SOFA Entertainment/UMe are set to release new, high-definition DVDs of legendary performances by Elvis Presley, The Beatles, The Supremes and The Temptations from US television’s The Ed Sullivan Show on 25 May.
From 1948 to 1971, US TV’s longest-running prime time variety program, CBS’ The Ed Sullivan Show, beamed the world’s biggest stars into the homes of nearly every American household live every Sunday evening. For musicians of all stripes, performing on the show was the pinnacle of television opportunities, with singular star-making potential. Among the artists vaulted to new heights of stardom via history-making appearances were The Beatles, Elvis Presley, The Temptations, and The Supremes, all of whom returned to The Ed Sullivan Show several times after electrifying debut performances on the program.
There are three collections honoring Elvis Presley’s legacy on The Ed Sullivan Show and beyond its stage: The 3 Complete Ed Sullivan Shows Starring Elvis Presley (2DVD), which includes all three entire episodes featuring Elvis; JUST ELVIS: All His Ed Sullivan Show Performances (1DVD), featuring just his iconic performances, including his infamous 1957 performance filmed from the waist up; and Elvis: The Great Performances (2DVD), which collects three previously released documentaries featuring appearances on “The Ed Sullivan Show” and dozens of other great Elvis TV and film performances into one DVD collection: Center Stage, The Man And The Music, and From The Waist Up.
In addition, three popular, previously released DVD collections: The Complete Ed Sullivan Shows Starring The Beatles, The Best Of The Supremes On The Ed Sullivan Show, and The Best Of The Temptations On The Ed Sullivan Show have been digitally upgraded from standard definition to high definition video for release on 25 May.
The Three Complete Ed Sullivan Shows Starring Elvis Presley presents the three entire Ed Sullivan Show episodes with Elvis’s historic performances, from September and October 1956 and January 1957. All 13 of Elvis’ electrifying performances for the program (including medleys) are featured in the 2DVD collection, as well as each show’s additional guests, including comedians Carol Burnett and Señor Wences, actor Charles Laughton, and boxer Sugar Ray Robinson. Special bonus material includes a home movie of a very early Elvis Presley performance in Houston, Texas; Elvis and Ed Sullivan remembered; and home movies of Elvis, his wife Priscilla, and their daughter Lisa Marie.
JUST ELVIS: All His Ed Sullivan Show Performances features all 15 songs from Elvis Presley’s three appearances on the show between September 1956 and January 1957, without the show’s other guests. So explosive and radical were these performances, Elvis’ final Ed Sullivan Show appearance had to be filmed from the waist up due to the fears and timidity of CBS’s censors.
Elvis: The Great Performances collects three feature documentary films on two DVDs, exploring the rise, music, personality and presence of the man crowned The King of Rock ’n’ Roll. Center Stage captures Elvis’ undeniable physical appeal and unrivaled artistic brilliance as it explores the time between his first TV in appearance in 1956 to one of his very last concerts. The Man and The Music offers glimpses into Elvis’ private life and the difficult realities of his unprecedented fame. Featured are rare home movies of Elvis’ friends and family as well as his first recording, a song Presley recorded at Sun Studios for his mother called ‘My Happiness’. From the Waist Up, narrated by U2’s Bono, follows Elvis’ remarkable trajectory to stardom, from unknown singer to icon in just 12 months. Featured are many of Elvis’ TV performances culminating with his legendary appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. Other featured performances include ‘Blue Suede Shoes,’ ‘Don’t Be Cruel,’ ‘All Shook Up,’ and ‘Return To Sender.’ The collection’s bonus features include interviews with Elvis Presley band members Scotty Moore & D.J. Fontana, Sun Records founder Sam Phillips, and Elvis contemporaries Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins.
The 4 Complete Ed Sullivan Shows Starring The Beatles collects the four entire episodes of The Ed Sullivan Show with history-making performances by The Beatles on two DVDs. On February 9, 1964, The Beatles stepped onto Ed Sullivan’s stage to make their U.S. TV debut. 73 million Americans tuned in and “Beatlemania” exploded. In these unforgettable live shows from 1964 and 1965, The Beatles performed 20 songs, including the Number One hits ‘She Loves You,’ ‘I Want To Hold Your Hand,’ ‘Ticket To Ride,’ ‘Yesterday,’ ‘Help!,’ ‘I Saw Her Standing There,’ and ‘All My Loving.’
The Best Of The Supremes On The Ed Sullivan Show presents 22 of the Motown legends’ greatest performances on the program on one DVD. Included is The Supremes’ first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show in December 1964, which featured a performance of their Number One hit ‘Come See About Me.’ Other timeless performances are showcased, including ‘You Can’t Hurry Love,’ ‘Love Child’ and ‘The Happening.’ This collection also includes ‘Up The Ladder To The Roof’ from the only appearance on the show by the “New Supremes” after Diana Ross went on to a solo career.
The Best Of The Temptations On The Ed Sullivan Show spotlights The Temptations’ best performances on the program on one DVD. Included is the group’s debut appearance from May 1967, in which they performed a medley of hits, including “My Girl” and ‘(I Know) I’m Losing You.’ The collections’ other featured performances include the group’s Number One hit ‘I Can’t Get Next To You,’ a playful version of ‘You’ve Made Me So Very Happy,’ the Top Ten hit ‘Psychedelic Shack,’ and the 1969 hit single ‘Runaway Child, Running Wild’ with Dennis Edwards replacing David Ruffin. The Temptations’ final 1971 performance on The Ed Sullivan Show is also included, broadcast just a few months before the show went off the air, for which they performed ‘Get Ready’ and their Number One hit ‘Just My Imagination (Running Away With Me).’