Kevin Brownlow's HOLLYWOOD and UNKNOWN CHAPLIN coming to DVD!

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Patrick McCart, Dec 15, 2004.

  1. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    http://groups-beta.google.com/group/...3795deda?tvc=2

    According to Kevin Brownlow, Freemantle Media is currently working on putting the 13 pt. documentary on the American silent era, HOLLYWOOD, on DVD. UNKNOWN CHAPLIN is also being worked on.


    No idea if this is a R2-only release, though. I just want to ditch my rabbit-ear UHF feed tapes.
     
  2. Keith Paynter

    Keith Paynter Screenwriter

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    HOLLYWOOD would be a fantastic purchase - I assumed it was clip rights that held up any possible re-release of this epic series (narrated by James Mason).

    The UNKNOWN CHAPLIN trilogy was available from Image Entertainment (in three separate discs [​IMG] ) but is now long out of print - an excellent series as well.
     
  3. Eric Peterson

    Eric Peterson Cinematographer

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    Excellent!

    Any word on "Buster Keaton - A Hard Act To Follow"?
     
  4. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    Nada. It would have been a good opportunity to tie it in with Warner's 2-disc set.

    However, A Hard Act to Follow would be next, chronologically. And after that, Harold Lloyd: The Third Genius (which I would hope would be tied in with the New Line DVD's of Lloyd's films).

    Then, there's still D.W. Griffith: The Father of Film and Universal Horror. The latter seems to be owned by Universal... and it would be wise for them to bundle it with the '43 version of Phantom of the Opera and The Climax (its sequel) to make it like the other Monster Legacy sets.
     
  5. Russell G

    Russell G Fake Shemp

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    holy super sweet! I've never seen Hollywood, only caought one volume of the Unknown Chaplin, never heard of the Lloyd and Keaton docs. And I want them ALL!!

    I've been dying to watch Unknown Chaplin since getting the 2 Warner sets.

    I missed the Universal Horror doc when it aired, and I'm put of my mind with wanting to see this, as I've heard it's awesome.

    I pray this all comes out in region 1!!
     
  6. oscar_merkx

    oscar_merkx Lead Actor

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    Thanks for the fantastic news Patrick.

    I have never seen these before and have only heard good things.

    To me it does not matter which Region it is

    [​IMG]
     
  7. DouglasBr

    DouglasBr Stunt Coordinator

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    "Buster Keaton - A Hard Act to Follow" = one good reason to keep the VCR in working order (for now, at least). Hope it makes it to DVD sooner rather than later.
     
  8. AndrewR

    AndrewR Stunt Coordinator

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    (!!!!)
    [​IMG]

    I was at my local library on Saturday and they had VHS copies of the Unknown Chaplin trilogy. I was tempted to rent them and burn them onto DVD-r thinking they'd never be released on DVD.

    This news absolutely makes my day! Thanks!!


    Andrew
     
  9. Michael Elliott

    Michael Elliott Lead Actor

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    Excellent news. I just watched HAROLD LLOYD: THE THIRD GENIUS and CECIL B. DEMILLE: AMERICAN EPIC a few weeks back and they were both very entertaining. A month or so ago I actually hooked up my VCR to tape UNKNOWN CHAPLIN off TCM but the power went out so I didn't get it recorded.

    UNIVERAL HORRORS is one I'm dying to see since I love those old monster films. They could put it on the same disc as COMING SOON, which was a 1982 documentary hosted by Jamie Lee Curtis and directed by John Landis.
     
  10. Roger Rollins

    Roger Rollins Supporting Actor

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    Let's hope it's true.....

    Magnificent works that will stand the test of time.

    However, these shows were built on 1" videotape in 1979/80,
    and would have to be re-assembled for DVD to be of even decent quality.

    Then there is the issue of clip licenses. Are they still valid?

    I fear this is wishful thinking rather than reality....

    AND I WOULD LOVE TO BE WRONG[​IMG]
     
  11. Michael Elliott

    Michael Elliott Lead Actor

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    It looks like studios would be willing to do this if the documentary let people know where they could buy the movies in question. "Available From Warner Home Video" or whatever.
     
