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Spartacus

Robert Harris

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34 replies to this topic

#1 of 35 OliverK

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Posted July 27 2008 - 08:28 PM

Hello Robert,

are you at liberty to tell us if there is work being done on Spartacus to prepare it for Blu-Ray release ?
And I am not talking about the second coming for the disappointing HD-DVD but something that you would be happy with.

Thanks !

Oliver

#2 of 35 PaulDA

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Posted July 28 2008 - 01:49 AM

I too would like to know. When I first heard Spartacus was to be on HD DVD, it nearly motivated me to jump onto HD DVD in 2006 (rather than Dec. 2007) but when I learned of its poor quality and how disappointed Mr. Harris was with it, I held off from buying it and from buying into HD DVD until prices plummeted (at that point, I wanted to know if HDM was worth the upgrade and HD DVD offered me an inexpensive way to test for that). So, until an HDM version is released with Mr. Harris' stamp of approval, I'll remain content with my R2 [I believe it mirrors the Critierion R1 release, or close to it, in terms of extras] release from the UK (picked it up for very little on a trip to the UK in March 2007--before then I soldiered on with my letterboxed VHS copy Posted Image ).
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#3 of 35 Jon Lidolt

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Posted July 28 2008 - 02:16 AM

Add me to that list. I suspect that we're not the only ones who will only purchase a Blu-ray edition of Spartacus if Universal does the right thing and hires RAH to supervise a new HD transfer.

#4 of 35 OliverK

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Posted July 29 2008 - 08:01 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Lidolt
Add me to that list. I suspect that we're not the only ones who will only purchase a Blu-ray edition of Spartacus if Universal does the right thing and hires RAH to supervise a new HD transfer.

I take it as a good sign that so far we got no answer from the man himself. If absolutely nothing was happening I would think that we would have gotten a short answer, but it might just be that either Mr. Harris is working on Spartacus again in one form or another or that he at least knows of developments he cannot talk about. Or maybe it is just that I want something good to happen to Spartacus so that we can finally enjoy it on Blu-Ray Posted Image

#5 of 35 Xylon

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Posted August 25 2008 - 10:39 PM

xylon.haloapplications.com - /hddvd/sparticus/

#6 of 35 Cassy_w

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Posted August 26 2008 - 09:19 AM

Ouch. That is shocking. How could that be allowed to happen? It looks worse than many standard DVD's I have.
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#7 of 35 Patrick McCart

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Posted August 26 2008 - 11:57 AM

Wow, it doesn't look nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Grainy, but not exactly "worse than Madacy" level as touted.

#8 of 35 Douglas Monce

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Posted August 26 2008 - 12:50 PM

If you look at the details in the fine text in the title sequence, you'll find that the HD DVD is actually much more detailed than the DVD. That isn't to say that this release couldn't be much better.

Doug
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#9 of 35 OliverK

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Posted August 26 2008 - 01:10 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick McCart
Wow, it doesn't look nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Grainy, but not exactly "worse than Madacy" level as touted.

The color timing is way off and makes the movie look completely different from the theatrical prints I have seen, that alone is completely unnecessary even with the bad master they had.

As Doug said it is better than all previous versions with regard to detail but this does not mean that much, knowing that Spartacus has the potential to look as detailed as for example Grand Prix.

#10 of 35 Douglas Monce

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Posted August 26 2008 - 05:28 PM

I believe that the Spartacus transfer comes from 65mm elements on less than state of the art telecine equipment. Hence the softness of something that should be practically razor sharp.

And as noted the Criterion version is much more accurate with regard to color. I believe Mr. Harris had a hand in the color corrections on that version.

I will say this, at least the HD DVD version of this film still looks like film.

Doug
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#11 of 35 Lord Dalek

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Posted September 22 2008 - 08:40 AM

Maybe Criterion would be nice enough to do the blu-ray using a new 8k RAH-approved transfer.

