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VIDEO/ 50 years of Lawrence of Arabia, Interview with Spielberg

November Wed 28, 2012

Scene from the movie Scene from the movie

It is a timeless masterpiece, though 50 years have passed since the opening of the film Lawrence of Arabia. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has decided to celebrate this anniversary with two completely restored Blu-ray versions of the movie that won seven Oscars, one in a limited edition box set on four discs, and another edition in two discs. The set includes an 88 page glossy illustrated book with rare photos of the film, and the CD with the original soundtrack of the film and exclusive tracks.

Lawrence of Arabia is considered one of the greatest epics in the history of cinema. Directed by David Lean and produced by Sam Spiegel, it includes among its protagonists Peter O'Toole, Alec Guinness, Anthony Quinn, Jack Hawikins and Omar Shariff. In 1963, the Academy awarded it seven statuettes: Best Film; Best Director; Best Cinematography (Freddie Young); Best Production Design (John Box, John Stoll and Dario Simoni); Best Editing (Anne V. Coates); Best Sound (John Cox) and best Original Score (Maurice Jarre). In addition, there were three other nominations: Best Actor (Peter O'Toole); Best Supporting Actor (Omar Shariff); and Best Adapted Screenplay (Robert Bolt and Michael Wilson). The film also received five Golden Globes and many other prizes.

The film is inspired by the story of Thomas Edward Lawrence, a secret agent and British soldier, who, during the First World War, led an uprising of the Arab tribes against the Ottoman rule in the area between the Hijaz and the Transjordan. According to David Bishop, president of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Lawrence of Arabia “is the crown jewel in the library of Columbia Pictures”. David Lean's masterpiece, available on Blu-ray, will now enable everyone to experience the excitement and grandeur of the film with improved photography and sound. It will also have a number of new special features, including an interview with Steven Spielberg, who along with Martin Scorsese, collaborated on the restoration of the David Lean film in 1989, restoring some scenes that were originally cut because of the excessive length of the film. Watch the video of the interview on the next page.

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