This conversation has begun in the official Criterion thread.
Thought it would be better to continue it here. Those who have
already responded in the other thread are welcome to repeat
their thoughts here.
It all started with a CLUE that was posted in a recent Criterion
Many are speculating that this points to Criterion about to release
IT’S A MAD MAD MAD MAD WORLD to Blu-ray under their label
as early as this upcoming November.
There is no official confirmation as of yet. However, this clue is
so utterly obvious that it's hard to think that it could be anything else.
So let's fantasize for a moment that this is actually happening....
Criterion wouldn't simply release the same Blu-ray that MGM
presently has available. They would want to sell it as something
different and "special" beyond the standard edition.
I believe that the expensive restoration that needed to be done
has not been done by the party most interested in doing it.
I know, due to the high (but necessary) costs of said restoration,
that MGM is not interested in restoring the film to its Roadshow
release. In fact, the studio stopped responding to requests to
consider doing it long ago.
I suspect, given the short amount of time to actual presumed
release, Criterion has not poured money into doing a full restoration.
Again, to stress if this news is true....
Perhaps Criterion recognizes that fans want that Roadshow
release at any cost. So, take the available transfer that MGM used
and simply add the extra footage that was on the laserdisc release
(warts and all) back into the original film, with perhaps extra material
that perhaps they were able to obtain.
It's my guess, despite the inconsistency in the quality of the material,
fans would embrace such a release. After all, it's the closest that
we would ever come to replicating the Laserdisc release.
Of course, there are those that don't want all those scenes put
back in the film as it greatly lengthens the running time. After all,
some of those scenes were not part of the approved Roadshow
version Mr. Kramer signed off on.
Me? I want it all. That laserdisc release was something incredibly
special and anything short of that will be an incomplete version for
a large group of us. I know there are "purists" out there that only
want included what is necessary. However, the fans of that laserdisc
will never rest until the kitchen sink is thrown into a proper (or nearly
Perhaps Criterion could do some great stuff with "branching" that
would satisfy everyone. Not certain if this is something they regularly
do or not.
So, I kind of wanted to hear what all of you thought as far as what
your dream version of this film would be. I have included a POLL to
kind of give a "at a glance" reference.
Look forward to your comments.