Before Arachnophobia and Eight Legged Freaks…there was Kingdom of the Spiders.
While sophisticated digital effects have made it possible for swarms of beetles, bees and other insects to rampage across movie screens throughout the last decade, back in the Seventies filmmakers had no such tool. If you wanted to have scores of bugs invade the set, many of them had to be real or it looked hokey. Films about nature seeking revenge were all the rage thirty years ago, and the 1977 cult film Kingdom of the Spiders starring William Shatner pulled no punches – those were live tarantulas crawling all over the set…and the cast!
On January 19, 2010, Shout! Factory will unleash the Kingdom of the Spiders Special Edition on DVD. Featuring all-new anamorphic widescreen transfer of the film, this Special Edition DVD release contains an all-new interview with William Shatner; an in-depth commentary featuring director John Bud Cardos, producer Igor Kantor, spider wrangler Jim Brockett and cinematographer John Morrill, moderated by HOSTEL producer Scott Spiegel and Lee Christian; rare behind-the-scenes footage; “Jim Brockett: Spider Wrangler” featurette; poster gallery and the original theatrical trailer. The collectible Kingdom of the Spiders Special Edition DVD is priced to own at $19.99.
William Shatner stars as veterinarian “Rack” Hansen in this cult film about an Arizona town infested with a horde of arachnids that turn on the humans whose insecticides have depleted their natural food supply. After livestock belonging to Rack’s friend, rancher Walter Colby (Woody Strode), fall victim to a spider attack, entomologist Diane Ashley (Tiffany Bolling) arrives and tries to help Rack deal with the crisis — but with the big county fair fast approaching, Mayor Connors (Roy Engel) refuses to let them quarantine Colby’s ranch. Soon the remaining residents of the town must barricade themselves at lodge of Emma Washburn (Lieux Dressler) lodge in an effort to save themselves from the eight-legged invaders in the ultimate man versus spider showdown.
Directed by John Bud Cardos and written by Richard Robinson and Alan Caillou, Kingdom of the Spiders was released in 1977, grossing a respectable $17 million against a $500,000 budget.
All New Interview with William Shatner
Audio commentary by Director John Bud Cardos, Producer Igor Kantor, spider wrangler
Jim Brockett and Cinematographer John Morrill, moderated by HOSTEL producer
Scott Spiegel and Lee Christian
Jim Brockett: Spider Wrangler Featurette.
-Rare Behind the Scenes Footage
Original Theatrical Trailer
About Shout! Factory
Shout! Factory is a diversified entertainment company devoted to producing, uncovering and revitalizing the very best of pop culture. Founders Richard Foos, Bob Emmer and Garson Foos have spent their careers sharing their music, television and film faves with discerning consumers the world over. Shout! Factory’s DVD offerings serve up classic, contemporary and cult TV series, riveting sports programs, live music, animation and documentaries in lavish packages crammed with extras. The company’s audio catalogue boasts GRAMMY®-nominated boxed sets, new releases from storied artists, lovingly assembled album reissues and indispensable “best of” compilations. These riches are the result of a creative acquisitions mandate that has established the company as a hotbed of cultural preservation and commercial reinvention. With its fingers on the pulse of pop culture, Shout! Factory continues to impact the entertainment media landscape through acquisition of top quality programming for home entertainment releases. Shout! Factory is based in Santa Monica, California. For more on Shout! Factory, visit www.shoutfactory.com.