Hollywood's home video business couldn't be more smeg-ed up than it is right now. Some studios have insisted on releasing "full–frame" (read: pan–scan) editions of their feature films on disc alongside their proper (anamorphic) widescreen counterparts — even as electronics manufacturers and retailers push widescreen (16 x 9 or 1.85:1 ratio) HD televisions.
That's enough to put your head in spin mode.
Well, leave it to 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment (News Corporation) to muddle the waters even further: The Onion's A.V. Club and Video Business are reporting on Fox's new marketing strategy: shipping to rental chains a separate line of DVDs without bonus features (running commentaries, making–of videos, and the like). As if another videogram marketing policy to release bare–bones discs and two–disc "special editions" wasn't enough.
Still with us?
Well… A.V. Club also reports (as does Cinematical) that rental–only bare–bones pressings of Danny Boyle's Oscar®/BAFTA/Golden Globe–winning Slumdog Millionaire accidentally ended up in packaging meant for the full–featured retail version that dropped last month.
If you live in North America and have one of the wrong pressings, give Fox a call (1–888–223–4FOX); they will advise you about what to do next.
Just don't tease them about Bill O'Reilly or Glenn Beck.
And don't ask them if this is all a ploy to get you to go Blu–Ray.
(Oh, yes: I still want to see this one. I also want Fox to get it right. For now, I'll stick with Universal–Interscope's CD of the A.R. Rahman score.)