A&E UK shows-what happens next?

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by StevePA, Oct 8, 2007.

  1. StevePA

    StevePA Stunt Coordinator

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    Okay, just out of curiousity-we all seem to agree that A&E is phasing out their UK tv shows (ie: Space:1999, etc.)-my question is-what's the chances someone else in the US will pick up these rights?
    Sure, I guess "The Prisoner" will get scooped up, but "The Persuaders!"...hmnnn, maybe not...
    Perhaps it is worth it to buy, say, "Space:1999" now, instead of holding out for that mythical US DVD remaster?
     
  2. Anthony Hom

    Anthony Hom Supporting Actor

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    The UK shows from A&E were a Golden Age. Doubt something like this will ever happen on this level ever again.
     
  3. Lord Dalek

    Lord Dalek Cinematographer

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    Well it all depends on who else releases this stuff. Outside of A&E the only two major distributors of British TV on dvd are BBC Video (representing The Beeb and some Channel 4 shows, like Father Ted) and Acorn Media (mostly Granada titles). With that determined lets see who could grab which portion of the back catalog.

    Monty Python's Flying Circus - BBC
    Upstairs Downstairs - Granada
    Poirot - Granada
    Hickson-era Miss Marple - BBC
    All Gerry Anderson series - Granada
    Saphire and Steel - Granada
    Timeslip - Granada
    The Tomorrow People - Freemantle
    Neverwhere - BBC
    Benny Hill - Freemantle
    Quatermass IV - Freemantle
    The Prisoner - Granada
    Hammer House of Horror - Granada
    Danger Mouse - Freemantle

    Now the BBC titles could easily be released by BBC Video (the only reason they aren't is the licences were drafted prior to the creation of the dvd label) and I wouldn't be surprised to see the UK remastered MPFC showing up here. The Granada titles however are a problem as, outside of A&E (and this is largely because of an agreement between A&E and then-licence owner Carlton), their one video distribution company appears to be dead most of the year. The situation with the Thames titles owned by Freemantle is even more dire as they don't have a distributor if A&E pulls out.
     
  4. AndyMcKinney

    AndyMcKinney Cinematographer

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    BCI/Eclipse inked a deal with Fremantle a long time ago, announced in January. In fact, they've already got releases of Man About the House, The Bill andThe Sweeney on their "International Voyage" label. They are a far more likely outlet than Acorn for any Fremantle titles.
     
  5. PattyFraser

    PattyFraser Second Unit

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    Well, I'd love to see someone do real justice to Pride and Prejudice mini-series, and Upstairs, Downstairs looks really awful in places. But I'm still waiting on a complete Onedin Line, and Poldark never has seen the light of day. I've been waiting on many of these forever, and by now I'd take them on DVD however I can get them.
     
  6. AndyMcKinney

    AndyMcKinney Cinematographer

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    If you have (or get) an all-region capable DVD player (and one that can convert the PAL signal to NTSC, like most Philips-branded ones), you should probably go for the R2 versions.

    Network Video rereleased Upstairs Downstairs and you can get the complete boxset on AmazonUK. Includes all the episodes (including the black-and-white ones), the 13-episode spin-off series Thomas and Sarah, commentaries and a 25th Anniversary special. Being a Network release, they probably include the original adbreak bumpers, LWT opening screen and perhaps even VT countdown clocks. Just make sure you get the Network Video ones, not the DD Video release.

    don't forget, at AmazonUK, if you're ordering from the US you can deduct VAT, which'll save you about 17.5% off the price.

    They also have series-by-series releases of Onedin Line and Poldark.

    Re: Pride & Prejudice. Are you speaking of the '85 Colin Firth version? There's a 10th Anniversary edition out in the UK on the cheap (with VAT deduction, would be about $15 American plus shipping). Includes a making-of featurette.

    Can't imagine why anyone with a serious interest in foreign TV wouldn't have a multi-region/multi-standard player, especially when they're so cheap and easy to render region-free (as I said, Philips is a good brand, and can be had for $50 or less).
     
  7. PattyFraser

    PattyFraser Second Unit

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    I do have a (hacked) region 2 player. But I had heard there was to be a release of the full Onedin Line boxset, and I've been waiting for it. Perhaps I should just get them singly, region 2 but that's not my preference. And I keep thinking there will be a region one release of Poldark, because I was one that thought since Amazon.com had a placeholder for it then it would eventually be released in region one (my preference.) I saw a thread on HTF just today that nixed that misconception.
    I have earlier boxsets of both Upstairs, Downstairs (without Thomas and Sarah) and Pride and Prejudice- the '95 Colin Firth, but I don't find the video to be all that good. Was it improved for the 10th anniversary edition? I thought all they did was add a book.
    I have a hacked cyberhome, and have enjoyed You Rang, M'Lord, Day of the Triffids (which I see is getting a region one release) and several other region2 releases. I've seen the hackable Phillips on Amazon, and may get one soon.
     
  8. William B.

    William B. Stunt Coordinator

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    Which begs the question: Any chance of BCI/Eclipse putting out Benny Hill Down Under, being as none of the A&E sets featured this Australian-made show as a "bonus" - and that particular special falls under Fremantle's "jurisprudence" (per one of Fred Scuttle's malapropisms)?
     
  9. Tory

    Tory -The Snappy Sneezer- -Red Huck-

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    I have a Pioneer and I like it better than my Phillips. I love You Rang M'Lord. Have you tried Hi-de- Hi and Oh! Dr. Beeching featuring many of the same actors? I don't think I ever saw any of these in the US , possibly a pilot for Hi-de-Hi in a vote for the new series to add during a PBS pledge drive but I am uncertain. I think they would appeal to fans of Are You Being Served and Allo Allo. Also have you looked into the Carry On series of films and their Christmas TV Specials? All of these need US release.
     
  10. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    The Beeb doesn't control the home video rights to the series. The Pythons themselves won all rights to the show as a result of a lawsuit years ago.

    Regards,

    Joe
     
  11. Kevin Fox

    Kevin Fox Stunt Coordinator

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    Oh, yes, Poldark. I forgot to add that to my list of TV shows on DVD that will make me a happy man.

    And am I correct in assuming the reason you want (like me) to see Pride & Prejudice revisited is that previous editions still have not done justice with the transfers?
     
  12. PattyFraser

    PattyFraser Second Unit

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    Yes. The current Pride and Prejudice looks pretty bad, especially on my HDTV. I can't upconvert to see if it looks any better because I have no HDMI and the mechanics of trying the "frowned on" ways to bypass that problem are beyond me.

    I live in hope though, that that particular series may make it to HD, as it is still considered to be the best version, as it's more complete (despite the Keira Knightly movie.)
     
  13. PattyFraser

    PattyFraser Second Unit

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    I've not seen this series, although I've read about it. It may be in my future--I love those Britcoms!
     

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