Hey man, we've got some news for fans of Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong: their breakthrough film, Cheech & Chong's Up In Smoke, is being reissued on Blu-ray for its 40th anniversary - and a deluxe edition will feature a trifecta of reissued product from Rhino Records.
Comedians Richard "Cheech" Marin and Tommy Chong had met in Canada during the '60s; Marin was there to evade the Vietnam War draft, while Chong, a native of the country, had been performing with his band, The Vancouvers. (The group had signed to the Motown subsidiary Gordy Records and spent a stint co-headlining with The Jackson 5.) Moving into stand-up, the duo began recording comedy albums that gradually placed high on the Billboard charts, with novelty single "Earache My Eye" reaching the Top 10 in 1974. (The previous year, their album Los Cochinos, attracted session players like George Harrison, Billy Preston and Carole King and won a Grammy for its effort.)
A transition to film was inevitable, and 1978's Up In Smoke featured the duo as a pair of lovable stoners getting into one misadventure after another, largely based on the comedy routines on their albums. Filmed on a shoestring budget of $2 million, the film grossed $44 million at the box office and lit up a new subgenre of stoner-friendly comedy (further exemplified by their follow-up films, Cheech & Chong's Next Movie (1980) Cheech & Chong's Nice Dreams (1981), both of which co-starred a rising comedian named Paul Reubens but widely known as Pee-wee Herman.) After a brief separation in the late '80s, both Cheech and Chong are still making audiences laugh, separately and together.
To celebrate the 40th anniversary of Up In Smoke, Paramount Pictures will release a features-packed Blu-ray on April 10; then, 10 days later (on April 20, naturally), a limited collector's edition will be issued. Limited to 5,000 copies, it pairs the Blu-ray with the original Up In Smoke soundtrack (which featured War's "Low Rider" and various sketches and dialogue from the movie, including a reprise of "Earache My Eye") on both vinyl (its first issue on the format in decades) and CD (featuring two bonus track versions of the title track "Up In Smoke": a newly-recorded version and a previously unreleased outtake featuring a Spanish verse by Marin). The 12" x 12" gatefold package also features a 7" picture disc offering two cuts from the soundtrack, plus an 11" x 17" replica poster, a booklet with essays from the duo and unseen photos, and even some oversized, fully usable rolling papers!
We'll bring you Amazon links to the deluxe package as it's available; in the meantime, full specs are below:
Cheech & Chong's Up In Smoke: 40th Anniversary Deluxe Collector's Edition (Paramount Home Media Distribution/Rhino, 2018)
Blu-ray: Original film in high definition plus extras:
- Commentary by Cheech Marin and director Lou Adler
- How Pedro Met the Man: Up In Smoke at 40 - new short-form documentary
- "Roach Clips" Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary
- Lighting It Up: A Look Back at Up In Smoke featurette
- "Earache My Eye" featuring Alice Bowie - Animated Music Video
- Cheech & Chong's "The Man Song"
- Vintage Radio Spots
- Theatrical Trailer
LP/CD: Cheech & Chong's Up In Smoke (originally released as Warner Bros. Records/Ode Sounds & Visuals BSK 3249, 1978)
- "Finkelstein Shit Kid" (dialogue)
- Up In Smoke
- Low Rider - War
- "1st Gear, 2nd Gear" (dialogue)
- "Ajax Lady" (dialogue)
- Here Come the Mounties to the Rescue
- "Sometimes When You Gotta Go, You Can't" (dialogue)
- Lost Due to Incompetence (Theme for a Big Green Van)
- "Lard Ass" (dialogue)
- Rock Fight
- "I Didn't Know Your Name Was Alex" (dialogue)
- Earache My Eye
- Up In Smoke (Reprise)
- Up In Smoke (Alternate Version - Previously Unreleased CD Bonus Track)
- Up In Smoke (2018 Version - Previously Unreleased CD Bonus Track)
Picture disc single: Earache My Eye b/w Lost Due to Incompetence (Theme for a Big Green Van)