B&W Seasons of Bewitched and I Dream of Jeannie on DVD — Colored Versions or Urban Legend?

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Would there be someone “in the know” that could give an definitive answer on whether or not Sony’s release of the B&W seasons of Bewitched and I Dream of Jeannie were the colorized versions or the original B&W?

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Kevin Collins

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53 Comments

  1. Here you go

    https://www.hometheaterforum.com/co…-creeks-bewitched-full-series-release.344996/

    We went through this a couple years back, and had people turning off color, pulling caps from the old Columbia House VHSs, and the final determination is…

    It didn't really matter, they all look the same, no matter what source was used.

    That's not really an answer as to what was used, but it is an answer as to whether it's incorrect.

    Read through the thread, though. It's interesting.

  2. Supposed the way they colorized the black and white seasons, the luminosity for each pixel was supposed to match the luminosity of the black and white originals. Not sure how that works, exactly, since a pixel with 100 percent saturation and 42 percent luminosity will be darker than a pixel with 0 percent saturation and 42 percent luminosity, once you remove the color.

  3. The Grey scaled B/W Bewitched DVD sets the first Two seasons.

    The point is that Sony used a colorized turn the color off grey scale print for their B/W option on seasons one & two not the original print, if you have the colorized version & turn the color off then you get the exact same version as the B/W one that Sony offered, even though it is very different then the original version seen in the 1960's which you can see on the CH VHS tapes.

    That is just Sony being cheap & not wanting to pay for two restored versions.

    I don't consider the colors fake looking at all, in fact they in my view look very realistic as if they were filmed in color which creates a seamlessness as you go into the actual color filmed season 3.

    Even [email protected] when they got the color episodes as well in 1998 i think it was, used the restored grey scale prints in showing the B/W episodes before the colorization took place & as such the B/W episodes clearly looked as they do now & different then they had in the early 1990's when they had used the original un-restored prints from the 1960's, the restoration process altered the B/W look from the original well before the colorization took place.

    I thought they did a wonderful & overall superb & accurate job of colorizing Bewitched.

    Of course if you get the first two seasons in Color you get them in B/W as well, all you have to do is turn off the color on your remote control for your TV & it is exactly the same grey scale as the B/W sets are.

    The B/W sets are not an accurate replication of how Bewitched was originally seen in B/W in 1964 to 1966, if you want the original shadows, lighting, witchy feel, contrast and visual feel then you need to see original studio 16 mm prints or the Columbia House & Screen Gems VHS tapes which were done before the show was restored & remastered and used old 35 mm master prints that were made during the shows actual run from Fall 1964 thru the spring of 1966.

    The Columbia House tapes are especially as the show was originally seen in the vintage sense with the same aesthetic quality's that were seen back in the 1960's.

    So you really don't need to record or buy the shows again in B/W as you will have them already on your Color DVD's with the color turned off.

    So i am a proponent of the Colorized episodes as it is a Two for One deal in effect, both Color & B/W.

  4. atcolomb

    Me TV is showing the early black & white episodes of Gilligan's Island in color. I wished they would not do that.

    Not only that, but the image is now zoomed to fill the 16×9 frame. Those old colorized episodes didn't look fantastic in standard def 4×3, but they really look grungy zoomed in on that already blurry, low bandwidth station.

  5. Robbie^Blackmon

    Not only that, but the image is now zoomed to fill the 16×9 frame. Those old colorized episodes didn't look fantastic in standard def 4×3, but they really look grungy zoomed in on that already blurry, low bandwidth station.

    Those poor castaways. They suffered on that Island and now on tv reruns. :unsure:

  6. bmasters9

    Sacrilege, it is, that colorization!

    The Gilligan's Island season or colorization in general?

    I really don't mind it as long as both versions are available. I've only seen a couple of the Gilligan's Island
    colorized episodes. They could probably use an update.

    Come to think of it, CBS didn't do an I Love Lucy Special this spring with new colorized episodes.
    Anyone know why?

  7. MartinP.

    The Gilligan's Island season or colorization in general?

    I really don't mind it as long as both versions are available. I've only seen a couple of the Gilligan's Island
    colorized episodes. They could probably use an update.

    Come to think of it, CBS didn't do an I Love Lucy Special this spring with new colorized episodes.
    Anyone know why?

    I thought they only did those at Christmas.

  8. ^^^

    You're the victim of incorrect thinking! Heh!

    The past three years they've called them I Love Lucy Superstar Specials and aired colorized episodes with famous celebrities in them. Last year, May 19th, the episodes were the Hollywood episodes with Harpo Marx and Van Johnson. If you recall, around the same time last May, CBS also aired two Dick Van Dyke colorized episodes.

