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Concerning "Splitting" TV Series DVD sets


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143 replies to this topic

#41 of 144 OFFLINE   Greg Madsen

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Posted July 13 2004 - 02:50 AM

I agree that it is all about greed. I'd like to know how much it cost to produce the first season of LIS. Unless they LOST money on MTM and LIS there is no reason not to release further seasons. They are making loads of $ from Simpsons and Family Guy so lets see them take a little less of a profit from show that sell a less copies.

#42 of 144 OFFLINE   Mikel_Cooperman

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Posted July 13 2004 - 02:53 AM

It was only a matter of time before companies started taking consumers for a ride with DVD just like they have for years with CD's. They are buying them now, we know they want this and then start splitting them up.
I remember hearing the reasons on here as to why they were splitting up the sets and it never held water with me.


Quote:
If worse comes to worse with "Lost in Space", and they start splitting the Season sets, then I will just buy the Region 2 Complete Season sets from Great Britain, and play them on my Region-Free DVD player.

Is it fact that the Lost in Space Season 2 set will be "Whole" in the other regions?

#43 of 144 OFFLINE   ZackR

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Posted July 13 2004 - 02:59 AM

Quote:
Unless they LOST money on MTM and LIS there is no reason not to release further seasons. They are making loads of $ from Simpsons and Family Guy so lets see them take a little less of a profit from show that sell a less copies.
I disagree. They have to make a decision on whether or not it is financially worthwhile for them to release something. I don't think they have any obligation to us or anything to release them. For example, if I invest money and don't lose money, but I make little to no returns, I will not invest in whatever it is. My resources would be better invested elsewhere. Same goes for them and Mary Tyler Moore. I hope they release the subsequent season eventually, but if they don't make much at all on them, then in their eyes, the money/effort/time would be more wisely invested elsewhere. Simple economics.
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#44 of 144 OFFLINE   Malcolm R

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Posted July 13 2004 - 03:21 AM

Just goes to show you do studios really care about the work and fans or just $$$???

Just the $$$. Why be in business otherwise?

Aren't the studios already making tons of cash on season sets? Haven't we read again and again how "impressed" and "surprised" execs are at sales?

Yeah, but now that they're selling so well, they're afraid that they're "leaving cash on the table." If John Doe will pay $39.99 for this box set, why don't we see if he'll pay $44.99 instead? How about $49.99? How about splitting into two sets for $27.99 each?

And I agree that poor quality probably dampened sales of "Lost in Space." I don't own it, but seem to recall reading quite a bit about how poor it was. Combined with a high price, it certainly didn't help.
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#45 of 144 OFFLINE   ZackR

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Posted July 13 2004 - 03:23 AM

Quote:
Just the $$$. Why be in business otherwise?
Quote:
Yeah, but now that they're selling so well, they're afraid that they're "leaving cash on the table." If John Doe will pay $39.99 for this box set, why don't we see if he'll pay $44.99 instead? How about $49.99? How about splitting into two sets for $27.99 each?
Bingo!! Exactly what I am saying. Nothing at all wrong with them wanting to make the $$$. Posted Image
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#46 of 144 OFFLINE   MattGSmith

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Posted July 13 2004 - 04:27 AM

for example, shows with a HUGE run of episodes in a season - like Transformers, GI Joe, Batman:TAS, He-Man and so on. A set with all 65 episodes from Season 2 of Transformers would be a HUGE set and cost a hefty chunk of change. Breaking it down means that you get to spread the price out, making it easier for consumers to buy and increasing sales overall.


I totally agree. We may never know the reasoning behind LiS, or Sex/City being split up. And even if someone on the inside tells us, not everyone is going to believe the answer. Why can't we just be happy that one of our fav shows is on dvd for us to keep forever (I know I am, I can finally throw away my really copied videos). It only makes sense to me to split up Batman: TAS, or Jem!, or any other show that had big seasons. Jem's third season had something like 60 episodes. That'd be like 8-9 discs. Bottom line: Be happy that with all the hundreds of shows, one of your favorites is being worked on and released.

#47 of 144 OFFLINE   Paul Miller

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Posted July 13 2004 - 04:33 AM

Just a note on greed, there is nothing more greedy about pricing a set at $150 rather than pricing it at $30 because if you sell more units at a lower price, you can very often make more money than if you sell it at the higher price.

I have no problem with the studios wanting to make money off of these releases. TV on DVD is one of the best values out there for entertainment. The only time that price has ever played a factor in a purchase for me so far has been the Dick Van Dyke Season sets and Jonny Quest which I would have gotten if they were a bit cheaper and I still may get if they ever come down in price. But I don't fault the studios for pricing it so high or get outraged when something is out of my price range....that is the way life goes sometimes.

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#48 of 144 OFFLINE   David Lambert

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Posted July 13 2004 - 04:49 AM

Mark Johnston said:
If Paramount and Image Entertainment can do it ("Star Trek" and "The Dick Van Dyke Show"), so can FOX.

As I said before, each of these things is on a case-by-case basis. You mention Image and point to Dick Van Dyke to make your point.

I have a one-word response to that: Combat!

