Anchor Bay UK: Coming to a cinema near you

At the Anchor Bay UK press event attended by DVD Times this week, an announcement was made regarding the company’s new venture into theatrical distribution, and a number of titles that they will be releasing cinematically through 2004 and into 2005.

The full text of the press release is as follows:

Anchor Bay Entertainment UK is well established as the premier DVD label in the UK for cult, horror and arthouse classics – investing more than any other competitive label in restoration work, creation of exclusive Special Features and marketing support. The company has enjoyed explosive growth in its first three years and a natural progression is to move into the acquisition of brand new productions for theatrical and DVD release, beginning in the second half of 2004.

ABE UK isn’t entering the theatrical sphere lightly or simply as a marketing tool for its DVD releases – this is a full throttle move into a new area of related business. Several exciting movies have already been acquired for UK theatrical release this year, principally major new productions within ABE UK’s acknowledged genres of expertise, and more are on the way as a result of an active acquisitions effort.

Bubba Ho-Tep is the acclaimed horror-comedy from Phantasm director Don Coscarelli, starring cult icon Bruce Campbell (The Evil Dead trilogy). It’s The King of Rock Vs The King of the Dead, boasting a misplaced Elvis Presley impersonator, a fake nutcase JFK and an evil Egyptian mummy on the loose in an old folks’ home!

The Toolbox Murders is The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Poltergeist director Tobe Hooper’s remake of the 1978 horror classic, while Undead is a chiller about an avalanche of meteorites hitting an Australian town, bringing with them an other-worldly infection which awakens the dead and unleashes a nightmare of zombies hungry for human flesh.

Prior to these three major releases, there will be a more modest theatrical outing for Jim Van Bebber’s graphic account of The Manson Family (18 cert, no cuts), which will open in the West End on 23rd July 2004. Pulling no punches whatsoever, Van Bebber ‘factionalises’ the story of how the infamous cult built up around Charles Manson, taking the audience through a series of horrifying and brutal murders culminating in the stomach-churning slaying of Sharon Tate and her companions. This is not for the faint hearted…

ABE UK Managing Director Mo Claridge confirms that the company is entering the theatrical market with eyes wide open: “We are a division of a major US corporation – IDT Entertainment Inc. – and this is a natural progression for us. We will promote our theatrical releases in their own right with full spend and are planning wide nationwide releases in almost every case. Our acquisitions programme is fully underway”.


The Manson Family
Directed by Jim Van Bebber
Starring Marcelo Games, Marc Pitman, Leslie Orr, Maureen Allisse
Release Date: 23rd July 2004

The Toolbox Murders
Directed by Tobe Hooper
Starring Angela Bettis, Juliet Landau, Brent Roam, Rance Howard
Release Date: late 2004 (TBC)

Directed by Michael Spierig and Peter Spierig
Starring Felicity Mason, Mungo McKay, Rob Jenkins, Lisa Cunningham
Release Date: early 2005 (TBC)

Bubba Ho-Tep
Directed by Don Coscarelli
Starring Bruce Campbell, Ossie Davis, Reggie Bannister, Bob Ivy
Release Date: late 2004 (TBC)

Category Cinema News

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