Buffy Season 4 in Widescreen. Yech! (R2)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Kai Zas, Jun 30, 2002.

  1. Kai Zas

    Kai Zas Second Unit

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    Bit of a letdown, actually. It mostly looks realy good, but the show was made for full-screen. And is shows.

    There's a lot of episodes where the extra room shows you people's hands handling scary stuff, like vines that are supposedly moving on their own. Other shots show stage equipment or lighting-racks. Then there's the shots of the campus and other out-door scenes that show the black thing of the lenses all around the edges.

    You know how annoying it is to sometimes see the microfone dangle on tv-shows? Well, this is a whole new annoyance.

    It's a shame they didn't edit these shots to hide the stuff we're not supposed to see.

    Me, I'd prefer full screen just this once.
     
  2. Kenny Goldin

    Kenny Goldin Second Unit

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    I've never heard of "butchering OAR" in reverse...interesting. I wonder if they think we are strictly "widescreen" freaks as opposed to OAR freaks? If it was shot 4:3 then that is what I want...

    On a side note, I really hate Seth Green. Ugh.
     
  3. Matthew Chmiel

    Matthew Chmiel Cinematographer

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    All the episodes of Season 4 were filmed in 16x9. All of the directors played around with the 16x9 frame, except Joss Whedon who prefers 4:3 (except on Once More, With Feeling in Season 6).
     
  4. Kai Zas

    Kai Zas Second Unit

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  5. Christian Preischl

    Christian Preischl Screenwriter

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    Hi,
    Actually, that's the way it was planned. But Seth's leaving the show rather abruptly put an end to that and they cut her story line short.
    And Seth Green rocks, by the way. [​IMG]
    Chris
     
  6. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    Because all kinds of people whined like little bitches that they wanted Buffy in widescreen. I believe that Fox has adopted an "if it's filmed in widescreen at all, it's 16:9" policy, which is usually good, but at least in this case a bad thing
     
  7. Bill GrandPre

    Bill GrandPre Cinematographer

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    There's definitely a double standard when it comes to releasing television in widescreen. The same people who bitched when "Willy Wonka" was released in open-matte, which actually showed *more* picture, had no problems with television shows like "The X-Files" being released open-matte. With "X-Files", all footage from previous seasons and the opening sequence had to be matted down to fill the widescreen frame, and opening up the sides showed footage that, like your Buffy examples, was never meant to be seen. One example I remember in Season 5 of "X-Files" was in the episode "Christmas Carol", when Emily's "mother" was shown lying dead in the bathtub, the actress in the tub was wearing a flesh-covered top, although she was obviously supposed to be nude. When the show is televised in it's original aspect ratio, this wouldn't be visible, but since it's been altered from the original aspect ratio, it's clearly visible.
     
  8. Robert Ringwald

    Robert Ringwald Cinematographer

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  9. Adam Tyner

    Adam Tyner Screenwriter

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  10. Eugene Hsieh

    Eugene Hsieh Supporting Actor

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  11. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    It's not quite an OAR butchering, because the filmmakers knew they were REQUIRED to film for both ratios. However, Joss has placed emphasis on the 4:3 area
     
  12. Michael St. Clair

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    Because emphasis for Buffy has been placed on the 4:3 area, the DVDs should be in 4:3.

    Hopefully by the time the R1 release comes, Fox has seen the error in their ways.

    Of course, if they do, there will be uninformed people screaming that the US got the shaft.
     
