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Selling the Splat PackThe DVD Revolution and the American Horror Film$
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Mark Bernard

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780748685493

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748685493.001.0001

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The DVD Revolution and the Horror Film, Take Two

The DVD Revolution and the Horror Film, Take Two

Rise of the ‘Unrated’

Chapter:
(p.70) 4. The DVD Revolution and the Horror Film, Take Two
Source:
Selling the Splat Pack
Author(s):

Mark Bernard

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748685493.003.0005

This chapter examines how DVD led to the mainstreaming of once marginal ‘Unrated’ horror films. It looks at the emergence of the Splat Pack films after an industrial change in ratings policy. During the DVD era, the film industry's ‘sell-through’ pricing mandates, coupled with DVD's ability to add to — and take away from — the content of a film, allowed ‘Unrated’ movies to make their way to the mainstream. This chapter considers the increasing prevalence of gory, graphic and prolonged violence in films made by the Splat Pack as a reflection of Hollywood taking advantage of a rating system that had changed because of DVD technology. Cinema versions of these films need only feature ‘just enough’ gore, blood and carnage to entice viewers to check out the ‘Unrated’ version on DVD, a product that, the consumer is assured, is ‘uncut’. This chapter discusses the reasons why home video became a viable avenue for the release of ‘Unrated’ films.

Keywords:   unrated horror films, Splat Pack films, DVD, sell-through pricing, Unrated movies, film industry, home video, rating system, Hollywood

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