Kino International has officially announced their upcoming July 6th Blu-ray release of Buster Keaton’s classic “Steamboat Bill, Jr.” After the stunning operation they performed on the Blu-ray release of Keaton’s “The General,” it is not unwarrented for enthusiasts and fans to be expecting this Kino title to look downright magnificent.
And we don’t get just one “Steamboat Bill,” but two! According to Kino:
“In the silent era, it was common practice for filmmakers to create two separate negatives of their films, each comprised of differing takes and camera angles. This definitive Blu-ray edition contains both versions of STEAMBOAT BILL, JR. – the Buster Keaton Estate version and the Killiam Shows Archive version – each mastered from archival 35mm materials.”
In addition to the two cuts, Kino’s Blu-ray will include music by The Biograph Players presented in DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, an organ score by Lee Erwin, a piano score by William Perry, a documentary on the making of the film, a stills Gallery, a montage of pratfalls called “Why They Call Him Buster,” and two vintage recordings of the folk song “Steamboat Bill.”
Keep your eyes peeled come July for a full review of both the film and its transfer.
For those who just can’t wait till July, you can catch the Buster Keaton silent comedy “The Cameraman” (1928) this Sunday May 23rd at Royce Hall in Westwood. The film is being presented by the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and the program begins at 6:30 with a screening of Disney’s silent short “Alice’s Wild West Show” (1924). Both films will have live musical accompaniment, with “The Cameraman” showcasing the world-premiere of Timothy Brock’s new original score.The score for “Alice” is by Alexander Rannie. To purchase tickets, go HERE.
In the meantime, here’s a clip put out by Kino themselves comparing a scene from the two different versions of Steamboat Bill, Jr.” Just a little something to whet your appetite….