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Alfred Hitchcock Presents Coming To Dvd In 2005...i Hope!!!!!!

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by JeffT., Dec 26, 2004.

  1. JeffT.

    JeffT. Screenwriter

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    "Goooooood Eeeeeveningggggg Ladies and Gentlemen!"--Alfred Hitchcock.

    Well it would seem that Universal Studios Home Entertainment will be (finally) making available the first landmark season of the long running ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS (CBS 1955-60, NBC 1960-62) sometime in 2005 at least according to our resident authorities back at TV Shows on DVD.

    There were an astounding 268 half-hour black-and-white episodes set before the cameras certainly making ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS the longest running dramatic anthology tv series ever produced.

    Later highly acclaimed efforts such as THE TWILIGHT ZONE (CBS 1959-64), BORIS KARLOFF'S THRILLER (NBC 1960-62) and THE OUTER LIMITS (ABC 1963-65) owe everything to this show which set the standards of an omnipresent celebrity host providing ironic and wry humour commentary, outstanding guest-stars of renown showcased on a weekly basis (practically everybody who ever worked in Hollywood appeared on this extraordinary tv series) and consistently well-written and expertly executed presentations.

    Unlike THE TWILIGHT ZONE, ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS made the transition into the hour length format as THE ALFRED HITCHCOCK HOUR (CBS 1962-64, NBC 1964-65) with the greatest of ease maintaining the selfsame high and exacting standards of the earlier half hour tv series and resulting in another 93 episodes produced.

    Hey! That's more episodes than are to be found on STAR TREK (NBC 1966-69) for Pete's sake!

    Of course the best part of this televsion classic were always those priceless prologues and epilogues featuring the all-time Master of Droll Humour and Wit himself who so wonderfully emoted on-camera which are a sheer delight to behold.

    For those younger tv fans (somewhat) jaded by the all-too-numerous failed later attempts to emulate the success and quality of the ALFRED HITCHCOCK anthology tv series this initial DVD set should prove to be both an education and a refreshingly pleasant oasis from the ceaseless flow of banality and inepititude that has pathetically continued to inundate the television airwaves ever since these two tv series' cancellation after a respectable 10 year run collectively.

    One thing's for certain that ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS is a bona fide adult tv show and there's absolutely nothing here to amuse the kiddies. A lack of appreciation for or interest in this (now) vintage television masterpiece only attests to a complete absense of good taste and sophistication.

    One interesting observation to be made here is that when this tv series first commenced in the mid-1950s it had a decidedly light touch to the stories depicted but as it progressed toward the early 1960s the show (gradually) took on a much darker and scarier tone almost reflecting the (possible) mindset of the Master of Suspense himself which would culminate and reach a zenith in the production of PSYCHO (1960) arguably the most terrifying film ever made.

    The Funeral March of a Marionette (Click Here).

    BRING ON ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS TO DVD!!!!!

    Jeff T.
     
  2. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    Season box set? Cool.
    Never seen the show, but love Hitchcock's films, and have wanted to see the series for a long time. Excited.
     
  3. Craig Beam

    Craig Beam Screenwriter

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    Does Universal hold the rights to both the 1/2-hour and hourlong incarnations of the series? I've never seen them syndicated together... also, the only episodes Universal has released so far have been the half-hour ones (in the Hitchcock box sets). Maybe we're only getting the half-hour version of the show...?
     
  4. TravisR

    TravisR Studio Mogul

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    I just hope they sell well enough so that they release all ten (or seven and three) seasons. In other words, I hope they have realistic sales expectations for a show that's 50 years old.
     
  5. Dan McW

    Dan McW Second Unit

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    Universal owns the whole Hitchcock Presents/Hour franchise. Both series were produced by Shamley Productions. So was "Psycho," which I assume ended up in the Universal family via Shamley, even though it was a Paramount theatrical release.

    DVD releases of AHP/TAHH would go faster if each was treated as a separate series and released from its first season forward--but I'll settle for season one of the half-hour show first! There are some outstanding hour-long episodes, though ("The Jar" springs to mind), and if TAHH is treated as seasons 8-10 of the original show, it'll be a long time before we see any of them released uncut on DVD.

    TV Land ran some of these shows a few years ago, but they were likely the 43-44-minute syndicated versions. I think Encore Mystery ran them uncut a few years ago, but of course that was before I had the channel on my cable.
     
