Schlock-Wire: Burt Lancaster Classic THE SWIMMER Coming To Blu-Ray From Grindhouse Releasing

March will find Grindhouse Releasing breaking new ground in their catalog when they release The Swimmer, a classic Hollywood film with Burt Lancaster.  Based on a John Cheever short story, it was directed by Frank Perry and explores suburban desperation in a distinctive and daring way.  Grindhouse will release a newly remastered version of the film in a blu-ray/DVD combo pack that will feature plentiful extras, the most noteworthy being a 2 1/2 hour documentary on the film from Oscar winner Chris Innis.  Read on for all the suburbia-gets-surreal details…

THE SWIMMER Arrives on Blu-ray and DVD

Grindhouse Releasing Presents Lavish Special Edition of Hollywood Classic

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. – Grindhouse Releasing is proud to present Burt Lancaster in the 1968 classic THE SWIMMER,  based on the acclaimed short story by John Cheever. Newly restored in high definition from 4K scans, the deluxe Blu-ray/DVD edition of THE SWIMMER arrives on March 11, 2013.

THE SWIMMER is available for pre-order now at

Swimmer-bluLancaster stars as Ned Merrill, a man who confronts his destiny by swimming home, pool by pool, through the suburban nightmare of upper-class East Coast society. Roger Ebert hailed THE SWIMMER as “brilliant and disturbing”, and Lancaster “superb in the finest performance of his career.” The film was directed by Frank Perry (DIARY OF A MAD HOUSEWIFE, PLAY IT AS IT LAYS, MOMMIE DEAREST) from a script by Eleanor Perry.

THE SWIMMER is an unusual choice for Grindhouse Releasing, the independent distributor known for its lavish special editions of Italian horror and exploitation films such as Lucio Fulci’s THE BEYOND and Ruggero Deodato’s CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST. As with the company’s recent acclaimed releases of Sergio Sollima’s THE BIG GUNDOWN and the Peter Cushing horror classic CORRUPTION, Grindhouse Releasing licensed THE SWIMMER from Sony/Columbia and has dedicated a massive amount of work to the new Blu-ray/DVD release.

“THE SWIMMER is one of those offbeat late-60s studio films that really defies explanation,” says Grindhouse Releasing president and co-founder Bob Murawski.  “It’s not an exploitation film by any stretch of the imagination, but it is ultimately as bleak and emotionally disturbing as anything by Deodato or Gasper Noe.  We are extremely proud to have the opportunity to present this almost-forgotten classic, and, as usual, have spared no effort or expense in giving it the best release possible. ”

Bonus features on the Blu-ray/DVD include THE STORY OF THE SWIMMER, a brand-new 2 1/2 hour documentary by Oscar winner Chris Innis. This comprehensive, five-part making-of documentary includes in-depth interviews with stars Janet Landgard, Joan Rivers, and Marge Champion, composer Marvin Hamlisch, film editor Sidney Katz, assistant directors Michael Hertzberg and Ted Zachary, UCLA swim coach Bob Horn, and Joanna Lancaster.

Grindhouse Releasing’s THE SWIMMMER Blu-ray also includes a rare vintage audio recording of author John Cheever reading his original NEW YORKER short story, a 12-page booklet with liner notes by director Stuart Gordon (RE-ANIMATOR), rare production stills from the lost alternate scenes, extensive still galleries, trailers, TV spots, and more.

In addition to THE SWIMMER, Grindhouse Releasing has a big slate of much sought-after titles in the works for Blu-ray release. Among the films viewers can expect to see hitting Blu-ray soon are Ruggero Deodato’s CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST, Lucio Fulci’s THE BEYOND and A CAT IN THE BRAIN, Umberto Lenzi’s CANNIBAL FEROX, Juan Piquer Simon’s PIECES, S.F. Brownrigg’s SCUM OF THE EARTH, and Duke Mitchell’s GONE WITH THE POPE and MASSACRE MAFIA STYLE.

Founded in 1996 by Sage Stallone and Bob Murawski, Grindhouse Releasing is dedicating to restoring and preserving underappreciated cult and exploitation films. The company’s most recent releases include Sage Stallone’s VIC, starring Clu Gulager, Sergio Sollima’s THE BIG GUNDOWN, starring Lee Van Cleef and Tomas Milian, Robert Hartford-Davis’ CORRUPTION, starring Peter Cushing, and Amos Sefer’s AN AMERICAN HIPPIE IN ISRAEL, starring  Asher Tzarfati and Shmuel Wolf.

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(Blu-ray/DVD combo) (1968)

Burt Lancaster, Janet Landgard, Janice Rule, Joan Rivers. Director: Frank Perry. Rated: PG.

Color – 1.85:1 – 1968 – 95 minutes – Region 0

Release Date:  March 11, 2014

Praise for THE SWIMMER:

“Burt Lancaster is superb in his finest performance.  Four stars.”

– Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

“Totally engrossing, thanks to its very strangeness, and to the superb performances and vivid location photography. Five stars.”

– Geoff Andrew, Time Out New York

“Grim, disturbing and sometimes funny…the film has the shape of an open-ended hallucination.”

– Vincent Canby, The New York Times

” A strange, stylized work, a brilliant and disturbing one.”

– Roger Ebert

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