    I tried looking up something about this and found many queries about it but only one thing with any information. It's a post on the Lucy Lounge where the poster "tjw" wrote this last May:

    Sorry to report that there will NOT be a colorized I LOVE LUCY special on CBS this spring… However, we are at work colorizing two additional LUCY episodes, one of which will almost definitely be used as part of this year's I LOVE LUCY CHRISTMAS SPECIAL… The other will either be used as part of a spring special NEXT year, or held for the following Christmas…Just wanted you to know…

    I am assuming "tjw" stands for Thomas J. Watson who works on many Lucy related things.

  9. Matt Hough

    This is a fantastic job on The Addams Family. I never would have thought it was colorized.

    That person also did a fantastic job on The Munsters as well. If you had never seen either of these series before and you saw these clips, you would swear that they were always in color.

    This person also did a few clips of The Lucy Show Season 1 in color.

  10. CBS has stated to one other poster on some other topic here on the forum that they will not be doing a "Superstar Special" of "I Love Lucy" this year. They really didn't give a reason why (Budgeting maybe? Low Ratings on last special?)…..but they did state that there will be another colorized "I Love Lucy" episode during Christmas this year along with the "Christmas Episode" they do every year. I don't recall if they mentioned which new "I Love Lucy" episode was being colorized.

  11. Sorry I was going to write something about "Bewitched"/"I Dream Of Jeannie"/"Gilligan's Island" black and white episodes, but got off track on The "I Love Lucy" Specials. I don't mind watching the black and white episodes. I know some of the younger generation (friends of mine who have kids in their teens) don't like the black and white episodes. They don't understand why they would film these shows back then in black and white. So I do try my best to explain to them on some of the history on why some shows were filmed in black and white vs. color. And for me, I think that is what bothers me about colorization of these shows. Because your kind of revamping their "history". Shows like "Bewitched", "I Dream Of Jeannie", "Gilligan's Island", "Lost In Space", "The Andy Griffith Show" are some of the more popular shows that started out in black and white for the first one or two seasons (in the case of "Andy Griffith Show" the first five seasons were in black and white, which is also what I call the "Barney Fife" years, cause Don Knotts left the show coincidently before the show started filming in color). So there is some "history" to these shows that I personally think is missing on the younger generation. I prefer watching these shows in black and white, as they were originally done. I don't mind watching colorized versions of a show. In fact I am a HUGE fan of "I Love Lucy", which was never filmed in color. The new colorized versions, though sometimes a little too cartoonish with Lucy's red or should I say "orange" hair, are fun to watch and kind of gives new life to the younger generations of the talents of Ms. Lucille Ball. I just prefer that the history is still kept in tacked for the black and white versions, which CBS/Paramount does on the DVD releases of the colorized versions of "I Love Lucy" by giving both versions. That's just my two cents on the subject.

  12. Sorry I was going to write something about "Bewitched"/"I Dream Of Jeannie"/"Gilligan's Island" black and white episodes, but got off track on The "I Love Lucy" Specials. I don't mind watching the black and white episodes. I know some of the younger generation (friends of mine who have kids in their teens) don't like the black and white episodes. They don't understand why they would film these shows back then in black and white. So I do try my best to explain to them on some of the history on why some shows were filmed in black and white vs. color. And for me, I think that is what bothers me about colorization of these shows. Because your kind of revamping their "history". Shows like "Bewitched", "I Dream Of Jeannie", "Gilligan's Island", "Lost In Space", "The Andy Griffith Show" are some of the more popular shows that started out in black and white for the first one or two seasons (in the case of "Andy Griffith Show" the first five seasons were in black and white, which is also what I call the "Barney Fife" years, cause Don Knotts left the show coincidently before the show started filming in color). So there is some "history" to these shows that I personally think is missing on the younger generation. I prefer watching these shows in black and white, as they were originally done. I don't mind watching colorized versions of a show. In fact I am a HUGE fan of "I Love Lucy", which was never filmed in color. The new colorized versions, though sometimes a little too cartoonish with Lucy's red or should I say "orange" hair, are fun to watch and kind of gives new life to the younger generations of the talents of Ms. Lucille Ball. I just prefer that the history is still kept in tacked for the black and white versions, which CBS/Paramount does on the DVD releases of the colorized versions of "I Love Lucy" by giving both versions. That's just my two cents on the subject.

  13. I think colorization is good way to introduce new, younger viewers to an old b&w show they wouldn't normally watch.
    For older viewers like me who grew up on b&w reruns, it can be a distraction because I'm already familiar with them. It brings a new aspect to the viewing experience. I spend more time analyzing the color choices instead of paying attention to the story and performances.

