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1978 Rings deluxe cover art

Timed to the release of Peter Jackson’s The Lord Of The Rings trilogy coming to Blu-ray on April 6, Warner Bros. is also upgrading director Ralph Bakshi’s 1978 animated feature edition of the first half of the story as a BD/DVD combo pack for $29.99. Newly released cover art for the set, which will include new interviews with Bakshi, can be seen here along with a press release from the Studio:

Ralph Bakshi’s Animated Classic The Lord of the Rings
Returns in a Newly Remastered Deluxe Edition on April 6

Warner Home Video Distributes Heralded Animated Film as Blu-Ray,
DVD and Bonus Digital Copy Combo Pack with All-New Extra Content

Journey back into the world of Hobbits, Humans, Elves and Dwarves in the all-new The Lord of the Rings Remastered Deluxe Edition coming April 6, 2010 from Warner Home Video.  This original animated classic from acclaimed director Ralph Bakshi and Academy Award Winning producer, Saul Zaentz, has been remastered with pristine New Dolby 5.1 audio and picture quality and will be distributed as a single disc DVD and Blu-ray combo which features a Blu-ray, DVD and bonus digital copy.  The film will also be available for Digital Download. This film is rated PG.

One of the great visionary animation directors of the modern era, Bakshi went to artistic extremes to meticulously bring the legendary world of J.R.R. Tolkien to animated life – adding yet another stunning title to the director’s canon of ground-breaking films. Bakshi’s animation accomplishments include Fritz the Cat, Heavy Traffic, American Pop, Wizards and Cool World.

All the magical adventure of the fantasy classic comes to life in Bakshi’s brilliantly animated tale of the enchanted land of Middle-earth – and the brave band of Hobbits, heroes and Wizards who set out to protect it. When a dangerous and powerful gold ring falls into his hands, a courageous Hobbit named Frodo embarks on an epic adventure. Along with the mighty Wizard Gandalf and some daring Elves, he defends his homeland from the Dark Power  who would destroy it. Set in a mystical age of magic, monsters and unlikely heroes on incredible journeys, The Lord of the Rings will cast its spell over the entire family!

The deluxe edition also features a never-before-seen, 30-minute in-depth interview with legendary director Ralph Bakshi entitled Forging Through The Darkness: The Ralph Bakshi Vision for The Lord Of The Rings.  This special feature explores his concept for creating an illustrated film, his pioneering rotoscoping process, and inspirations for his visual storytelling.

The Lord of the Rings is a timeless classic that continues to be a favorite for generation after generation,” said Amit Desai, WHV Vice President of Family, Animation & Partner Brands Marketing. “The theatrical release in 1978 had a domestic total gross of nearly $90 million at the box office and shipped 1.1 million net videos. We are looking forward to offering this remastered deluxe edition to the fans for their library collections and providing endless enjoyment for years to come.”

With operations in 90 international territories Warner Home Video, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company, commands the largest distribution infrastructure in the global video marketplace.  Warner Home Video’s film library is the largest of any studio, offering top quality new and vintage titles from the repertoires of Warner Bros. Pictures, Turner Entertainment, Castle Rock Entertainment, HBO Home Video and New Line Home Entertainment.

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