The NON-superhero big comic book movie of this past summer was Cowboys & Aliens, starring Harrison Ford and Daniel Craig in a sci-fi/Western mash-up based on a graphic novel.
Although it didn’t do as well as obviously hoped, the Blu-ray release still provides plenty of extras, mostly dealing with the extensive special effects, for an audience that might find the film more enjoyable on home video.
The Blu-ray Combo Pack (list price $34.98) has “a never-before-seen extended version of the movie” as well as a DVD and digital copy (available for six months) of the film. Extra features include the making-of “Igniting the Sky”, with participation by director Jon Favreau; producers Steven Spielberg, Ron Howard, and Brian Grazer; stars Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig, and Olivia Wilde; and “visual-effects powerhouses” Legacy Effects and ILM. It consists of these segments (according to the press release):
- FINDING THE STORY — Cowboys & Aliens, based on the graphic novel by Scott Mitchell Rosenberg, has been in development for over a decade. Filmmakers, writers and cast explain why this particular team of Hollywood heavyweights hit the right note to bring this to the big screen.
- THE SCOPE OF THE SPECTACLE — A look at the team behind the camera for the film’s massive New Mexico shoot, as the stars ride horses, shoot guns, jump from explosions, and get yanked 80 feet in the air! Director Jon Favreau stages unforgettable action set-pieces as cameras capture every moment, while legendary stuntman and Cowboys & Aliens’ second unit director Terry Leonard brings a lifetime of experience to the big-screen stunts, from legendary moments in John Wayne classics to doubling for Harrison Ford in Raiders of the Lost Ark.
- OUTER-SPACE ICON — Take a closer look at the creation of a new, terrifying alien design from Legacy Effects and Industrial Light and Magic.
- A CALL TO ACTION (Blu-ray only) — A profile of prolific actor, writer and director Jon Favreau featuring on-set video diaries shot throughout the production.
- ABSOLUTION (Blu-ray only) — A look at the practical re-creation of a dusty Old West mining town, the town’s inhabitants and the amazing ensemble of actors who portray them, as well as an exclusive look at the film’s meticulous production and costume designs.
Both the Blu-ray and DVD version (list price $29.98) also include Jon Favreau’s commentary.
The Blu-ray also debuts a technological advance with an update to Universal’s “Second Screen” feature, an application that runs on a tablet or computer and provides bonus behind-the-scenes material in sync with the movie on your WiFi-connected Blu-ray player. They’ve added “Flick View”, a way (if using a touchscreen device) to “flick” content from the device onto the TV screen or back again. You can also control your Blu-ray player from your handheld device with Universal’s “pocketBLU” app. The Second Screen updates are nifty enough that they created a trailer to show you how it works:
Yet another example of how we’re living in the future — it seems so simple, and yet, when you think about it, that’s pretty amazing as an entertainment toy.