HD-DVD as a TV-show media

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Alex Spindler, Mar 26, 2004.

  1. Alex Spindler

    Alex Spindler Producer

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    A question for you all,
    I've been thinking about TV show releases that would never ever happen. Daily entertainment programs become one of the key ones. The real problem there is in terms of storage. There is just too much content and too much time needed. I've been thinking of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart which is just loaded with great stuff like celebrity interviews. But they must have over 100 shows a year. They even parodied it themselves, showing a huge mountain of DVDs that could be ordered for the low price of like a million dollars.

    That brings me to my point. We're relatively close to seeing a final HD-DVD spec. HD-DVD is looking to combine both high capacity discs with much more efficient codecs. This is looked at as necessary to store high def movies, which have such an increase in resolution that standard DVD won't really work.

    But, if we keep the same resolution as NTSC, those same HD-DVD discs could be a great media choice to place high volume shows such as this. I don't think it is unreasonable to think you couldn't get it down to the same number of discs as you'd find in a DVD TV Season Set (5 to 7).

    Do you think, assuming that HD-DVD gets some level of adoption, that it might be a method for getting some of this programming into a grubby little hands?
     
  2. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    It's possible, but I also have to imagine that with that high capacity, the ability to find anything would decrease.

    Let's posit an HDVD that can contain twenty hours of 480p video. Say it contains a month of Letterman. You remember that Barenaked Ladies performed during that month, but currently the DVD user interface doesn't give you much option other than diving several menus deep to find that performance.

    And that's if you remember which disc its on, or that a 20-hour disc is all you've got. The next generation of 100-hour discs will need a search engine bundled.

    Granted, I think having this stuff available would be great, but I wonder if DVD isn't exactly the right medium for it; once the amount of stuff gets large enough, it might be more convenient/efficient to go the video-on-demand/iTunes route.
     
  3. Alex Spindler

    Alex Spindler Producer

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    Ahhh, that's an interesting alternative. It's always a bit different to have not own the content. That would be the functional difference between renting and owning movies, which DVD paves the way for.

    In thinking about how to manage that much content, I think you can get a great deal of mileage through even the most basic of a good indexing. Putting a letter category then name of guest would probably help you wend your way through the list (with a listing of guests on other discs so you can find your way).
     
  4. Roger_R

    Roger_R Second Unit

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    They could include a bookleet which the user could use as a referene. There's been talk of using one of the MPEG-4 codecs as video. I tried to compress the entire DS9 (48 DVDs) with MPEG-4 and AC-3 audio and ended up at rougly 64GB. That's 2 HD-DVDs discs and about 180 episodes. So with 2 discs you could have an entire year of David Letterman...
     
  5. Casey Trowbridg

    Casey Trowbridg Lead Actor

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    Even if it is a possibility which I don't deny that it is, I've got to wonder about the appeal of owning some of these daily programs on DVD. Standard TV shows are different because most of them have some sort of linear story, I'm not sure people will be kean to watch an episode of the daily show from August 11, 2002 if they don't have any recollection of what happened on the show. All of this is IMO of course, but I really don't see shows like the daily show having as great of a demand for DVD release as your standard sitcom and dramas. Of course, that really wasn't the question, and as others have mentioned the answer to that question is yes, it would be possible.
     
  6. Alex Spindler

    Alex Spindler Producer

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    I've been thinking that some of the popularity in retro channels like The Game Show Network gives a bit of credence that those old shows are still of some interest.

    And even if it were a niche, it would be a new revenue stream of something that I still think has some value due to their comedic nature.


    I know I would be going through them linearly for quite some time. Perhaps in an era when they direct marketed stuff like that from a website. Say if Letterman or Leno did something similar directly from their network websites.
     
  7. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    Hey, these people all have families. [​IMG]

    A lot of the talk shows might have musical performances that would be of interest, if the price for a season set is low enough - I may only be interested in four hours worth of the 100-plus hours Letterman produces a year, but if the cost of a year is only $50, why not?

    As to some of the rest - well, aren't the Dark Shadows people slowly releasing something like 100 DVDs? Heck, I remember seeing a whole wall of that one on VHS back in the day. Not many other daily shows would necessarily have that kind of appeal, but I could see a stalker fan of Sarah Michelle Gellar picking up a set or two that contained her soap work.

    It's a niche market, but I suppose it could be profitable if the producers are willing to basically accept a few nickels per hour as a fair price, as compared to the couple dollars an hour prime-time TV on DVD gets.
     
  8. JeanSSullivan

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    I don't know, but a lot of New show are 1080i like Joan Of Arcadia, CSI(Old but this season is 1080i), Steven King : KingDom Hospital, etc ... So there's place for 1080i transfert of those since if they release them on dvd, they'll be inferior to their broadcast sibbling..
     

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