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Conversations with Twilight Time's Nick Redman (UPDATED New Interview 9/8/13)

Twilight Time

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#101 of 196 OFFLINE   ROclockCK

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Posted September 10 2013 - 10:12 AM

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I'm not crazy about TT's model, but I've bought about 10 or their releases so I guess I'm a supporter. I feel that the Dinman audio interview was a bit mean-spirited in itself, in the way that it scoffed at some of the criticism that has arisen from the anonymous forum people (like me), many of whom are, after all, their customers. I feel that there would have been more dignity in leaving that alone and not being so defensive.

 

But isn't that what TT has been doing more or less since the beginning of this venture...allowing the quality of their product to speak quietly and confidently for itself...trusting the candour and thoroughness of those key sophomore interviews (aka the FAQs)* to provide some sober counterpoint for any attempted misrepresentation via the general media or web? At some point though, enough is enough, and any rational human being with an ounce of self-respect will understandably push back. At least that's what I heard loud and clear in those interviews.

 

The biggest problem I had with that Digital Bits piece was simply how backhanded it read...I mean, shouldn't this guy have at least sent TT an advance copy for review, or phrased some of his reservations as questions, which the label could have then addressed...maybe even pitched them an interview of his own? But like so many of the arrogant, line-of-least-resistance comments I've read about TT (especially on some of the other message boards), this 'Dr.' dude just weaseled out and ran blind...possibly afraid that his thin understanding and even thinner research wouldn't survive the hard light of deeper reflection and analysis. If nothing else, I thought it was an incredibly shallow and self-serving piece. 

 

So it's like he counted on Twilight Time to just again remain silent and take his roundhouse kicks to the head, back, and groin. The irony is, with a more civilized and balanced approach, this Redman fellow is one of the easiest reaches for any discussion about what TT is trying to do for catalogue via this label. I know this personally from my own out-of-the-blue casual conversations with the guy. I mean gee...if you've got a legit query...these people are the least likely to remain aloof and unapproachable. They're all talented, experienced, hardworking (and overworked) individuals - all veteran movie fans themselves - just trying to treat catalogue titles with a little respect. They aren't alone in that of course, but they do seem singled out for a multitude of *imagined* sins having almost nothing to do with their products or service, and routinely afforded less common courtesy than I've ever seen from so-called 'professionals'. Yeeesh, you'd think the TT principals were politicians or something.  ;)

 

Having said that, hat's off to Mr Redman and co. for putting up the money for this enterprise, and being responsive to some of the concerns. I understand why discounting is not an option for them. They've got me by the short and curlies.

 

If it's any consolation, isn't TT also in the same position? I mean, this is a totally out-of-pocket fly for them with nothing but increasing fixed costs staring them in the puss each month...the Studios with their 'clean' no risk cut upfront...ditto for their production collaborators...ditto for Cinram...ditto for SAE...no deferrals here, and little wiggle-room...TT is only as good as their cashflow from all of us good folks trying to reclaim our treasured film memories. So it seems to me that they - like us - are simply dealing with the reality of what it actually costs to get the Studios to unlock their vaults and get quality titles out via such pro showcases in realistically sustainable numbers. I've never had a problem with that. We live in a bottom line, horsetrading world.

 

So if I seem like just another 'fanboy' over this label..."MEA CULPA!" Yes, I want TT to succeed because these are my kind of movies...my kind of composers...my kind of quality...and nearly 8 years into this Blu-ray thing, I'm finally seeing that stuff where it belongs...on my shelf and in my player, instead of trapped indefinitely within the realm of wishful thinking because the numbers aren't there for a wider Studio release. I own every single TT title and have watched and enjoyed all of them, and am still stunned by what this team has managed to achieve during such a brief period of time. Everyone's mileage will vary of course, I get that, but what I don't get is the insanely hostile attitude toward any company trying its best to raise the bar a bit, in whatever capacity their means allow.

 

Truth be, the last time I felt this enthused about the output of a single home video label was back in the Laserdisc era...another struggling little upstart player with a love of neglected catalogue titles and a head for quality called...uhm...what was that masthead again...oh yeah...the Criterion Collection.

 

* Especially Adam Gregorich's oft-quoted legacy HTF interview, which provided my earliest insight into what TT was up to and how.



#102 of 196 OFFLINE   Rob_Ray

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Posted September 10 2013 - 10:15 AM

I could have, and should have, written exactly what Mark said.  The Nick Redmans and George Feltensteins in the industry have been a blessing to collectors such as us because they aren't in it just for the money.  They are true fans of classic film like most of us here.



#103 of 196 OFFLINE   Ronald Epstein

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Posted September 10 2013 - 10:18 AM

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The Nick Redmans and George Feltensteins in the industry have been a blessing to collectors such as us because they aren't in it just for the money.  They are true fans of classic film like most of us here.

 

Very well said.  

 

I would also add the "Grover Crisps" of the industry to that list.