  14. Ron Lee Green

    I think colorization is good way to introduce new, younger viewers to an old b&w show they wouldn't normally watch.
    I grew up on b&w reruns, so I find it distracting because I'm already familiar with them. It brings a new aspect to the viewing experience. I spend more time analyzing the color choices instead of paying attention to the story and performances.

    It is NOT a 'good way' to introduce younger generations to what is essentially a cultural artifact from another vintage in our ever-developing (or devolving, depending on one's point of view) pop culture. Younger generations, weaning their ever-shortening attention spans on today's muck need to be shown quality. Quality will always out. And quality is what you get when a show has been meticulously lit in B&W. However 'good looking' the color is (and I sincerely concede the color on these Addams Family and Munsters clips is superb) this is NOT how these shows were originally shown, nor is it what was intended by their creators. If you prefer, create a colorized version. But provide the public with BOTH versions, specifying the reason why. And remaster both from original camera negatives, where possible. Anything less is nothing short than a total bastardization of film/TV art.

    Again, I refer to the great cultural artifacts from other generations and cultures: the David sculpture of Michelangelo or Da Vinci's Mona Lisa. Should we pack David with some more steroidal muscle, simply because our ideal of the muscular male has changed over time? Why not give Mona some lipstick and rouge, and maybe some highlights in her hair because she looks nothing like today's modern woman? Well, the short answer is because these are time-honored works of art. TV and films are a more recent art form, but just as needy of our preservation rather than embellishment. Love art. Don't change it – period!

  15. Nick*Z

    If you prefer, create a colorized version. But provide the public with BOTH versions, specifying the reason why. And remaster both from original camera negatives, where possible. Anything less is nothing short than a total bastardization of film/TV art.

    Isn't that what CBS did on those colorized Lucy releases– both the colorized version and the original B/W for the same show, with the option to see it whichever way you wanted? IINM, that's how it was.

  16. The real problem I have with the DVD release of Bewitched S1 & S2 is the opening titles sequences are just B/W versions of the later color one. The original B/W titles had a different music arrangement and somewhat different animation. Of course, they also had a "sponsored by' voiceover, which is most likely they reason they've been replaced on DVD (and television).

  17. Nick*Z

    Quality will always out. And quality is what you get when a show has been meticulously lit in B&W. [?] However 'good looking' the color is […] this is NOT how these shows were originally shown, nor is it what was intended by their creators.

    Except then you have something like Season 2 of The Lucy Show which was filmed in color, but originally aired in b&w. Some other series did this as well. As for "intended by their creators"… movies weren't originally intended to be shown at home on a small screen, either. Or edited for television. TV series were intended to air with commercials. Books weren't meant to be condensed by Reader's Digest, were they? How many times has George Lucas fiddled around with the original Star Wars film? And sound recording is always being fiddled around with over the years. Also, what if the creators don't mind?

  18. MartinP.

    Except then you have something like Season 2 of The Lucy Show which was filmed in color, but originally aired in b&w. Some other series did this as well. As for "intended by their creators"… movies weren't originally intended to be shown at home on a small screen, either. Or edited for television. TV series were intended to air with commercials. Books weren't meant to be condensed by Reader's Digest, were they? How many times has George Lucas fiddled around with the original Star Wars film? And sound recording is always being fiddled around with over the years. Also, what if the creators don't mind?

    Okay, let's clarify here. Bewitched Seasons 1 and 2 were shot 'in B&W' and aired B&W! The Lucy Show was shot in color but aired B&W. So, to release a Lucy Show with both color and B&W options would be considered acceptable. Colorizing B&W images, however you slice it, is not – period!

    As for 'intended by creators' – movies shown on TV with commercial interruptions is annoying – yes, but still not a bastardization of the original content until you start to consider scenes cut out for time concision, and dialogue altered to keep tender ears from hearing profanity, and finally, unless, of course, those movies were also colorized, cropped or pan and scanned. Dumb practices.

    Your point about TV shows airing with commercials however is moot, since no writer or director shooting an episode is basing the content on his/her programming on whether Quaker Oats or Proctor & Gamble is their sponsor. And every 'creator' of a series knows nothing gets aired without corporate sponsorship. So, they have devised their episodes to fit neatly between commercial breaks.

    Books condensed for Reader's Digest? Apples to oranges, my friend. Pocket-sized editions are the domain of the publishing world and have no basis in this argument.

    But I don't think you'll find too many supporters here who think George Lucas' incessant tampering with the original Star Wars trilogy is anything but a travesty – artistic and otherwise.

    Sound recording being altered is again, okay, so long as the original sound mix is also provided. In most cases today, there are optional tracks to listen to, allowing the viewer their choice. Bewitched in its current release from Sony as a Box Set DOES NOT allow for choice. That's my problem with it!