#12 of 35 linksano

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Posted November 23 2008 - 03:06 AM

one of my all time greats, just the sort of film that would get me on to blue ray,
fingers crossed

#13 of 35 Billy Batson

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Posted December 18 2008 - 02:50 AM

I see the HD is going for a song there days (I suppose that goes for most HD's). Due to the harsh things said about the transfer, & no news on the Blu-ray front. I'm hoping Universal are starting afresh, maybe scanning all the neg. into HD & going from there. I hope so.

#14 of 35 OliverK

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Posted December 18 2008 - 09:37 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy Batson
I see the HD is going for a song there days (I suppose that goes for most HD's). Due to the harsh things said about the transfer, & no news on the Blu-ray front. I'm hoping Universal are starting afresh, maybe scanning all the neg. into HD & going from there. I hope so.

The master that the HD-DVD is derived from is certainly not up to the task.
But the duplicate 70mm negative surely would be good enough to arrive at a very satisfying Blu-Ray in case Universal does not want to go back to the original horizontal elements.

#15 of 35 Billy Batson

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Posted December 19 2008 - 05:33 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by OliverK
The master that the HD-DVD is derived from is certainly not up to the task.
But the duplicate 70mm negative surely would be good enough to arrive at a very satisfying Blu-Ray in case Universal does not want to go back to the original horizontal elements.

If they're going to scan it (& I don't know), then it might be just as easy to scan the original negs.

#16 of 35 OliverK

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Posted December 19 2008 - 11:37 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy Batson
If they're going to scan it (& I don't know), then it might be just as easy to scan the original negs.

Unfortunately it is not. The original negative is incomplete and already was in a less than perfect shape almost 20 years ago when RAH worked on it for his restoration.

RAH surely could comment on which elements he would see fit to be used for scanning with the aim to arrive at a sufficiently high quality digital master. I would guess the duplicate negative as that would be possible without too much additional expense, going back to the original elements could be considered too costly and too much money to spend on a single movie.

From the work RAH has done on The Godfather movies I would very much like him to work on Spartacus and also on Lawrence of Arabia - The Godfather movies look very much like film in their Blu-Ray incarnations and I hope that we can one day say the same about Spartacus and Lawrence Posted Image

#17 of 35 Stephen PI

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Posted December 20 2008 - 08:34 AM

If a 65mm Interpositive of the restoration was made, this seems most likely the element that would be used.
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#18 of 35 lukejosephchung

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Posted December 26 2008 - 07:59 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord Dalek
Maybe Criterion would be nice enough to do the blu-ray using a new 8k RAH-approved transfer.
Such a release would be a cinematic godsend to home theater enthusiasts around the world! I'd be doing cartwheels in public and I've got arthritis in both knees!Posted Image

#19 of 35 dana martin

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Posted February 23 2010 - 12:56 PM

OK, so Universal has officially announced this ( is showing up on classicflix) and just going over the extras that is in this single disc release, it seems that some of the above statement's  might come true. seems a lot of the extras look very familiar as the same ones on my Criterion set.

This need to be done correctly, and if it has taken this long for them to get from the HDDVD version to something more in line with what this truly deserves then i hope that in the coming months that i will be happy.

i would be even more ecstatic to know that RAH had a hand in it this time
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#20 of 35 OliverK

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Posted February 23 2010 - 07:44 PM

Seeing how the HD-DVD looked I cannot see it that Universal would be giving us just an improved version of the same HD Transfer so I have high hopes that it will be a new and worthy effort to bring this to HD media.
I think this would also be the first pre 70ies title that gets released by Universal on Blu-Ray - imo they picked the right movie!

Quote:
Originally Posted by dana martin 

OK, so Universal has officially announced this ( is showing up on classicflix) and just going over the extras that is in this single disc release, it seems that some of the above statement's  might come true. seems a lot of the extras look very familiar as the same ones on my Criterion set.

This need to be done correctly, and if it has taken this long for them to get from the HDDVD version to something more in line with what this truly deserves then i hope that in the coming months that i will be happy.

i would be even more ecstatic to know that RAH had a hand in it this time




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