Ealing Studios’ ‘The Ladykillers’ is getting a 4K restoration to mark its 65th anniversary.
The 1955 black comedy has been restored from the original 3-strip Technicolor negative. It will be released in cinemas on 23rd October 2020 followed by a digital, DVD, Blu-ray and 4K UHD Blu-ray Collector’s Edition release on 9th November 2020, which you can pre-order now.
Directed by Alexander Mackendrick, ‘The Ladykillers’ follows the hilarious capers of a group of small-time crooks, taking on more they can handle in the form of their sweet, but slightly dotty, elderly landlady Mrs Wilberforce (BAFTA Award-winning actress Katie Johnson; ‘How To Murder A Rich Uncle’).
This group of seedy misfits are planning a security van robbery and rent a room from Mrs Wilberforce in her rickety Victorian house next to King’s Cross station from which to base their operation. To conceal their true purpose, they pose as a string quartet, though they cannot play a note and are in fact miming to a recording of Boccherini’s Minuet. The gang pull off the robbery but none of them could have predicted that their greatest obstacle to escaping with the loot would be their tiny hostess.
‘The Ladykillers’ features an all-star line-up of the finest comedy actors of the era: Alec Guinness (‘Kind Hearts and Coronets’, ‘The Lavender Hill Mob’) plays the gang’s mastermind ‘Professor Marcus’; Cecil Parker (‘A French Mistress’) is Claude otherwise known as ‘Major Courtney’; Peter Sellers (‘I’m Alright Jack’) is Harry aka ‘Mr Robinson’; Herbert Lom (‘The Pink Panther’) is Louis aka ‘Mr Harvey’ and Danny Green (‘A Kid For Two Farthings’) plays One-Round also known as ‘Mr Lawson’. Jack Warner, Frankie Howerd and Kenneth Connor also appear in supporting roles.
Extras on the 4K UHD Blu-ray Collector’s Edition include:
- UHD, Blu-ray and DVD
- The feature in both 1.37:1 and 1.66:1 aspect ratios
- ‘Those Glorious Ealing Films’ CD soundtrack (with music from The Ladykillers, Passport to Pimlico, Kind Hearts & Coronets and more)
- 64-page booklet
- 6 Pop Art artcards by Art & Hue
- NEW documentary ‘Investigating the Ladykillers’ featuring new and archive interviews including Reece Shearsmith, The Guardian’s Catherine Shoard, Stuart Maconie, Ronald Harwood, Allan Scott and Terence Davies
- NEW ‘Colour in The Ladykillers’: new interview with Professor Keith Johnston
- ‘Forever Ealing’ documentary narrated by Michael Balcon’s grandson Daniel Day-Lewis
- Lobby Cards gallery
- Behind-the-scenes gallery
- Audio commentary with author and film scholar Philip Kemp
- King’s Cross locations featurette with Alan Dein
- Excerpt from BBC Omnibus ‘Made in Ealing’ (1986) featuring interviews with Alexander Mackendrick and William Rose.
- Audio interview with Assistant Director Tom Pevsner
- Audio interview with Unit Production Manager David Peers
- Peter Sellers spoof trailer from the set of The Ladykillers