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Sony MGM confusion - Sony speak up!

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16 replies to this topic

#1 of 17 OFFLINE   Eric Huffstutler

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Posted May 31 2006 - 08:19 AM

I think that most of the ranting about Sony's takeover of MGM stems from the lack of information coming out from them to the DVD consumer. No wonder people are bashing and making assumptions. Come on Sony representatives, speak up! All that we have seen and heard through the grapevine is that prices are going up and that is a big scare to those who have been happy with MGM's price points over the years over Sonys notoriously inflated prices. One series in general are the Midnite Movies titles where we have gotten 2 films, trailers, and sometimes features all for $9.99 from online retailers. And when it came to the A.I.P. Corman / Arkoff-Nicholson titles in general, they were of correct aspect ratio and the transfers look to have come from original camera negatives. People have had high hopes that the series will continue and only after a lot of flack to Sony that it will come again in June but early releases looks to be of inferior titles and not following the Midnite Movie formula (Horror and Sci-Fi 'B' drive-in movies of the 50s-60s). Then there is the question of content - will we be getting better quality transfers and better content for those extra bucks for the same catalog items we have been buying years past? And why is Sony so afraid of the classic Horror and Sci-Fi genre other than Godzilla (which needs new transfers). It is as though personal likes and dislikes of someone in marketing is making the decision for the public in general? If we could get some concrete information out of Sony as to their intensions then maybe we will have some hope and respect for them but until that time, why are they remaining so closed-lipped? Eric

#2 of 17 OFFLINE   Rob Gardiner

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Posted May 31 2006 - 08:57 AM

Good news, everybody! MGM's DVDs will now be distributed by Fox rather than Sony. Posted Image

#3 of 17 OFFLINE   Eric Huffstutler

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Posted May 31 2006 - 09:15 AM

From what I hear the Fox distribution deal doesn't make any difference with Sony's marketing strategy. Just delegating some work to out sources, in this case distribution by Fox. Has nothing to do with what titles are chosen or what they will contain. Just another middleman with possibly even more price increase to justify it.

#4 of 17 OFFLINE   Jeff(R)


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Posted May 31 2006 - 11:00 AM


#5 of 17 OFFLINE   Eric Huffstutler

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Posted May 31 2006 - 11:14 AM

After doing a little digging, I have mixed feelings. I found the cover art and pre-order listing for the two pirate movies. The artwork is laid out just like the Midnite Movie series minus the MGM and neon blue logo. Second, these are Columbia titles (as on the other double disc) instead of MGM or independent studios. Next, it isn't a flipper but a 2-disc set. And lastly, even though the MSRP is $19.98 I see on the actual Sony website store they are offering it pre-order for $13.99. That may give some indication about what other online retailers may sell these for? Amazon is also showing the cover art and taking pre-orders but asking more. Now, if they would just go back to the A.I.P. / U.A. titles to finish off the original titles that were on VHS but not DVD and what was slated, we will be happy and hopefully they will put out more Drive-In genre titles? Eric

#6 of 17 OFFLINE   MarcoBiscotti



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Posted May 31 2006 - 11:41 AM

Based on what we've seen in recent months and the focus of that article linked above, it would seem that Sony's primary concern right now is with it's BR investment, and the company's efforts towards DVD seem to have been placed on the backburner...

#7 of 17 OFFLINE   Mark Edward Heuck

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Posted May 31 2006 - 01:10 PM

Actually, CRYSTALSTONE and THE BOY AND THE PIRATES are MGM properties; BOY was a UA film, CRYSTALSTONE a pickup from the Polygram package. The other double feature, CAPTAIN PIRATE/FORTUNE OF CAPT. BLOOD, is a Columbia pairing. Aside from the grevious misuse of "midnight movie," pairing CRYSTALSTONE, an '80's era film, with BOY, a classical Bert I. Gordon outing of the '60's, is just bad planning. Just because they're both ostensible "pirate" movies does not mean that they should be lumped together.
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#8 of 17 OFFLINE   Malcolm R

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Posted May 31 2006 - 04:08 PM

So what parts of MGM did Sony actually buy? A few months ago it sounded like they bought the whole thing lock, stock, and barrel. Now, from that article it says Sony only has 20% ownership, and MGM is basically acting like a major studio, planning 20 theatrical releases a year and partnering with Fox for DVD distribution. Does Sony have any control of MGM? Did they just buy part of the library?
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#9 of 17 OFFLINE   Lord Dalek

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Posted May 31 2006 - 05:12 PM

So... is this going to help the piss poor quality I usually associate with MGM?

