Just in time for the Halloween season, Universal Pictures Home Entertainment has announced the upcoming release of a collection dubbed the Universal Monsters Classics Collection, which will include the first ever physical 4K, UHD Blu-ray release of four iconic monster movies. Dracula, Frankenstein, The Wolf Man and The Invisible Man will be the first Universal monster movies of their era to be made available to collectors in 4K Ultra HD. The box set is expected to hit physical shelves on Oct. 5, 2021, with digital 4K streaming options showing up at the same time.
There will definitely be some horror purists out there thrilled by this news, and no doubt just as many who are frustrated, having been hoping for either a more expansive and all-encompassing set of 4K releases, or themed ones specific to each monster. This first “Classics Collection” is just dipping a toe into the dozens of classic monster movies in Universal’s vault, and leaves out even foundational ones such as 1932’s The Mummy and 1954’s Creature From the Black Lagoon, not to mention all the sequels in each series. Fans would perhaps have preferred box sets for each series individually—say, all the Frankenstein films in 4K, or all the Dracula films. Universal is skilled at continuing to promote these old classics, though—they’ll surely find a way to sell them all in 4K eventually.
As for this collection, it will be spread out over 8 discs that contain tons of bonus content, including documentaries such as The Road to Dracula, Karloff: The Gentle Monster and Now You See Him: The Invisible Man Revealed. Likewise, these are technically 90th anniversary editions of both Dracula and Frankenstein, and an 80th anniversary edition of The Wolf Man.
Although this is indeed the first time any of these films have made it to 4K UHD, they have all previously been on Blu-ray. Universal first released a 9-movie Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection set on Blu-ray in 2012, followed by the Complete 30-Film Collection on Blu-ray in 2018. These releases were all in 1080p, so as always, it will be up to the consumer to determine if they feel 4K is a big enough upgrade to buy these films all over again. Regardless, it will be pretty cool to see Frankenstein looking better than ever before. Check out the 4K set below.