Criterion will start releasing Wellspring (Winstar) library!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jay E, Feb 13, 2002.

  1. Jay E

    Jay E Cinematographer

    Joined:
    May 30, 2000
    Messages:
    2,483
    Likes Received:
    0
    Someone mentioned this article at DVDTalk so I went to the website
    www.hive4media.com/index.cfm?search=Criterion&section=2-1&sec_id=search&image.x=12&image.y=12 and posted it here as I thought it would make happy reading.
    Some movies just can’t stay out of the Criterion Collection.
    The DVD label has just been signed by Wellspring Media to produce new editions of titles in Wellspring’s catalog -- including one that was among Criterion’s earliest DVD releases.
    They include films by French New Wave directors François Truffaut, Eric Rohmer, Steven Soderbergh, and Rainer Werner Fassbinder.
    Wellspring, formerly Winstar TV & Video, wants to take advantage of the standards and technology that have improved so much in the four years since DVD appeared on the scene, said Al Cattabiani, Wellspring’s president and CEO.
    “Our catalog is just too big for us to do everything at once and we want to make sure when we want to put out a DVD it’s the best it can be, both aesthetically and technically,” Cattabiani said. “We needed a partner in order to do this, and who better than Criterion?”
    Criterion, which started the whole special-edition-on-disc trend back in the laserdisc days, has been lauded for producing high-quality DVDs of digitally cleaned-up versions of movies that are often packed with unique special features.
    USA Home Entertainment recently licensed one of its top titles, the Academy Award-winning Traffic, to Criterion, which will produce a two-disc special edition slated for release May 28. Criterion, part of foreign and classic film distributor Public Media Inc., will also produce a disc edition of USA’s In the Mood for Love.
    Special features on the Wellspring title discs might include audio commentaries, director’s cuts, deleted scenes, documentaries, scripts, filmmakers’ early shorts and storyboards, according to Wellspring.
    Eight titles are on the burner for the Criterion treatment, but others will likely follow, according to Cattabiani. Among the initial titles under the deal are Truffaut’s The 400 Blows and Jules and Jim, Fassbinder’s The Marriage of Maria Braun and Ali: Fear Eats the Soul, and Rohmer’s My Night at Maud’s and Claire’s Knee. The 400 Blows, Jules and Jim, My Night at Maud’s and Claire’s Knee are on DVD under the Winstar label. The 400 Blows was among Criterion’s first half dozen DVDs. That edition quickly went out of print and the title was subsequently released on disc by Wellspring when it was still Winstar.
    Wellspring’s previous discs have been criticized by DVD fans.
    Now Wellspring is making an effort to bring out better quality discs, either in partnership with a company like Criterion or on its own, Cattabiani said. For instance, Wellspring itself will reissue an improved, remastered edition of Akira Kurosawa’s Ran, as well as other European classics such as the political thriller Z and Jacques Demy’s Lola and Bay of Angels.
    All new titles will use remastered, restored prints at the very least, and some will contain extras such as audio commentaries and Dolby Digital 5.1 sound remixes.
    “We’re not getting out of the DVD business ourselves,” Cattabiani said. “We’re going to spend a lot of time upgrading our DVDs ourselves.”
    This is one of the greatest partnerships in the history of DVD!!!! Great to hear that Wellspring has finally seen the light.
     
  2. PatrickL

    PatrickL Second Unit

    Joined:
    May 13, 2000
    Messages:
    426
    Likes Received:
    0
    Fantastic! I'm especially thrilled about Ali: Fear Eats the Soul, one of my favorite films. And who could argue with an "improved, remastered" edition of Ran?
     
  3. Craig S

    Craig S Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2000
    Messages:
    5,727
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    League City, Texas
    Real Name:
    Craig Seanor
    Great news! Here's hoping Yi Yi is one of the titles they give to Criterion.
    Fox Lorber to Winstar to Wellspring. Hard to keep up with these guys' name changes.
     
  4. Scott_MacD

    Scott_MacD Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    May 13, 2001
    Messages:
    760
    Likes Received:
    0
    Is it possible to reissue The Killer and Hard-Boiled from Criterion under this arrangement?
     
  5. MatthewA

    MatthewA Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2000
    Messages:
    6,976
    Likes Received:
    794
    Location:
    Salinas, CA
    Real Name:
    Matthew
    Yes! Yes! Oh God yes!

