Blu-Ray Review: Bonus-Heavy Release of Will Ferrell’s Beloved ‘Anchorman’

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CHICAGO – “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy” is one of the most beloved comedies of the ’00s, a film that may have failed to crack $100 million on its initial release but has legions of fans who now know the entire script by heart after dozens of DVD and cable viewings. Like many comedy hits, Adam McKay’s directorial debut has been given the gift set treatment complete with collectibles and hours of special features. It’s exclusive to Best Buy for the next few months but we have a look at it for you now. Blu-Ray Rating: 4.5/5.0
Blu-Ray Rating: 4.5/5.0

“Anchorman” came out when Will Ferrell was arguably at or near his peak as a comedy actor. “Old School” and “Elf” had dominated the year before and while “Anchorman” wouldn’t set the box office on fire (it actually ranks below “Blades of Glory,” “The Other Guys,” and “Step Brothers” in terms of domestic gross), it would define the McKay-Ferrell comedy dynamic for years to come and become one of the most quotable DVD hits of the decade.

Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy: The
Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy: The “Rich Mahogany” Edition was released on Blu-ray on August 31st, 2010
Photo credit: Paramount

One of the reasons for the continued success of “Anchorman” is that the film holds up remarkably well. Not only is Ferrell completely at the top of his game as Ron Burgundy but this is arguably his best ensemble with great turns from Paul Rudd, Steve Carell, Vince Vaughn, Ben Stiller, David Koechner, Fred Willard, and the highly-underrated Christina Applegate. Think about what would result in the careers of people like Producer Judd Apatow, McKay, Carell, and Rudd after “Anchorman.” It’s one of the most influential comedies of the ’00s. And it’s as damn funny today as the day it came out.

“The “Rich Mahogany” Edition” of “Anchorman” includes an overwhelming amount of special features, including everything that has been available before on standard DVD releases along with a few new gems and some physical collectibles. The latter consists of a series of “Anchorman” trading cards and a book called “The Many Months of Burgundy.” The new features total over 50 minutes and include some great unseen cast auditions of both actual stars of the film and a few A-listers who didn’t make the cut. You really need to see Maya Rudolph’s take on Veronica Corningstone. I don’t mean to take anything away from Applegate, but it could have been magical with Maya.

As for video and audio, the 1080p High Definition picture is a bit muted for my tastes with a washed-out look that makes the movie look older than it actually is but the English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio is a nice touch for audiophiles. Special features are as follows…clear your schedule:

*—includes previously-unavailable content

Disc One:
o Commentary with Adam McKay, Will Ferrell, Lou Rawls, Andy Richter, Kyle Gass, Paul Rudd, David Koechner and Christina Applegate
o Deleted & Extended Scenes*
o Bloopers
o ESPN Sports Center Audition – Ron Burgundy

Disc Two:
o Wake Up Ron Burgundy
o Feature Introduction by Will Ferrell and Aaron Zimmerman
o Raw Footage “Good Takes”*
o “Afternoon Delight” music video
o “Afternoon Delight” Recording Session*
o Public Service Announcements
o Awards Speech
o AMC Loews Happy Birthday*
o Interviews: Rebecca Romijn, Jim Caviezel, Burt Reynolds
o Cinemax: The Making of Ron Burgundy
o Reel Comedy: Anchorman
o A Conversation with Ron Burgundy
o Cast Auditions*
o Table Read*
o Rehearsals
o Playback Video
o Commercial Break
o Trailers (HD)*

“Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy: The “Rich Mahogany” Edition” stars Will Ferrell, Christina Applegate, Paul Rudd, Steve Carell, David Koechner, and Fred Willard. It was written by Ferrell & Adam McKay and directed by McKay. The film is rated PG-13 or Unrated and was released on Blu-ray on August 31st, 2010, exclusively at Best Buy. content director Brian Tallerico

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