  13. Michael St. Clair

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  14. cafink

    cafink Producer

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    I believe you're mistaken on both counts, Michael. A 16:9-enhanced DVD can indeed be programmed to crop the sides for a 4:3 image. This is what's known as "pan and scan on the fly," and while it's rarely used for movies, many DVDs use the option to present their menus in either 4:3 or 16:9 depending on the ratio of your television.
    As for your point about alternate angles, I would have agreed with you, but I learned recently that Mr. Jim Taylor says that we're wrong:
    http://www.thedigitalbits.com/officialfaq.html#3.7
     
  15. Adam Barratt

    Adam Barratt Cinematographer

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    I just finished watching season four on DVD and although there were a few incidents of visible props, cameras and equipment, I didn't find them particularly distracting.
    I had read some complaints about the framing of these discs so approached them expecting the worst, but after viewing the discs believe the framing problem is being blown out of proportion. Most of the episodes look very well-framed, and were clearly shot with 1.78:1 in mind; the framing problems I saw were few and far between.
    Here are some screen caps of a few framing flaws:
    Hand on vines (Anya and Xander attacked by vines. Where the Wild Things Are.)
    Hendheld camera (Buffy and Faith falling down stairs. This Year's Girl.)
    Lens sun visor (Buffy and Riley at murder scene following Adam's escape. Goodbye Iowa.)
    Adam
     
  16. Mark_Davis

    Mark_Davis Extra

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    All the information I have read says that this was shot in 16:9 and framed for both 4:3 and 16:9 presentation...
    You say you want the 4:3 as that is how it was originally shown...
    Well in the UK we want it widescreen as that is how it was originally shown on BBC2 [​IMG]
    We got what we wanted and if you want the R1 release to be as you saw it then I'd get onto Fox.
    As an aside, despite the odd flaw the framing looks good to me and doesn't feel as cramped as the 4:3 compositions... Sky still insist on showing Buffy in 4:3 so I have seen both...
    Of course this raises the question of what is the OAR in this case anyway?... Unless you speak to every individual director you won't really know what he/she intended...
     
  17. Robert Ringwald

    Robert Ringwald Cinematographer

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    Like I said, when there's obvious mistakes like the last picture, there's something wrong.
    I'm just wondering why they didn't try to get rid of those mistakes when they could. They knew that BUFFY would be in re-runs on HDTV broadcasts in the future, that's why the framed for it.
    I won't be horribly pissed if it's released in widescreen, because they'll be anamorphic, and so I can just take some cardboard pieces over the sides to get rid of the 'mistakes'. [​IMG]
    But we're not wanting Buffy now it was originally 'shown' in the US, we want it how it was INTENDED.
     
  18. Mark_Davis

    Mark_Davis Extra

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    You can debate how it was INTENDED until the cows come home...

    Ask each director of each episode of Buffy which ratio they intended when shooting it and you'll have your answer...

    Joss Whedon's word is not law in this case as the intention is down to the cinematographer and director on set.

    They were originally shot in 16:9 with a view to it being shown in 4:3 or 16:9... so which was intended?

    Same with films, which ratio did Romero intend when he shot Dawn of the Dead?... I've seen 1.85:1, 1.66:1 and 4:3 prints and they all claim to be correct... Romero supposedly prefers the 1.66:1 but this isn't certain...

    Raimi shot Evil Dead in 4:3 but now he claims they always intended to matte it to 1.85:1... which is funny because there is some nasty cropping in the 1.85:1 ratio... we need to go back to Raimi in the early 80's to ask him his intentions.

    Seems to me in this case that both 4:3 and 16:9 are valid choices and some of the episodes in the 16:9 version definitely shows framing which leans more towards 16:9 (Extra information is not just blank space, characters don't look incredibly cramped in frame etc).... by the same token certain episodes look better framed in 4:3 (the extra space is wasted or unwanted props appear in shot)... Maybe a mixture of 4:3/16:9 dependant on episode would be better?

    I should also point out that I am not adverse to black bars on the sides of my TV picture.... for instance I am perfectly happy with my Kubrick discs as that is what he intended...
     
  19. Adam Tyner

    Adam Tyner Screenwriter

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  20. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    Raimi would not have sent Bruce to SPECIFICALLY oversee said transfer if he did not want the film to be a certain way for the new 1.85:1 transfer

     

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