  6. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Here's what we'll see in the "AHP S.1" DVD set (39 half-hour episodes):

    1st Season 1955-1956 (CBS-TV):

    # 1- 1 2 Oct 55 Revenge
    # 1- 2 9 Oct 55 Premonition
    # 1- 3 16 Oct 55 Triggers in Leash
    # 1- 4 23 Oct 55 Don't Come Back Alive
    # 1- 5 30 Oct 55 Into Thin Air (aka The Vanishing Lady)
    # 1- 6 6 Nov 55 Salvage
    # 1- 7 13 Nov 55 Breakdown
    # 1- 8 20 Nov 55 Our Cook's a Treasure
    # 1- 9 27 Nov 55 The Long Shot
    # 1-10 4 Dec 55 The Case of Mr. Pelham
    # 1-11 11 Dec 55 Guilty Witness
    # 1-12 18 Dec 55 Santa Claus and the 10th Avenue Kid
    # 1-13 25 Dec 55 The Cheney Vase
    # 1-14 1 Jan 56 A Bullet for Baldwin
    # 1-15 8 Jan 56 The Big Switch
    # 1-16 15 Jan 56 You Got to Have Luck
    # 1-17 22 Jan 56 The Older Sister
    # 1-18 29 Jan 56 Shopping for Death
    # 1-19 5 Feb 56 The Derelicts
    # 1-20 12 Feb 56 And So Died Riabouchinska
    # 1-21 19 Feb 56 Safe Conduct
    # 1-22 26 Feb 56 Place of Shadows
    # 1-23 4 Mar 56 Back for Christmas
    # 1-24 11 Mar 56 The Perfect Murder
    # 1-25 18 Mar 56 There Was an Old Woman
    # 1-26 25 Mar 56 Whodunit ?
    # 1-27 1 Apr 56 Help Wanted
    # 1-28 8 Apr 56 Portrait of Jocelyn
    # 1-29 15 Apr 56 The Orderly World of Mr. Appleby
    # 1-30 22 Apr 56 Never Again
    # 1-31 29 Apr 56 The Gentleman from America
    # 1-32 6 May 56 The Babysitter
    # 1-33 13 May 56 The Belfry
    # 1-34 20 May 56 The Hidden Thing
    # 1-35 27 May 56 The Legacy
    # 1-36 3 Jun 56 Mink
    # 1-37 10 Jun 56 The Decoy
    # 1-38 17 Jun 56 The Creeper
    # 1-39 24 Jun 56 Momentum


    ---------------------

    I hadn't realized that there were so many of my faves in the very first season of AHP. Like: the debut show ("Revenge"), which co-stars Frances Bavier (of Andy Griffith Show fame; 5 years before she became "Aunt Bee").

    Plus:

    >> "The Case Of Mr. Pelham", with Tom Ewell playing a "dual" role.

    >> "Breakdown", with Joseph Cotten as a car-accident victim. This one's quite creepy, IMO.

    >> "Back For Christmas", with John Williams (who is always popping up in Hitchcock TV shows and movies [usually as a police officer or detective]).

    >> "The Cheney Vase", with Darren McGavin and Carolyn Jones (aka Morticia Addams).
     
  7. Mark To

    Mark To Supporting Actor

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    That's my favorite episode of the series. It's a classic but there are too many great episodes to name.
     
  8. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    How many in this season were directed by Hitchcock himself, may I ask?
     
  9. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Four.

    And, ironically, the four are the exact four episodes I listed above in my previous "favorites" post (4 out of 5 mentioned to be precise) ----

    "Revenge"
    "Mr. Pelham"
    "Breakdown"
    "Back For Christmas"
     
  10. Tom.W

    Tom.W Stunt Coordinator

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    Last night watched my 15 year-old beta copy of An Unlocked Window, one of my favorites (60 minute episode). This one wasn't included in the Encore package. It has several similarities to Psycho. The author of Psycho, Robert Bloch, penned several AHP's, although not An Unlocked Window. The series was well represented by the greatest stars of Hollywood doing guest shots, eg. Gloria Swanson, John Cassavetes, Gena Rowlands, Joseph Cotten, Robert Redford, etc.
     
  11. Bryan Ri

    Bryan Ri Screenwriter

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    I'm a huge Hitchcock junkie and I can't wait to check these out.
     
  12. oscar_merkx

    oscar_merkx Lead Actor

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    Count me in as well
     
  13. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    David - Thanks for your answer.
     
  14. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    S'alright. [​IMG]

    In fact, I'm glad you brought up the question. I, too, was interested in the same thing. And I'm very surprised there aren't more than just the 4 Hitchcock-directed eps. from Season 1.

    But, according to TV-Tome, those are the only ones. (Assuming that Tome has the correct data; which I really have no reason to doubt; they are usually pretty accurate about such things as far as I know.)
     
  15. JeffT.

    JeffT. Screenwriter

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    It's certainly gratifying to note the keen interest in the possibility of an ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS (CBS 1955-60, NBC 1960-62) tv series DVD release.

    Let's hope that all the enthusiasm generated here isn't for naught!

