There should DVD collections of lost pilots from the 50s- present.

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Charles Ellis, May 19, 2012.

  1. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    Today there was an article about the pilots that weren't picked up by the networks, and these included Oscar and Emmy winning stars in the casts! When you think of all the pilots which have been made for TV from the 50s to the present, there must be hundreds if not thousands of hours (and half-hours) of programs that never were beyond a single pilot. The studios should release the vaults to look at these unseen shows as many do include big names.
    Considering the work Warner Archive is doing by getting stuff from the Warner Bros/ 1924-86 MGM library and Timeless with the Universal library, there must be a lot of unsold pilots from the past fifty years just waiting to see the light of day. What lost pilots should be released from the vaults?
    In the meantime, here's a link to the article regarding this year's rejected pilots:
    http://tv.yahoo.com/photos/the-big-name-tv-pilots-you-will-never-see-slideshow/
     
  2. vnisanian2001

    vnisanian2001 Supporting Actor

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    There are also books chronicling unsold TV pilots.
     
  3. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

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    Many unsold pilots were burned off on anthology shows or as would-be spinoffs. It's too bad there's no guide to what is on DVD that falls in that category.
    "Love American Style" S1 has a failed pilot based on "Barefoot In The Park." The show would later sell several years later with an all-black cast instead. "Adam-12" S6 has the failed pilot "Frauds" and "Emergency" S4 I think has the failed Mark Harmon pilot "905-Wild"
     
  4. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    I just watched the last episode of Quincy which was more or less a pilot for a show to be called The Cuttign Edge.
     
  5. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    Btw when did Zach Levi become a woman.
    [​IMG]
     
  6. Neil Brock

    Neil Brock Cinematographer

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    A) Who would buy them? I just don't see enough of a market.
    B) Clearance nightmare. Ownership would be hard to track down and figuring out who owned what would be a nightmare that no studio would want to be bothered undertaking. Since the shows never went to series, they would probably have to get every cast member of every show to sign off on it.
    C) Finding the elements would most likely be problematic.
     
  7. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

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    Two more already on DVD we can add:
    "Head Of The Family" Carl Reiner's initial attempt to get what became "The Dick Van Dyke Show" on the air, with himself in the lead.
    "That Girl" S1 I think has a failed pilot for a 1965 Marlo Thomas sitcom about a married couple and also with Paul Lynde.
    This should be a project worth compiling!
     
  8. bretmaverick2

    bretmaverick2 Supporting Actor

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    Wasn't there also a pilot for a spinoff of MASH starring the character of Radar?????
    I could well imagine a maybe smaller market for this type of product, though.
     
  9. Neil Brock

    Neil Brock Cinematographer

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    Weren't both of those included in the respective sets for both series? I don't recall if they were or not as I've had them for so many years that I didn't pay close attention.
     
