Space: 1999 Season One on Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Kevin EK, Jul 21, 2010.

  1. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Producer
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    Just noticed that Space: 1999 Season One will be coming to Blu-ray this fall. Some websites have noted that Amazon has a pre-order listing up for it now. The link is http://www.amazon.com/Space-1999-Complete-Season-Blu-ray/dp/B003ES5JDI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=dvd&qid=1279742398&sr=1-1


    To be fair, I first noticed this at The Digital Bits, and then noticed discussions about it popping up all over the place. But I must give first props to Bill Hunt.


    I hope that this release will utilize the high definition masters made for the UK Network DVD release a few years back - I saw that one in standard definition and thought it was a fine piece of work. Among other things, they took the time to rebuild the credit screens for Martin Landau and Barbara Bain, using the textless versions preserved for language variation. Meaning that for the first time, you could see a really clean version of those two images, as the ones we have been seeing for years have been a bit distressed. The Network DVD website used to have a great page about their remastering work, which included some screen images of what they had been doing. And in the UK DVD set, there was a pair of booklets, one of which went into depth about the remastering process.


    The Network set also came with a generous amount of extra materials, including commentaries by Gerry Anderson on "Breakaway" and "Dragon's Domain" and a version of the Space: 1999 documentary done by Fanderson. (I should note that Gerry Anderson's commentary mostly repeats what he says in the documentary.) I believe A&E also has access to two other commentaries issued with the special "remastered" Season One DVD - one with Gerry Anderson for "Dragon's Domain" and one with Sylvia Anderson for "The Testament of Arkadia". And there's also the fan-made "Message from Moonbase Alpha" with Zienia Merton. I have no idea if any of this stuff will be included, but it's always nice to hope.
     
  2. Jeff Robertson

    Jeff Robertson Second Unit

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    I'm looking forward to this set also. I wonder if the original aspect ratio will be preserved or they will go with the cropped version. I've seen a couple examples of the 16:9 cropped version that aired in the UK and they look very good. If there's anything important removed from the top and bottom, I wouldn't miss it. And, yes, the opening credits are crisp and clean.


    And then there's Space: 2099:


    http://www.space2099.tv
     
  3. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Producer
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    There's also a YouTube parody called "Star Trek: 1969", which I enjoyed. (Not to mention the "Montgomery Scott in the 24th Century" parody...)
     
  4. Will_B

    Will_B Producer

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    I agree, the 16:9 version actually works well since they went back to the original film and found extra image on the sides, enough to make the slicing off of the top and bottom rather minimal.





    The direct link:


    http://www.space1999.net/catacombs/main/pguide/upimhd.html
     
  5. Eric F

    Eric F Screenwriter

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    $100MSRP for a single season. Ouch!
     
  6. RickER

    RickER Producer

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    I will be more than happy to buy it. I could lock the price in at $70 on Amazon. But i wouldn't be surprised to see the price even lower. I know i only paid $40 for The Prisoner, and it had a similar MSRP.


    This fall will be VERY expensive.

    Space:1999 Blu

    The Six Million Dollar Man complete series on DVD

    The Bionic Woman season 1

    Doctor Who season 5 on Blu

    Ellery Queen on DVD

    Star Wars: The Clone Wars on Blu

    and The Alien Anthology on Blu


    That's just a few of the box sets off the top of my head i have an interest in!
     
  7. Jeff Robertson

    Jeff Robertson Second Unit

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    You forgot Back To The Future! Indeed, fall is going to be a wallet killer.


    I did not know about the Six Million Dollar Man! Thanks for that. Oh boy....entertainment overload.



     
  8. RickardL

    RickardL Second Unit

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    The Network SD version looked very nice to me initially but I am wondering if they boosted contrast/brightness too much?

    I haven't looked at my Network DVD for this but here are some pics from the Network SD , the 16:9 version and the Carlton UK SD.

    From http://www.space1999.net/catacombs/main/pguide/upimhdbs.html

    "In the shot of the Alphans round the model Moonbase, the white wall panel behind Bergman shows much more detail in the HD version, and the text "Photon Drive" is readable." (in the widescreen shot)

    Edit: I did have a look on my Netword SD version and the screenshot below (the first one) is misleading.

    The white panel behind Bergman looks a lot better, more like the HD-version.

    The screencap is way too much boosted for some reason.

    So these screencaps only good for cropping comparisons....

    See a post on the second page of this thread with a "new" screencap from the UK Network SD release.

     

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  9. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Producer
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    I'll wait to see what they've got in mind. I think if they used the masters for the Network DVD (which I think are the same as were used for the 16x9 croppings), we'll get very nice Blu rays indeed.


    BTW in that list of upcoming releases, there's another goldmine coming, particularly for TV on DVD - The Complete Larry Sanders Show. I think someone is trying to drive me into bankruptcy, I tells you...
     
  10. AndyMcKinney

    AndyMcKinney Cinematographer

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    If they use the Network/BBC Resources masters, then I suspect we will be getting the original, uncropped 4:3 pillarboxed into the 16:9 frame. That's the only version I would consider buying anyway.


    I see A&E are still committed to the crappy graphics design they did for the DVD range...
     
  11. RickER

    RickER Producer

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    A&E used the Network prints for The Prisoner, dont see why they wouldnt do the same for Space:1999. The Prisoner was a beautiful Blu-ray!
     
  12. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Producer
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    Rick, if you're right, we're all in for a really nice experience. And believe me, I hope you're right.

    And you're absolutely right about the Prisoner set. That's a great piece of work.

    This is going to be a REALLY expensive fall.
     
  13. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Wow, this is a very nice surprise!

    Indeed, it will be a very expensive Fall with all the great SciFi stuff coming! Don't forget The Twilight Zone too!

    Those images look great. The Prisoner was an amazing looking release. So Space should be great! I only have the very first release of 1999 on DVD. So I hope those extras mentioned above will be included! The Testament of Arkadia is probably my top 5 favorite season one episodes.
     
  14. AndyMcKinney

    AndyMcKinney Cinematographer

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    Incidentally, Network have just announced on their website that a Region B BluRay set of Year One will be coming "fourth quarter". Guess perhaps A&E's announcement has forced them to break silence!


    The Network version is, supposedly, going to be a numbere limited-edition of 1,999 copies (though I'm sure a 'general release' version will come later).


    I certainly prefer Network's boxart to A&E's...
     
  15. AndyMcKinney

    AndyMcKinney Cinematographer

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    Testament takes all five top places in your list? (wink)
     
  16. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Producer
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    My hope is that the A&E release is essentially identical to the Network Blu-ray, albeit with different outer packaging. And I agree that the Network packaging is better.


    My top 5 Series One eps:


    1. Another Time, Another Place

    2. Dragon's Domain

    3. Testament of Arkadia

    4. Earthbound (just for that ending)

    5. Voyager's Return
     
  17. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Andy, It was a pretty good episode!


    Bad typing on my part.


    I was looking at the link above to space1999.net. Nice site. Those widescreen cropped shots are looking good. However, I have reservations. Like Star Trek, I'm glad that was kept OAR. But perhaps they'll do what they did for TOS Star Trek where you have a choice of CGI effects or original effects and give you the option of seeing 1999 in OAR or widescreen.


    On that site, it was interesting to read the notes on the production of each episode. I was surprised episodes were filmed over 3 to 4 weeks!


    Kevin, to add to that list, The Last Sunset, The Full Circle was interesting conceptually, The Infernal Machine, Leo McKern was great in it, and Space Brain was fun. And Breakaway of course. And Earthbound I really liked to for similar reasons! Christopher Lee was great in it.
     
  18. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Producer
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    Nelson, I was thinking the same thing about being able to have either the OAR or the cropped version as options. Just so long as they don't only present the cropped version.


    Series One of the show regularly took quite a long time to film and went way overbudget. By the time they got to "Testament of Arkadia", they were in a situation where they had to make that one as cheaply as possible with what they had left in the till. For Series Two, things changed radically. Sylvia Anderson split with Gerry Anderson, who retained control over the show. Fred Freiberger was brought in from the States to get a handle on how things were run, and to make the show more accessible to a US audience. In terms of economics, he actually got a lot done - with several instances of two eps being filmed at the same time, and with the bigger, grander sets being reduced to smaller ones - Main Mission was traded in for the more compact Command Center, etc. When you look at it today, Series Two unfortunately also dumbed down a lot of the more interesting qualities of the show and wound up with repeated sequences of Maya transforming into the weird monster of the week and running up and down the halls of Moonbase Alpha.


    I prefer Series One as it's just a more interesting show, and while it was clearly a mess to produce, the resulting show was beautiful to watch. (Given some major 70s things like crazy zooms and crazy hair...)


    I'm not as much into The Full Circle - interesting concept, but really strange execution. The Last Sunset has a great closing moment, and The Infernal Machine has a great final act. BTW when Peter Cushing guested on the show later in Series One, I believe he wore the same wig that Christopher Lee did...
     
  19. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    I agree, Series One was stronger overall. Freiberger, a name I used to curse for taking Star Trek down.


    I think the only episodes that I thought were decent in Series Two was Journey to Where and for the goofy funness, Brian the Brain. I don't have the entire Series Two on DVD, only the first boxset that contained 6 episodes. In looking at the series guide, I recall The Immunity Syndrome was interesting. And I recall an actor who was on TOS Star Trek was a guest in that one, Karl Held. (Christopher Held)
     
  20. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Producer
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    Classic Series Two dialogue from the episode "The Bringers of Wonder"


    Koenig: Maya, what do you see out there in the Command Center?

    Maya: People, from Earth...

    Koenig: Maya, when you look, you see people from Earth. When I look, I see MONSTERS. From a different dimension.

    Maya: (thoughtfully) One of us is wrong.

    Koenig: Will you accept that it could be you?


    And they go on to have a fascinating discussion...I couldn't hear much of it over my own hysterical laughter...

    (And in looking over this scene just now, I noticed that Barbara Bain is desperately trying to keep a straight face in her reaction shot...)
     

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