A Few Words About A few words about...™ Gone with the Wind -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Nov 4, 2009.

  1. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    The term answer print can have many meanings. From an archival perspective, the answer print would denote the print that was the final approved entity signed off on by the filmmakers.

    Most answer prints from other than the modern era do not survive. As I recall, the print in Rochester is far from complete, and AFAIK is not noted as Answer Print.

    RAH

     
  2. Guest

    I'm a purist, but I must confess without sounding too blunt that after seeing this new revelation, I'm not concerned whether they used an answer print or not. The film is lush, yet has that antique look to it. It has something for everyone. I'm sure D.O.S. and company would be overjoyed if they were around to experience it. 1939 audiences would have been lucky as well.
     
  3. Brian W.

    Brian W. Screenwriter

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  4. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    Here's what I said: 2. If this print exists (only a certain number of reels were previously known, plus a print in an archive in China) then the cropped shots should be able to be restored digitally.

    I don' recall anyone from the studio at that time referring to an entire 1939 "answer print."
     
  5. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    While I had the brief pleasure of meeting Mr. Selznick around 1961, I have no idea if he and company would be "overjoyed." I do however, believe that, as a brilliant showman, he would have been appreciative for the major efforts spent in bring his work to Blu-ray. I have been told than Daniel Selznick, who speaks for the family, is very pleased.

    As to a 1939 audience, I believe you're skating on the proverbial thin ice. My vote would go with what D.O.S. created in 1939 for that specific audience, and it would be inappropriate for either you or I to speak to something we know little or nothing about. The original 1939 prints served a specific purpose in the early days of three-strip Technicolor seven decades ago. I believe we should let history and the many Academy Awards speak for themselves. 1939 audiences were thrilled, and needed no changes or help from those who at that time... did not exist.

    RAH

     
  6. Brian W.

    Brian W. Screenwriter

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    I guess they don't say "answer print." In looking at the "Restoring a Legend" featurette from the 2004 DVD, Ned Price says, "We were fortunate enough to get a 1939 color reference print that was used at Technicolor at the time of manufacture. It was a real boon to us because it gave us a legitimate snapshot of what this film actually looked like on its release. We had started into our restoration, and we had to go back and rethink and rework our work to date after we found that, but it was a great save for us."
     
  7. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    Whatever print they were able to reference certainly led them in the right direction, as the final result is magnificent.
     
  8. Powell&Pressburger

    Powell&Pressburger Screenwriter

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    After watching the making of from 1988 on the supplements, I am surprised we can see it this well today. Sounded like even on the old documentary they were under the wire for the color timing etc.

    Only drawback to the set for HD in my mind is that they didn't go out for an all new making of doc in HD. It would have been nice to have something better looking to show off the format etc. The film speaks for itself, but the release deserved a new making of. I know they can be expensive to produce and the one from 1988 is very informative, but I was thinking more in the line of doing that photo processing that looks 3-D kind of like the Snow White Supplements. (not sure the terminology) Wizard of Oz deserved the same.

    Correct me if I am wrong but I don't think one extras was in HD!
     
  9. Rob_Ray

    Rob_Ray Screenwriter
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    What's so special about the 50th anniversary documentary and what makes it now so poignant is that virtually all of the participants, except for Ann Rutherford, are now gone. Ted Turner, George Feltenstein and the rest of the folks behind this documentary were both lucky and extremely wise to make this documentary when they did. The thoughts and recollections of Marcella Rabwin, Ray Klune, Kay Brown, Butterfly McQueen, Evelyn Keyes and many others are now themselves gone with the wind and what remains of their stories lies in this historical artifact which is to be cherished.
     
  10. MatthewA

    MatthewA Lead Actor

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    Well put. With all the glorified EPKs that accompany almost every DVD of every new movie ever made today (and a fair bit of old and middle-aged ones), this one was one of the best documentaries about the making of a film ever. The only other one that's in the same class that I've seen, with the same love for its subject matter, and the same level of access to people who were there, is The Sound of Music: From Fact to Phenomenon, from 1994 (which would be tragic to omit from its eventual Blu-Ray as it was from the 40th Anniversary DVD).
     
  11. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    A major ongoing archival effort at WB has been the interview library which has been in progress for quite a while. It enables the studio, via the efforts of Mr. Feltenstein and others, to bring the men and women who made the movies to the fore whenever needed. The archive holds a massive amount of information what is mined as necessary.
     
  12. Guest

    RAH, fair enough. I am just going to speak for myself then. This is absolutely one of , if not THE best remastering effort I have ever seen. The fact that this film is tied with The Wizard of Oz for my favorite film makes it that much better. I now have the GWTW that I have always wanted. And I couldn't be happier.
     
  13. Guest

    Incidentally, what paper inserts came in your guys' box? Mine had the "booklet" containing the features of the discs, a TCM advert, and a Wizard of Oz Blu-Ray advert. I didn't get an advert for GWTW merchandise or anything for a poster offer.
     
  14. Flemming.K

    Flemming.K Stunt Coordinator

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    I can't think of a movie, I'd rather own in HD and then in this fabulous quality. Amazing. I've watched the former DVD version with my daughter and yesterday, we saw this new version. She's 10 and it's her favorite movie ... well close anyway. I guess Spirit "Cimarron" is a tough opponent
     
  15. Rob_Ray

    Rob_Ray Screenwriter
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    I have the same paper inserts as you, I believe. I'd have to verify that for sure. I had to pick up both versions (BD and DVD) as it's one of my favorite films and my primary viewing source remains a 35" 4:3 standard definition TV. I'll be viewing the new DVD in my film class next month, so I was content to viewing part one of the BD on the 32" HD set while revisiting Rudy Behlmer's audio commentary last night. I can't get over how amazing the quality is! I noticed a fly buzzing around the set during one scene (I think it was Belle donating money to the hospital) the texture (and occasionally the soil during the evacuation) on all the clothes. And things in the background that I never noticed before sprang to the fore, especially various bits of business performed by the extras in scenes like the naptime sequence and at the bazaar.

    Just incredible!
     
  16. Jon Lidolt

    Jon Lidolt Stunt Coordinator

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    I second your comments. GWTW is why I bought a Blu-ray player when the format finally won the war over HD-DVD. And I can scarcely believe that I actually have a Blu-ray copy in my grubby little paws. I've seen GWTW in 35mm 1.66 Technicolor, in 1.85 Eastman Color (not good) and in 70mm on: a flat screen, a D-150 presentation and on the full, deeply curved Cinerama screen. This is, by far, the best I've ever seen it, and I am thrilled with the final result.
     
  17. Jeff Adkins

    Jeff Adkins Screenwriter

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    I can't add much that hasn't already been said. I will say that it's exceeded my wildest expectations. I got the 2-disc set from England for $27 and I'm simply blown away.
     
  18. Marvin

    Marvin Screenwriter

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    I also got the UK version. In case anyone's still wondering, both discs - the movie in BD on disc 1 and the extras on disc 2 - all play fine in my player.
     
  19. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    Someone on another forum posted that he sees color registration errors. Has anyone else noticed this? I just watched the entire film and I didn't see what he's talking about.
     
  20. Jon Lidolt

    Jon Lidolt Stunt Coordinator

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    I don't think anyone else mentioned this, but I did notice that we can now see the entire frame. In the last transfer the image was zoomed in too much. The improvement is most noticeable in the main credits. In this new version there's plenty of breathing space around the lettering and consequently we're treated to the correct compositions throughout.
     

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