Lionsgate today released the animated feature Happily N’ever After on DVD and Blu-ray Disc. The independently produced fairytale farce was overshadowed by bigger studio releases when it arrived in theaters back in January, but Lionsgate is hoping it will reach a wider audience on home video. The disc comes with a generous offering of extra features that take viewers deeper into the story and behind the scenes of the production.
Happily N’ever After takes place in Fairy Tale Land, where the age-old balance between good and evil has been thrown out of whack. When Cinderella’s power-mad stepmother rallies an unholy alliance of bad guys, it’s up to our blonde heroine to shed her damsel-in-distress trappings to lead the resistance. The voice cast is led by Sarah Michelle Gellar, Sigourney Weaver, Freddie Prinze Jr., George Carlin, Wallace Shawn and Andy Dick. The film is directed by Paul J. Bolger and written by Robert Moreland. Vanguard Films’ Oscar-winning producer John H. Williams (Shrek, Valiant) produced the pic with BAF Berlin Animation Film and BFC Berliner Film Companie.
Both the DVD and the Blu-ray Disc releases include an alternate ending, seven deleted scenes, more than 40 minutes of featurettes, audio commentary by Bolger, interactive games and more. In addition, Lionsgate has created customized menus that will allow viewers to choose between good or evil menu screens based on responses to a series of multiple-choice questions. The menus are hosted by animated characters Mambo (Andy Dick) and Munk (Wallace Shawn) from the movie, who provide color commentary throughout the bonus feature selections.
Happily N’ever After carries a suggested retail price of $28.98 on DVD and $39.99 on Blue-ray. The release is also at the center of an in-school program reaching 20,000 schools nationwide. Teachers will use movie clips and the fairytale theme as an educational resource to engage and teach kids some of the film’s lessons.
Another toon movie arriving on home video this week is Fox Home Entertainment’s release of Strawberry Shortcake: Berry Blossom Festival, an animated feature based on the cartoon series from DIC and American Greetings. The Berry Blossom Festival is underway and everyone in Strawberryland is having a Grand Time, thanks to the selfless help of Strawberry Shortcake, who is crowned Berry Blossom Queen. The movie carries a suggested retail price of $14.98.
Fans can also pick up episode compilations from a number of popular animated TV shows. The Warner Home Video release Tom and Jerry Tales: Volume 2 offers 12 cartoons from the Kids’ WB series and retails for $14.97, while Paramount Home Entertainment dishes out 12 installments of the PBS Kids series Caillou in Caillou the Creative, listing for $14.99. Also from Paramount comes Jay Jay the Jet Plane: Jay Jay’s Big Mystery, a set of six episodes from the PBS Kids pre-school favorite that retails for $12.99.