    Finally, 'what if the creators don't mind?' Well, let's see. Most of the creators here are dead, so they cannot mind one way or the other. The rest are at the mercy of crass commercialism they have absolutely no creative control over. The studio dictates the release, not the show's creators. So much for that.

  19. Nick*Z

    It is NOT a 'good way' to introduce younger generations to what is essentially a cultural artifact from another vintage in our ever-developing (or devolving, depending on one's point of view) pop culture. Younger generations, weaning their ever-shortening attention spans on today's muck need to be shown quality. Quality will always out. And quality is what you get when a show has been meticulously lit in B&W. However 'good looking' the color is (and I sincerely concede the color on these Addams Family and Munsters clips is superb) this is NOT how these shows were originally shown, nor is it what was intended by their creators. If you prefer, create a colorized version. But provide the public with BOTH versions, specifying the reason why. And remaster both from original camera negatives, where possible. Anything less is nothing short than a total bastardization of film/TV art.

    Again, I refer to the great cultural artifacts from other generations and cultures: the David sculpture of Michelangelo or Da Vinci's Mona Lisa. Should we pack David with some more steroidal muscle, simply because our ideal of the muscular male has changed over time? Why not give Mona some lipstick and rouge, and maybe some highlights in her hair because she looks nothing like today's modern woman? Well, the short answer is because these are time-honored works of art. TV and films are a more recent art form, but just as needy of our preservation rather than embellishment. Love art. Don't change it – period!

    Nobody is talking about destroying an original piece of art like the Michelangelo or the Mona Lisa! That would be absurd. We're talking about a TV show that debuted in a era when the networks were making the switch to all-color programming. Some shows, like Bewitched and Jeannie, had to initially film in black and white because of budgets–not because they wanted to for "artistic reasons".

    I still stand by my belief that one of the pros of colorized TV shows is that it introduces younger generations to a show that they might not normally watch. I'm pretty sure the colorists are not destroying the original film elements. I did not say anything about destroying the Mona Lisa, but since you brought it up, that reminds me of the Bewitched episode where Aunt Clara zapped up Leonardo da Vinci, and Darrin wanted to use his Mona Lisa painting for a toothpaste campaign. LOL

    [​IMG]

    And then there's this:
    [​IMG]

  20. Remember that episode fondly too. PS – never said you said anything about dear Mona. That's my analogy of one art being more or less disregarded 'as art' while the other is clearly perceived – and justly so – as a masterpiece. Every generation produces its own cultural artifacts, suitable to the time – and timeless, as a result of fate, good timing and overall popularity with fans who, somehow or another, never forget it. Bewitched is a cultural artifact from the late sixties. It deserves as much consideration and preservation as such.

    PS – your comment about colorists not destroying original elements is moot. No, they're not. But denying the public access to original elements and only offering them colorized versions is NOT a good trade off. Original elements need their own archival preservation, later to be transferred faithfully and disseminated among the public at large. B&W is an art form in and of itself. It is an art worth preserving – not to dumb it down for a generation that ought to recognize there was an art – full formed and well worth their time and effort – that came before them. That too is a moot point.

    I was born in 1971. But I came to treasure reruns of old Abbott and Costello movies every Sunday morning and made in the 40's without any expectation they should be colorized for my benefit. Why B&W continues to be thought of – in some circles – as the 'lesser' to movies and/or TV shows made in color is really beyond all good sense of taste and logic.

    And it's the old apples to oranges argument all over again. By this logic we should be adding sound to all silent movies because today's generation will not sit through a movie without dialogue. Silly argument, isn't it?

  21. BobO’Link

    Her brother's favorite TV show of all time is I Love Lucy – first seen at my house via DVD.

    So it is with my nephew Eli as well– in fact, I've lately been working on getting him into Here's Lucy (granted, that one's in color naturally; I'm just trying to expand his horizons beyond the flagship).

  22. Nick*Z

    And it's the old apples to oranges argument all over again. By this logic we should be adding sound to all silent movies because today's generation will not sit through a movie without dialogue. Silly argument, isn't it?

    Interesting you bring up silent movies. Your enjoyment of a silent movie could depend on what score someone attaches to it. I've seen WINGS with a piano score accompaniment, an organ accompaniment and a full orchestral viewing with accomplished sound effect artists supplying sounds to many parts of the action. Which way did the creators want this work to be viewed? I saw THE COVERED WAGON with an organ score and really disliked the film. I saw it performed with a live combo with country music influences and the film was delightful.

    If you don't like colorization then my advice is to not watch anything that's colorized, that's your choice. I've always looked at it as just a different way to enjoy something that I've seen before. Maybe I don't mind it because I grew up in a household that didn't get a color television until like 1974. I only watched everything on b&w TV sets. So later on I'd watch syndicated reruns of all these shows and they'd be in color! Home video allowed me to see movies in color! So colorization isn't that big a deal to me.

