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Superman II, III, IV: Where Are the BD's?


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#1 of 89 kemcha

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Posted March 04 2010 - 04:57 PM

While we only have Superman The Motion Picture and Superman Returns on Blu-ray, I'm curious why Warner Brothers has been reluctant to release Superman II, Superman II and Superman IV: The Quest for Peace to Blu-ray. While the Richard Donner version of Superman II has been released, I don't consider it an actual release since it was never finished and lacks a lot of footage ...

I just wish Warner Brothers would hurry up and release the rest of the films.

#2 of 89 Brandon Conway

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Posted March 05 2010 - 04:59 AM

I can see them releasing the theatrical versions of Superman and Superman II at some point, but I wouldn't necessarily hold my breath for Superman III and IV.

"And now the reprimand, from an American critic. He reproaches me for using film as a sacred & lasting medium, like a painting or a book. He does not believe that filmmaking is an inferior art, but he believes, and quite rightly, that a reel goes quickly, that the public are looking above all for relaxation, that film is fragile and that it is pretentious to express the power of one's soul by such ephemeral and delicate means, that Charlie Chaplin's or Buster Keaton's first films can only be seen on very rare and badly spoiled prints. I add that the cinema is making daily progress and that eventually films that we consider marvelous today will soon be forgotten because of new dimensions & colour. This is true. But for 4 weeks this film [The Blood of a Poet] has been shown to audiences that have been so attentive, so eager & so warm, that I wonder after all there is not an anonymous public who are looking for more than relaxation in the cinema." - Jean Cocteau, 1932


#3 of 89 kemcha

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Posted March 05 2010 - 05:44 AM

That would be bad news. While Superman III and Superman IV are not very well received by fans, I consider them better quality than the Tim Burton Batman films. While Warner Brothers is releasing Batman, Batman Returns, Batman Forever and Batman and Robin, all of which are campy and cheesecake, the Superman movies are more enjoyable to watch. It would be a shame to see these classic movies from Christopher reeves to never get released to Blu-ray.

#4 of 89 WillG

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Posted March 05 2010 - 06:25 AM

WB could be waiting for whenever the next Theatrical Superman film is near release. Perhaps at that time, they'll do a boxed set or something (hopefully with a version of S:TM that is like the one that is currently on DVD)


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#5 of 89 Joseph DeMartino

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Posted March 05 2010 - 06:31 AM

I have to disagree re: Superman vs. Batman.  I think the first two Reeve* films are terrific, as are both Keaton Batman films.  (Neither of which can be called "campy" by any stretch of the immagination.  If that's how you remember them, you need to go back and watch them again.)  And I think the rest of the films in both series sucked.  (Although it is a real close call as to whether Batman and Robin or The Quest for Peace was bigger embarassment to its cast and franchise.)   So while I agree it is a crime that the 3rd and 4th Batman films from that series are being released on BD, I won't be surprised or disappointed if Superman III and IV are left as standard def DVDs.  It isn't like being able to see the image more clearly is going to bring the acting, directing or scripts into better focus. 

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#6 of 89 Bryan^H

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Posted March 05 2010 - 06:48 AM



Quote:
Originally Posted by kemcha 

While we only have Superman The Motion Picture and Superman Returns on Blu-ray, I'm curious why Warner Brothers has been reluctant to release Superman II, Superman II and Superman IV: The Quest for Peace to Blu-ray. While the Richard Donner version of Superman II has been released, I don't consider it an actual release since it was never finished and lacks a lot of footage ...

I just wish Warner Brothers would hurry up and release the rest of the films.
I don't have time to search for it now, but I'm sure it was asked about in the last WB theatrical dvd chat.  Are the rest of the Superman films coming to Blu-Ray?  The answer was kind of short and to the point "Been there, done that"  meaning don't hold your breath.


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#7 of 89 JediFonger

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Posted March 05 2010 - 08:02 AM

dont remember how long ago but i remember watching Superman III in 1080i via cable broadcast (also don't remember which channel) and it was superb master =P. just add lossless and maybe we'll have somn =).


#8 of 89 Brandon Conway

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Posted March 05 2010 - 08:09 AM

The biggest difference between Batman Forever/Batman & Robin and Superman III/Superman IV is that the Batman films seem to sell fairly well on home video, while the Superman films do not.

