The Elephant Man 1980
Lynch's Elephant Man tells of the historical figure, John Merrick (real name, Joseph Merrick, played here by John Hurt) whose physical deformities included an enlarged skull, twisted spine, and an unusable right arm. These grotesque deformities found Merrick on display in a circus freak show and mistreated. Doctor Frederick Treves (Anthony Hopkins) and the actress Mrs. Kendall (Anne Bancroft) would eventually champion Merrick, and the once maligned figure would become lionized in Victorian society.

Lynch’s film is a dreamlike commentary on Victorian society, filmed in beautiful black and white. He uses imagery, often surreal, to draw viewers into the quiet suffering of John Merrick and to reveal that, though Merrick may be hideous on the outside, he as gentle as a lamb on the inside.

The Elephant Man was nominated for eight Academy Awards in 1981, including Best Picture, when it lost to Robert Redford’s Ordinary People.

Director: David Lynch
Cast: Anthony Hopkins, John Hurt, Anne Bancroft
Country: USA, UK
Genre: Biography, Drama


BD50, 2xDVD9 | 1080p AVC, NTSC | 02:03:38 | 45.8 Gb + 14.8 Gb
Language: English
Subtitles: English

Extras:

Room to Dream - director David Lynch and coauthor Krisine McKenna read from their 2018 book Room to Dream. Audio only with images. In English, not subtitled. (70 min, 1080p).

Interviews -

1. John Hurt - in this archival interview, John Hurt discusses his collaboration with David Lynch on The Elephant Man and the film's production process. There are also some very interesting comments about the film's international reception. The interview was conducted in 2009. In English, not subtitled. (21 min, 1080i).

2. Frank Connor - in this recent video program, Frank Connor, stills photographer on The Elephant Man, discusses his work on the film as well as the evolution of his career, with some very interesting comments about the 'old days' and David Lynch's working methods. The program was produced in 2019. In English, not subtitled. (26 min, 1080p).

3. Jonathan Sanger at the BFI - presented here is a Q&A session with producer Jonathan Sanger, which is hosted by Ian Haydn-Smith. The bulk of the information addresses the production of The Elephant Man, from script to screen, the film's visual style (with great comments about the decision to shoot in black-and-white), and David Lynch's creative efforts. The session was filmed at BFI Southbank on January 18, 2018. In English, not subtitled. (25 min, 1080p).

4. David Lynch - in this archival video interview, David Lynch recalls how The Elephant Man came to exist. The interview was conducted in 2009. In English, not subtitled. (25 min, 1080i).

Archival -

1. David Lynch at the AFI - presented here is an archival audio recording of a seminar with David Lynch. A wide range of topics are discussed, from the director's preparation and shooting methods, the unique qualities of his films (with some very interesting comments about Eraserhead and its critical reception), the importance of scouting, the production of The Elephant Man, etc. The seminar was recorded in 1981.

2. The Terrible Elephant Man Revealed - this archival featurette chronicles the production history of The Elephant Man. It features clips from interviews with producer producer Jonathan Sanger, executive producer Mel Brooks, John Hurt, and cinematographer Freddie Francis, amongst others. In English, not subtitled. (21 min).

3. Joseph Merrick: The Real Elephant Man - a look at the tragic history of the man whose story inspired David Lynch's film. In English, not subtitled. (31 min, 1080i).

4. Mike Figgis and David Lynch - another long and very informative interview. David Lynch's comments on the process of transforming an idea into film are fascinating. The interview was conducted in 2006. In English, not subtitled. (20 min, 1080i).

5. Clapper Board: John Hurt - presented here is an archival interview with John Hurt which was conducted by Chris Kelly and aired on Granada Television in the UK on November 3, 1980. The actor discusses his collaboration with David Lynch on The Elephant Man. In English, not subtitled. (12 min, 1080i).

6. Skintricks: Christopher Tucker and John Hurt - presented here are excerpts from a Dutch television film broadcast on June 5, 1988, that feature an interview with makeup artist Christopher Tucker and actor John Hurt. The interviewees discuss the creation of the Elephant Man. Also, there photos of the real Elephant Man. In English, not subtitled. (14 min, 1080p).

Radio Spots - four vintage radio spots for The Elephant Man. In English, not subtitled. (2 min, 1080p).

Trailer - vintage trailer for The Elephant Man. In English, not subtitled. (3 min, 1080p).

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