By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

Michael Schlesinger’s “Vintage” Comedy Shorts With “The World’s Favorite Fake 1930s Comedy Team” Hit The Bricks

KINO LORBER ACQUIRES ALL NORTH AMERICAN RIGHTS TO RETRO COMEDY BIFFLE AND SHOOSTERz

Collection of New “Vintage” Comedy Shorts Starring “The World’s Favorite Fake 1930s Comedy Team” Available on DVD May 22, 2018

Feature-Length Compilation To Be Released on Major Digital Platforms including iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu on May 22, 2018

March 30, 2018 –  Kino Lorber has acquired all North American rights to BIFFLE AND SHOOSTER, a collection of new “vintage” comedy shorts written, produced and directed by former studio exec turned award-winning independent filmmaker Michael Schlesinger.

Harking back to the glory days of Laurel & Hardy, Abbott & Costello, Hope & Crosby and The Three Stooges, Biffle and Shooster are vaudeville comics who get themselves into (but seldom out of) various scrapes with a minimum of smarts and a maximum of laughs, plowing through life armed with slapstick, puns, impressions and an occasional song. Though first created by the actors who portray them, Nick Santa Maria and Will Ryan, it was Schlesinger who developed the characters into full-fledged movie stars in these amazingly authentic-looking shorts, presented in 1.37:1 and (mostly) black-and-white.

Advance screenings have already garnered lavish praise from such filmmakers and writers as Joe Dante, Peter Bogdanovich, Leonard Maltin, Scott Eyman, Tim Lucas, Sid Ganis and many more.

The collection includes six shorts: “The Biffle Murder Case,” “Imitation of Wife,” “Schmo Boat,” “Bride of Finklestein” and “It’s A Frame-Up!” — plus a faux-Vitaphone novelty, “First Things Last.” Among the familiar faces in the cast of nearly 50 are Jim Beaver, Daniel Roebuck, Robert Picardo, H.M. Wynant, Dick Miller, Fay Masterson, Academy Award®-nominee Robert Forster and — though you don’t actually see his face — Academy Award®-winning VFX artist Chris Walas as a gorilla. (“Any film is improved by a gorilla,” Schlesinger noted.) The discs will contain over three hours of hilarious bonus material spanning their alleged film career from 1928 to 1962.

To avoid confusion — which is a normal state of mind for the team — the DVD will be titled THE MISADVENTURES OF BIFFLE AND SHOOSTER, to be released on May 22, 2018, while a feature-length compilation of four shorts plus additional songs and bits, simply titled THE ADVENTURES OF BIFFLE AND SHOOSTER will be available on all major digital platforms including iTunes, Amazon Instant, Google Play and Vudu, beginning May 22nd. Special features on the DVD will include audio commentaries, additional short subjects, extended and deleted scenes, behind-the-scenes footage, and bloopers and outtakes.

The deal was negotiated between Kino Lorber CEO Richard Lorber and Schlesigner. Schlesinger observed: “Kino Lorber was always my first choice. They’ve been around for over 40 years, I know and admire everyone there, and as one of the premier distributors of both old and new movies, who better to release a new movie that looks like an old movie?”

About Writer / Producer / Director Michael Schlesinger:
Michael Schlesinger is widely acknowledged as the dean of classic film distributors, having worked for more than 25 years at MGM, Paramount and Sony, keeping hundreds of vintage movies in theatrical release (and later on DVD), and instigating the restoration of many more, including the completion of Orson Welles’ 1942 documentary It’s All True some 50 years later. He has also recorded several DVD commentaries, including some for Kino Lorber, is a “Trailers From Hell” guru and has appeared in numerous documentaries as a film historian, as well as the recent HBO smash If You’re Not In The Obit, Eat Breakfast. Behind the camera, he wrote and produced the American version of Godzilla 2000 and co-produced such Larry Blamire parodies as The Lost Skeleton Returns Again and Dark and Stormy NightBIFFLE AND SHOOSTER represents his first effort as a director. He hopes it won’t be his last.

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