"And now the reprimand, from an American critic. He reproaches me for using film as a sacred & lasting medium, like a painting or a book. He does not believe that filmmaking is an inferior art, but he believes, and quite rightly, that a reel goes quickly, that the public are looking above all for relaxation, that film is fragile and that it is pretentious to express the power of one's soul by such ephemeral and delicate means, that Charlie Chaplin's or Buster Keaton's first films can only be seen on very rare and badly spoiled prints. I add that the cinema is making daily progress and that eventually films that we consider marvelous today will soon be forgotten because of new dimensions & colour. This is true. But for 4 weeks this film [The Blood of a Poet] has been shown to audiences that have been so attentive, so eager & so warm, that I wonder after all there is not an anonymous public who are looking for more than relaxation in the cinema." - Jean Cocteau, 1932


#9 of 89 Joseph DeMartino

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Posted March 05 2010 - 09:04 AM



Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon Conway View Post

The biggest difference between Batman Forever/Batman & Robin and Superman III/Superman IV is that the Batman films seem to sell fairly well on home video, while the Superman films do not.
 
And that, more than anything, is what determines which films get a Blu-Ray release and which don't.  The installed base of BD players is still a fraction of the DVD base, so they aren't going to spend money releasing films that didn't do well in the mass market of DVD. 

Regards,

Joe

#10 of 89 kemcha

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Posted March 05 2010 - 12:47 PM

The only reason why the Batman movies sell fairly well is that there is an over-abundance of them on DVD and you can find them everywhere. Not so with the Superman movies. Matter of fact, retailers don't even carry the Superman movies on DVD while they do carry the Batman movies. It's because warner Brothers has made the Batman movies more available to consumers than the Superman movies.

I believe the only Superman movies that you will find in retailers are the Blu-ray releases of Superman TMP, Superman II (Donner Cut) and the Superman Returns (and all on Blul-ray). The DVD's are non-existent. Walmart, Target, Best Buy and Barnes and Noble all have the Batman movies available on DVD for purchase but try finding the Superman movies and you'll be left scratching your heads.

I can't help but think that this is a marketing strategy by Warner Brothers to make the Superman movies less available as they don't consider Superman III and IV worthy of being sold to consumers.

#11 of 89 Brandon Conway

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Posted March 05 2010 - 01:25 PM

Or the sales gap between the DVDs of the Superman boxes vs, the individual releases of the first two films when they were released was significantly wide enough to give WB pause to releasing the 3rd and 4th films on BD.

"And now the reprimand, from an American critic. He reproaches me for using film as a sacred & lasting medium, like a painting or a book. He does not believe that filmmaking is an inferior art, but he believes, and quite rightly, that a reel goes quickly, that the public are looking above all for relaxation, that film is fragile and that it is pretentious to express the power of one's soul by such ephemeral and delicate means, that Charlie Chaplin's or Buster Keaton's first films can only be seen on very rare and badly spoiled prints. I add that the cinema is making daily progress and that eventually films that we consider marvelous today will soon be forgotten because of new dimensions & colour. This is true. But for 4 weeks this film [The Blood of a Poet] has been shown to audiences that have been so attentive, so eager & so warm, that I wonder after all there is not an anonymous public who are looking for more than relaxation in the cinema." - Jean Cocteau, 1932


#12 of 89 kemcha

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Posted March 05 2010 - 03:10 PM

The problem, Brandon, is that when Warners released those boxed sets, the single DVD's were only available for sale at retailers for a few months before retailers pulled those DVD's from their stores. Not only that, but it appears that the Superman boxed sets are now discontinued, with the exception of the Chrispher Reeves boxed set.

#13 of 89 WillG

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Posted March 05 2010 - 03:21 PM


Quote:
Are the rest of the Superman films coming to Blu-Ray?  The answer was kind of short and to the point "Been there, done that"  meaning don't hold your breath.
I actually kind of remember that, but I think the question was either more related to S:TM which had already been released on Blu-Ray or further plans for regular DVD. It wouldn't make much sense for them to say "Been There, Done That" in regards to the Reeve films when there have been only 2 BD releases (and one of them isn't even a "real" film). I'm sure the rest of the films will eventually be released, but as I said, They're probably holding off until the next Superman movie is about to hit theaters.

