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Gord and David will Ask the Studios to Account for their Mistakes


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#1 of 90 Eric_Bee

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Posted August 24 2005 - 06:49 AM

The studios will be asked to explain the monstrosity of syndicated releases:

http://www.tvshowson...cfm?NewsID=3975

#2 of 90 Andreas_K

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Posted August 24 2005 - 06:53 AM

I posted my assessment of the editorial on tvshowsondvd.com in the "House MD" thread already but since you opened this thread on that very topic I thought I'd post it here as well.

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

Gord, that's a good editorial you posted on your site. I totally agree with you when you ask companies to take their time with a shows release and do it properly. A bit more fan involvement (if they need it) like you suggested would be ideal.

The only thing I disagree with is the music rights issue on which you seem to have given up - I think "take your time and do it properly" would be a good motto in that area as well. Personally I'm more annoyed when big companies like Universal aren't willing to spend that extra dollar and mess up a release than when a smaller publisher makes a mistake. The reasons for putting out a compromised set is the same - cutting costs and staying within a certain budget. I think that's still the reason for the majority of bad sets that are out there, not so much unawareness of the show they want to release.

#3 of 90 TravisR

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Posted August 24 2005 - 07:21 AM

While I think it's great that they are doing this, I don't think they owe an explanation to anyone for what they do or don't report on.

#4 of 90 Jonny P

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Posted August 24 2005 - 08:12 AM

It is nice of them to check this out, but the studios themselves are ultimately culpable for the sets that they produce.

The reason that you are seeing these problems is that studios, producers and stars are anxious to get this programming out on the market. There is a reason Best Buy shuffled how they organize DVDs and put TV shows in a more prominent position -- they are very popular right now.

As with all DVDs, this boom will pass, and "quality" and "attention to detail" will return.

Back in 2002, Fox released the first season of "24." The show had mediocre ratings, but the DVD release was credited with helping viewership for Season 2.

The popularity of "The Family Guy" on DVD prompted Fox to start up production again.

They are still doing some sets right. I am sure that the upcoming "Lost" set -- for example -- will be excellent.

The "Seinfeld" sets are better than I had ever anticipated. They could just as easily have released syndicated cuts that weren't remastered.

"Roseanne" and "Cosby" were hit shows, but they don't have the following that sitcoms like "Friends" and "Seinfeld" have. Therefore, they probably didn't think it was financially soluble to spend a lot of money going back to the original masters and making prints. It is possible that the syndicated tapes were in better shape than the original network tapes.

When these smaller, third party companies make DVD sets...watch out!

My Dead Zone S3 DVD is atrocious. It is terrible...the "white line pixel problem" at the top of the picture is horrendous. That is a serious technical flaw. You'd think someone would have made a test DVD and checked it on a couple of different configurations before sending it out.

The sheer bulk of content (typically around 20 eps) probably hurts quality control. I mean, even newer material has its "issues."

#5 of 90 EricSchulz

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Posted August 24 2005 - 08:42 AM

"Roseanne" and "Cosby" were hit shows, but they don't have the following that sitcoms like "Friends" and "Seinfeld" have.


I am not sure I would agree with you on this one...but I refuse to buy "Roseanne" because of the edits. And I plan to let them know!

#6 of 90 David*P

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Posted August 24 2005 - 08:43 AM

I agree with that editorial completely and I'm glad TVShowsonDVD is going to take a stand.

#7 of 90 MattHR

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Posted August 24 2005 - 08:50 AM

I think it's a great, albeit long overdue, policy change. When major websites start pressing the issue, the studios will have to answer. They've been playing "duck and cover" far too long regarding the syndication cuts issue.

At the very least, if cut episodes are here to stay, the studios MUST stop claiming their TVonDVD sets to be "complete". There should also be very clear labeling to indicate they are NOT presented in their original broadcast versions.

It was only a few years ago that the various director, writer, cinematographer and actor guilds combined efforts to force the studios to label movies that were not in their original aspect ratios. This effort is why we see the "modified to fit your screen" disclaimer on screen and on packaging.

You'd think there would be a similar reaction to this current issue of edited TVonDVD. There is plenty of space given to warnings of copyright infringment, duplication, exhibition, exportation, the views of partcipants of commentaries and supplements, etc,. etc, yadda-yadda-yadda...

But there is NEVER any indication that some, or all, of the content has been edited via syndication versions. There are RARE examples of disclaimers warning about deleted episodes ("Profiler" Season 1) or music alterations, due to the ongoing music clearance problem.

This forum should adopt as its primary mission statement:

We will only accept and endorse TV programs presented as originally broadcast. This includes running time, aspect ratio, sound mix and teasers/trailers ("previously on.../next on...").

#8 of 90 Brian Himes

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Posted August 24 2005 - 08:54 AM

I'm so glad that someone is doing this. These syndicated cuts on DVD have to stop. I will be missing 2 of my favorites in my collection becuase of this practice.

#9 of 90 ElijahS

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Posted August 24 2005 - 08:57 AM

I don't think they've been "playing 'duck and cover'" necessarily; they've just been trying to figure out the correct way to approach the situation.

Also, what are you talking about on deleted episodes on Alias? As far as I know, the only difference between any of the episodes for the series on DVD and in their broadcast form involves a scene being added back in for the episode "Nocturne" involving a Russian roulette scene that ABC had taken out for broadcast.
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#10 of 90 MattHR

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Posted August 24 2005 - 09:05 AM

Quote:
Also, what are you talking about on deleted episodes on Alias?


