ManW_TheUncool

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All this certainly puts a damper on my upcoming plans to (completely?) overhaul the HT over the next year or two... :huh:

_Man_
 

Jake Lipson

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Even a tie in isn't guaranteed. Dumbo 2019 was put on UHD and the original is nowhere to be seen. :/
I think that's because they've apparently decided anything older than a certain point doesn't get UHD. As I noted before, The Little Mermaid is the oldest animated classic to be offered on UHD.

I would think that something like Pirates of the Caribbean would be likely for a tie-in whenever that new reboot they're working on comes out, because Pirates is still a modern franchise and something they view as currently active.

But in addition to your example, they chose not to release Mary Poppins on UHD even when Mary Poppins Returns came out that way. So there is clearly a recency bias involved here.
 

Paul_Warren

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Then I guess you really didn’t mean “blind buys“ which would mean you had never seen them. :)
Blind buys as in blind buying the 4K UHD if it was ever available!

Off to watch Flash Gordon now in glorious 4K UHD HDR as Studio Canal are more than happy to produce 4K UHD discs for many classic films & also spend money on producing some beautiful transfers & Flash Gordon alone had 500 hours worth of remastering put into it so it seems a little rich that Disney with way more resource than Studio Canal cannot do the same for so many big titles they now control!! :rolleyes:
 

Stephen_J_H

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Blind buys as in blind buying the 4K UHD if it was ever available!

Off to watch Flash Gordon now in glorious 4K UHD HDR as Studio Canal are more than happy to produce 4K UHD discs for many classic films & also spend money on producing some beautiful transfers & Flash Gordon alone had 500 hours worth of remastering put into it so it seems a little rich that Disney with way more resource than Studio Canal cannot do the same for so many big titles they now control!! :rolleyes:
Flash Gordon is a cult classic and has a built in audience who would be more than willing to double and triple dip for upgrades. Can't say that for most catalogue titles.
 
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Brandon Conway

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And MGM does not have a set home media partner at this time. Their deal with Fox ended in June.
Their new distribution for catalog is Warner. As things stand, however, I'd expect very little to come from MGM themselves (via WB distribution) as most of their catalog is licensed out to various labels (Arrow, Shout, Kino, Criterion, Vinegar Syndrome, etc,). They're one of the few major catalog rights holders to license out 4K UHD to 3rd party as well (licensing Hannibal and now 3 more unannounced titles to Kino). So, aside from maybe Rocky and Bond films getting new 4K UHD reissues, I don't see much coming via the MGM/WB distribution.
 
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Josh Steinberg

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Agreed. Warner themselves is forming a joint venture with Universal for new release titles on physical media, I believe it was set to launch in 2021. That right there speaks to the rapid decline of physical media and their business expectations for it in the next few years - they don’t anticipate sales being enough to justify having departments dedicated solely to physical media and are partnering with each other to reduce overhead in response to changing consumer preferences. I think in their press release there was an indication that they didn’t expect physical media to be viable as a mass market product beyond the decade.

Consumers have spoken with their wallets, and what they’ve said loud and clear is that subscription streaming is their preference, with over $15 billion in yearly revenue and rising, as physical media sales continue to decline to $3 billion and still sinking. At its peak, physical media was nearly a $20 billion a year business.

Disney isn’t interested in maintaining the kind of infrastructure necessary to release catalog physical media titles that will most likely sell hundreds of copies, maybe low thousands, with that number coming down all the time. In the past year or so, they’ve thrown what should be two of the most popular series at the format - the MCU titles and the Star Wars titles - and neither series made the sort of splash that disc releases used to receive.

I don’t think this is a surprising strategy from a company that has shifted to only producing large entertainments aimed at the largest possible audience.

And none of this suggests that the actual content is going away. It’s simply shifting from an older method of distribution that is falling out of favor with the general audience to one that the general audience has wholeheartedly embraced. If there was a market to sell hundreds of thousands of copies of old titles at premium prices, they’d be on it.
 

