Kiss Me Kate replacement discs

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Robert Harris, Aug 26, 2003.

  1. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    Since the release of the Kiss Me Kate DVD, the folks at Warner have been going through the elements and planning a new disc to replace the initial release which had some technical problems, as pointed out via HTF threads.

    The transfer has now been completed with the new version to be released toward the end of the year in the proper 1.37:1 aspect ratio as it had been at the premiere.

    The alternate 3-D footage will be found as an ancillary item.

    The alternate footage had been physically cut into prints set for 3-D distribution and had been produced as a separate roll.

    Those wishing to exchange their discs will be accommodated, most likely with a program similar to that set in motion for Back to the Future by Universal.

    Expect an announcement as the discs go into production around November.

    For those interested, here are the actual post-production cutting notes on the alternate shots: (note: the numbers indicate footage)

    "Reel 3A - delete from 404-13 to 422-7, and replace with special footage beginning with curtain opening, players carrying sign saying "The Taming of the Shrew" and actors throwing confetti, flames, and water at the camera.

    Reel 4A - delete from 414-5 to 446-5, and replace with special footage.
    Kate takes a bow, turns and throws a mug of water at camera.
    Intermission card follows, and fade out.

    Reel 4A, from 0 to 446-5 is spliced to the end of 3B, making the intermission at the end of 5000 ft. reel 1, following the song "I Hate Men".

    Reel 4A - New leader and opening shot fades in for beginning of Act 2.

    5000 ft. reel 1 consists of conventional reels 1, 2, 3 and the first 446 feet of 4.
    4949 ft. - 55 min.
    5000 ft. reel 2 consists of conventional reel 4 from 446, and reels 5, 6, and 7.
    4897 ft. - 54min. 20 sec."

    RAH
     
  2. DeeF

    DeeF Screenwriter

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    Mr. Harris,

    Clearly, this work is being done because of your personal involvement. You remain my hero.

    Yippee! for the new Kiss Me, Kate!

    P.S. Let's talk West Side Story....

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    While I would like to take a bit of credit for this action, the majority of the work came from within WB, where there are a number of people in executive positions as passionate about film as those on HTF.

    They recognized a problem, did something about it, and deserve your kudos.

    RAH
     
  4. Mark Zimmer

    Mark Zimmer Producer

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    Well, then, well done Warner! It's always nice to see a megacorporation actually respond and try to correct a mistake instead of sweep it under the carpet. [​IMG]
     
  5. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    So where's the field-sequential 3-D version?
     
  6. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    This is the first time I've seen Warner do this for a faulty transfer (other than the alternate Wonka disc).

    WB should be applaused for this action...especially with a lower level classic title like this.

     
  7. Joe_Pinney

    Joe_Pinney Stunt Coordinator

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    Mr. Harris, you DO know that you're the Frank Sinatra of the film restoration world, do you not? You are worth more than 20 lunches with Steven Spielberg to us. More than 100 THX certifications :wink:. You are the Supreme Guru of Film Restoration. [​IMG] (That'd sound good on a business card; be my guest to the term!) You are the great and wonderful Mr. Robert A. Harris, and you can do no wrong. All others must kowtow in your presence. We're not worthy! :wink:

    This is excellent news! Any expectation of when the replacement discs will supercede the existing discs on retailer shelves now? The BTTF replacement discs apparently have yet to show up on retailer shelves, although the disc replacement program has been going on for several months, as I understand it.
     
  8. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    "Supreme guru..."

    No. Don't think so.

    But the thought is appreciated.

    For the record, where I may have a more public presence, there are archivists working hard at the the studios, at private archives and at OUR Library of Congress and National Archives, who are saving our film heritage on a daily basis.

    One individual can help to enlighten, but it takes an exhultation of us to save the films.

    I'm merely a messenger.

    RAH
     
  9. Bill Burns

    Bill Burns Supporting Actor

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    This is excellent news for owners of the first edition. I trust future shipments of the disc will include the corrected version. [​IMG]

    As to 3D, may I respectfully direct WB's attention to the following links, where HTF thoughts have run more or less positive to current field sequential (few if any like anaglyph) home viewing technology (which I find is how things run for 3D in theatres, as well; there are always those who say it gives them a headache, including my own mother when I "dragged" her to Ghosts of the Abyss; there are also those who continue to dislike watching films with big black bars "making it so darn small on my 27-inch Trinitron, giving me a headache." [​IMG] Even director Roger Donaldson recently said something similar, but happily his more-or-less "anti-Criterion thoughts," if you will, are not studio policy on 'Scope in the home):

    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...threadid=70448

    ... and ...