    Conversely, some movies that I love to watch over and over again…I have on occasion turned the color off and watched them in black and white.

    (Forgive my lack of knowledge of technical terms in the following two paragraphs…)

    Do you also know that the digitalization of b&w looks different on a movie screen than the originals do. I saw a presentation at AMPAS one year in their "sciences" series where they showed a scene from a black & white film from an original nitrate print and then the next generation of film stock and then a digital presentation and there was a marked difference in the various presentations.

    AMPAS showed an original 1972 print of The Godfather done by the original color film lab that is since out of business. They said that these film prints look different than what has been struck later on. (I suppose computers could redo that look, no?) This print was the best looking version of The Godfather I'd seen and I'd only seen it the first time in the late 1980's.

    My point is that film experiences are almost never the same. How many of us went to revival theaters with faded prints and brittle film edits and faulty projectors? A film experience can be affected by your own mood, the weather, the theatre you're viewing it in, the audience around you, if your pants are too tight and dozens of other things. If one has certain expectations that are always to be met…well you'll probably never be satisfied.

    I'd never seen THE TEN COMMANDMENTS until 2-3 years ago when TCM was showing it in theaters as part of one of their classic movie programs. After the intermission, while the movie was playing it started to pixelate and, from those in the know, it then jumped or skipped to a scene a couple minutes later. (!)

    I used to work in the video store business and someone returned DRUMS ALONG THE MOHAWK and said they didn't watch it because they didn't want to see a colorized film.

    I wish I could find that article Kenneth Turan wrote during the first year(s) colorized movies were coming out. Many don't recall that the reaction to colorizing things was initially quite positive until some directors, notably Scorcese and Woody Allen, started the "artisitic integrity" meme. Turan's article deflated all that.

    By the way…Hal Roach's Topper is considered the 1st colorized film, and he was around in 1986-87, and he didn't mind it.

    It just comes down to yourself. If there's money to be made, good luck with stopping it. Colorization of things waned more in the beginning because of the way the early process looked…a lot less appealing than it has over the years since, more than with the opposition for artistic reasons. But, I say, as long as the choice is present for viewers, I certainly don't mind,

  23. I've been hearing both sides of this discussion for many years now. There is one vital thing that the pro-colorization crowd seems to miss time and time again.

    TV shows and films that were produced in Black and White used different lighting techniques, different make-up techniques, sometimes even the choice of materials/fabrics for costumes, not to mention all the work that went into the set designs. This includes the paints used on the set walls or wallpaper. Yes, these things were seen in the 'real world' in color but on film they were in Black and White and a lot of work went into every aspect of the picture we the audience saw. Colorization distorts that if not destroys it. Shadows and subtle shading gets lost. Most of the time the colorized picture looks flat, like a painting. In fact, that's what colorization looks like to me. A painting. I simply cannot understand how this flat painted look is more appealing than the original Black and White picture.

  24. Brian Himes

    I've been hearing both sides of this discussion for many years now. There is one vital thing that the pro-colorization crowd seems to miss time and time again.

    TV shows and films that were produced in Black and White used different lighting techniques, different make-up techniques, sometimes even the choice of materials/fabrics for costumes, not to mention all the work that went into the set designs. This includes the paints used on the set walls or wallpaper. Yes, these things were seen in the 'real world' in color but on film they were in Black and White and a lot of work went into every aspect of the picture we the audience saw. Colorization distorts that if not destroys it. Shadows and subtle shading gets lost. Most of the time the colorized picture looks flat, like a painting. In fact, that's what colorization looks like to me. A painting. I simply cannot understand how this flat painted look is more appealing than the original Black and White picture.

    Have you looked at the clips I posted of The Addams Family, The Munsters, and The Lucy Show, those clips look fantastic they don't look flat at all.

  25. I've never fully bought into the idea that colorization will bring in new viewers who otherwise wouldn't be viewing black and white programming. Why? Because the people whom I have encountered with prejudices against black and white films also harbor prejudices against almost anything old. Being in color or black and white seems to be immaterial. If it's deemed old, they won't watch it. Perhaps some people have been successfully introduced to watching classic programming through colorization, but I don't think that can be said for very many. I could be wrong though.

    As for colorization, I have always considered it as a novelty. I'll watch a colorized film for a few minutes out of curiosity but nothing beyond that. If the B&W originals are available, I'm not going to squawk about the presence of colorized versions. What I wouldn't mind seeing would be the technology being used to (sort of) reconstruct the color on color films that survive only in black and white (Sally, Show of Shows, On with the Show, Sweet Kitty Bellairs, etc.). That probably wouldn't be all that profitable though.