Expect all seasons of Image's Combat! releases to be split-seasons, as I mentioned here. For that matter, expect more and more studios to experiment with this idea...not that there aren't many examples of it already: Transformers, G.I. Joe, Sex and the City, Wiseguy, The Man Show, etc.

In the end, everyone's going to have to make up their own mind about whether or not these releases are worth it. Mark, I appreciate the motivation you had, which was to "alert" everyone to something that you think is wrong. I disagree with your perception, and there are obviously people here who feel on both sides of the issue. One of the people you accused came here and defended himself (jolly good of him to do so, if you ask me!): it's nice to hear the counterpoint, even if you don't believe him.

I do.
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#49 of 144 OFFLINE   Glenn Overholt

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Posted July 13 2004 - 04:56 AM

...and no one sees where this is going?

Ok, a few do. If a season of 24 is split in 2, why not 4? Why not 12? If a trend like this contues, we're going to have seasons split up just like TOS was. Let's face it - they can make even more money that way.

A season of 24 episodes split that way at $20 a pop comes to - oh yeah - $240. per season!

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#50 of 144 OFFLINE   Steve_Smith

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Posted July 13 2004 - 05:18 AM

I think we should all wait and see the explosion when The Simpsons season 5 part one shows up on the schedule Posted Image Ok, just kidding on that one, but yes this is a trend that is not the greatest, but could be lived with on a case-by-case basis as David Lambert said...but we are all talking about ways for a show to be released and the studios to make profit. Just remember that somethings do cause a slippery slope to begin and with this trend being used (even though limited for now) I'm sure somewhere in some studio meeting room someone has suggested "if they will buy 2 parts, lets do it with 3 parts..I know how about the Simpsons one season in 3 parts?" (oops there I go again splitting up the Simpsons Posted Image ...really I'm just kidding!!!!!

#51 of 144 OFFLINE   David Lambert

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Posted July 13 2004 - 05:29 AM

Quote:
I'm sure somewhere in some studio meeting room someone has suggested "if they will buy 2 parts, lets do it with 3 parts..I know how about the Simpsons one season in 3 parts?"


No, because then you start getting into the OTHER problem that retailers will have with the studios: Too much shelve space being taken up.

It's nice and convenient for us consumers to have everything in one nice compact box for each season. But the real space savings that studios are worried about are for retail stores. It's the difference between the retail chains ordering quantities at this level vs. THIS LEVEL.

There will be a fine line they will have to walk on splitting up season sets. And if it has to go too far in that direction, then I expect that they'll simply do it as "Volumes", like with Futurama, Batman: TAS, Dark Shadows, etc.

Also, don't forget that they have lots of data in Europe to work with as to how this affects sales. The verdict? I dunno, maybe some UK folks can chime in: one reader told me "with certainty" that the split-season releases over there were going away, in favor of the single-set-per-season configuration. Is that accurate?
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#52 of 144 OFFLINE   Sam Favate

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Posted July 13 2004 - 07:43 AM

Quote:
We may never know the reasoning behind LiS, or Sex/City being split up.


In the case of Sex in the City Season 6, I believe this is what happned: The first part of the season was broadcast on HBO months before the second part. (I think it had something to do with Sarah Jessica Parker's pregnancy.) The DVD of Season 6, Part 1 was timed to the beginning of Part 2 of season 6 on HBO. I don't think it was a ploy to squeeze more money, just a marketing thing to have new product out there when new episodes were airing.

#53 of 144 OFFLINE   EricW

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Posted July 13 2004 - 08:44 AM

i'm not in the biz, but...
if studios were going to split seasons in half, they'd have to mark up each half by alot to break even: a full season at $100, if split in 2, might need to be $65 - $75 to have SIMILAR profit, and that's IF every single person that would have bought the original full season buys the two halves. many marginal consumers would be turned off and wouldn't buy the 2 halves, or maybe not the second 1. so it may not be a clearly profitable strategy, right? i dunno.

why not just jack up the cost of a full season? look at the (relatively) ridiculously high prices of sets like Sopranos or 6 Feet Under.
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#54 of 144 OFFLINE   Joe Karlosi

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Posted July 13 2004 - 08:58 AM

For those still against splitting the seasons,let us think back to the 1980's and recall how we diehard collectors of television shows used to buy VHS tapes - individual episodes, that is - of our favorite programs for, what -- something like $10 -$20 each??? So in the old days we were perfectly content to own 15 individual VHS episodes, of lesser quality, in big bulky sleeves, for well over $200! And now some are concerned about 15 eps costing $29.00 ...?

Then there are those who worry about shelf space and not having one neat "complete" box set which contains an entire season of their favorite show. All I know is, having a two-part split DVD season of LOST IN SPACE saves me a tremendous amount more shelf space when compared to the old 83 big, bulky individual VHS tape cases I used to have! I needed a bookcase just for one show alone!

Sure, Complete Season Sets would be my first choice, and anyone who knows me will tell you I'm very anal when it comes to wanting all my collections to be "neat" and "uniform" and not spread out into multiple editions. But we've become so spoiled by DVD that we're worrying about $29 when the same programs used to cost us $200, whining about LIS disc quality when the DVDs are much better than the actual broadcasts we grew up with, and worrying about adding another inch of shelf space when it used to be a matter of several feet.