    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...threadid=75815

    There are other threads, but these are good starters. Tylenol not included. [​IMG]

    Once again, though, WB has done fans of the 2D presentation a service with this corrected version, and that's very good news. The above is very much intended respectfully, and not, in the colorful colloquialism I've read so often around here, as a "thread fart." A quality 2D presentation will make more than a few happy, and WB is to be congratulated for responding to this problem at all (it would have been very easy to write off, I should think).
     
  10. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    thats great news. and why i waited to buy. i was counting on warner to do the right thing.
     
  11. James_Garner

    James_Garner Stunt Coordinator

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  12. BruceKimmel

    BruceKimmel Stunt Coordinator

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    Since I have not seen the DVD nor have I seen the threads pertaining to its problems (and since said problems don't seem to have been discussed much anywhere else), might I inquire what the problems were with this disc? Thanks in advance.
     
  13. Greg_M

    Greg_M Screenwriter

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    This is great news. Warner said they were going to fix it, and apparently they are. [​IMG]


    Quote RH: "The alternate 3-D footage will be found as an ancillary item.

    The alternate footage had been physically cut into prints set for 3-D distribution and had been produced as a separate roll."

    Now for the obvious question:
    Why doesn't Warner just edit the footage back into the film?

    *Mr. Harris - you are a welcome addition to the Home Theater Forum, and it is alway a pleasure to hear from you [​IMG]
     
  14. Greg_M

    Greg_M Screenwriter

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  15. Bob Furmanek

    Bob Furmanek Insider
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    "The alternate 3-D footage will be found as an ancillary item. The alternate footage had been physically cut into prints set for 3-D distribution and had been produced as a separate roll."

    Re: Now for the obvious question: Why doesn't Warner just edit the footage back into the film?

    If you want to see the flat version of this film in the way that audiences would have seen it in 1953, then the 3-D gimmick footage should not be put into a flat transfer. (However, it should definitely be put into a field-sequential version.) As is shown by the revised cutting continuity, quite a bit of tweaking was done with the 3-D release prints of this film. None of these changes should be made to a flat transfer, if the intent is to replicate the original theatrical experience.

    Regarding the "correct" aspect ratio, I submit the following information:

    From Box Office magazine of May, 1953: (parapharasing) It was filmed with MGM's own 3D camera rig at a negative aspect ratio of 1.37; however, it would be available for playdates in 3D at full Academy ratio and could be matted for 2D "flat" playdates at any of *three* aspect ratios - 1.66, 1.75, or 1.85. So, the negative would be fully exposed and the theatres would soft-matte it to whichever ratio they preferred.

    I can only add that the New York and Los Angeles playdates were heavily promoted as "Wide Screen."

    Here's a direct quote from George Sidney, the director: "My cameraman, Charlie Rosher, and I had to compose every shot three different ways at the same time. What would be good for one width would not be good for another. It was tricky, but we got around it by building more tops on sets, more floor and more sets in forced perspective to enhance the depth. The wider the screen, you see, the narrower; we had to compensate for those cut-off tops and bottoms. Same with the lighting: we used many more side lights than usual to relieve and bring out persons and objects at different distances from the camera. Even if you see 'Kate' flat, you'll notice that it seems to have more depth than the ordinary movie." - Interview from the L.A. Times, November 8, 1953

    So, if the new flat DVD transfer is 1.37, you will be getting all of the information that was exposed on the negative. But it will not be the way in which most people saw the film theatrically. By the time it was released in December 1953, most theatres would have played it in one of the recommended wide screen ratios.

    Warners is to be commended for recognizing the problems with the initial DVD release, and taking the necessary steps to fix them.
     
  16. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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  17. James_Garner

    James_Garner Stunt Coordinator

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  18. GregK

    GregK Screenwriter

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  19. Steve Phillips

    Steve Phillips Screenwriter

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    I've been watching field sequential 3-D VHD discs for some time, and not once have I gotten dizzy or thrown up. Neither has anyone I've watched them with! [​IMG]
     
  20. TedD

    TedD Supporting Actor

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    Thank you Warners!!!

    I can live with the 1.37:1 release, since I can soft matte it to 1.66:1 or 1.85:1 (or 1.75:1 or.....) the same way that the theaters do.

    Ted
     

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