A new "Gunsmoke" DVD release in August? Could be....

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Charles Ellis, May 18, 2006.

  1. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    I just checked out Barrie Maxwell's column at the "The Digital Bits"
    website, and apparently Paramount is gonna put out something called
    Gunsmoke: The Director's Edition. Another website confirms
    this. I think it may be a new collection of classic episodes chosen
    by the show's directors and I would not be surprised if commentaries
    were part of the DVD deal too. At least that's what I think! Here
    are some links. Anyone else know about this release?

    http://dvd.themanroom.com/dvd-newsview.php?id=0076

    http://www.thedigitalbits.com/articl...ll051706b.html
     
  2. Bob Hug

    Bob Hug Screenwriter

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    Charles, this is the first that I've heard this news and it's kind of bittersweet. On the one hand, it means more episodes released on DVD; on the other, it suggests that Paramount has no real plans for full season releases of this Western classic. But I bought set 1 in January (I have a preference for the black & white years with Dennis Weaver) and the extras that Paul Brownstein was able to include on the set were great.
     
  3. Nick Zbu

    Nick Zbu Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm getting worried about that as well. With Have Gun Will Travel stopped at Season 3, they're probably just putting out feelers via this Gunsmoke set to see if anybody wants. In all honesty, the only way we could get satisfaction is if Paramount put the entire run out in some massive set.
     
  4. Randy Korstick

    Randy Korstick Producer

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    Paramount is not getting an accurate feel for the "real" Gunsmoke market because many will not buy best of sets. It also didn't help when the best of set they released was pretty poor. The color episodes are in horrible shape and no remastering was done. I don't think a complete 20 season set would be realistic but they could easily do 4 seasons a year and have the whole series out in 5 years.
     
  5. Jeff_HR

    Jeff_HR Producer

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    Do you really think ANY company will put out 20 yrs worth of a TV series? Just have one small sales glitch & NO MORE season sets. If I can't have all the seasons, well...........
     
  6. Randy Korstick

    Randy Korstick Producer

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    How about 28 Seasons of Star Trek for Starters and before you say " But its Star Trek "...
    All the spinoffs were not even on a Major Network and they never commanded the ratings that Gunsmoke did during its 20 year run.
    MASH ran for 11 Seasons and they just finished with it on DVD and there are many other series just started or in progress that ran for 8 years or more. If its not high on your list thats ok but it doesn't mean that Gunsmoke couldn't or shouldn't be done right on DVD.
     
  7. Jeff_HR

    Jeff_HR Producer

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    But "Gunsmoke" is high on my list (As is St. Elsewhwere, but that show is another story). The present marketing scheme for "Gunsmoke" seems to be the wrong way to market it. MASH & Star Trek were of more recent vintage. You know the old saying, "Out of sight - Out of mind". I'm hoping that another "old" TV show called "Perry Mason" will see all of the seasons released.
     
  8. Randy Korstick

    Randy Korstick Producer

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    Well great we are in the same boat then.
    I'd be willing to take the chance of only getting a few season sets of Gunsmoke and then they stop. If we can't get the whole series I would rather have a few season sets than a few Best ofs.
     
  9. Jeff#

    Jeff# Screenwriter

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    Each Star Trek series has to be treated individually like any other....in that the 1960s original lasted 3 years, the unreleased cartoon series for 2 years, most of the sequel series ran for 7 years each, and Enterprise for 4 years. It was the enormous fan following that caused all of those series to make it to DVD. And that doesn't even take into account the many feature film sequels. I treasure GUNSMOKE far and above any Star Trek series (and I don't even collect Star Trek even though I've seen them all....once each), but the fact is that GUNSMOKE doesn't have as large a fan following unfortunately. You can, however, get the entire GUNSMOKE radio series (well over 400 episodes with William Conrad as Matt Dillon) for free by downloading Mp3 files from several websites. One would think the TV series and James Arness would get the respect they deserve.
     
  10. Randy Korstick

    Randy Korstick Producer

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    Just considering the fact that the Gunsmoke Columbia House VHS tapes still get one of the highest E-bay bids of any Columbia House series tells me that the market and fan base for Gunsmoke DVD's is extremely underestimated. Since they have never released season sets of Gunsmoke its hard to really say how well they would sell. With the fact that MASH is on TV so much on so many different channels everyday I would have never thought it would sell well enough to release all 11 seasons but it did. Gunsmoke is not as overexposed on TV which seems to create a market for classic and well remembered shows.
     
  11. Bob Gu

    Bob Gu Supporting Actor

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    Instead of these three best of collections they should have put out three no frills sets like PERRY MASON and RAWHIDE.

    They should have done: The First Season of half-hour shows, The first season of black and white hour shows and the first season of color episodes. They could continue with which season group sold best. This might create fan interest: "Hey where are the rest of the half-hour seasons"?

    They could go the info-mercial route: They could get Burt Reynolds, Buck Taylor, and James Arness...as Matt Dillon, to host it. Does Arness still own GUNSMOKE?
     
  12. michael_ks

    michael_ks Screenwriter

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    An excellent idea and the best way to market a 20 year series that had these fundamental changes. So much better than releasing a 3 disc set with episodes spanning the entire series run:

    http://tvshowsondvd.com/newsitem.cfm?NewsID=6203
     
  13. Nick Zbu

    Nick Zbu Stunt Coordinator

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    Not to go too far off-topic, but I'm confused why studios just don't put out barebones sets either. If anything, it can stop people on eBay from charging out the nose for shows. The market exists, but it's insane to think that every single DVD release is going to be massive. Just put them out there, if anything to keep your investment going. No sense letting them rot.

    But I'm sure this has been said before. Companies are so stupid. [​IMG]
     
  14. Roy Wall

    Roy Wall Supporting Actor

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    I'm gonna buy it. "Mannon" is a personal favorite.
     
  15. Jeff#

    Jeff# Screenwriter

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    Not since Arness sold his share of the show to CBS around 1962. After just a few seasons, "The Arness Production Company" (or words to that effect) no longer appeared in the end credits.

    If GUNSMOKE ever was released in entire season collections, it would be kind of silly to jump around to different eras. True -- the show is usually better as an hour than a half-hour, because of there being the extra time for character development. True -- the production values and music improved substantially in the last B & W year (1965-66). True -- it's more realistic in color. Ultimately, with the exception of the characters, these factors are not what makes a great TV series. The show proved it could be entertaining in the half-hour format in the first 6 years (it was that way on the radio too for 10 seasons). The show was great with Chester and equally entertaining with Festus. Quint was an interesting character who didn't make much of an impact in his 2 years+ on the show. Thad Greenwood was one of the weakest characters, yet he was around for 2 years.

    And true -- it would be most appropriate to release the series in order by each season, regardless of how many years it takes. But we all know that hinges on how well it sells in the marketplace.

    CBS Video felt that doing Anniversary and "Directors" editions of GUNSMOKE with tons of extras will sell more discs. Maybe....and that could later open the door to what we all want. [​IMG]
     

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