screenplay of future indie-film icon and two-time Academy Award® nominee John Sayles (Lone Star, Eight Men Out). Sharp-eyed viewers will also spot cameo appearances by both Dante and Sayles in this film!

Not only was Piranha a box-office hit – becoming one of New World Pictures’ biggest worldwide hits – but it also earned rave reviews from critics, who appreciated its fast pacing, energetic cast, clever conspiracy satire, inventive special effects and, of course, the scares. Many critics considered it second-best only to Jaws but far superior to the “official” Jaws sequels — including Jaws 2, which opened the same year. Piranha won the Saturn Award for Best Editing (shared by Dante and Mark Goldblatt) and was nominated as Best Horror Film.

Perhaps the greatest tribute to Piranha’s sustained popularity is that this summer will see the release of Piranha 3-D to the nation’s movie screens. While the big-budget remake will undoubtedly put the bite on moviegoers, true fans know where it all began … with the original, classic Piranha.

PIRANHA SPECIAL EDITION BLU-RAY AND DVD SPECIAL FEATURES:

  • New anamorphic widescreen presentation (1.78:1)
  • Audio commentary with director Joe Dante and producer Jon Davison
  • Behind-the-scenes footage
  • “The Making of Piranha” featurette with new interviews from Roger Corman, Joe Dante, Dick Miller, Belinda Balaski and many More
  • Bloopers and outtakes
  • Piranha trailer with commentary by producer Jon Davison – Courtesy of Trailers From Hell (www.trailersfromhell.com)
  • Stills gallery with photos and posters from around the world
  • Behind-the-scenes stills gallery featuring photos from Phil Tippett’s personal collection
  • Additional scenes from the network television version
  • Radio and TV spots
  • New World trailers

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