Wednesday, September 27, 2006

For Keen Da Vinci Code Fans

Tom Hanks, Audrey Tautou, Mona Lisa painting
The film The Da Vinci Code is to be issued on DVD November 14-17 as a UMD-DVD 2-disc set. (UMD is a DVD subformat used for video-game releases. Sony has denied earlier reports of a release on the new hi-resolution DVD specification called Blu-Ray.)
The second disc includes 90 minutes of extras. These are listed as: First Day On The Set With Ron Howard Featurette; A Discussion With Dan Brown Featurette; A Portrait Of Langdon Featurette ("How did Tom Hanks become the character?"); Who Is Sophie Neveu? Featurette [on Ms Tautou]; Unusual Suspects Featurette [on the supporting cast]; Magical Places Featurette [film locations]; Close-up On Mona Lisa Featurette ("Ron Howard, his cast and colleagues share their experience working next to one of the most famous paintings in the world"); The Filmmaking Experience Featurette [behind-the-cameras 2-parter]; The Codes Of "The Da Vinci Code" Featurette; The Music Of "The Da Vinci Code" Featurette; DVD ROM-Da Vinci Code Puzzle Game PC Demo; and 'Bonus Previews' [whatever they are].
There are also some 28 minutes of deleted scenes to help viewers make sense of proceedings. The Malta press reports this will include the film’s most controversial scene, the narrated flashback, shot on Malta, where Jesus weds Mary Magdalene, which was omitted from theatrical prints. Despite poor reviews saying it was even worse than the book (a recent example is here), the film was the year’s most profitable cinema release. (It outdid Pirates of the Caribbean in terms of production-and-marketing costs versus box office takings.) However given its subject matter it remains to be seen if it will do as well as a Xmas present.
Update: As of 16th October, a 149 minute version is advertised as available on DVD in the UK, by online seller Sendit, and it’s already discounted by nearly 50%, from £24.99 RRP to £13.89.