Quote:
(Although it is a real close call as to whether Batman and Robin or The Quest for Peace was bigger embarassment to its cast and franchise.) 
Batman Forever is a terrible film, but at least it had real production values and doesn't come off as if a chainsaw was taken to the original negative (there are parts of Supe IV that literally make no sense). And Schwartzenegger, Clooney and Thruman obviously came out ok. Also Batman and Robin actually did do pretty well at the box office unlike Supe IV.

As for Superman III, I don't dislike it. There were obviously some big mistakes regarding the tone of the film, but every so often there is some legitimately good material in the movie.





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#14 of 89 MielR

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Posted March 05 2010 - 08:34 PM

 I'd like to see the extended cut of IV released on Blu-ray someday. Wasn't it only released on a Japanese LD?
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#15 of 89 Joseph DeMartino

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Posted March 06 2010 - 02:09 AM


Quote:
 The only reason why the Batman movies sell fairly well is that there is an over-abundance of them on DVD and you can find them everywhere.
You're confusing cause and effect here.  The Batman films don't sell well because they're available, they're available because they sell well.  That is, retailers continue to stock them because at the end of the month they see the copies they bought that month have mostly sold out.  Conversely the Superman films vanished because they weren't selling.  When you get to the end of the month and you still have the same 10 copies of Superman IV that you started with (that is, you didn't sell them all and have to reorder), then you don't order any more copies.  You either return the unsold copies to Warner Bros.or you mark them down to get them out the door. Retailers don't arbitrarily decide to stop stocking a product that is selling well because they "don't like it".  Nor do studios arbitrarily stop producing such titles.  Everybody is in business to make money.  You do that by producing and stocking the products that people want, and not wasting money producing and stocking the ones they don't.  It really is that simple. 

Regards,

Joe



#16 of 89 Bryan^H

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Posted March 06 2010 - 04:33 AM

From the WB chat March 2009

[JoeCampos] Hi! I'm happy you're doing digital work on the MGM/Turner titles, and look forward to OZ and GONE WITH THE WIND on blu ray. Anyway, any chance you will revisit SUPERMAN: The Movie and SUPERMAN II in definitive editions on Blu Ray/DVD with the added TV footage and other new stuff? I was disappointed that no 30th Anniversary Edition of SUPERMAN was released.

[warnerbros] Thanks for your kind words. We do appreciate them. As to SUPERMAN....Been there.. Done that..to great success two years ago.


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#17 of 89 kemcha

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Posted March 06 2010 - 04:56 AM

Bryan, that contains useless information. It's obvious that WB was referring to the DVD release. The Blu-ray question should have been asked separately. Of course they are going to say been there, done that, for DVD. The question for "Blu-ray/DVD" was a front-loaded question since Superman II, III, and IV have never been released to Blu-ray.

So, their response "been there, done that" is a lie since the films have never been released to Blu-ray.

#18 of 89 Jesse Skeen

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Posted March 08 2010 - 09:31 PM

The 4 Superman movies have been available together on standard DVD for a while for around $10- if they don't announce a Blu-Ray of any of these soon I might break down and get that.  I've got the first 3 Warner Batmans on laserdisc and aren't in a hurry to upgrade those- don't have Batman and Robin on any format, but didn't think it was that bad.  Superman IV's problem was its budget, or lack thereof.

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#19 of 89 Joseph DeMartino

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Posted March 09 2010 - 12:47 AM


Quote:
The question for "Blu-ray/DVD" was a front-loaded question since Superman II, III, and IV have never been released to Blu-ray.
 

Well, the Richard Donner cut of Superman II has been released on Blu-Ray.  $17.49 at Amazon.com

Personally I've never had much use for "extended cuts" or "TV cuts".  They are generally padded out with material that was cut for very good reason and only shoe-horned back in to make up for footage that couldn't be used on TV (e.g., Blazing Saddles) or to make the film run in a given time slot with commercials.  In almost every case the "restored" footage was cut for very good reason and putting it back in adds little or nothing to the narrative, while absolutely killing the pace of the films.  The Donner cuts are a different matter since they were alternate artistic visions of the films, not commercial products churned out to fit the requirements of a different medium and patched together from the film equivalent of meat trimmings and gristle. 

Regards,

Joe

#20 of 89 WillG

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Posted March 09 2010 - 03:32 AM


Quote:
Superman IV's problem was its budget, or lack thereof.

 

The film was a mess in many other ways that was unrelated to its budget.

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