Woodstock: Ultimate Collectors Edition

Over half a million people gathered in upstate New York for a three-day festival featuring some of the greatest rock n roll performers of all time. Warner Home Video has announced its plans to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the music history milestone July 28, 2009 by releasing a spectacular Ultimate Collectors Edition (UCE) of the Oscar-winning Woodstock: 3 Days of Peace & Music.

The restored and remastered release will include more than an hour of newly discovered Festival performances, some never-before-published in their entirety, from a number of artists, including The Who, Joe Cocker, Canned Heat, Joan Baez, Country Joe McDonald and Country Joe and the Fish with more to be announced. The release will incorporate reflections and perspectives from musicians, celebrities, influencers and other giants in the entertainment industry on the cultural significance of Woodstock 40 years later.

The Ultimate Collectors Edition (Blu-ray Hi-Def & DVD) will include the four-hour Directors Cut, remastered from original elements and scanned at 2K with audio 5.1 mix supervised by director Michael Wadleigh. The concert original chief engineer Eddie Kramer who was on-site for the festival, is overseeing the audio mix of all of the recently found added footage.

In addition, there will be filmmaker commentary, replicas of handwritten notes from Festival attendees, The 1960s and the Woodstock Generation, a 40 minute documentary film by noted filmmaker Robert Kline adapted from his book Children of the 1960s, studio archive letters and other souvenir collectible items.

The film has been on moratorium since January of this year and will continue to be unavailable to the public for more than a year and a half until its DVD release next year. Woodstock: 3 Days of Peace & Music will also be available as a stand-alone DVD.

In making the announcement, Jeff Baker, WHVs Executive VP and General Manager, Theatrical Catalog, stated, The music, artists and spirit of Woodstock resonate as strongly today as in 1969. Were certain the film will strike a chord with those who remember, and may have even attended, Woodstock, but we also believe the music–some in extended cuts–will appeal to todays youth generation who not only love rock music but are equally as committed now to the values surrounding Woodstock, like spirit of community, caring for the environment and idealistic change.

Additionally, since we think of the Ultimate Collectors Edition as our signature dish, if you will, were very excited that well be giving the same attention to this iconic film as we have to our other top-tier titles such as Harry Potter, Blade Runner, JFK and the upcoming Casablanca and A Christmas Story.

Woodstock alumni David Crosby noted, Woodstock was more than just a concert; it was an event. It was a time for our generation to speak up and let everyone know we had a voice. Whether you were there or are discovering the film for the first time, it still holds up 40 years later and now will speak to a whole new generation.

Woodstock and the Film

Woodstock was unique not only because of its legendary artists, from Jimi Hendrix to Janis Joplin, or the subsequent timeless motion picture it produced, but also because it was the pivotal event of the 1960s peace movement. The Woodstock Music and Art Fair was held at Max Yasgurs dairy farm in the rural town of Bethel, New York on a sometimes rain-soaked weekend from August 15 to August 18, 1969.

Created by promoter Michael Lang with Artie Kornfeld, John Roberts and Joel Rosenman, the two put together 32 legendary musical acts which included such artists as Crosby, Stills & Nash, The Who, Santana, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Joan Baez, The Band, Joe Cocker, Country Joe McDonald and The Fish, Richie Havens, Jefferson Airplane, John Sebastian, Ravi Shankar and Sly & The Family Stone. Rolling Stone Magazine hailed the Festival as one of the 50 Moments That Changed the History of Rock n Roll.

Winner of the Oscar Award for Best Documentary Feature (and nominated for Best Editing and Best Sound), Woodstock was produced by Bob Maurice and directed by Michael Wadleigh, who assembled an outstanding crew that included young editors and filmmakers like Martin Scorsese, Thelma Schoonmaker, Joel Cox and Tina Hirsch. The Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert said, Few documentaries have captured a time and place more completely, poignantly and, for that matter, entertainingly.