  12. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    Other Thames miniseries were re-built for DVD (The World at War, for one), so perhaps Hollywood could be too.

    One of the problems was not just the issue of clips being owned by studios or archives... but that a lot were from private sources, due to Brownlow and David Gill using them for quality reasons.

    Now, most of the clips have superior quality with studios instead of collectors.
     
  13. DouglasBr

    DouglasBr Stunt Coordinator

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    Sorry for off topic question, but:

    What is the status of Buster Keaton's The General with the Carl Davis score that was released on VHS in the late 80's? I think it was released around the same time as Buster Keaton: A Hard Act to Follow (probably coincidental, but maybe not?). Does anyone know who has rights to this?
     
  14. obscurelabel

    obscurelabel Stunt Coordinator

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    For anyone not familiar with this series, it is perhaps the best documentary ever focusing on the silent era, if not the best certainly on a very short list. There are interviews from dozens of notables from the silent era. I believe Brownlow had been filming these since the late 50s so he was able to include some who had passed away by the time the series was released in 1980. The number and quality of clips from silents both celebrated and obscure that are included is pretty amazing.

    I remember watching this in 1980, and I believe it was repeated on PBS at some later time, which is when I recorded my blurry VHS copies. Each show is organized around a theme, I can't remember all of them but they include Comedy, Stunts, Special Effects, Early Sound, Cinematography, etc. My favorites were Comedy, Special Effects, and Stunts (lots of amazing stuff which wouldn't even be attempted on any set with an insurance policy today). Also, despite the title, there is a episode devoted to foreign silents as well.

    In addition, I found the brief opening credits sequence to be the most thrilling I have ever seen, movies, TV, anything.

    Brownlow's book The Parade's Gone By (1968) is pretty much a blueprint to the series. Although it isn't a point by point companion piece, a lot of the material in the book winds up being used for the series. I would recommend it to anyone interested in the history of film, silent or otherwise, as indispensable. It appears to be in print.

    I believe the full series has been available on VHS for some time, but I am looking more forward to a DVD release of it (whatever region) as much as anything I can think of.
     
  15. Greig Forbes

    Greig Forbes Extra

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    The book that did come out to accompany the Hollywood series is a beautifully illustrated piece. It did a lot to create my interest in silent movies when it first aired.

    Odd thing with the Unknown Chaplin series - when I was very young, Chaplin seemed funny to me, but as I got older he lost his appeal. Keaton seemed much more amusing. But watching the outtakes from his films, seeing how he refined a sight gag, built on each take until it was just right, really renewed my appreciation of him. What I still don't quite understand is how analysing the comedy process like this actually made it funnier, but it did. Wonderful documentaries.
     
  16. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    Thames produced a lot of special presentations with Photoplay Productions. These were released in the U.S. through HBO.

    The problem is that most of the Carl Davis scores are really expensive to license. Since it's pretty much just a few low-budget labels who handle silent cinema on DVD (Kino, Film Preservation Associates, and Milestone), a lot of them simply cannot afford the cost.

    However, the Davis scores for the Harold Lloyd films (Safety Last, Speedy, and The Kid Brother) will most likely turn up on the eventual New Line Home Entertainment DVD's. And his scores for It, The Chess Player, and Phantom of the Opera are on the Milestone DVD's.
     
  17. Eric Peterson

    Eric Peterson Cinematographer

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    Patrick,

    Have you heard any updates on this release.

    I haven't seen any of these great Brownlow documentaries, and want to very badly.[​IMG]
     
  18. Russell G

    Russell G Fake Shemp

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    AMAZON.CA list "Unknown Chaplin" on nov 29, for $39.

    It ahs no other info though, just a titel, so I don't know if it's the same thing.
     
  19. Jay Gregory

    Jay Gregory Stunt Coordinator

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    Was Hollywood ever released?

    The Network website does not list it (or at least I cannot find it.)

    Was it quickly deleted or did it never make it out?
     
  20. John Hodson

    John Hodson Producer

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    It's worth mentioning here that Uknown Chaplin is currently $4.98 from DDD.
     

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