Talk about coming out of nowhere.
Image Entertainment has revealed that they have licensed a select collection of films from The Criterion Collection, to AT&T U-verse TV, meaning that these films, some of the biggest the collection has to offer, will be available on the service’s U-verse Movies collection.
Included are ‘˜The Seven Samurai,’ ‘˜The 400 Blows,’ ‘˜The Seventh Seal,’ ‘˜Amarcord,’ ‘˜House,’ ‘˜For All Mankind,’ ‘˜The Great Dictator’ and (randomly I might add), Stuart Cooper’s ‘˜Overlord.’
Each film will be available in HD, leaving ‘˜Overlord,’ as the only film not available from this list on Blu-ray, which may be a big story as well. Could we be seeing an ‘Overlord’ Blu-ray in the near future?
Personally, while I’m not all that familiar with U-verse or how well it works, this is definitely a huge win for AT&T. It’s not a huge amount of films set here, but it should go without saying that that will likely change, so the seeds are being planted here, for something quite special.
What do you guys think? Here’s the full press release:
CHATSWORTH, Calif., Jan 26, 2012 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Image Entertainment, Inc. (otcqb:DISK) announced today the licensing of select films from the prestigious Criterion Collection to AT&T U-verse(R) TV, making these films available to the service’s U-verse Movies lineup. The deal was announced today by John Hyde, Vice Chairman of Image Entertainment.
“Image has a long-standing and successful partnership with the team at Criterion Collection,” commented Hyde. “We are very protective of the wonderful work Criterion does and it is the first time ever we are releasing these titles in this format available on AT&T U-verse.”
“We’re proud to offer this exciting content from The Criterion Collection,” said Richard Wellerstein, vice president of U-verse Movies and Content Acquisition, AT&T. “We’re giving U-verse TV customers access to one of the most significant archives of contemporary filmmaking available through U-verse Movies.”
AT&T U-verse subscribers will be able to choose from a selection of classic and contemporary films from The Criterion Collection including:
— Seven Samurai (Directed by Akira Kurosawa) — 1957 Oscar(TM) nominee
— The 400 Blows (Directed by Francois Truffaut) — 1960 Oscar nominee
— The Seventh Seal (Directed by Ingmar Berman) — 1957 Cannes Film Festival Jury Special Prize
— Amarcord (Directed by Federico Fellini) — 1975 Oscar winner for Best Foreign Film
— House (Directed by Nobuhiko Ojbayashi) — 1978 Blue Ribbon Award for Best New Director
— For All Mankind (Directed by Al Reinert) — 1990 Oscar nominee
— The Great Dictator (Directed by and starring Charles Chaplin) — 1941 Oscar nominee
— Overlord (Directed by Stuart Cooper) — 1975 Berlin Film Festival Winner
All will be available in HD and/or SD as part of AT&T’s U-verse Movie lineup. The premiere titles will be made available to AT&T U-verse subscribers on February 1, 2012.
Each film in The Criterion Collection has been cleaned and restored, enhancing these cinematic treasures to the highest quality standards, allowing optimal on demand TV viewing. The Criterion Collection is also renowned for its special edition Blu-ray(TM) and DVD packaging, offering rare and unique bonus materials.
Image Entertainment is the exclusive distributor of Criterion Collection Blu-rays(TM) and DVDs.
U-verse Movies continues to grow its content library, offering easy access to the hottest Hollywood hits in HD quality in any room of your home. U-verse TV customers get instant access through U-verse Movies to affordable entertainment without the wait or DVDs to return, anytime they want.
ABOUT IMAGE ENTERTAINMENT
Image Entertainment, Inc. is a leading independent licensee and distributor of entertainment programming in North America, with approximately 3,200 exclusive DVD titles and approximately 340 exclusive CD titles in domestic release and more than 450 programs internationally via sublicense agreements. For many of its titles, the Company has exclusive audio and broadcast rights, as well as digital download rights to over 2,100 video programs and approximately 400 audio titles containing more than 6,000 individual tracks. The Company is headquartered in Chatsworth, California. For more information about Image Entertainment, Inc., please go to www.image-entertainment.com .
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AT&T U-verse TV: Residential customers only. Prices, programming, features and offers subject to change without notice. HD Service: access to HD service requires $10/mo. HD Premium Tier available for an additional $5/mo. HD channel availability varies by package selected.