    If the referred organ score to The Covered Wagon is the one from the 1980s Paramount VHS and the recent Kino DVD/blu-ray, then that score was performed by the late theater organist Gaylord Carter. The man was the real deal. He actually accompanied silents for Sid Grauman in the 1920s, and he was considered one of the best organists. Luckily, he lived to a very ripe old age and recorded many of his scores which are still used today. His score for The Covered Wagon was based upon the cue sheets that Paramount compiled for the film's original release. I'm not saying you have to like the score (I can't stand Lee Erwin's organ scores, and he was one of Gaylord's contemporaries). However, if you want to get an idea of how silent films were actually accompanied back during their original exhibitions, it's a good example to reference.

  26. I've never fully bought into the idea that colorization will bring in new viewers who otherwise wouldn't be viewing black and white programming. Why? Because the people whom I have encountered with prejudices against black and white films also harbor prejudices against almost anything old. Being in color or black and white seems to be immaterial. If it's deemed old, they won't watch it. Perhaps some people have been successfully introduced to watching classic programming through colorization, but I don't think that can be said for very many. I could be wrong though.

    As for colorization, I have always considered it as a novelty. I'll watch a colorized film for a few minutes out of curiosity but nothing beyond that. If the B&W originals are available, I'm not going to squawk about the presence of colorized versions. What I wouldn't mind seeing would be the technology being used to (sort of) reconstruct the color on color films that survive only in black and white (Sally, Show of Shows, On with the Show, Sweet Kitty Bellairs, etc.). That probably wouldn't be all that profitable though.

    If the referred organ score to The Covered Wagon is the one from the 1980s Paramount VHS and the recent Kino DVD/blu-ray, then that score was performed by the late theater organist Gaylord Carter. The man was the real deal. He actually accompanied silents for Sid Grauman in the 1920s, and he was considered one of the best organists. Luckily, he lived to a very ripe old age and recorded many of his scores which are still used today. His score for The Covered Wagon was based upon the cue sheets that Paramount compiled for the film's original release. I'm not saying you have to like the score (I can't stand Lee Erwin's organ scores, and he was one of Gaylord's contemporaries). However, if you want to get an idea of how silent films were actually accompanied back during their original exhibitions, it's a good example to reference.

  27. Arthur Powell

    I've never fully bought into the idea that colorization will bring in new viewers who otherwise wouldn't be viewing black and white programming. Why? Because the people whom I have encountered with prejudices against black and white films also harbor prejudices against almost anything old. Being in color or black and white seems to be immaterial. If it's deemed old, they won't watch it. Perhaps some people have been successfully introduced to watching classic programming through colorization, but I don't think that can be said for very many. I could be wrong though.

    Sadly, Arthur is right about this. There are people who won't give classics a chance because they consider them "old". These types of people are the unfortunate victims of parents failing to introduce them to the classics at an early age like I was.

  28. MartinP.

    Interesting you bring up silent movies. Your enjoyment of a silent movie could depend on what score someone attaches to it. I've seen WINGS with a piano score accompaniment, an organ accompaniment and a full orchestral viewing with accomplished sound effect artists supplying sounds to many parts of the action. Which way did the creators want this work to be viewed? I saw THE COVERED WAGON with an organ score and really disliked the film. I saw it performed with a live combo with country music influences and the film was delightful.

    If you don't like colorization then my advice is to not watch anything that's colorized, that's your choice. I've always looked at it as just a different way to enjoy something that I've seen before. Maybe I don't mind it because I grew up in a household that didn't get a color television until like 1974. I only watched everything on b&w TV sets. So later on I'd watch syndicated reruns of all these shows and they'd be in color! Home video allowed me to see movies in color! So colorization isn't that big a deal to me.

    Conversely, some movies that I love to watch over and over again…I have on occasion turned the color off and watched them in black and white.

    (Forgive my lack of knowledge of technical terms in the following two paragraphs…)

    Do you also know that the digitalization of b&w looks different on a movie screen than the originals do. I saw a presentation at AMPAS one year in their "sciences" series where they showed a scene from a black & white film from an original nitrate print and then the next generation of film stock and then a digital presentation and there was a marked difference in the various presentations.

    AMPAS showed an original 1972 print of The Godfather done by the original color film lab that is since out of business. They said that these film prints look different than what has been struck later on. (I suppose computers could redo that look, no?) This print was the best looking version of The Godfather I'd seen and I'd only seen it the first time in the late 1980's.

