By Jerry Beck | Animation Scoop August 6, 2013 at 9:00AM
It's tough-sledding these days for classic animation collectors with less and less being made available on DVD and Blu-Ray. But here's some good news. A boutique video producer/distributor, B2MP, Inc. has licensed Arnold Leibovit's 1987 compilation feature The Puppetoon Movie and is making it available exclusively on blu-ray.
Here's a heads-up for this blu-ray set of vintage, Academy Award winning Paramount Techincolor animated shorts from the 1940s. The two-disc collection will be available in October - and only 3000 copies will be produced (that's the attractive cover above). In addtion to a newly re-mastered High-Def copy of Leibovit's feature - which bridges ten classic Pal Puppetoons with an all new stop-motion framing story starring Art Clokey's Gumby and Pokey (voiced by Dal McKennon), narrator Paul Frees (as Arnie the Dinosaur) and cameos by Speedy Alka Seltzer, King Kong and Spielberg's Gremlins - the set also contains seven HD Puppetoons never released on video before - restored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and sub-licensed from Paramount Pictures.
The set also contains a newly remastered in HD Pal feature The Great Rupert (starring Jimmy Durante), as well as standard-definition bonus material including 12 complete Puppetoons (from 35mm masters), Leibovit's fine Pal documentary, The Fantasy Film Worlds of George Pal, rare interview footage with Ray Harryhausen, Ray Bradbury, Wah Chang, Roy Disney, etc. - not to mention an all-new audio commentary by Arnold Leibovit and... me!This is a must-have for anyone who cares about animation history, stop motion fans and animation students, George Pal devotees (of which I am one of) and cartoon buffs. Here's the sell-sheet:
This release will NOT be available on DVD - nor will it be sold on Amazon (or anywhere else). I highly recommend you order from B2MP today. What else can I say? Here's Dorothy Lamour posing with one of the Puppetoon figures (in her likeness) featured on this set: