The Unreleased (Question Marks)

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Frank Soyke, Apr 29, 2013.

  1. Frank Soyke

    Frank Soyke Screenwriter

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    Doing some trending of releases recently, I found some interestesting patterns.

    1) As I stated in a previous thread, one season sitcoms appear to be one of the weakest genres with regard to DVD releases. Critically acclaimed series such as My World and Welcome To It, He and She, and Open All Night don't appear to ever see the light of day.
    2) Releases of sitcoms of minority interest seems to have waned. After an initial push including Sanford, Good Times, What's Happening, and even That's My Mama, things have stalled out. The Jefferson's have stalled and Chico and the Man (for some reason) was never touched.
    3) 70's and 80's sitcoms continue to struggle. Maude, One Day, WKRP, Kotter, and Silver Spoons, appear to be one and done. Others such as Growing Pains, Facts Of Life, Happy Days, Who's The Boss, and maybe Different Strokes are stalled, and shows like Head Of The Class, and Dear John have no releases.
    4) Westerns are soon on the way down. Operating on the assumptions that CBS continues with Gunsmoke and Bonanza and WB finishes Cheyenne and Maverick as well as the reported Riflleman set, the only real MAJOR series unreleased is the Rebel, and since it is CBS, it probably won't happen. Westerns have been represented well (although I would personally like to see Trackdown).
    5) Judging from WB's releases so far from their MOD program, it doesn't appear that they are really interested in older b/w material. Other than Kildare, it's all mid to late 60's color stuff. Maybe I'm wrong but I don't really see them putting all the money into settling music rights to put out 77 Sunset Strip and Hawaiian Eye considering the limited market for those shows.
    6) Other b/w 50's - 60's drama shows like Ricahrd Diamond and Tightrope seem to be on an island by themselves because majors won't look at them and Timeless appears to be top heavy on westerns.
    7) The "tried shows" such as Welby, My Three Sons, and Room 222 probably won't be back since a company will be apprehensive to liscense them after their first few releases didn't sell well.

    IMO
     
  2. jimmyjet

    jimmyjet Producer

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    regarding #7 - i think all 3 shows would sell. in the order that i would place them for popularity is my three sons, marcus welby, room 222.

    so i went to amazon.

    stinking reviews for my three sons.

    marcus welby had good reviews, so cbs learned their lesson on this one. one of the first reviews said that the first season had stellar sales.

    shout put out room 222. the video is poor quality. but apparently, shout says so on the box. it is the best copies they could come up with.

    there are generally good reasons why tv shows dont sell, and few of them are because people werent interested.

    i will re-state something once again - if a tv show is put out complete and with pretty good quality, it will sell enough to make profit.

    but as the old computer adage goes, garbage in garbage out.
     
  3. Frank Soyke

    Frank Soyke Screenwriter

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    Just a couple things. To my knowledge, Welby was Shout, not CBS and, maybe, I'm wrong, but I believe I recall that the Shout rep said that Season 2 sales did not justify another release.
    I do have to disagree with you on the other point though. Just because something is of good quality and packaged well, in no way assures profitable sales. Sadly some shows, including some of my faves, only have niche markets and wouldn't sell nearly enough units to make a profit for a major like CBS. For example, T.H.E. Cat is one of my faves, but I'm under no misconception that sales of that show would justify a release by anyone other than an indy.
     
  4. jimmyjet

    jimmyjet Producer

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    yea, my comment was not directed at a major studio, per se.

    but a show like my three sons would definitely sell, if it had been done correctly.

    i recall liking the cat, as a kid - dont recall too much about it.

    except the intro was a bit different. i can sorta recall it in my mind, but i cant put words to it. at least for the time, it was a bit different.

    but i think that was a very niche market, even when out. so i dont know if that would sell all that well.

    season 2 of welby also had good reviews.

    i think many people have begun to join my boat - we want complete series. and we wait until all episodes are out.

    i think welby would sell well if a complete well-produced series came out. like my 3 sons, it was quite popular.
     
  5. JamesSmith

    JamesSmith Screenwriter

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    One major exception es the High Chapparal, which ran 4 seasons, and has not had a US release date, and I believe is owned by CBS/Paramount.James
     
  6. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

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    Much of this is going to depend on the practices of the studios overall which ultimately transcends the matter of whether a specific genre is considered more viable for release or not. "Chico And The Man" for instance is not out because Warner Archive has said it has music clearance issues that are problematic, so it's not out yet for the same reason that shows they control of a different genre ("77 Sunset Strip" etc.) are also not out. It is not true to say that Warner is not specifically interested in B/W material, it's more a case of what can be done first and foremost since we have gotten "The Lieiutenant" and "The Gallant Men" out from them ahead of other more famous titles from later.

    "Marcus Welby" and "Ironside" IMO are the titles that I wish Shout would unstall because unlike the titles they did from Fox and Sony which now appear to be out of their hands, those two I am sure would still be available and in the case of Welby in particular they didn't give it a fair shot by trying S3 through the "Select" program that was supposed to be Shout's way of producing more limited quantity to justify continued releases. I appreciate Shout fast-tracking out "Kojak" to completion but I think they should go back to trying the "Select" model for these other titles again for at least one more release.

    To me, I would like to know if Fox will EVER do something that can get their programs unstalled that need to be unstalled (Burke's Law, Big Valley, Bob Newhart Show). Why they can't start an MOD program of their own, I have no idea but if they did and got those three titles finished I know I'd feel 95% satisfied with all titles on DVD overall.
     

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