#10 of 17 OFFLINE   Eric Huffstutler

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Posted June 01 2006 - 02:52 AM

The whole Sony-MGM situation is as clear as mud with so many contradictions. That is why I ask for a Sony rep to speak out and hopefully give us some insight as to what actually happened or is happening and what to expect from them as far as titles and quality.

I have liked Columbia's "High Definition" releases (not HD-DVD) thus far and really didn't have a beef with MGM but then again, I don't buy everything I see but only select titles that I like which reduces my MGM library other than Midnight Movies, Horror classics, War pictures, etc.. I have a lot of different kinds of movies but my collection is heavy on the Horror, Sci-Fi, and WWII movies from the 40s-60s hence my concerns over their Midnight Movies selections.

As far as "any" studio giving a heavy concentration of time and effort to roll out HD or BR titles and ignoring regular DVD would only be cutting their own throats. It took 7 years to get DVDs in nearly ever home and down to a price so everyone can afford one. The average Joe who shops for bargains may have acquired a considerable collection of DVD titles and do not have the desire or means to switch to the new technology until prices come down both on players and titles. But that would be a moot point for people who watch DVDs on a $100, 27" television - such as I do Posted Image

I think it will be years before HD and BR are widely accepted but in the mean time consumers still have demands for standard DVDs and wish certain titles to be released that way, not exclusive to any one format or another.


#11 of 17 OFFLINE   Casey C.

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Posted June 01 2006 - 05:17 AM

The problem isn't that the current situation is unclear, it's that everyone assumed that "Sony owns MGM" -- which has never been the case. It's the private-equity money people calling the shots. Their initial strategy of getting out of the first-run movie business and distributing the catalog through Sony got disappointing results. So now they're trying something else.

#12 of 17 OFFLINE   Douglas R

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Posted June 01 2006 - 08:12 AM

No. MGM still call the shots so we can expect the same rubbish! It's a pity Sony or some other studio didn't swallow up MGM completely because the present MGM has absolutely no continuity with that great studio and doesn't even own the films which made the studio famous.

#13 of 17 OFFLINE   Mark Zimmer

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Posted June 01 2006 - 09:37 AM

Sony/Columbia was almost always worse than MGM when it came to DVD releases. Overpriced, quadruple dipping, slapped on edge enhancement, you name it. MGM had some problem titles (Jean de Florette springs to mind) but on the whole they had it down pretty well before Sony bought their interest. I'd just as soon they reasserted their independence.

#14 of 17 OFFLINE   Aaron Silverman

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Posted June 01 2006 - 09:58 AM

Quadruple-dipping is the only one of those that still applies, and then only occasionally. (Not much beyond Black Hawk Down, but I'll give you the many triple-dips. Posted Image )
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#15 of 17 OFFLINE   Paul_Scott


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Posted June 01 2006 - 10:22 AM

MGM has been very bi polar for most of its existence. There are titles in the MM series that are, considering the age, content, etc as good looking as anything I have seen from Warner- then they have indisputable classics like The Apartment or Elmer Gantry or a dozen others that were tossed onto disc in as careless a fashion as possible. There is a lot of schlock I like, so the consistency of the MMs in quality and release scheduling was a point in the studios favor. But if you have catalog interests in MGM beyond those- good luck. Where's Wuthering Heights? Where's That Hamilton Woman? Why is Best Years of Our Lives just a rinky dink bare bones disc dump? How many titles still even lack an anamorphic transfer?

#16 of 17 OFFLINE   Anthony Thorne

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Posted June 02 2006 - 05:19 PM

I wonder if this will delay the Leone remasters even further.

#17 of 17 OFFLINE   Mark_TS



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Posted June 02 2006 - 05:41 PM

Im honestly thinking since these are not even on the radar for this year (unless someone knows something different) that SONY are holding the Leone films and the BOND remasters hostage-for Blue Ray only-
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