DRACULA 1979 on 10/19

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Larry Sutliff, Jul 8, 2004.

  1. Larry Sutliff

    Larry Sutliff Cinematographer

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    Someone mentioned on another message board that the 1979 version of DRACULA with Frank Langella and Laurence Olivier was up for pre-order on DVD Planet. I took a look, and sure enough, it is. I haven't heard a thing about this release. I wonder if it will be anamorphic, and if the transfer will be taken from the rich Technicolor theatrical release rather than the dull, monochrome master that appeared on laserdisc and DVD. Any info on this release would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Robert Floto

    Robert Floto Supporting Actor

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    I would definitely like to upgrade! Does anyone have more info on this?
     
  3. Ernest Rister

    Ernest Rister Producer

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    I'd pick it up for John Williams' score alone.
     
  4. Steve Christou

    Steve Christou Long Member

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    Fangtastic news, one of my favorites, saw it in the cinema back in 79, loved it.
    I didn't bother with the dvd after I read how crap it was, all the color 'bled' out of it (supposedly at John Badham's request), I hope this is a much improved copy, and John Williams score is superb.[​IMG]
     
  5. Peter Apruzzese

    Peter Apruzzese Producer

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    Universal's B2B website only lists it a widescreen and includes no other details.

    If John Badham supervises the transfer, you can pretty much count on it being drained of color - he originally wanted it filmed in black & white and "corrected" the widescreen LD. Too bad, since the rich color of the theatrical release was one of the good things about the film.
     
  6. Douglas Bailey

    Douglas Bailey Second Unit

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    Hm. I like the desaturated-colour look of the film, but then I think that's the only way I've ever seen it: both the current (non-anamorphic) DVD and the old widescreen laserdisc featured Badham-approved transfers.

    Ideally, of course, Universal could give us both versions, the way Columbia did with Boorman's The General (except without the aspect-ratio fuckup found on that DVD, please).
     
  7. Brian Kidd

    Brian Kidd Screenwriter
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    I haven't seen this movie since I was a kid, but let me tell you it freaked the heck out of me then. Does it hold up?
     
  8. Mike_Richardson

    Mike_Richardson Supporting Actor

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    I think it does. John Williams's score is awesome, there are excellent individual scenes, and the film holds up really well -- especially a lot more than something like BRAM STOKER'S DRACULA, which between Keanu and Winona Ryder, now resembles a silly costume paegant by comparison to me. Badham's movie has a more "classical" feel to it.

    I do hope they include Gil Taylor's original cinematography -- in color -- on the DVD. What Badham did, whether it was his "intention" or not, was basically pull a Ted Turner and colorize (or in his case, DE-colorize) the original film. If he wanted so badly to make the movie in black and white, he ought to have stood his ground and made a major fuss about it in the first place.

    Taylor's cinematography utilized full color and was one of the strongest elements in the movie -- I'm hoping it's restored for this DVD.
     
  9. Michael Harris

    Michael Harris Screenwriter

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    Not a bad movie. Follows, more or less, the plot of the stage version of "Dracula" rather then the novel which makes sense since it was filmed hot on the heels of Langella's star turn on Broadway in the title role. I had the great fortune of seeing it and still remember Edward Gorey's wonderful set design.
     
  10. Joseph J.D

    Joseph J.D Cinematographer

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    Oh I hope the news of the re-release is true.....I actually enjoy this version of Dracula over the Coppola one. I hope they present it as I originally saw the film during it's first release in 1979.......with ALL THE COLOR in - and ANAMORPHIC.
     
  11. Neil S. Bulk

    Neil S. Bulk Screenwriter

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    An isolated score would be a beautiful thing since the soundtrack album is a re-recording and the original tracks have never been released, and because Universal doesn't seem that keen on re-issuing soundtracks on CD.

    I'd love to see the full color on this and of course it needs to be anamorphic if Universal want's me to re-purchase it.

    Oh, and after this, please re-issue Flash Gordon.

    Neil
     
  12. Michael Harris

    Michael Harris Screenwriter

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    I have the LP of the score and I never knew that it was not from the original sound track. The cover states "original soundtrack". A case of some ad copy writer not knowing the difference between a soundtrack and a score? Why would MCA Records, an Universal subsidiary, have the score re-recorded? Technical reasons? Artistic? Some sort of bizarre rights issue?
     
  13. Larry Sutliff

    Larry Sutliff Cinematographer

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    Same here. I also hope that the DVD includes the original music playing on the victrola in the scene where Lucy and Jonathan dance near the beginning of the film. The laserdisc and the DVD have different music on it, apparently because of a rights issue. It's not a big deal, but the original music was definitely better.
     
  14. Joseph J.D

    Joseph J.D Cinematographer

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    Take a look at the beautiful coverart that Davis DVD put up. Really looking forward to getting this one.[​IMG]
     
  15. James Phillips

    James Phillips Stunt Coordinator

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    Looks good. Far better than the back-to-front poster art and snapper case of the last release! [​IMG]



    Yeah, my old CIC/DiscoVision laserdisc has the original soundtrack, but I think all the other prints I've seen of this film have had the music altered for that sequence. It would be nice if they could reinstate the original music.

    I've always loved the vibrant colours in this film. It's a great shame John Badham decided to subdue them for the widescreen laserdisc transfer.

    Hopefully, we'll see Gilbert Taylor's beautiful cinematography restored to its former glory this time round. [​IMG]
     
  16. Jim Blackie

    Jim Blackie Stunt Coordinator

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    [​IMG] Order placed... now comes the hard part. Waiting.
     
  17. Zachary Cohen

    Zachary Cohen Stunt Coordinator

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    It appears Davis DVD is down.
     
  18. Joseph J.D

    Joseph J.D Cinematographer

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    I think I read yesterday that they are in the process of switching their server. Oh well....just going to have to wait.
     
  19. James Phillips

    James Phillips Stunt Coordinator

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    Here's the new cover art. [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    been in limbo for the last week- but this is GREAT news!.

    goes without saying though, that if it isn't ananmorphic its a big 'no sale' for me.

    Universal has been pretty consistent with the upgrades to the old image titles so i'm optimistic.
    count me as wishing the film would be restored to the full color of its original theatrical version.
    desaturating what was originally intended as color is just not the same thing as lighting and shooting with B&W intention.
    its just watering the soup and i can't believe Badham was satisfied with the results there.

    oh and, while its not that high a priority on my list, i don't dig the new cover art.
    i liked the classic key art image.
    oh well- if thats the biggest disappointment i have with the release...i won't complain anymore [​IMG].

    great to be able to cross another title off the long list!
     

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