 

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#104 of 196 OFFLINE   Professor Echo

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Posted September 10 2013 - 11:30 AM

Any pre-1966 film that's not listed in Maltin's Classic Movie Guide is obscure enough for any video releasing company.

I believe Criterion and Alpha could make a good case against that.

#105 of 196 OFFLINE   Rob_Ray

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Posted September 10 2013 - 12:01 PM

I believe Criterion and Alpha could make a good case against that.

Alpha specializes in orphaned films so obscure that nobody bothered to renew their copyrights.  If Alpha releases it, you can almost guarantee that it's obscure.  I never knew that Wallace Ford had so many starring roles!



#106 of 196 OFFLINE   Professor Echo

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Posted September 10 2013 - 01:31 PM

Wallace Ford is one of my favorites, from pre-code supporting roles to poverty row leading man to an Oscar caliber performance late in life in A PATCH OF BLUE. The man constantly worked and always turned in excellent performances, no matter how little or big the roles.

#107 of 196 OFFLINE   Richard--W

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Posted October 19 2013 - 01:27 AM

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OneEyedJacks-1961-Paramount-six.jpg

 

Twilight Time might want to investigate the possibility of releasing One-Eyed Jacks (1961), a much-admired western starring Marlon Brando and Karl Malden with both general audience appeal and a strong cult-following. Possibly TT has looked into this film already and knows about its ownership and elements. Who owns the rights is anything but clear. It's either Paramount the original theatrical distributor, Marlon Brando's estate, his Pennebaker Productions, public domain, or a combination thereof. Columbia had TV rights for awhile. Since Paramount doesn't seem to want to own it, Twilight Time might be able to strike an advantageous deal with whomever does. The best transfer was issued on laser-disc by Paramount, but that is no longer acceptable for DVD. All the public-domain DVD's & blu-rays seem to be ports of that laser disc. A French DVD may have been sourced from the same transfer as the laser disc, but opinions differ on that.

 

Reportedly some 40-odd minutes were cut from the theatrical release. Rumors abound about cut footage surviving in private hands and studio vaults. Most people would be content to just buy a decent transfer of the theatrical release.

 

Anyhow, the film needs a champion. It merits the effort and expense. Even if the elements are only good enough for a DVD, you'll have no problem selling 3,000 copies very quickly. It's that popular, and fans have  been asking for a decent DVD since the dawn of the technology.

 

Just a suggestion.

 

OneEyedJacks-1961-Paramount-one.jpg



#108 of 196 OFFLINE   Billy Batson

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Posted October 19 2013 - 01:39 AM

Wow, I can only say good luck to them, now that would be a quick sell-out (if the were to keep it to 3000 copies). I did read somewhere on the net that Paramount did do an HD transfer from the original elements, but I don't know how true that is. I suppose with a bit of good will on all sides it could be possible. Watch this space.

#109 of 196 OFFLINE   Richard--W

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Posted October 19 2013 - 01:51 AM

I hadn't heard that Paramount made a hi-def transfer. I hope it's true.

 

If anyone knows the facts, post it here.

 

OneEyedJacks-1961-Paramount-France-half.jpg

 

OneEyedJacks-1961-Paramount-half.jpg

 


Edited by Richard--W, October 19 2013 - 01:53 AM.


#110 of 196 OFFLINE   WadeM

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Posted October 19 2013 - 04:47 AM

I would love it if they released a blu-ray of One-Eyed Jacks.



#111 of 196 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted October 19 2013 - 07:00 AM

One Eyed Jacks was already offered in BluRay from some crap source, so maybe it is soiled goods. Hope not.

 

The long-standing "considered best" is the R2 France Wild Side Video.



#112 of 196 OFFLINE   Richard--W

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Posted October 19 2013 - 07:30 AM

I haven't seen the Wild Side Video DVD. I'll hunt it up.

 

The Intergroove blu-ray looks like sh it on a shingle. When the wood is blue and the leather holster is green and the sand on the street is white you know something is wrong even though the fleshtones are fleshy. It's actually worse than The Searchers, if that's possible.



#113 of 196 OFFLINE   Billy Batson

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Posted October 19 2013 - 08:17 AM

I hadn't heard that Paramount made a hi-def transfer. I hope it's true. If anyone knows the facts, post it here.

I remembered where I read it a few years back, it was the filmscoremonthly site.http://www.filmscore...mID=1&archive=0

#114 of 196 OFFLINE   Robin9

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Posted October 20 2013 - 02:16 AM

I haven't seen the Wild Side Video DVD. I'll hunt it up.

 

The Intergroove blu-ray looks like sh it on a shingle. When the wood is blue and the leather holster is green and the sand on the street is white you know something is wrong even though the fleshtones are fleshy. It's actually worse than The Searchers, if that's possible.

 

The colors on my German BRD are much worse than those on The Searchers



#115 of 196 OFFLINE   Jari K

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Posted October 20 2013 - 03:17 AM

I could have, and should have, written exactly what Mark said.  The Nick Redmans and George Feltensteins in the industry have been a blessing to collectors such as us because they aren't in it just for the money.  They are true fans of classic film like most of us here.

