Unbroken, the inspirational true story of Olympian and war hero Louie Zamperini, will arrive on Digital HD on March 10 and Blu-ray, DVD, and On Demand on March 24. Based on Laura Hillenbrand’s best-seller and directed by Angelina Jolie, Unbroken stars Jack O’Connell as Zamperini, the world-class runner who competed at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin and became a tortured prisoner of war after his plane crashed in the Pacific during World War II.
In one of two exclusive clips from Unbroken’s Blu-ray extras, Jolie and the late Zamperini—who died on July 2 at the age of 97—describe their friendship, which flourished during the making of the film. “They just hit it off so well, so quickly,” says Zamperini’s grandson, Clay. “He was almost as thrilled just to be her pal as he was to see his life story come to life.”
O’Connell lost approximately 30 pounds to play Zamperini during the sequences where he’s abused in the Japanese P.O.W. camp, and the pivotal scene where his cruel tormentor (Miyavi) threatens him with execution should he fail to lift and hold a heavy plank over his head was extremely taxing, both physically and mentally. “I was very, very nervous, and I know the boys were very nervous [about that scene],” says Jolie. “It felt like preparing two boxers separately in a ring.”
Among the Blu-ray and DVD’s features is a behind-the-scenes film called “The Real Louis Zamperini,” which showcases interviews with the real hero and the film’s cast and crew. The Blu-ray will also feature deleted scenes and several other featurettes.