    My point is that film experiences are almost never the same. How many of us went to revival theaters with faded prints and brittle film edits and faulty projectors? A film experience can be affected by your own mood, the weather, the theatre you're viewing it in, the audience around you, if your pants are too tight and dozens of other things. If one has certain expectations that are always to be met…well you'll probably never be satisfied.

    I'd never seen THE TEN COMMANDMENTS until 2-3 years ago when TCM was showing it in theaters as part of one of their classic movie programs. After the intermission, while the movie was playing it started to pixelate and, from those in the know, it then jumped or skipped to a scene a couple minutes later. (!)

    I used to work in the video store business and someone returned DRUMS ALONG THE MOHAWK and said they didn't watch it because they didn't want to see a colorized film.

    I wish I could find that article Kenneth Turan wrote during the first year(s) colorized movies were coming out. Many don't recall that the reaction to colorizing things was initially quite positive until some directors, notably Scorcese and Woody Allen, started the "artisitic integrity" meme. Turan's article deflated all that.

    By the way…Hal Roach's Topper is considered the 1st colorized film, and he was around in 1986-87, and he didn't mind it.

    It just comes down to yourself. If there's money to be made, good luck with stopping it. Colorization of things waned more in the beginning because of the way the early process looked…a lot less appealing than it has over the years since, more than with the opposition for artistic reasons. But, I say, as long as the choice is present for viewers, I certainly don't mind,

    Don't forget Orson Welles comment about colorization: "Tell Mr. Turner to keep his goddamn Crayolas away from Citizen Kane!"

    PS – I hope your reference to Drums Along The Mohawk was meant to illustrate the ignorance of the customer. 'Drums' was always a 3-strip Technicolor movie.

  29. darkrock17

    Sadly, Arthur is right about this. There are people who won't give classics a chance because they consider them "old". These types of people are the unfortunate victims of parents failing to introduce them to the classics at an early age like I was.

    Absolutely my point. Colorization will not 'bring' an audience who has zero interest in Cary Grant, per say, to formulate an interest in Cary Grant. You either love vintage or you don't. Just as applying lipstick to a sow doesn't make her Miss America, colorizing All About Eve will never make it Fifty Shades of Grey. Thank heaven!

  30. If colorization will not 'bring' an audience, then I wonder exactly who is watching all those highly-rated I Love Lucy colorized specials that CBS airs every year in prime time? Surely, not the b&w purists. I watched the first one out of curiosity but it looked fake to me, so I never bothered to set my recorder whenever a new special came on.
    And just for the record, I'm not a fan of colorization myself. As I said in an earlier post, I prefer to watch Bewitched in b&w and I find the colorization distracting and I hated the abundant use of pastels.
    I was just trying to keep an open mind and see things from both sides of the spectrum, but this topic seems the same as arguing about politics and religion. lol

  31. Nick*Z

    Don't forget Orson Welles comment about colorization: "Tell Mr. Turner to keep his goddamn Crayolas away from Citizen Kane!"

    PS – I hope your reference to Drums Along The Mohawk was meant to illustrate the ignorance of the customer. 'Drums' was always a 3-strip Technicolor movie.

    I've encountered several people (one PhD in fact) who have sworn up and down to me that both Gone with the Wind and The Wizard of Oz were colorized. One even tried telling me that the first time he saw Oz it was in black and white. When I asked him if that viewing on a B&W TV, he said yes but didn't seem to get the contradiction. :laugh:

  32. Ron Lee Green

    If colorization will not 'bring' an audience, then I wonder exactly who is watching all those highly-rated I Love Lucy colorized specials that CBS airs every year in prime time? Surely, not the b&w purists. I watched the first one out of curiosity but it looked fake to me, so I never bothered to set my recorder whenever a new special came on.
    And just for the record, I'm not a fan of colorization myself. As I said in an earlier post, I prefer to watch Bewitched in b&w and I find the colorization distracting and I hated the abundant use of pastels.
    I was just trying to keep an open mind and see things from both sides of the spectrum, but this topic seems the same as arguing about politics and religion. lol

    I think that those colorized Lucy and Dick Van Dyke specials are probably bring in some vintage TV fans as well as some people who are just curious to see the color results. I remember reading that Fox was touting back in the 1980s the high ratings for the then newly colorized Miracle on 34th Street and how those ratings were much higher than those for the airings of the standard B&W version over the past several years. Granted, I'm definitely seeing the issue with hindsight, but those higher ratings were brought about because of people curious to see how the film would play in color and not necessarily an indictment against the black and white version.

  33. Brian Himes

    I've been hearing both sides of this discussion for many years now. There is one vital thing that the pro-colorization crowd seems to miss time and time again.

