Official Shaw Brothers US DVD/Blu-ray Release List

by Tom Fardy on October 10, 2015 · 9 comments in Buddhist Blog

(Previously published on the Facebook group page The Mighty Shaw Brothers Vault on Feb. 26, 2015, updated here, and with additional bits of info by Kung Fu Bob O’Brien)

In 2002 IVL/Celestial Pictures began releasing the 760 titles from the Shaw Brothers Film Library onto DVD. These releases were all Region 3, so outside of South East Asia, unless a fan owned a multi-region DVD player they couldn’t watch them. Eventually many of these films received distribution stateside as Region 1 DVDs. For the convenience of US fans seeking to acquire SB DVD/Blu-rays for their collection or video libraries, here is a list “by distributor” of the Shaw Brothers movies that were officially released on DVD and Blu-ray here in the U.S. (as of October 10, 2015)

All titles listed are in DVD format, except Blu-ray releases which are marked as such after the film’s title. All titles contain both Chinese audio (Cantonese or Mandarin, or in some cases both) with English subtitles, and English dub, unless otherwise noted.

DRAGON DYNASTY

THE 36th CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN (Also released on Blu-ray by Vivendi Visual Entertainment)
KING BOXER
THE ONE ARMED SWORDSMAN
MY YOUNG AUNTIE
COME DRINK WITH ME
HEROES OF THE EAST
THE FIVE VENOMS (Also released on Blu-ray by Vivendi Visual Entertainment)
THE 8-DIAGRAM POLE FIGHTER
RETURN TO THE 36th CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN
RETURN OF THE ONE ARMED SWORDSMAN
CRIPPLED AVENGERS (Released as “Return Of The 5 Deadly Venoms” for some reason)
SHAOLIN MANTIS
DISCIPLES OF THE 36th CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN
GOLDEN SWALLOW
BLOOD BROTHERS
KILLER CLANS
AVENGING EAGLE
THE FLYING GUILLOTINE
THE FLYING GUILLOTINE PART II
MARTIAL ARTS OF SHAOLIN
MAD MONKEY KUNG FU
EXECUTIONERS FROM SHAOLIN
THE FIVE SHAOLIN MASTERS.

MEDIA BLASTERS (TOKYO SHOCK)

HEROES TWO (Also released on Blu-ray)
THE MASTER
CHALLENGE OF THE MASTERS
THE DEADLY DUO (Also released on Blu-ray)
THE BRAVE ARCHER
MARTIAL CLUB
TEN TIGERS OF KWANGTUNG
BLACK MAGIC PART 2 (aka: REVENGE OF THE ZOMBIES)
THE FLAG OF IRON
FIVE ELEMENT NINJAS (Also released on Blu-ray)
KID WITH THE GOLDEN ARM
IRON BODYGUARD
ROAR OF THE LION

BCI/NAVARRE FUNIMATION (THE HONG KONG CONNECTION)

OPIUM AND THE KUNG FU MASTER (Also released on Blu-ray by Navarre Corporation)
LIFE GAMBLE (Also released on Blu-ray by Navarre Corporation)
THE FOURTEEN AMAZONS
SHAOLIN HANDLOCK
HONG KONG GODFATHER (English Subtitled only, NO dub)
SHAOLIN PRINCE
THE DUEL OF THE IRON FIST
SHAOLIN RESCUERS
SOUL OF THE SWORD
INVINCIBLE SHAOLIN
THE LADY HERMIT
THE SWORD OF SWORDS
THE BASTARD SWORDSMAN
RETURN OF THE BASTARD SWORDSMAN
THE SUPREME SWORDSMAN (English subtitled ONLY, NO dub.)

WELL-GO USA (SWORD MASTERS COLLECTION)

THE HEROIC ONES (Also released on Blu-ray)
TWO CHAMPIONS OF SHAOLIN
BRAVE ARCHER AND HIS MATE
THE BATTLE WIZARD
THE DELIGHTFUL FOREST (Also released on Blu-ray)
HEROES SHED NO TEARS
HOLY FLAME OF THE MARTIAL WORLD
THE WEB OF DEATH (Also released on Blu-ray)
ALL MEN ARE BROTHERS (Also released on Blu-ray)
THE DUEL OF FISTS
LEGEND OF THE BAT

The following films were released in the U.S. with English subtitles only:

DUEL OF THE CENTURY
BROTHERS 5 (Also released on Blu-ray)
JOURNEY OF THE DOOMED
SWORDSMAN AND THE ENCHANTRESS
THE JADE TIGER
DEATH DUEL
TRAIL OF THE BROKEN BLADE
SHADOW BOXING (aka: The Spiritual Boxer Part II)

IMAGE ENTERTAINMENT (EASTERN MASTERS series)

THE SUPER INFRAMAN
BLACK MAGIC
THE CAVE OF SILKEN WEB (No English Dub – I doubt it ever existed for this title.)
KILLER SNAKES
LEGENDARY WEAPONS OF CHINA

…then they dropped the ball and started releasing SB films with no English dub whatsoever, even though they were offered them by the late Linn Haynes and myself, hence my labeling the following  titles “Epic Fail” since they should have included the English language soundtrack when available.