  10. Peter M Fitzgerald

    Peter M Fitzgerald Screenwriter

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    As I'm sure most of you already know, many of the seemingly one-shot made-for-TV movies were unsold pilots, like Irwin Allen's CITY BENEATH THE SEA (available via Warner Archives) and Gene Roddenberry's SPECTRE, EARTH II, etc. A few of them were even released as theatrical features instead of debuting on TV, like Warner's CHAMBER OF HORRORS (1966, which was supposed to be basically HOUSE OF WAX: THE SERIES) and Richard Boone's KONA COAST (1967, which would've been a HAWAII FIVE-0 type show). So, as far as unsold pilots for dramatic shows, your best bet is to keep an eye on the various studios' MOD programs, which seem to be a dumping ground for that sort of thing, and then do a little online research to see if a given title was originally intended to launch a series.
    For the half-hour and hour-length failed pilots, if they were stand-alone things that didn't piggyback on an existing series, I'd have to agree with Neil that the prospects of a special disc release would be pretty remote, especially these days. You'd just have to hope to luck into something that's a special feature on a DVD, like Dan Curtis' DEAD OF NIGHT: A DARKNESS AT BLAISEDON pilot from 1969 that's included as an extra with the 1970s anthology TV-Movie, DEAD OF NIGHT, stuff like that.
    I'd personally like to see Conan O'Brien's hilarious LOOKWELL pilot, starring Adam West, released on DVD... apparently circulating a boot from its original airing was a big popular thing to do by those in the professional stand-up comedy world in years' past... luckily, the long-extinct TRIO network ran that and a couple of other bizarro comedy pilots (like HEAT VISION & JACK), for us plebs to enjoy at the time, but who knows what legal hurdles and expenses would have to be overcome to clear them for legit DVD/Blu release, or how many people would buy such things sight-unseen, even if big names were attached to them. Maybe these will eventually find their way into the streaming/downloading services; I could see how individual pilots exposed to the public that way (where they could sample them cheaply) could gain a decent cult following, perhaps enough to make physical copies or burnable files a viable option to their owners. Or maybe I'm just whistling in the dark.
    If it hasn't already been done, it might be useful to start a thread that could serve as a guide to listing unsold pilots that have made their way to physical media, either as episodes of various series (like the 'Gary Seven' episode of STAR TREK: TOS), or as bonus material on TV and movie discs (or as their own stand-alone movie releases).
     
  11. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

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    Yes, that's my point. I'm only listing failed pilots already available on DVD.
     
  12. Neil Brock

    Neil Brock Cinematographer

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    Networks used to actually run failed pilots as prime time filler throughout the year and especially in the summer. I know that I have hundreds of them that myself and my friends taped off the air since the late 70s. In addition, film prints of others from earlier have always been sold on 16mm. Yet another thing which is findable if you take the time and effort to seek it out instead of waiting for it to be handed to you on a silver platter.
    Neil "now awaiting the ensuing insulting posts which always follow when I suggest collectors actually get off their asses and work to get what they want instead of sitting back and expecting it to be handed to them" Brock
     
  13. Ethan Riley

    Ethan Riley Producer

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    Well, if people insult you, perhaps it's because you intentionally go out of your way to flame the threads. And what you're actually suggesting is that people trade or buy bootleg copies of these films, which borders on breaking the terms of service. I realize that you taped them off-air, which is legal, but for those of us who didn't do that, we'd have to buy them illegally. This thread suggests that official studio releases be made; not that people "get off their asses" to find them, through illegal trade. I don't even understand why you brought it up.
    Ethan "doesn't like breaking the TOS or stealing Gary's end quotes" Riley.
     
  14. Gary OS

    Gary OS Producer

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    Neil, since you made your final statement and put it in quotes to simulate my sign off style, I've got to assume you meant me. Oh well.


    Gary " " O.
     
  15. Thomas T

    Thomas T Cinematographer

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    The DVDs for three films include failed pilots.
    Meet Me In St. Louis contains a TV pilot with Shelley Fabares in the Judy Garland role and Celeste Holm in the Mary Astor part.
    State Fair includes a TV pilot with Vera Miles in the Fay Bainter/Alice Faye role.
    L.A. Confidential includes a TV pilot with Kiefer Sutherland in the Kevin Spacey role.
     
  16. Neil Brock

    Neil Brock Cinematographer

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    Sorry but buying 16mm film prints sold from collector to collector does not constitute bootlegging nor is it illegal. Nor is trading with no money involved illegal either. You should know a little more about what you're talking about before making accusations.
     
  17. Ethan Riley

    Ethan Riley Producer

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    Sorry, you say? The only apology I'll accept from you is the one where you finally admit that you're a troll.
     
  18. Neil Brock

    Neil Brock Cinematographer

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    Sure, as soon as you admit that you weren't smart enough or resourceful enough to record the pilots when they aired and that you know nothing about the hobby pre-DVD era.
     
  19. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    I'm about to close this thread... really!
    It better returns quickly to the subject - DVD and TV, that is.


    Cees
     
  20. vnisanian2001

    vnisanian2001 Supporting Actor

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    Ethan, thanks a lot for ruining this thread!
     

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