    TV shows and films that were produced in Black and White used different lighting techniques, different make-up techniques, sometimes even the choice of materials/fabrics for costumes, not to mention all the work that went into the set designs. This includes the paints used on the set walls or wallpaper. Yes, these things were seen in the 'real world' in color but on film they were in Black and White and a lot of work went into every aspect of the picture we the audience saw. Colorization distorts that if not destroys it. Shadows and subtle shading gets lost. Most of the time the colorized picture looks flat, like a painting. In fact, that's what colorization looks like to me. A painting. I simply cannot understand how this flat painted look is more appealing than the original Black and White picture.

    I took a tour of the Warner studios back in the 1970's and a guy who had painted backdrops and did set design for many Warner films and TV (including Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?) was asked if they painted the background murals any differently for a b&w production than for color and he said NO they did not.

    I'm sure there are examples of this off and on, but nothing is absolute.

    As for this:

    Brian Himes

    Shadows and subtle shading gets lost.

    It's gotten lost in the use of nitrate film to safer film stocks to digitalization of b&w films, too, but don't let that worry you.

  34. Nick*Z

    Don't forget Orson Welles comment about colorization: "Tell Mr. Turner to keep his goddamn Crayolas away from Citizen Kane!"

    Don't forget that when Topper was first colorized Hal Roach as well as Cary Grant were quite enthusiastic about it.

    Nick*Z

    PS – I hope your reference to Drums Along The Mohawk was meant to illustrate the ignorance of the customer. 'Drums' was always a 3-strip Technicolor movie.

    It was meant to show how a vocal campaign to demonize colorization in its infancy was affecting people in various ways.

    Although several silent films had the hand-painted color treatment and no one seemed to mind that at the time.

  35. Arthur Powell

    I've encountered several people (one PhD in fact) who have sworn up and down to me that both Gone with the Wind and The Wizard of Oz were colorized. One even tried telling me that the first time he saw Oz it was in black and white. When I asked him if that viewing on a B&W TV, he said yes but didn't seem to get the contradiction. :laugh:

    I hope that wasn't the guy with the PhD….

  36. That reminds me of the time a girl that that was in one of my film classes at my local community college swore up and down that Psycho was a Universal film and not Paramount. I told her Paramount released it originally and then the rights transferred to Universal a few years later. But, she wouldn't have any of my explanation, so finally after this went on for a bit I finally proved t her that it was. I showed her on YouTube that it was in fact a Paramount film. After that she stayed quite for a bit until she was at again with yet another movie.

    We'll to make a long story short

    It doesn't matter what you tell someone, some people are too admit/thick-headed to be proved that they are in fact wrong.

  37. The Obsolete Man

    Here you go

    https://www.hometheaterforum.com/co…-creeks-bewitched-full-series-release.344996/

    We went through this a couple years back, and had people turning off color, pulling caps from the old Columbia House VHSs, and the final determination is…

    It didn't really matter, they all look the same, no matter what source was used.

    That's not really an answer as to what was used, but it is an answer as to whether it's incorrect.

    Read through the thread, though. It's interesting.

    "Interesting" is the right word, even the black & white/color debate in this thread.

    I was aware of the prior thread. Thanks, Robert, for providing the link.

    Larry Tate, would you know where I can see the Japanese extra on Bewitched you spoke of here?

  38. I have Sony's black and white DVD sets of Bewitched seasons 1 and 2, and I Dream Of Jeannie season 1. While these DVD sets might be the colorized ones with the color turned off, it's not an issue for me, I just want to have the episodes in black and white as they were originally seen, no colorized junk for me.

  39. I'm currently watching season 1 of I Dream of Jeannie, in the original B&W. I have to say that it would have been much better in color. It's set in Florida, and shows set in sunny tropical places generally look pretty depressing in black and white. (SEE ALSO: Season 1 of Gilligan's Island). But I always want to see a show the way it was originally presented.

  40. With the colorful tropical island setting, I think Gilligan's Island should have been filmed in color from the beginning. The first season in black and white looks pretty drab.

    However, with I Dream Of Jeannie, the first season looks good in black and white because it fits the mood of the show, during the first season the episodes were more subdued, it was more of a fantasy/romantic comedy. After it switched to color in season 2, the show started becoming more zany, eventually almost resembling a live action cartoon, and the color episodes certainly fit that mood.

    The first two seasons of Bewitched in black and white are fine too, then for season 3 in 1966-67 it was ready for the switch to color.

  41. Robbie^Blackmon

    Not only that, but the image is now zoomed to fill the 16×9 frame. Those old colorized episodes didn't look fantastic in standard def 4×3, but they really look grungy zoomed in on that already blurry, low bandwidth station.

    i was ecstatic when i found out that Dish was carrying METV that was until i saw it, its so pixelated and blurry i can't watch it thats not to mention it's cropped 4×3

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