And then we're left with the most important matter of all that so many forget about during all the nitpicking - being privileged to own and watch the actual shows themselves at all. That's the bottom line.

#55 of 144 OFFLINE   Andrew Bunk

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Posted July 13 2004 - 09:40 AM

Sam,

While I agree that Sex And The City was split because of the split in the season's broadcast, SATC's second half aired in January-February 2004. Season 6 Part 1 on DVD came out in May 2004. I would have preferred that they just wait until December 2004 to release the whole season.

Also, maybe we should start calling this whole phenomenon the "Kill Bill" problem...
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#56 of 144 OFFLINE   Andrew Bunk

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Posted July 13 2004 - 09:52 AM

Joe,

TV on DVD is a two way street. The studios are doing us no bigger a favor by releasing series as we are to them by buying them.

I can choose to spend my money elsewhere-I don't have to give it to them. And in turn, due to poor sales, the studio employees can choose to get jobs elsewhere.

My point is, it's very dangerous to give the studios the impression that we need them more than they need us. It does not benefit them financially to keep their catalogs in a vault-they need us to make them profitable. And since they need us, they need to listen to us.
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#57 of 144 OFFLINE   Joe Karlosi

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Posted July 13 2004 - 10:59 AM

Andrew,

I hear you, but I think that the longer the studios leave something like LOST IN SPACE in their vaults, the less profitable it becomes with passing years as the older "target" generations die off and more kids who only care about getting THE ANNA NICOLE SMITH COMPLETE SEASONS start arriving.

I think there are plenty of older shows that will never be highly profitable for the studios and will never leave the vaults. So when one of these is put out on DVD, I think it's a blessing. And I'm there, with wallet in hand. I'm not going to quibble because it's a dollar or two more for two volumes (and some have said the split sets actually come out to less!).

#58 of 144 OFFLINE   Carlos Garcia

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Posted July 13 2004 - 11:50 AM

Quote:
I'm not going to quibble because it's a dollar or two more for two volumes (and some have said the split sets actually come out to less!).


I will only quibble that they release these shows unre-mastered, and then overprice them. The average person who has never seen Lost In Space won't be making any impulse buys of this show, but its fanbase sure will. The real fans want the show to look as best as is possible. The original Twilight Zone was originally released in 43 volumes, and they were unre-mastered. Now after several years they are going to re-release them totally re-mastered. This double dipping is ripping off the public who bought the original sets thinking they were getting the best of what the show had to offer. What's being done with Lost In Space is no different...In fact, we might see triple dipping, where enough fans complain so they will re-release the 2nd season as 1 set sometime in the future, then they will re-release the show yet again re-mastered. Let's face it it's all about $$$. If they really cared, they would release these shows re-mastered and in complete season sets, the first time around. So what if they charged $100 per season...It's alot better than buying all 3 eventual sets at $50 a pop. If you don't want to call it greed, call it good business for the studios, but either way, it's the consumers who are getting screwed.
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#59 of 144 OFFLINE   david_slater

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Posted July 13 2004 - 12:29 PM

for me it has nothing to do with money!
i want Complete Season sets, if not Complete sets in order.
and thats all there is to it.
and i am also a heavy buyer of tv shows as well.
and no im not rich! i live on $600 a month.
they just need to let people know a year ahead of time to save up for them. most of all i hate waiting!!!
if they get released before i have the money at least its up to me when i can buy and not waiting for them to be released. thats all i need to say over all this.
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#60 of 144 OFFLINE   Joe Karlosi

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Posted July 13 2004 - 01:38 PM

Quote:
I will only quibble that they release these shows unre-mastered, and then overprice them. The average person who has never seen Lost In Space won't be making any impulse buys of this show, but its fanbase sure will. The real fans want the show to look as best as is possible.

Were the old VHS tapes of non-remastered shows overpriced at $15 an episode? Do the math times three seasons!

Anyway, I'm extremely satisfied with the quality of the First Season, and believe me when I say that this is coming from a person who is absolutely meticulous about picture quality. I've never seen the show look better, including broadcast television. Now, could it be even better through remastering? Yes, I have no doubt it could. But LIS does not have the fanbase the size of STAR TREK nor even THE TWILIGHT ZONE. So I'll cut Fox some slack there.

You say that the fanbase will sure make "impulse buys," but if you're part of the core fanbase, there's nothing impulsive about it. It's not enough to sell only to the fans; Fox has to get some first-timers. Speaking for myself, for example, I've never watched LAND OF THE GIANTS. But if Fox released split volumes of a season at a more affordable price, I could see myself testing the waters. If I liked the first volume, I'd buy the second one. At least that way I'm not dropping $60 - $70.

You have the R2 option if you don't like split R1 sets. I think it's annoying that Europe gets the set done "complete" while the U.S. doesn't, but it's still better than nothing here. All the bellyaching in the world isn't going to make Fox re-think this and go back to full seasons after the first didn't do as well as expected. And though it's unfortunate, I believe Mr. Staddon when he says it didn't.


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