TV on DVD on demand?

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Ivan G, Jan 26, 2008.

  1. Ivan G

    Ivan G Stunt Coordinator

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    I don't know if anyone caught this L.A. Times article, but I found it kind of interesting:

    HP to make Sony DVDs
    It will create copies of the studio's films and TV shows on demand.

    By Michelle Quinn, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
    January 24, 2008

    SAN FRANCISCO -- Hewlett-Packard Co. plans to announce today that it has signed an agreement with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment to create made-to-order DVDs of some of the studio's movies and TV shows.

    The agreement, whose terms were not disclosed, boosts Palo Alto-based HP's ambition to play the middleman in the future of how entertainment is distributed.

    Sony is the first major Hollywood studio to work with HP in its fledgling business of making DVDs of movies, TV shows and other video content only when someone orders them -- much like HP rival Dell Inc. does with computers. It will allow consumers to order DVDs of some of Sony's older or more obscure programming, which retailers tend not to stock because it's not economically viable.

    By making DVDs on demand, HP says it can help studios unlock the value of their libraries and give consumers more choice.

    "We're hoping this provides another option to make available products that wouldn't necessarily garner widespread retail shelf space," said Jason Spivak, senior vice president of strategic development at Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, a division of Sony Corp. of America.

    The agreement comes a month after HP ended its 11-month-old video download service with Wal-Mart Stores Inc. HP had powered the service on Walmart.com that sold customers TV shows and movies to download to their computers on the same day as DVD releases. But download sales were reportedly not strong.

    Separately, HP has started a DVD production business and already has agreements with 40 content partners for 5,000 titles, including classic science fiction movies, exercise videos and children's series. The titles aren't on sale yet, but HP said it planned to soon announce partnerships with websites that would sell these made-to-order DVDs.

    "This is part of HP's effort to transform digital entertainment," said Doug Warner, vice president of HP's digital content services business. "If studios can sell more catalog than previously, they can generate more money."


    I'm curious as to what something like this will cost.
     
  2. Ron Lee Green

    Ron Lee Green Supporting Actor

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    Sounds intriguing!

    There are a lot of vintage TV shows in Sony's library that I'd like to get my hands on, especially The Farmer's Daughter, Donna Reed Show, and Hazel (season 2).

    I wonder it will be full seasons or just episodes?
    And how much will they charge?
     
  3. nikkif99uk

    nikkif99uk Supporting Actor

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    hope it would be complete seasons too, or whatever we want. Hopefully they would make us decent cover art to and not just random blank discs.
    Hopefully for reasonable prices too
     
  4. Ron Lee Green

    Ron Lee Green Supporting Actor

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    Of course, it's just speculation on my part, but it doesn't say what shows will be available. It says shows normally not stocked in stores. It could mean shows already available on DVD or out-of-print that are not carried in stores because of shelf space, but that's what online stores like amazon are for.

    It's too early to tell. I will need more information, but I really hope they will make vintage TV shows available that haven't already been given a DVD release.

    I don't think it will come in fancy cases with cover art and nice labels since they're catering to a small group of consumers. It will probably be generic, but that's just my personal guess.
     
  5. JasonJason

    JasonJason Stunt Coordinator

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    Unfortunately, I read it the same way as Ron in that they are only talking about shows that have already had a proper release. I hope we're wrong, cause I'd love to have some of the shows that have never been released, even if they don't have a nice, fancy case to go along with it.
     
  6. nikkif99uk

    nikkif99uk Supporting Actor

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    altho it does say the titles aren't on sale yet, so could mean some new releases or just re-releases. Annoying how reading something can be interpreted in so many different ways
     
  7. Aryn Leroux

    Aryn Leroux Screenwriter

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    This is very interesting to say the least. It doesn't make clear if they will be selling tv shows or just movies this way though? This is something i have been saying all studios should head towards so many times. By making available your classic libraries of tv/movies and take orders and make only what you have been able to sell. I will definately be keeping an eye on how this turns out. Because if the studios were smart, this very well could wind up being, the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow (a win/win), for everyone. How great would it be to head to the Sony (or any studio for that matter, that goes this route) site and order those long awaited seasons of tj hooker, fantasy island, hart to hart etc.. no more waiting months and years between releases. It makes to much sense though and when it does it usually ends up not happening. So we shall see!
     
  8. MatthewA

    MatthewA Lead Actor

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    If they offered these shows would they offer them unedited? That's the big question and the deal-breaker for me.
     
  9. Elena S

    Elena S Supporting Actor

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    If this really happens it would be a very welcome innovation in the TV-on-DVD field. It seems as if it would be a win-win situation, as well.

    The only problem I see with it is with older shows that would need cleaning up. If the shows are only sold on demand would it be worth the studio's time to remaster them? Probably not -- so the best we could hope for would be the disintegrating copies of whatever they have. Still, it's better than nothing at all.
     
