THE COHEN FILM COLLECTION PRESENTS A REDISCOVERED CLASSIC FROM HOLLYWOOD'S - AND JAZZ'S - GOLDEN AGE
Jackie Cooper Stars Alongside Musical Greats Benny Goodman, Harry James and More in the Remastered Film, Coming to Blu-ray and DVD on February 10, 2015
The Cohen Film Collection is proud to announce that it will bring Oscar-nominated director William Dieterle's long-unseen 1942 musical feature Syncopation to home video for the first time in the U.S. The film, featuring Jackie Cooper and musicians like Benny Goodman and Harry James in their prime, has been digitally remastered and will be released in deluxe Blu-ray and DVD editions on February 10, 2015, with SRPs, respectively, of $39.98 and $29.98.
A one-of-a-kind cinematic extravaganza, Syncopation is both a love story about two young musicians and a celebration of some of the greatest popular music of the first half of the 20th century. The romance between a young trumpeter (former child star Jackie Cooper of The Champ and Our Gang fame) and a New Orleans-born piano player (Bonita Granville, the silver screen's original Nancy Drew and the future producer of TV's Lassie) serves as the narrative plot line. But the core of the film is its celebratory history of "syncopated" music - jazz - tracing it from the turn-of-the-century sounds of ragtime, through Dixieland, the blues, Chicago jazz and the swing era.
Musical greats of the day are featured in performance, including Benny Goodman, Harry James, Gene Krupa, Charlie Barnet and many more. Also in the cast are Adolphe Menjou, George Bancroft, Robert Benchley and singers Todd Duncan and Connee Boswell. Putting all of the elements together is prolific golden age director William Dieterle (The Life of Emile Zola, Portrait of Jennie, September Affair, The Hunchback of Notre Dame).
For its Cohen Film Collection Blu-ray and DVD release, Syncopation has been restored in 2K from an archival 35mm fine grain master struck by the Library of Congress from the nitrate negative.
In addition to a 2015 rerelease trailer, special features on both the Blu-ray and DVD editions of Syncopation include nine short musical films showcasing some of the most iconic performers in jazz history:
"Symphony in Black" (1935 w/Duke Ellington and Billie Holiday) (9:36)
"Rhapsody in Black and Blue" (1932, w/Louis Armstrong) (10:00)
"St. Louis Blues" (1929, w/Bessie Smith) (15:41)
"Cab Calloway's Hi De Ho" (1933) (10:00)
"Bundle of Blues" (1933, w/Duke Ellington) (9:00)
"Hoagy Carmichael" (1939, w/Carmichael and Jack Teagarden) (10:00)
"Artie Shaw's Class in Swing" (1939, w/Shaw) (10:00)
"Jazz a la Cuba" (1933, w/Don Azpiaz˙) (5:19)
"Black and Tan Fantasy" (1929, w/Duke Ellington and Fredi Washington) (19:00)
About Cohen Media Group (www.cohenmedia.net)
Formed in 2008 by Charles S. Cohen, an executive producer of multiple Academy Award nominee Frozen River, the COHEN MEDIA GROUP, LLC (CMG) produces and distributes select films throughout North America. Current and upcoming CMG releases include Lorraine Levy's The Other Son (winner of the Grand Prize and Best Director prize at the 2012 Tokyo International Film Festival); French director Francois Ozon's thriller In The House (San Sebastian Film Festival's winner of the Golden Shell and Best Screenplay award; Spain's official entry to the Academy awards, Blancanieves; Fernando Trueba's The Artist and the Model, starring Jean Rochefort and Claudia Cardinale; and Lebanese director Ziad Doueiri's The Attack, based on the international best-selling book by Yasmina Khadra. CMG's Cohen Film Collection (formerly the Rohauer Collection) includes some 700 cinema landmarks, including films by D.W. Griffith, Buster Keaton and Douglas Fairbanks, as well as foreign classics like Luis Bunuel's Tristana.
Street date: February 10, 2015
SRP: $39.98 (Blu-ray), $29.98 (DVD)
Running time: 89 minutes, plus extras
Bonus features on both Blu-ray and DVD: trailer, nine short jazz films: "Symphony in Black," "Rhapsody in Black and Blue," "St. Louis Blues," "Cab Calloway's Hi De Ho," "Bundle of Blues," "Hoagy Carmichael," "Artie Shaw's Class in Swing," "Jazz a la Cuba," "Black and Tan Fantasy"
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News Editor January 12, 2015, 11:03 pm