Ejanss

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Wow, you’ve never seen any of those films before? You need to get busy!
Any (ahemmillennial) who has never seen Poseidon Adventure, Towering Inferno, The Omen, Patton, or the original Heston POTA has NO IDEA why people went to the movies in the late-60's/early 70's Golden Age, where Fox and Paramount ruled supreme. :oops:

The most important part of seeing, quote, "old pre-1982 movies" is seeing Old Pre-1977 ones.
 
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Chuck_Kahn

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Flash Gordon is a cult classic and has a built in audience who would be more than willing to double and triple dip for upgrades. Can't say that for most catalogue titles.
Thank goodness Disney doesn't have the rights to Flash Gordon because this 4K disc release wouldn't be happening if it were up to them -- is the point being made, regardless of its cult status.
 
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Stephen_J_H

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Agreed. Warner themselves is forming a joint venture with Universal for new release titles on physical media, I believe it was set to launch in 2021. That right there speaks to the rapid decline of physical media and their business expectations for it in the next few years - they don’t anticipate sales being enough to justify having departments dedicated solely to physical media and are partnering with each other to reduce overhead in response to changing consumer preferences. I think in their press release there was an indication that they didn’t expect physical media to be viable as a mass market product beyond the decade.

Consumers have spoken with their wallets, and what they’ve said loud and clear is that subscription streaming is their preference, with over $15 billion in yearly revenue and rising, as physical media sales continue to decline to $3 billion and still sinking. At its peak, physical media was nearly a $20 billion a year business.

Disney isn’t interested in maintaining the kind of infrastructure necessary to release catalog physical media titles that will most likely sell hundreds of copies, maybe low thousands, with that number coming down all the time. In the past year or so, they’ve thrown what should be two of the most popular series at the format - the MCU titles and the Star Wars titles - and neither series made the sort of splash that disc releases used to receive.

I don’t think this is a surprising strategy from a company that has shifted to only producing large entertainments aimed at the largest possible audience.

And none of this suggests that the actual content is going away. It’s simply shifting from an older method of distribution that is falling out of favor with the general audience to one that the general audience has wholeheartedly embraced. If there was a market to sell hundreds of thousands of copies of old titles at premium prices, they’d be on it.
I believe the joint venture is designed to consolidate distribution of physical media more than anything else. We are currently witnessing a ramping down of physical media, if you will, and while extermination is possible, whether it happens will depend on how many of us are still willing to buy physical media. If there is a market, they will produce or, in the case of Flash Gordon and so many other titles, they will licence to another party [Arrow/Shout/Kino/Criterion/Olive/MVD/Mill Creek] to produce physical copies of catalogue titles.
 
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David Norman

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Never has one man's report from an anonymous source been taken as Gospel. And I'm far from anti Bill Hunt/TDB, but he has been wrong more than once over the years. I have little doubt that someone from Disney told or floated this to him, but even if they are 100% convinced of it's truth, Disney has reversed course more than once and have also been known to float ideas and watched the discussions.

I remember Dumbo being edited was last year's to-do which went round and round for months all from the one report of an previously obscure to unknown blogger. PAges and pages and pages of reports with hundreds of articles written but every single one traced back to the single initial report of "I've been told by someone inside Disney that ........."

Bill Hunt has 100+ times more credibility than that issue, but until Disney (or multiple Disney people) announces in public and put their name on the article that this is the policy from here on and there is zero chance of reversals, then I will remain more than a bit sceptical.
 

Stephen_J_H

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Thank goodness Disney doesn't have the rights to Flash Gordon because this 4K disc release wouldn't be happening if it were up to them -- is the point being made, regardless of its cult status.
Moreso, the point being made is thank heavens for third party houses like Shout, Arrow and Kino for licencing these titles when the studios themselves don't want to release them.
 