Oops! Sorry, I meant to say "Profiler" Season 1.
I corrected the orginal post.

#11 of 90 AnthonyC

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Posted August 24 2005 - 10:03 AM

Quote:
"Roseanne" and "Cosby" were hit shows, but they don't have the following that sitcoms like "Friends" and "Seinfeld" have.

Yes they do. But because there aren't any problems with the Friends or Seinfeld releases, more people are buying them which makes it seem like they have more of an audience.

ETA: Fantastic editorial, Gord. Hopefully these studios will listen.

#12 of 90 Gord Lacey

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Posted August 24 2005 - 10:13 AM

Quote:
But there is NEVER any indication that some, or all, of the content has been edited via syndication versions.


Apparently the new ALF set mentions the syndicated versions were used. I haven't seen the set myself though.

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#13 of 90 Jonny P

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Posted August 24 2005 - 10:26 AM

More people would by "Seinfeld" and "Friends" regardless of whether "Roseanne" and "Cosby" were cut or not.

#14 of 90 MattHR

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Posted August 24 2005 - 10:37 AM

Quote:
Apparently the new ALF set mentions the syndicated versions were used. I haven't seen the set myself though.


I haven't seen this yet either. I looked it up on dvdempire.com, and took a look at the back cover. It does have an asterisk after "Alf: Season Two" within the synopsis, with the corresponding "syndicated version" in small print near the bottom. But then it also goes on to say "the complete second season" within the same paragraph! By complete they must mean a complete season of syndicated episodes.

My fear is that, like the term "modified to fit your screen", the use of the term "syndicated version" will not be widely understood, outside of forums like this one. The studios are going to use semantics to avoid labeling these shows with words such as "edited" or "altered". The average consumer will not pay any attention to the term, and will likely never know that they're purchasing an edited series.

Consumers would NEVER accept edited "broadcast network versions" of their favorite movies on DVD. So why should we accept edited "syndicated versions" of our favorite TV shows?

#15 of 90 MatthewA

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Posted August 24 2005 - 10:44 AM

Quote:
More people would by "Seinfeld" and "Friends" regardless of whether "Roseanne" and "Cosby" were cut or not.

That's their problem, not mine. I had no interest in Seinfeld or Friends, but I would have gladly bought uncut Cosby Show and Roseanne. I would have even bought That's My Mama if the word "complete" on the box meant what I thought it used to mean.

Third party companies bother to put out uncut versions all the time. Look at Shout! Factory which went out of its way to try and release uncut shows that have smaller followings than Seinfeld or Friends:

Undeclared
Freaks and Geeks
You Bet Your Life
Punky Brewster
SCTV
Here's Lucy

With music intact whenever they can get it. Two of these shows were gone after a season. One is over 50 years old. The others are seldom shown anymore. But did that deter Shout! Factory? No.

And Image has done stellar work. Look at The Twilight Zone and the Dick Van Dyke Show sets.

But you know, we shouldn't be demanding disclaimers. We should be demanding complete, unedited episodes.

Enough is enough, Disney. No more evasions or excuses. We DEMAND the release Song of the South on Blu-ray along with the uncut version of Bedknobs and Broomsticks on Blu-ray. I will not support anything your company produces until then.


#16 of 90 Gord Lacey

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Posted August 24 2005 - 10:50 AM

Quote:
SCTV


SCTV has tons of edits in it; you may want to take that off the list Posted Image

Twilight Zone features a few episodes with wrong opening titles.
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#17 of 90 MattHR

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Posted August 24 2005 - 11:01 AM

Quote:
But you know, we shouldn't be demanding disclaimers. We should be demanding complete, unedited episodes.


I agree 100%. My only insistence on the use of disclaimers would be to explain any alterations...not to excuse them.

For example, if a show absolutely had to be edited for music issues or source-print damage, a short explanation would be required. I understand "The Brady Bunch" apparently has a few instances of print damage, implying multiple sources may have been used to compile the original, complete episodes. In this case, a disclaimer would serve two purposes: 1) Satisfy the consumer wishing unedited episodes, and 2) inform the consumer that any variance in the print quality is due to the restoration of the original episode, and not a defect in the DVD. We would then feel safe knowing that every effort was made to release the show as complete as possible, even if it meant a few rough spots in the presentation.

Studios that would use such a disclaimer would gain my respect...and my purchases. I'm no longer making any "blind" purchases of TVonDVD. I now consult this forum and wait for reviews...just to be safe.

#18 of 90 Christian Preischl

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Posted August 24 2005 - 11:11 AM

Fantastic editiorial, Gord! Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image

Chris

#19 of 90 Jay_B!

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Posted August 24 2005 - 11:11 AM

Quote:
"Roseanne" and "Cosby" were hit shows, but they don't have the following that sitcoms like "Friends" and "Seinfeld" have.


I disagree with that! I have friends who love Roseanne as much as I do and we can get into a lot of discussions over specific episodes, etc... Roseanne and Seinfeld were the two best sitcoms of the 1990's IMO. Friends was alright but most everyone I know kinda moved on after the show ended, while we still talk about Seinfeld and Roseanne all these years after they wrapped.

#20 of 90 george kaplan

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Posted August 24 2005 - 11:40 AM

One part of your editorial that I'd disagree with Gord:
I'm not talking about music substitutions...but the sets that are released with major problems
I'd certainly consider music substitutions a major problem, every bit as serious as syndicated cuts. If WKRP ever came out with no cuts, but with music replacement, that would be as tragic as any of the tv on dvd releases that have been screwed up.
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