    I hope Criterion will do the Wellspring library justice. I bought the DVD of Yi Yi but have been afraid to watch it because of what I've heard about the transfer. I guess that was a mistake.
     
  6. Cameron Seaman

    Cameron Seaman Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 1998
    Messages:
    708
    Likes Received:
    0
    AHH! Oh my, I'm going to cry! I really hope this means that they can release (or re-release) a few titles like:
    400 BLOWS!
    THE KILLER!
    HARD BOILED!
    I will be a good day if they can.
     
  7. Richard Kim

    Richard Kim Producer

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2001
    Messages:
    4,385
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hopefully Criterion will make titles like 400 Blows, The Killer and Hard Boiled with anamorphic transfers, and not just reissues of their previously OOP DVDs.
     
  8. Lance Nichols

    Lance Nichols Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 1998
    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hurray! I already have a line up of former Winstar/Fox Lorber titles that I dearly want to see remestered, and treated Properly. Yes, that is proper with a capital "P".

    I wonder how long we will have to wait for these to start hitting the shelves, and who we can speak to/email to sugest titles that need work. Can't wait until Ran comes out. I have wanted it baddly, but have held off for some time.

    Does Wellspring have a website yet?

    Thank you to both Criterion and Wellspring!
     
  9. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 1998
    Messages:
    5,584
    Likes Received:
    0
    I wonder how Criterion will handle reissues of their previous titles - do they get a new spine number?

    I hope the Rohmer titles get a box set if they are doing the complete series of Moral Tales, though that would be their biggest yet at six discs.
     
  10. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2000
    Messages:
    2,965
    Likes Received:
    24
     
  11. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2000
    Messages:
    2,965
    Likes Received:
    24
     
  12. Rain

    Rain Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2001
    Messages:
    5,015
    Likes Received:
    0
    Damn, I can't seem to avoid good news this week.
    Does this mean something bad is going to happen to me? [​IMG]
    Seriously though, this is terrific. Finally some of these films will get the respect they deserve!
    Long live Criterion!!!!
     
  13. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 1999
    Messages:
    6,499
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  14. Rain

    Rain Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2001
    Messages:
    5,015
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  15. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 1998
    Messages:
    5,584
    Likes Received:
    0
    While I haven't seen Winstar's Breathless, I did review both Le Petit Soldat and Les Carabiniers, and both have very nice transfers. debi did give Breathless an A for transfer, so I assume it is pretty reasonable.They also added full running commentary for it.
    I would also like to see the full Rohmer slate get Criterion box sets, and do hope the reissue spine numbers get an "a" designation, rather than a full redesignation. I also hope that if they go with the "a" that they will stick to the old spine art format for the low numbered titles so they match. [​IMG]
     
  16. HenrikTull

    HenrikTull Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2000
    Messages:
    469
    Likes Received:
    0
    Excellent news indeed.
    I feel sorry for the people who fleshed out over 200 bucks for their The Killer: Criterion Collection DVD if Criterion does indeed re-issue this title along with Hard Boiled. [​IMG]
     
  17. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 1998
    Messages:
    5,584
    Likes Received:
    0
    Not that I'm one of them, but those who paid for an OOP Criterion still have an OOP Criterion, regardless of any reissue. The collector's value remains.
     
  18. Jason Whyte

    Jason Whyte Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 1999
    Messages:
    1,439
    Likes Received:
    0
    Great, thanks a lot Criterion, you're going to make me even MORE broke now! [​IMG]
    This is wonderful news and I certainly hope more independent companies make connections with Criteron. I shouldn't even have to say how badly I want the company to pick up "Battle Royale".
    Oh, and Criterion: remaster "Yi Yi"!!!
    Jason
     
  19. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 1998
    Messages:
    7,585
    Likes Received:
    0
    Can Criterion handle a major increase in workload?

    It sounds like Wellspring will still be doing a lot of it's own work, like redoing Ran, and I wonder how much Criterion will be able to help.

    It's fine to want everything to go through Criterion but can it be done.

    I'd love to have good (non-shimmering) versions of Yi Yi and Ran.
     
  20. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 1999
    Messages:
    11,267
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jason, it's almost totally confirmed that BR has already been picked up for US distribution, and it's VERY unlikely they would sublicense to Criterion.
     

Share This Page