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PHANTOM OF THE PARADISE : Will the newly "found" footage appear on DVD or Blu-Ray?


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#1 of 25 OFFLINE   MielR

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Posted September 21 2008 - 03:46 PM

I was perusing the Swan Archives site, and discovered all the shots that were deleted from the film, many because of references to the film's fictional 'Swan Song' music company and legal issues with the real-life Swansong record label. Unfortunately, the need to remove the Swan Song references forced Brian DePalma and editor Paul Hirsch to make some awkward edits. The excised footage can be viewed here:
The Swan Archives - Production

I emailed the site's archivist, asking if there were any plans to reincorporate the trimmed footage into a future DVD/blu-ray release and he told me some interesting things, which I will recount here (with his permission).

He told me that the trailers used in the French 2-disc release were provided by him. 20th Century Fox apparently didn't have any in useable condition, which explains why the supposed 'trailer' on the R1 release was indeed not a trailer at all- just some footage cobbled together, perhaps an attempt at a trailer which was never finished.

If 20th Century Fox (or Criterion) has any interest in including the newly-discovered footage in a future DVD or blu-ray release, they will need to contact the site's archivist since he appears to be the only person in possession of the footage. So far, he has not heard from them.

He doesn't know if there would still be legal hurdles with the 'Swan Song' references. However, I imagine that if there are still legal problems, the footage could still be used, with the Swan Song references digitally removed. I bet Brian DePalma wishes he could have done that back in 1974! It sure would have saved him and Paul Hirsch a lot of headaches.

Here are some other deleted scenes, most of these being outtakes, and other scenes that were willingly cut by DePalma. I think any decent DVD/Blu-Ray release in the future should include these as supplemental material:
The Swan Archives - Production

PHANTOM is a film screaming for a special edition, especially here in "R1 Land" where all we got was a bare-bones DVD without even a proper trailer. All of this extra material along with a new transfer would really make a great new release of this classic film.

I hope someone at FOX or Criterion is reading this thread. Posted Image
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#2 of 25 OFFLINE   Bradley Newton

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Posted September 22 2008 - 03:29 AM

I also contacted the archivist and had a nice email conversation. I assumed that the clips were from an upcoming SE because he has done such a great job with the remastering. I remember reading in Video Watchdog that Phantom was Tim and Donna Lucas' first date movie and in their review of the DVD it was noted that Phantom looks good on disc, but that the color red should have really popped more. And although I was very young when I saw it, I have the same memory of the reds being really vibrant. Anyhoo, I would gladly double-dip for a special edition of this film. And having it in Blu-Ray would be too cool. I'm just glad that the disc I have is anamorphic and in stereo. I really want to hear the 5.1 remix that was done for the French disc but I don't have a PAL friendly region free player.

#3 of 25 OFFLINE   MielR

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Posted September 22 2008 - 06:13 AM

Is the current R1 DVD OOP? I read somewhere that it is - although Amazon still has new copies of it.
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#4 of 25 OFFLINE   Bradley Newton

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Posted September 22 2008 - 06:43 AM

According to another online forum, it is indeed out of print. And here is Tim Lucas' review of the 2 disc French edition..
http://videowatchdog....fe-is-all.html

#5 of 25 OFFLINE   paul_austin

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Posted September 22 2008 - 01:36 PM

those clips are in amazing shape, its really a crime to not have them restored back into the film and released.
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#6 of 25 OFFLINE   MielR

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Posted September 22 2008 - 03:27 PM

Yes, and by making FOX aware of them (hopefully), that may happen someday.
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#7 of 25 OFFLINE   AlanBrom

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Posted September 23 2008 - 06:34 AM

Hmmmm.... Won't 2009 be the 35th Anniversary of PHANTOM? Perfect time for a SE editon.

