The Criterion Collection will launch its new "Eclipse" line of DVDs on March 27th with the release of the 5-Disc boxed set, "Early Bergman." This will be followed in April with a 6-Disc set called "The Documentaries of Louis Malle."
The mission statement for the new line says that "Eclipse presents a selection of lost, forgotten, or overshadowed films in simple, affordable editions. Each series is a brief cinematheque retrospective for the adventurous home viewer."
Each month, Eclipse will present a short series, usually three to five films, focusing on a particular director or theme. There will be no supplements and the master materials will be the best available, but they won't be full Criterion restorations.
Suggested Retail Prices should hover around $15 per disc.
"The goal is to make these films available, to make sure that Criterion's own work style doesn't contribute to the continuing unavailability of these films," said Peter Becker, President of the Criterion Collection in a prepared statement.
"Once our producers and restoration crew get started on a Criterion edition, the project takes on a life of its own. Months later, with a little luck, we'll have something really special to show for it, but at that rate we can't make a dent in the number of important unreleased films that we'd like people to be able to see."
The series will present rarely seen films such as "The Documentaries of Louis Male" - due out April 24th - and works from Mizoguchi, Naruse, Ozu, and Raymond Bernard, as well as filmmakers equally as important, if not as well known.
A complete rundown of the films included in the first two boxed sets follows after the jump.
"Early Bergman" will carry a Suggested Retail Price of $69.95, while the "Louis Male" documentary set will go for $79.95. But like we always say, these prices are only suggestions. Actual "street prices" will vary, but could be as low as $63.00 and $56.00, respectively.