 

Or at least they want to make you believe that they are "true fans". To me it's pretty clear what they're trying to achieve with these "limited to 3000 copies" titles. They try to create "collector's items" in a matter of months and create a buzz a la "OOP Criterion". At least I'm not buying it and I don't buy any of their releases (it's not that I need to, since many of them go "OOP" - 3000 copies is not much). Too bad, since the films itself are pretty good.

 

I know that the market has changed. People just don't buy that much DVD and Blu-rays anymore (outside the mainstream releases, at least). "Limited edition" is not 10 000 (or 30 000, 60 000, whatever) copies like it was back in the days, but to me 3000 is an insult. Insult as an movie collector and insult as a "true fan". It's just "buy our release and let the Ebay do the rest".

 

Besides, we all know that many of these titles will be re-released at some point and probably with better extras. Good, recent example is "The Fury": Twilight Time has isolated score while the UK release is loaded with extras (and has that isolated score also).

 

But don't get me wrong, since I'm not judging people who buy these TT releases. I understand that some of you simply need to buy them all - they're limited and all that. That's what collectors do. Many of these releases are also probably pretty good so I don't claim that they're trying to sell some mediocre stuff. But personally I feel that I have to draw that line somewhere. And for me 3000 copies is just that. Business model sucks.



#116 of 196 OFFLINE   Rob W

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Posted October 20 2013 - 04:44 AM

Jari, in order to be consistent with your thinking you should be refusing to purchase ALL Sony and Fox titles since they're the ones who licensed their titles to those despicable Twilight Time con artists . Me, I have no principles and think they're a great outfit......

#117 of 196 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted October 20 2013 - 06:06 AM

Or at least they want to make you believe that they are "true fans". To me it's pretty clear what they're trying to achieve with these "limited to 3000 copies" titles. They try to create "collector's items" in a matter of months and create a buzz a la "OOP Criterion". At least I'm not buying it and I don't buy any of their releases (it's not that I need to, since many of them go "OOP" - 3000 copies is not much). Too bad, since the films itself are pretty good.

 

I know that the market has changed. People just don't buy that much DVD and Blu-rays anymore (outside the mainstream releases, at least). "Limited edition" is not 10 000 (or 30 000, 60 000, whatever) copies like it was back in the days, but to me 3000 is an insult. Insult as an movie collector and insult as a "true fan". It's just "buy our release and let the Ebay do the rest".

 

Besides, we all know that many of these titles will be re-released at some point and probably with better extras. Good, recent example is "The Fury": Twilight Time has isolated score while the UK release is loaded with extras (and has that isolated score also).

 

But don't get me wrong, since I'm not judging people who buy these TT releases. I understand that some of you simply need to buy them all - they're limited and all that. That's what collectors do. Many of these releases are also probably pretty good so I don't claim that they're trying to sell some mediocre stuff. But personally I feel that I have to draw that line somewhere. And for me 3000 copies is just that. Business model sucks.

I don't have a problem with you having an opinion about this business model.  However, I thought this personal swipe was unnecessary and it doesn't reflect well on you and your argument.


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#118 of 196 OFFLINE   ahollis

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Posted October 20 2013 - 06:31 AM

Besides, we all know that many of these titles will be re-released at some point and probably with better extras. Good, recent example is "The Fury": Twilight Time has isolated score while the UK release is loaded with extras (and has that isolated score also).But don't get me wrong, since I'm not judging people who buy these TT releases. I understand that some of you simply need to buy them all - they're limited and all that. That's what collectors do. Many of these releases are also probably pretty good so I don't claim that they're trying to sell some mediocre stuff. But personally I feel that I have to draw that line somewhere. And for me 3000 copies is just that. Business model sucks.

I'm glad you know they will be released again. I don't know that. Just because a title is released in Europe does not mean it will be released in the US, this Forum is full of such threads of titles there but not here. I buy Twilight titles because I want them, not because they are limited and I have to own them. I had the opportunity to purchase Christine and Fright Night and could still buy Mindwrap but that's not my genre so pass. However, I will be ordering Oliver next week and have not made my mind up on The Way We Were. Are you upset that the business model is only 3000 copies or is there another reason? Every title I own has an immaculate transfer, picture and sound and a welcome addition to my collection.
"Get a director and a writer and leave them alone. That`s how the best pictures get made" - William "Wild Bill" Wellman


#119 of 196 OFFLINE   Keith Cobby

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Posted October 20 2013 - 07:04 AM

When would Pal Joey, Bell Book & Candle, The Big Heat, Cover Girl etc be released? I want my favourites now so that I can enjoy them for longer.



#120 of 196 OFFLINE   TravisR

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Posted October 20 2013 - 07:54 AM

Are you upset that the business model is only 3000 copies or is there another reason?

And considering that the vast majority of their titles haven't sold out and even the ones that have (except the horror titles) took months to go, I don't understand why it would matter to someone if there's 3,000 or 3,000,000 made.







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