Anamorphic Menus on Full-Screen Releases

Discussion in 'DVD' started by GerardoHP, Nov 26, 2004.

  1. GerardoHP

    GerardoHP Supporting Actor

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    I frequently wonder why do studios put anamorphic menus on full-screen releases and viceversa.

    I find it really annoying when I'm watching a full-screen DVD in the zoom or theater mode on my 16X9 and can't see the whole menu, usually at the bottom of the screen.

    In the latest Gone With the Wind set, almost all the menus are anamorphic, so the figures appear distorted because my DVD player is always on 16X9 mode. Fortunately, someone got smart on that DVD and kept all the menu options at the center of the screen so they never go out of frame even when watching the video in zoom mode.

    Why do they do this?
     
  2. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Executive Producer

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    I'm not sure, to be honest with you. The menu people are probably different than the transfer people, and the menu people prefer to work in 16x9.

    But let me get this straight: You watched Gone with the Wind zoomed in?
     
  3. Josh Simpson

    Josh Simpson Supporting Actor

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    It is slightly annoying, but as long as the movie is in its OAR, it doesn't bother me too badly.
     
  4. GerardoHP

    GerardoHP Supporting Actor

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    I appreciate your concerns but please let's not digress. I really would like to know the rationale behind these menus if anyone knows it.
     
  5. ThomasC

    ThomasC Lead Actor

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  6. GerardoHP

    GerardoHP Supporting Actor

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    That's certainly one possibility, but it's hard for me to believe that's all there is to it.

    I mean, someone must be coordinating every aspect of the presentation on efforts of the caliber of the GWTW set. So why would they allow the menus to appear vertically stretched when they could simply make them non-anamorphic.

    What I'm saying is -- and I imagine we've all noticed this -- that if your DVD player is set for 16X9 TV's, then the menus will appear vertically stretched whenever your TV is not in the Full mode.
     
  7. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    This is why I won't buy a 16x9 TV unless it can automatically detect the screen formats and switch modes by itself.
     
  8. Darren Gross

    Darren Gross Supporting Actor

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    Howdy Jesse.

    My set detects and switches automatically. If it's 16x9, bip, the screen converts to the correct shape.

    Let's say I click on a 4x3 bonus feature from a 16x9 menu, zip, the monitor adjusts to the correct shape as well. Then back when the program's over and the menu cycles back.

    I've got a Loewe Aconda, but I'm told that most if not all 16x9 sets have an auto detect option.

    As for menu encoding, many companies will encode both 4x3 and 16x9 menus on the disc and the correct one will be accessed depending on your player settings.

    The defaults on most monitors are 4x3 and 16x9 mode and authorers wouldn't expect someones set to be in zoom or another mode as a rule of thumb.

    As for why 16x9 menus, I would think that other than being aesthetically pleasing, it helps prevent 4x3 burn-in on monitors, if the menu is left on for a significant time especially if they are motion menus.
     
  9. Jonathan_Clarke

    Jonathan_Clarke Second Unit

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    I find that really strange myself. The Seinfeld dvds have 16X9 menus and I have to switch from 'full' to 'just' when I choose an episode.
     
  10. Christian Preischl

    Christian Preischl Screenwriter

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    You never seize to learn. I didn't even know there were 16x9 TVs that didn't switch automatically. Even my 10+ years old 4x3 TV (which has a 16x9 mode and can utilize the full DVD resolution) does it.

    Chris
     
  11. MikeEckman

    MikeEckman Screenwriter

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    The Friends boxed set seasons are like this, however seasons 1 and 2 were 4x3 menus. I wonder why they switched? Doesnt bother me though. I am only looking at the menus for a couple seconds anyway, plus my Sony WEGA auto detects between the two and switches for me! [​IMG]
     
  12. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

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    Not if you have to switch your TV to standard. This is just pure laziness IMO. If the content is 4x3, the menus should be 4x3.
     
  13. Will_B

    Will_B Producer

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    Until recently, only high end DVD menu creation systems offered the ability to make widescreen menus for widescreen films. So that would explain why all the low-budget studios weren't making widescreen menus. Doesn't explain why major studios continue to put old fashioned square menus on modern widescreen releases.
     
  14. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    Firstly, get a DVD player that can zoom for you and convert from 4x3 to 16x9 on the fly.

    Secondly, we shouldn't even talk about "zooming" OAR 1.33:1 material Begone Heretic! [​IMG]

    Thirdly, what *really* pisses me off are P/S 4x3 DVDs (not OAR) with 16x9 menus...because it's like rubbing salt in the wound that "we knew all about 16x9 because we made our menu to fit your HD display...now get ready for the P/S trash when you view the feature film."
     

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