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Invaders From Mars has had a 4K restoration

Ignite Films is set to release a new 4K restoration of the sci-fi classic Invaders From Mars in all its terrifying color, just in time for its 70th anniversary. Fearful memories of this timeless 1953 bone-chiller still haunt the dreams of fans who have never forgotten the story of a young boy (Jimmy Hunt) who witnesses an alien invasion. Invaders From Mars will have its first public showcase screening at the TCM Classic Film Festival in Hollywood on April 23. Jimmy Hunt will be in attendance at the TCM Classic Film Festival screening.

Pre-orders for the 4K UHD-HDR and Blu-ray launched on opening day of the TCM Festival, April 21 in the United States, with a special limited (1,000) bundle that includes an autographed mini-poster signed by the film’s star Jimmy Hunt. The newly restored 4K UHD-HDR, Blu-ray, and DVD of Invaders from Mars will be released by Ignite Films worldwide in Fall 2022. Arrow Films will release in the UK. The Big Pieces Company is supporting the release in the US and overseeing international sales.

Invaders from Mars was filmed from a child’s point of view, using exaggerated sets and upward angles. It became a modern classic and was also one of two early 50s classic alien-invasion science fiction films (the other is Robert Wise’s “The Day the Earth Stood Still”) reflecting Cold War tensions, the Red Scare and paranoid anxiety typical of many  films in the 50s.

Invaders from Mars (1953) is a starkly stylish Sci-fi tale told from a pre-adolescent boy’s point of view, as he alone witnesses the invasion of aliens who capture and brainwash residents of an average small town. Young David MacLean (Jimmy Hunt) is convinced that his normal suburban neighborhood has been invaded by strange creatures, especially when his parents come home acting like zombies. Nobody believes him. Things get stranger until somebody finally believes: Dr. Pat Blake (Helena Carter) and astronomer Stuart Kelston (Arthur Franz). Stuart takes David seriously and informs them that prominent scientists have theorized that Martians, who live either underground on Mars or in giant spaceships, have manufactured synthetic humans called Mutax. Stuart speculates that Martians have come to Earth because local scientists including David’s father, have constructed a rocket that will eventually pave the way for a devastating weapon that could control the solar system. Stuart postulates that the Martians will attempt to destroy the rocket and alerts Col. Fielding at a nearby military installation. Fielding notifies the Pentagon and soon massive numbers of men and tanks begin to mobilize toward David’s small town.

“We’re grateful to finally complete the 4K restoration of the sci-fi classic Invaders from Mars after a lengthy search for the final elements,” said Jan Willem Bosman Jansen, Director, Ignite Films.

“We needed the elements to fill in the gaps in the original camera negative, which was stored with great care at the UCLA Film & Television Archive. We are so grateful to the George Eastman Museum and National Film and Sound Archive of Australia for supplying the necessary elements and cannot wait to share the completed product with fans world-wide,” added Bosman Jansen.

The long-awaited restoration of William Cameron Menzies’ classic sci-fi thriller Invaders from Mars is now available for pre-order! The restoration of Invaders from  Mars has been much hoped for and a long time coming — but the process was not an easy one. Leading the effort was longtime enthusiast and preservationist of classic cinema Scott MacQueen, who previously was head of preservation at UCLA Film & Television Archive for more than a decade, before retiring last summer.

The biggest challenge for MacQueen was that the color negative confirmed for printing in SUPERcineCOLOR lacked many shots and needed to be sourced from 70-year-old prints. Artist and Illustrator Laz Marquez is Creative Director, leading the creative vision of the release, including key artwork and packaging.

Bonus Features

  • In UHD, extra HDR treatment
  • Restored 4K trailer
  • Newly commissioned artwork including an exclusive poster by Creative Director Laz Marquez
  • Featurette of interviews with star Jimmy Hunt, William Cameron Menzies’ biographer James Curtis, Restoration Supervisor Scott MacQueen, acclaimed film director Joe Dante, recollections of Menzies’ eldest granddaughter Pamela Lauesen, and more to be announced
  • Before/after clips of restoration – original negative and archival film elements
  • Restored segments in 2K of the Alternate International Version
  • Gallery with original Press Book pages, behind the scenes photos from the restoration process
  • Twenty page extensive essay on the restoration process: “Invaders From Mars: A Nightmare of Restoration” by Scott MacQueen

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