If DVD is indeed going the way of VHS in the next few years, with everything soon to be stored in the nebulous “cloud,” the upcoming “Once Upon A Time In America” set may be one you’ll want to physically own before that’s no longer possible. But first, let’s go through a quick history of where this movie has been.
Few films over the past three decades have been through as many iterations of Sergio Leone‘s final effort, “Once Upon A Time In America.” After premiering at Cannes in 1984, Leone’s 4-hour-plus version first arrived in theaters stateside severely cut in a 134-minute version that the director didn’t approve, with the story presented in chronological order. During the ’90s, a three-hour version played TV and then a 229-minute cut made the rounds on home video. Then in 2012 a restored version played the Cannes Film Festival, but before it could make the rounds to more festivals and screenings, it was pulled from circulation so more work could be done. But now, it’s yours to own.
Warner Bros. has announced a Blu-ray Collector’s Edition of “Once Upon A Time In America,” with 22 minutes of additional footage, bringing the runtime up to 251 minutes. The set will include a 32-page booklet, making-of documentary and the 1984 theatrical cut in case you want to see the compromised version for comparison sake.
The set will street on September 30th and might make a nice, early Christmas present for yourself. Check out the fancy packaging below.