THE WATER MARGIN (No Dub – EPIC FAIL!)
HAVE SWORD WILL TRAVEL (No Dub – EPIC FAIL!)
THE SHADOW WHIP (No Dub)
SHAOLIN INTRUDERS (No Dub – EPIC FAIL!)
HEAVEN AND HELL (No Dub – EPIC FAIL!)
THE WANDERING SWORDSMAN (No Dub)
VENGEANCE IS A GOLDEN BLADE (No Dub)
BAT WITHOUT WINGS (No Dub)
THE BELLS OF DEATH (No Dub – EPIC FAIL!)
THE SHADOW BOXER (No Dub)
BOXER’S OMEN (No Dub, but only DVD release worldwide!)
CORPSE MANIA (No Dub, but only DVD release worldwide!)
SEEDING OF A GHOST (No Dub)
THE MAGNIFICENT TRIO (No Dub)
KING EAGLE (No Dub)
HUMAN LANTERNS (No Dub)

…and then they got back on the ball and resumed with English language releases, including some very rare dubs that I never heard before…

THUNDERBOLT FIST
THE LIZARD
THE MAGIC BLADE
THE DEADLY BREAKING SWORD (First time released in English!)
INTIMATE CONFESSIONS OF A CHINESE COURTESAN
THE KISS OF DEATH (First time released in English!)
LOST SOULS (First time released in English!)
DISCIPLES OF SHAOLIN

…and ended their Celestial contract with the English language release of…

THE HOUSE OF TRAPS (First time released in English!)

MIRAMAX (THE WIENSTEIN COMPANY)

THE MIGHTY PEKING MAN

ANCHOR BAY (THE HAMMER COLLECTION)

LEGEND OF THE 7 GOLDEN VAMPIRES
SHATTER

WARNER BROS.

CLEOPATRA JONES AND THE CASINO OF GOLD
BLADE RUNNER (Also released on Blu-ray)

MGM/UA

METEOR (Also released on Blu-ray, by Kino Video)

IVL/CELESTIAL

THE 36TH CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN TRILOGY Set of Blu-rays
This set is not a US release, but since the discs are All-Region and will play on standard US Blu-ray players I am including it. Each film contains the original Chinese audio, English dub, and optional English subtitles. The films in this set are:
THE 36TH CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN
RETURN TO THE 36TH CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN
DISCIPLES OF THE 36TH CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN

COLUMBIA/TRI-STAR

THE KING OF MASKS (1996)

Our thanks to Tom for creating this list and allowing us to publish it here.

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Rollin Kuhn January 19, 2017

First off, thanks a lot for re-posting this list, which is invaluable for those of us trying to find copies of these films on DVD/BR.

I am fortunate enough to live in Portland, Ore., which has one of (if not) the only theaters anywhere in the world where these and other Hong Kong wuxia films can still be seen on 35mm – the Hollywood Theatre. There’s a monthly “Kung Fu Theatre” series on the second Tuesday of each month, and I’ve been going almost every month for several years. It’s amazing getting to see these films with a crowd of people in the setting they were meant for (the big screen). So far I’ve seen maybe 30, many of which are in the list above.

The head projectionist is a film collector who has several hundred of these films on 35mm, in many cases the only known print of them still left. He is always on the lookout for more, as he’s also a preservationist and is trying to keep these films from being lost or destroyed (I know Q. Tarantino is also doing the same thing). If anyone knows of copies of any of the classic Hong Kong cinema from the 60’s through the 80’s that are on 35mm and for sale, you should reach out to Dan at the Hollywood Theatre.

And if you’re ever in Portland on the second Tuesday of the month, check out KFT! Buy tickets ahead of time – it nearly always sells out.

Reply

Steven Millan October 25, 2015

Quite an amazing list there,for hopefully half of those titles that are currently OOP will eventually return in the near future(for those that missed on them the first time).

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Kung Fu Bob October 25, 2015

Whoa, I just noticed that this list was credited to me! This list is the work of Tom Fardy. I only added a few words here and there and edited a bit. Tom compiled the list entirely, and it ii his hard work that everyone has been enjoying NOT mine. That means that this has been up on our site for 15 days with incorrect credit stating that I wrote this. I’m mortified, and am contacting SMK right now to have this corrected. My sincere apologies to Tom for this gross oversight.

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Michael Lauck October 19, 2015

In regards to the Image releases without English dubs, is it possible that someone else owns the copyright to them? A release with a different soundtrack is considered its own entity under US copyright law (that is why the English dubbed Street Fighter is public domain but the original Japanese version is not), so if some existing company owns rights to a dubbed version that hit drive-ins or syndicated TV back in the day, it may complicate things for Image.

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Tom Fardy October 25, 2015

No, the films and their soundtracks are all Shaw Brothers property, they were all dubbed in HK by the same crew – Ted Thomas’ Axis International under contract with the Shaw Organisation Pte. for distribution in their theater chain.
Like Toho’s Godzilla films, the Street Fighter movies were dubbed by Peter Fernandez’ Titan Productions in New York for New Line Cinema, not Toei Company.
The reason the dubs were not included was because they failed to obtain them from Celestial Pictures while acquiring them and did not wish to negotiate any further to obtain them at that time. (In other words, they were just lazy.)

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Tom Fardy October 25, 2015

re: “for distribution in their theater chain.”
…in English speaking territories in S.E. Asia as well as abroad.
They were also necessary to sell the films Internationally via Cannes.

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Kung Fu Bob October 25, 2015

Thanks for that additional info Tom.

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Michael Lauck October 26, 2015

Good to know… it was just a thought.

Didn’t Shaw have a hand in the Sean Connery/Natalie Wood disaster film Meteor which is available on Blu-Ray and DVD from Kino Lorber?

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TJ October 11, 2015

This list is fantastic! Thanks for putting it together.

Reply

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