#8 of 25 OFFLINE   paul_austin

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Posted September 23 2008 - 06:51 AM

I've found a better excuse for them to rerelease it. I went to IMDB and put in "phantom of the paradise" and it pulls up 2 choices 1974 and 2010, theres no casing info, but it looks like a remake is in production.
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#9 of 25 OFFLINE   MielR

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Posted September 24 2008 - 09:14 AM

All of the above reasons are reasons enough for a PHANTOM SE. The disc being oop now is enough. I think the French 2-disker is oop as well.
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#10 of 25 OFFLINE   Frank M

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Posted September 24 2008 - 09:52 AM

There is also a German 2-Disc Special Edition with the same content as the French version available (with German dub instead of French):

Amazon.de: Phantom of the Paradise (Special Edition, 2 DVDs): Brian DePalma: DVD

#11 of 25 OFFLINE   MielR

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Posted October 27 2008 - 04:14 PM

I always start thinking about this film around Halloween. Posted Image

Would it do any good to perhaps write to somebody at FOX about the footage that's been found?

If so, who would be the best person to contact?
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#12 of 25 OFFLINE   Robert Floto

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Posted October 28 2008 - 10:41 AM

I'm hoping that a new edition will be released on DVD around the time the re-make is released in theatres.
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#13 of 25 OFFLINE   MielR

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Posted October 28 2008 - 03:14 PM

I'm sure a new edition will be released eventually (especially since it's oop now) but AFAIK they're not aware of the lost footage that was recovered.

They can't include it if they don't even contact the person who found it. :-/
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#14 of 25 OFFLINE   archivist

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Posted October 28 2008 - 03:51 PM

Hi -

The thought of you guys distressing yourselves over this is distressing me.

Fox is aware of the footage. Brian De Palma is aware of the footage.

Despite this, nobody's approached me about using it for anything -- and I don't make myself hard to find. They may yet; I hope so. If Mr. De Palma were to let me know he wanted it, I'd be on the next plane to wherever he is to hand it over to him; in my view, it's rightfully his, and I'm just a temporary caretaker.

As far as the fabled remake...I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for it.

I appreciate your kind words about the restoration of the footage; it really was a labor of love and, trust me, the crippled format at which I present it on the web, compressed and at 10 frames per second, doesn't do it justice. (I'm presenting it only in crippled form precisely because I don't want to discourage a legitimate release; if the footage were available for free from me in high quality, there'd be little motivation for Fox, or Criterion, to make the investment in preparing a special edition.) If they do, it'll be worth the effort, I think: if people are ever able to see this stuff on DVD or Blu-Ray, they'll be blown away.

-A

#15 of 25 OFFLINE   MielR

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Posted October 28 2008 - 05:03 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by archivist
Fox is aware of the footage. Brian De Palma is aware of the footage.

Despite this, nobody's approached me about using it for anything -- and I don't make myself hard to find. They may yet; I hope so. If Mr. De Palma were to let me know he wanted it, I'd be on the next plane to wherever he is to hand it over to him; in my view, it's rightfully his, and I'm just a temporary caretaker.

Thanks for clearing that up! Posted Image Hopefully someone will contact you soon about the footage. It boggles my mind that no one has thus far.

We'd all love to see a restored version of the film on DVD and blu-ray someday. Thank you for rescuing the footage and taking good care of it.
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#16 of 25 OFFLINE   Wesley Ray

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Posted October 29 2008 - 04:37 AM

wow, I love this movie and had no idea there was lost footage out there. Very exciting!

#17 of 25 OFFLINE   MielR

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Posted October 29 2008 - 11:27 AM

The quality of the footage looks very good. I don't know if he had to use any digital color correction, but the color looks fantastic for a film that age.
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#18 of 25 OFFLINE   archivist

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Posted October 29 2008 - 11:54 AM

The negatives were very faded after 35 years, and a lot of color correction was required.

#19 of 25 OFFLINE   archivist

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Posted December 10 2008 - 02:00 AM

You guys might be interested to see that, last night, I added a few more newly-found clips to the site, on the Outtakes and Swan Song Fiasco pages.

Enjoy....

#20 of 25 OFFLINE   MielR

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Posted December 10 2008 - 07:49 AM

Thank you! :-)
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