Re-editing flops for DVD

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Adam_WM, Oct 11, 2005.

  1. Adam_WM

    Adam_WM Screenwriter

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    I saw this article in USA TODAY this morning. I hope this doesn't become a habit for Hollywood. Just because a movie bombs, they shouldn't re-edit it for DVD.... Wait a minute, don't we already make movies "Unrated" for DVD? This is just going in the other direction. Either way, the had better not change THE ISLAND any. I liked it just the way it was... (don't flame me.)


    FROM USA TODAY:

    DVD do-over can boost a flop's sales
    By Thomas K. Arnold, Special for USA TODAY
    DVD has become so lucrative that Hollywood studios are seeing gold in box-office flops.

    Making the cut: The Honeymooners DVD, with John Leguizamo and Cedric the Entertainer, is now rated PG.
    Paramount Pictures

    They're repositioning and sometimes re-editing theatrical failures in an attempt not only to recoup their losses, but also turn a profit.

    "Hollywood's video marketers excel at making lemonade out of lemons," says industry analyst Tom Adams, president of Adams Media Research. (Related story: An avalanche of titles expected this fall)

    For DVDs, studios "get the opportunity to capitalize on everything that's been learned from the theatrical run — reviews, exit polling, blogging."

    An extreme case is The Honeymooners, an urban-comedy remake of the classic TV sitcom that cost $27 million and took in just $13 million when it came out in June.

    For the DVD, which comes out Nov. 22, the film — originally rated PG-13 for "some innuendo and rude humor" — was trimmed to make it a family-friendlier PG.

    Studio research showed the film had more appeal to families than to teens, the initial target audience, says Paramount's Meagan Burrows.

    Other movies being reconsidered for home viewing:

    • Michael Bay's The Island cost $122 million and brought in just $36 million in North America, one of summer's biggest flops. For the Dec. 13 DVD release, DreamWorks will play up the action rather than the story and characters, and will offer a $3-off DVD coupon in People.

    •Kingdom of Heaven, out today (Fox, $30), cost $130 million and took in $47.4 million in North America. A new DVD feature lets viewers use an interactive production grid to watch any of 16 custom documentaries on making the film.

    It's not the first time a movie has been redone for DVD. Oliver Stone's $150 million Alexander was panned for being dull and, at 175 minutes, too long. The film took in $34.3 million during its 2004 North American theatrical run.

    When the epic came out on DVD in August, it was released in two versions: a shorter director's cut and the theatrical cut.

    Consumers bought twice as many copies of the shorter version, according to Nielsen VideoScan. Alexander's DVD haul: $19.3 million.
     
  2. CarlosL

    CarlosL Stunt Coordinator

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    If DreamWorks decides to do this, hopefully they'll offer "The Island" in separate original and edited versions, or at the very least, on the same release using seamless branching. Just a bad idea if you ask me... [​IMG]
     
  3. Jonathan

    Jonathan Second Unit

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    I think that they are talking about how they are going to advertise the DVD. Really push how it's directed by the same guy who directed The Rock, Armageddon, and the Bad Boys films. For some reason I doubt they will mention Pearl Harbor in the advertisements.
     
  4. John*D

    John*D Second Unit

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    The REfocus on the ACTION is suppose to be for the Marketing of the DVD, not re-editing of the movie, as from what I read elsewhere.

    They plan on using images of the action scenes rather than BIG photos of the stars for promoting the DVD.

    Of course I could be mistaken about them not re-editing the film?

    Knowing UNI, we'll probably get 3 or 4 dips of this movie.
     
  5. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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    Exactly, and I'm changing the thread title to reflect the article's general topic, which is about far more than The Island.

    M.
     
  6. PatrickDA

    PatrickDA Stunt Coordinator

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    Was Alexander's $19.3 million talking about the sales or
    rental totals? I think it's grossed more than $19.3 from
    DVD rentals.
     
  7. Mathew B

    Mathew B Stunt Coordinator

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    They did the billboards/trailers over here...

    But then again, Warner Bros owns it here.
     
