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Published on June 20th, 2016 | by Ed Sum

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Charles Band on the Remastering of The Lurking Fear and Beyond…

Charles Band listens to his fans of his works and in response, is re-releasing his catalog of old classics from his Empire/ Full Moon days onto blu-ray. The trend has been going on for a while now, and this producer will keep the trend going. C. Courtney Joyner’s The Lurking Fear, inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft, is now available (released Jun 15, 2016).

I enjoyed looking at the preview. The remaster looks very good and my only question is why explosions from old films always look the most pixellated. The disc version should technically correct the latter. But as for what I’ve noticed, the rest of the film is very beautiful to behold. Band kept the original 35mm prints, so there should not be any pixellation at all. Of course there will be the usual dust and scratches, and to get all that fixed takes time. No photoshop plug-in can do the job, and I imagine each frame has to be analyzed and corrected for the best image possible. He notes that it’s really expensive to go back to the original negative in order to make a HD master, but unless you have fantastic talent who truly appreciates the work — to bring the product back to its original lusture — the thought of putting it out to high definition for those collectors is a gamble.

“The key ingredient to any of these transfers is to have a fantastic colorist,” noted Band. “We have a guy who has been doing most of our work for the last 4-5 years. When he’s busy, I wait because he’s the only guy I trust.”

Other titles that’s in the works of getting a remaster and rerelease is Meridian: Kiss of the Beast starring Sherilyn Finn and Dark Angel: The Ascent starring Angela Featherstone.
Band reveals he has a beautiful transfer of Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-O-Rama that’s on the slate too. This 1988 film starring Brinke Stevens and Michelle Bauer started a sub-genre of horror comedy T&A movies which Band is proud of starting. For this filmmaker, what’s interesting about his involvement with this movie is that he was the first guy who thought of making all the behind the scenes material to include in VHS releases. He wasn’t sure why the hell he did that, to have a crew filming behind the scenes material, but perhaps, in the back of his mind, he guessed somebody will enjoy looking at the material. For collectors like me, in a group who enjoy purchasing physical releases, he nails it. He said that’s what enthusiastic consumers of his works want. As for whether there’s anything older that he might have had recorded, he believes the material in Sorority Babes is the oldest to date (that he recalls) of behind the scenes material he got recorded, almost 30 years ago.

Interest in this type of material may be limited, but for fans who loves looking at it first before gandering at the film, Band knew early on he had to provide. From VHS, DVD, Bluray to Streaming Service, not every medium is perfect for putting the bonus material onto. Band does his best to provide, and this release of Lurking Fear is no different. I’m looking foward to all the reveals of his team working in Romania and Italy. Back then, filmmakers could afford to film there. Now, because of conservation and protection of historical monuments, not even the big studios are able to. Charles Band lived in great times when his production team located there to make their movies.

As for what’s next on the slate (I’m hoping for Oblivion to be added), Band said there’s no real rhyme or reason in what’s going to be next after the two that’s being working on right now. Doctor Mordred did very well when he started rereleasing his company’s early catalog of films. He puts out what makes sense to get out first. I expect this title will fly through the roof once when hype for Doctor Strange starts.

“Because we’re self-funded here, and we are not an appendage of a major studio, we just kind of of do every month what we can really afford,” said Band.

Available on this release will be
* 16×9 widescreen & 5.1 Surround Sound presentation.
* audio commentary by Courtney Joyner, writer/director, recalling her experience in making this film.
* footage of the production’s time spent filming in Romania.
* original videozone
* deleted scenes

You can follow this author on Twitter @edohotep and his other interests on sites like otakunoculture.com, nerdtitan.com and twohungryblokes.com

lf

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