Looking for rare public domain programming on DVD

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by DuMont_Network_Saiyan, Aug 19, 2008.

  1. DuMont_Network_Saiyan

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    Um, Hi, I'm new here. Well...I'm looking for rare and unusual public domain TV programming on DVD, perhaps from very small DVD companies. This is because I'm part of the 'Internet Archive' website, who are currently trying to expand their "Classic TV" section, and also because I enjoy watching rare and ususual TV programming. So far, thanks to Alpha Video and Shokus Video, I've been able to find some rare programs like "Rocky King, Detective" and "Coke Time". However, I need help finding more. In particular, I'm looking for DVDs of the following:
    DuMont Network Programming
    Metropolitan Broadcasting programming
    Pre-1963 daytime children's programming
    Pre-1963 episodes of the "Bozo" series
    Pre-1963 failed TV pilots
    Pre-1963 soap operas
    Any 40's-era programming

    If anybody knows any places to get this sort of rare and unusual public domain TV programming on DVD, please help.
     
  2. Bob Hug

    Bob Hug Screenwriter

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    DuMont programming on DVD is scattered, but one set from Mill Creek, Best of TV Detectives has a few episodes from shows like "Adventures of Ellery Queen," "Cases of Eddie Drake," "Front Page Detective," and "Man Against Crime a/k/a "Follow that Man" (filmed version only).

    Mill Creek Details Page

    Alpha Video is probably your best bet for failed pilots with their series of "Lost" shows, though you can also get "Tales of Frankenstein" from them.

    I haven't found a huge amount of late 1940s programming, but the easiest to find are the season 1, Fall 1949 episodes (16) from "The Lone Ranger" that are PD. There are some "Howdy Doody" episodes from 1948 floating around on some dollar DVDs from Digiview, and a Vincent Price hosted telling of "A Christmas Carol" that I've seen dates back to either 1948 or 1949 (Alpha has this). Frankly, in terms of commercial sources, Shokus is about as good as it gets for 1940s era programming, but you may also want to check Moviecraft.

    http://www.moviecraft.com/


    TV4U.com also has some PD Dumont programs that you can view for free:

    http://tv4u.com/Dumont.asp

    I'm also assuming that you are aware of Shout! Factory's "Hiya Kids" a sampler of 1950s children's programming (not sure if it's all PD, but certainly some of it is):

    http://www.shoutfactorystore.com/pro...64EABC7C8E7426
     
  3. Radioman970

    Radioman970 Lead Actor

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    Nice. I'm interested in this too.
     
  4. DuMont_Network_Saiyan

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    Thanks, I'll check out the "Best of TV Detectives" DVD set. It's such a shame so little DuMont Network programming still exists.
     
  5. Bob Hug

    Bob Hug Screenwriter

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    Indeed, much of the network's programming is gone. I'm guessing, by your screen name, that you're probably familiar with Clark Ingram's excellent site on the DuMont Network, and he has a page that shows the DuMont programming that the UCLA Film & Television Archive has in its holdings.

    The DuMont Television Network: Appendix Five

    As far as DVDs are concerned, I'd guess that "Man Against Crime" a/k/a "Follow that Man" probably has the most episodes out on DVD of any DuMont show, at least those of the public domain variety.
     
  6. redbird

    redbird Agent

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    I hope that fool who tossed all of that Dumont stuff into the river lived long enough to see the TV on DVD phenomenon happen-he'd be kicking himself for throwing away a potential goldmine![​IMG]
     
  7. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    Go to any local dollar store, and you'll find PD shows on DVD- many from the 1950s and early 60s. Also, search Amazon and eBay.
     
  8. DuMont_Network_Saiyan

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    Agreed. Even if nobody wants to see "The Family Genius" again, shows like "Down You Go" could of been big hits on GSN before they went sour along with TVLand.
     
  9. Tory

    Tory -The Snappy Sneezer- -Red Huck-

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    I always wonder, when I see such a statement, did someone actually dump these in a river? and if so, who?
     
  10. DuMont_Network_Saiyan

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    They were dumped into a Bay, not a river. According to Edie Adams, "One of the lawyers doing the bargaining said that he could "take care of it" in a "fair manner," and he did take care of it. At 2 a.m. the next morning, he had three huge semis back up to the loading dock at ABC, filled them all with stored kinescopes and 2" videotapes, drove them to a waiting barge in New Jersey, took them out on the water, made a right at the Statue of
    Liberty and dumped them in the Upper New York Bay"

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    For heaven's sake, why didn't they donate them to a museum as a tax write-off or auction the tapes and kinies to the general public a la MGM's legendary 1970 auction of its costumes and props?
     
  12. DuMont_Network_Saiyan

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    I agree. To my knowledge the lawyers didn't even ask the Producers or Cast whether they wanted the Kinescopes.
     
  13. DeWilson

    DeWilson Cinematographer

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    Sad fact is these were destroyed About TWO YEARS before Bill Paley set up his Museum of Television and Radio. [​IMG]

    Also, ABC "inherited" these prints from DuMont when they purchased the broadcasting equipment from DuMont when they when under. They had no value to the network who was stuck storing them for about 20 years.
     

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