  8. Nigel McN

    Nigel McN Supporting Actor

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    No mention of the lawsuit against The Island, I thought it was specifically against distribution of the DVD iirc.
     
  9. MikeEckman

    MikeEckman Screenwriter

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    I suspect that the reason that a shorter Alexander selling more than the theatrical version is because most uninformed consumers associate an "unrated director's cut" to be the better of the two so thats what they buy. I doubt it was because it was shorter.

    I guess it doesnt bother me as much if they want to offer these edited versions, as long as the originals are still available.

    Personally, I liked the story of "The Island" more than the action sequences. I thought the first half of the movie was MUCH better than the second half. I just hope the original is still available.
     
  10. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    Adam, I'm in total agreement about The Island- I guess you and I are among the few who saw the movie and loved it. Tinkering with a box-office failure is nothing new. Look at all the various cuts and releases of Heaven's Gate, and back in 1968 Fox had Star! recut several times, even changing the title to Those Were The Happy Times for a re-release shortly after the initial failure. Release The Island as it was originally, with any additions as extras on the DVD. After all, Star! made it to DVD in its original form with a wealth of extras!
     
  11. Chad Ferguson

    Chad Ferguson Supporting Actor

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    I was actually hoping for a Directors Cut of The Island, I love a R rated Michael Bay film personally. Can't wait to hear what the final specs for that film will be.
     
  12. Russell G

    Russell G Fake Shemp
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    I have no problem with re-editing, if it follows the film makers intent. As far as "Honymooners" goes, their jsut polishing a turd to exploit children with it.

    I too enjoyed "The Island", and actually, it well probably be the first and only Michael Bay film to have a place in my collection. A real lfun flick, the first part was interesting, the action was retarded, but fun, the ending was stupid, but not so stupid as to ruin the first 2 acts. Another movie release this year that doesn't deserve it's box office performance.
     
  13. JulianK

    JulianK Supporting Actor

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    This will certainly come as no surprise to Oliver Stone fans - several of his films, including Natural Born Killers, Heaven & Earth and Any Given Sunday have been edited for their home video incarnations!
     
  14. PatrickDA

    PatrickDA Stunt Coordinator

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    I wonder if Warner Bros. will release the sales totals for
    'Alexander'...$19.3 million could mean to sold over a million copies.
     
  15. PatrickDA

    PatrickDA Stunt Coordinator

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    Don't forget about 'Nixon' being expanded from 191 mins. to
    212 mins. in 2001. We'll get to see a longer version of
    'Alexander' in about ten years and finally see the complete
    story!
     
  16. Erik_H

    Erik_H Stunt Coordinator

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    Another example is Blake Edwards' 1970 film "Darling Lili." Edwards re-cut the film several decades after the film flopped in theaters (shortening the running time by approx. 20 minutes). On October 25, Paramount will be releasing Edwards' cut of the film on DVD. The scenes that Edwards deleted from the original release---19 in total---are included separately on the DVD (no seamless branching option).
     
  17. Mikah Cerucco

    Mikah Cerucco Cinematographer

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    Looking at that list of flops was kind of sobering. Spend $150MM and make back $35MM? Making movies is a tough business. Everybody wants to be James Cameron.
     
  18. PatrickDA

    PatrickDA Stunt Coordinator

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    Actually, 'Alexander' wasn't that bad. They sold off many
    foreign territories before and during filming, which in
    turn led to a much smaller outstanding total to be made up
    via box office returns. So the $170 million it grossed from
    theaters left all the investors with a little bit of change.
    However, I'm sure most were expecting 'Gladiator' type
    numbers.
     
  19. Scott Simonian

    Scott Simonian Screenwriter

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    Really? I never saw NBK in theaters but many times on HBO and such. I also saw Any Given Sunday in theaters. What was changed?
     
  20. Adam_WM

    Adam_WM Screenwriter

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    I'm no purist. For some reason, I don't mind if a movie changes for the better or gets longer. I just don't want them to change the ISLAND because of perceived crappiness. Wow, I just caught myself in a really bad double standard!
    You hear me studios, DON'T CHANGE MOVIES I LIKE! [​IMG]
     

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