    I think that that initial first season (1955-56) collection will do well because many will buy the set sight unseen just to give the tv series a try not to mention the existing popularity of Hitchcock in the first place.

    This (initial) success will then lead to a second season (1956-57) DVD release but whether continued patronship stay strong for all seven seasons will remain to be seen.

    A lot will depend on just what kind of condition the video transfers used for these disc pressings are in of course. Hopefully digitally remastered from the original 35mm print negative source elements a la THE TWILIGHT ZONE - THE DEFINITIVE COLLECTION - FIRST SEASON 6-disc box set.

    Whenever ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS and THE ALFRED HITCHCOCK HOUR (CBS 1962-64, NBC 1964-65) have aired in my television broadcast area through tv syndication they've always been treated as two separate entities usually with each airing on a different tv station and one has to wonder when Universal Studios Home Entertainment says that ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS is coming out on DVD in 2005 whether this will also include the hour-long expanded incarnation as well.

    I've appended an audio download weblink of the main ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS opening title theme to my original message post in this HITCHCOCK tv series discussion thread for those who are interested in hearing it!

    Enjoy all and GOOOOOOOOODDDDDD NIIIIIGHHHHHHTTTTTT!!!!!

    Jeff T.
     
  16. GlennWD

    GlennWD Stunt Coordinator

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    Is there any new news on Alfred Hitchcock Presents Season 1. I have not heard anything about it in a while and I am really looking forward to it.

    Thanks
     
  17. Gregory V

    Gregory V Stunt Coordinator

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    I will certainly buy this show. I remember staying up late when I was a kid, because they had two episodes on at 1030 and 1100 every night. God I LOVE this show. I remember they had a lot of tongue in cheek episodes. One I remember had Roddy MacDowall and Ruth McDevitt. She was a rich old lady (so he thought) and he befriended her and was trying to knock her off to get at her money which he thought she had hidden in her house, but she just WOULDNT die. Classic stuff all the way.
     
  18. Jeff#

    Jeff# Screenwriter

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    One of my favorites was directed by Hitchcock in the seventh and last year of Alfred Hitchcock Presents. It was called "Bang...You're Dead!" with Billy Mumy as a little boy who believes his father's real revolver is a toy gun. It has 1 bullet in the chamber, and the kid goes around pulling the trigger several times. Will he kill or injure someone? That's the suspense that builds, and it included some location shooting at a supermarket! That was from the season with the most outstanding version of the Hitchcock theme song (1961-62) since it was a full classical orchestration.

    It was also the year to feature the most consistently well-written half-hour episodes to boot. Charles Bronson -- who had been in some of the earliest episodes in 1955, 56, and 57 returned in one more episode (which wasn't that good actually), and there wss also s guest appearance by Robert Duvall in one of the best murders the show ever portrayed -- even though it typically couldn't display the violence or the remains of a dead body!

    Robert Redford played a pharmacist who is forced to help a criminal the 7th season's "The Right Kind of Medicine", although he was put to much better use on the other side of the law as a scheming gambler in the very first Alfred Hitchcock Hour "A Piece of the Action" a year later.

    Alfred Hitchcock Presents only had one 3-part story "I Killed the Count" in 1957. It had a solid performance by British character actor John Williams, who had been seen in many Hitchcock episodes and films. The series never had a 2-parter though.

    One of my favorite hour shows "A Matter of Murder" had Telly Savalas as Philadelphia Harry -- a car thief who discovers and tries to get rid of a dead body found in the trunk of his latest vechicle! Darren McGavin and Patricia Crowley were in that one too.

    All of the half-hour episodes in my viewing experience (starting from early 1980s reruns) are pristine film prints. During that same period, USA Network reran The Alfred Hitchcock Hour and those prints were of average quality. One of the more amusing intros by Hitchcock in the hour shows had the big guy wearing a Beatles wig, sitting behind the drums! (What did Ringo Starr think?). In another he is stuffed with hay, like a scarecrow in a field. In still another Hitch makes fun of the new TV season, including a comment about Bewitched. James Allardice wrote all of the funny lines Hitchcock drolly spoke during those 10 years. Those Brits sure know their humor! [​IMG]

    No, it isn't. Death Valley Days holds that honor, even though it was a western anthology. It lasted 20 years from the 1950s to the early 1970s in first-run syndication, and a few years later in the mid 70s it briefly returned with more new episodes. The series had few hosts in its long run, including Ronald Reagan in his last TV series -- during the first year Death Valley Days was filmed in color (1965 to 1966) and then actor Robert Taylor, after Reagan quit to successfully run for Governor of California.
     
  19. David Lambert

    David Lambert Executive Producer

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    No official news yet, Glenn, but just hang tight. Should be nearer to Halloween.
     
  20. TravisR

    TravisR Studio Mogul

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    Cool. I can't wait for it to be released!
     

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