Lionsgate dvd's

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Mark Pytel, Jan 23, 2009.

  1. Mark Pytel

    Mark Pytel Second Unit

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    Mark Pytel
    I really like movies, both coming from a wide variety of genres, so therefore I tend to buy or rent a lot of movies. Having gone to film school, and just using good common sense, I know the importance of OAR. Plus with it being 2009 and widescreen tv's being normal fare nowaday, I simply just can't understand the full frame only release of a widescreen movie.
    My question then is, why does lionsgate still release fullframe only transfers of their older release films? I have no problem with their new release films such as iron man, etc as those dvd and most new features have great transfers. No what I am referring to are the films from the 80's and 90's that they own. It seems that unless the film is with a popular actor, or is highlander, the film is relegated to the bottom bin with a ff transfer. Granted, some of those films are not high art, but i'd still like to see them they way they were intended. Plus a pan and scan version of a 2:35 movie looks horribly crappy on my widescreen tv!
    Plus, I'm pretty sure they hate Christopher Lambert! LOL Besides Highlander, every other movie they own of his has gotten shoddy treatment. What stinks is that a lot of his 90's films were shot in scope so the dvd looks really bad with 40% of the picture gone.
    My biggest complaint is that I was so looking forward to the upcoming lost 80's collection, (repossessed, homer and eddie etc) actually wanting to buy them all, but I read on the dvd talk forum that many of the upcoming dvds are going to be full frame thus getting rid of my potential purchase.
    Now all the other companies are releasing almost everything in OAR, heck even universal is going back and re-releasing some of their old full frame dvd's, so why is lionsgate still stuck in this pattern that budget or low volume dvd's are fullframe only? Is this since they are a smaller company? Do they even own./have the masters/negative for the original prints? Now, I don't work in dvd transfer production so I don't know the actual costs, but it can't cost that much to do a straight 16:9 transfer. I'd gather creating a pan and scan version costs more as that creates more work.
    I am not asking for warner bros style restorations or slick transfers, Hell I'd take a non-restored crappy looking widescreen dvd over these full frame disasters. I used to thing that van damme got the short end of the stick as so many of his bad-good movies were on dvd in bad transfers, but with universal re-releasing all of them in new widescreen transfers, it seems that Chris Lambert is now the king of crappily transfered dvd's.
    I was looking on Lionsgates website and I can't seem to find a comment/request area. Does anyone know what their contact info/ address is so I can send them a letter?
    Let me know what everyone else thinks about this
    -mark
     
  2. Simon Howson

    Simon Howson Screenwriter

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    Maybe they have old transfers in the vault, and don't want to spend money redoing them.
     
  3. cineMANIAC

    cineMANIAC Cinematographer
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    We have to ask ourselves if we are willing to accept any release over no release at all. Personally, I don't care about special editions anymore because most of the time they are just filler material that studios throw in to justify charging us more. However, I draw the line at what should be standard practice at this stage in the game and that is that the film should be presented in its OAR regardless of the budget or genre of the film; there is simply no excuse to release anything in fullscreen only. We're not talking about an upstart little indie distributor here-Lionsgate has the money-they just don't care. Example: I love Fright Night Part 2. I think its a great follow-up to the original but the DVD is a horrendous-looking atrocity that is barely watchable because half the image is missing since this is a Scope film. If I didn't love the movie so much I would've passed on it but I bit my tongue and bought it. Also, the recent Chaplin re-issue was a missed opportunity..it wasn't as "Special" as the label clainmed and the only reason they released it was to cash-in on Robert Downey's recent popularity. At least the transfer was an improvement. Bottom line, why bother release anything at all if you're not going to do it right?
     
  4. Jon Martin

    Jon Martin Cinematographer

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    Many of the titles, such as the upcoming Lost Films collection, were made by other companies, and over the years, Lionsgate got the rights to them. They may not have the elements needed to make a widescren transfers. The companies are long out of business.
     
  5. Tanner

    Tanner Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm glad this thread was started. When i first heard Slaughter High was going to be released I was elated. Then I read these specs (direct from Lionsgate):

    Screen Format: Full Screen
    Language/Subtitles: English
    Audio: 2.0
    Rating: R
    Run Time: 90
    CC: No
    Color: Color

    Full Frame? FULL FRAME! And, according to ShockTillYouDrop.com - http://www.shocktillyoudrop.com/news...ws.php?id=9316, it really is going to be the R-rated version. Are you kidding me? Fearnet, which is owned by Lionsgate, aired an uncut version. Even my VHS copy is uncut!

    I emailed Lionsgate and told them I'm not buying what they're selling. Hopefully some of you will too. customerservice@lionsgate.com and general-inquiries@lionsgate.com
     
  6. Michael Allred

    Michael Allred Screenwriter

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    I'm waiting to hear the specs for "Repossessed" and "My Best Friend's a Vampire." If both are full screen only, I'm not buying. Period.
     

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