  10. Hank Dearborn

    Hank Dearborn Supporting Actor

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    I think that would depend on the last time a show had any sales. For instance Sony sold Camp Runamuck and Occasional Wife to HA in the early 90s so they would exist on tape. Something like Love on a Rooftop or The Paul Lynde Show which have never been rerun, they would have to go back to the original film elements and I just don't think they would do that for this type of project. Of course, it really doesn't cost a lot to do a "dirty transfer" which is just a film run to tape with no cleanup or color correction involved.

    As for the question about packaging, many of us discard the packaging the shows come in anyway so it wouldn't matter to us in the least. When you have thousands upon thousands of DVDRs in jewel cases it is much easier to put the pre-recorded DVDs in those as well for convenient storage purposes. It doesn't pay to have separate shelving for what really is a minority portion of the collection.
     
  11. MatthewA

    MatthewA Lead Actor

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    Videotape material (i.e. almost anything by Norman Lear, any of the game shows they bought in the 90s, and everything in the past 20 years) should be a cinch to transfer. You don't "restore" videotape the same way one restores film.

    I also hope they don't slack off of regular releases of their TV shows.
     
  12. Firebee

    Firebee Supporting Actor

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    Well, when it comes to me, I haven't discarded any of the packaging that the TV on DVD comes in, the only time I'd consider that is if the package itself were damaged, such as the plastic leaved ones used for ``Star Trek: Voyager'' or in the extreme case that the cases themselves were rotting the discs such as the Scanavo cases used for some shows.
     
  13. Jack Cleveland

    Jack Cleveland Second Unit

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    So, if I read this correctly, the deal is with Hewlett-Packard. Does this mean I have to buy an HP computer? If so, that's important to know for those of us who are thinking of purchasing a new computer in the next few months...

    If this is the direction of the future, I would welcome it. On another thread recently re-posted by me, we have been wondering how we will ever see a release like "Peyton Place". At 514 episodes, prime time's first soap will probably never be released in the current way studios do business. "Peyton Place" is probably too much of a niche market, as it has seldom been re-run, and those who remember it in it's first run are growing older. "Dark Shadows" is the only soap to be released in it's entirety, and MPI, a smaller distributor is responsible for bringing it to DVD in it's entirety.

    Recent airings of PP show that the prints are muddy and grainy, and need to be cleaned up by Fox. This probably will not happen for those of us who would buy this on demand. However, I would probably purchase a show like this regardless of the prints condition, as long as it was complete. It would certainly be a way to get a classic show without waiting for years to complete the collection.

    One more question... If we burned our shows to DVD-R, how long can we count on that format lasting? Don't professional DVDs have a longer shelf life than DVD-Rs Let me know experts... This is an intriguing solution for us classic TV collectors!

    Jack Cleveland
     
  14. Cheetah

    Cheetah Stunt Coordinator

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    Why couldn't they make images available as part of the download for those that wanted a similar look to the commercially made packages? Those that want them could simply pay a nominal fee to offset any costs involved. Then you just print it and apply it onto your own cases.
     
  15. Corey3rd

    Corey3rd Screenwriter

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    I never get excited about anything related to Sony's vault. They do know how to screw things up. It's a miracle they realized people would be eager to pick up the Three Stooges if they released them in order and not for an outrageous price (especially compared to a Marx Brothers boxset or Abbott & Costello). Look how slow Sony has been when it comes to releasing music online. What percentage of their music vault can you buy online?
     
  16. Aryn Leroux

    Aryn Leroux Screenwriter

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    It is not like Sony has not allready slacked off with their regular releases [​IMG]
     
  17. Mary_P

    Mary_P Second Unit

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    Not enough information here yet for me to really get excited, but I could see this being used as test marketing -- you know, offer select episodes of certain series and see which ones sell well, then maybe move the better-selling series into full-season commercial releases. In any event, if it makes available material that hasn't been released yet and can't be seen in syndication, I'm all for that. There are also a few shows where I might be interested in buying specific episodes for a particular guest star, but am really not interested in a season set, and this would be good for that.

    Odd side note, but "Love on a Rooftop" has been rerun, just not recently. ABC ran it as a filler series in the summer of 1971 after launching "Alias Smith & Jones" earlier that year. Other Screen Gems shows of that period are in pretty good shape, but they're the ones like "Gidget" that have been in syndication for years. No idea what kind of condition the LOAR prints are in.
     
  18. Aryn Leroux

    Aryn Leroux Screenwriter

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    With both hd-dvd and blu-ray both biting themselves in the foot from the get go , basically ruining any longterm success in the future, no matter who pre-vails. Sony obviously is going to win that war. But to little to late in my mind. HD-DVD is dead or almost dead, while Blu-ray will likely be dead within 2-3yrs itself.

    I look at someting like this where you will buy in advance and it will be made and shipped to you. Sure a system like this may never get off the ground. But i think it will and it is only in it's infancy and lots of kinks will need to be worked out going forward. But i see this as the eventual way to still own physical media, while gearing everything else towards a download/streaming world.
     
  19. TravisR

    TravisR Studio Mogul

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    No offense but unless you have some information that no one else here has, you're just making a wild guess.
     
  20. Aryn Leroux

    Aryn Leroux Screenwriter

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    No offense taken. But no it is a personal opinion, which i think i am more than entitled to have. Thankyou! [​IMG]
     

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