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Ejanss

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Never has one man's report from an anonymous source been taken as Gospel. And I'm far from anti Bill Hunt/TDB, but he has been wrong more than once over the years. I have little doubt that someone from Disney told or floated this to him, but even if they are 100% convinced of it's truth, Disney has reversed course more than once and have also been known to float ideas and watched the discussions.

Bill Hunt has 100+ times more credibility than that issue, but until Disney (or multiple Disney people) announces in public and put their name on the article that this is the policy from here on and there is zero chance of reversals, then I will remain more than a bit sceptical.
Although I'd been reading his site since the DiVX Wars, and still consider him the "face" of the industry authority, I flatter myself that Bill Hunt and I are, at the moment, the jokingly Best of Feuding Enemies on his TDB Twitter accounts:
During my, ahem, absence from HTF, I, under the alias of "the Movie Activist", had to sublimate my movie-discussion urges by running my own Howard Beale-ish place-for-my-stuff blog about the Disk-vs.-Digital War (among other issues), where, for one, I managed to call the death of Ultraviolet digital-locker several months early, and analyze the reasons why it'd flopped.

Bill, from his columns, spent most of the Wartime 10's retreating into an isolated geek-niche corner of the Diehard 4K Enthusiasts (who may be in for a bit of a rude awakening), while wringing his hands following the "Death of Physical Media...End of an era!" script that the studios had been selling, in an attempt to create somber credibility though misery-loves-company.
While I, OTOH, remained the tinfoil conspiracy-theorist who still fingered Warner as the defeated puppet-master behind the "war", and pointed out that Digital had made the mistake of selling its product to people who "didn't care", while the minor disk labels were fostering fiercely loyal cults on Facebook and Twitter...And now, the loyal online-buying disk cults were the last ones standing.
Right now, Bill's on his early-adopter bent for selling us the neato new "Kaleidescape" 4K download/streaming box he's discovered (despite its being unsellably high-end and late to the 4K-streaming party), and trying to nudge the "Death of disk" discussions in that direction...Would you buy a streaming STB from this man?
 

David Norman

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Disney reacts -- apparently some things weren't ready to be announced, hadn't been decided quite so definitively, someone spoke out of turn, or someone got the tail ahead of the front bumper of the car

 
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MatthewA

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When Digital Bits was a new site, laserdisc was in its death throes (ironically, Disney was one of the last holdouts though in the 1990s they let Image Entertainment make and distribute the discs themselves*, though the post-Discovision 1980s ones were in-house and pressed at Pioneer), VHS was on borrowed time, and Beta was kaput except for a few loyalists using eBay to find blanks to tape then-current shows. Streaming media was garbage then compared to now; did anyone ever think RealPlayer was ever going to pose a threat to TV or home video? But they all coexisted with cable TV. Similarly, I don't see why discs and streaming can't co-exist. I am also pro-disc because it gives you more ownership rights than streaming. These are not rights the studios granted consumers without a fight. Disney and Universal didn't even want home taping to be legal.

I would not be surprised if WarnerMedia is behind any anti-disc sentiment now that they're part of AT&T. It would be nice if they could get consistent service in non-urban areas. Until that time, streaming 4k is a pipe dream unless you like constant buffering every 3 seconds. Even back when they were just plain old Time Warner, I remember reading about Warren Lieberfarb actively telling studios to stop making laserdiscs while head of Warner Home Video. Right now we are in a format cold war, and the disc side is split three ways between DVD, Blu-ray, and UHD with backward-compatibility being one-way.

*The writing was on the wall when the complete-ish Bedknobs and Broomsticks was a laserdisc exclusive for 4 years while Happiest Millionaire's near-3-hour reconstruction was DVD-and-VHS only as part of the Anchor Bay deal 2 years later. Imagine what else we could have gotten if not for Eisner's ego and Iger's misplaced sense of shame in anything pre-1984 getting in the way.
 
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Dave Moritz

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Now I am getting very concerned about The Abyss and True Lies not making it to 4K Blu-ray! These two movies where supposed to be restored and given a HD Blu-ray and 4K Blu-ray release but now, who knows?
 

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