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Laurel and Hardy Restorations Coming to Blu Ray and DVD

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Rob_Ray, Feb 10, 2020.

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  1. Rob_Ray

    Rob_Ray Cinematographer

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    Randy Skretvedt, the author of "Laurel and Hardy: The Magic Behind the Movies" posted this on his Facebook page yesterday:

    "Whew! At last I can post something about this beautiful, wonderful project that I and others have been working on since October 2018. The films are ASTONISHING. You won't believe how clear and clean they look, as if they were filmed yesterday. Well, maybe the day before yesterday, but I guarantee you have never seen "Come Clean" or "Hog Wild" or the others in such wonderful quality. As for the eight hours of special features, I have contributed multitudes of material from my own collection, as has Richard W. Bann. There are many exclusives here, such as my filmed interviews with producer Joe Rock, special-effects wizard Roy Seawright and actress Anita Garvin Stanley. Also Babe Hardy's personal scrapbook of his "Vim Comedy" days in Jacksonville in 1916-17, as well as his own photos from L&H's 1932 tour of the UK. Marvin Hatley music tracks are here, along with audio interviews with Hal Roach, Richard Currier, Bert Jordan, George Marshall and others. I provided commentaries for 19 movies and Richard for two of them, which give you a guided tour through the production of the films. Photo galleries will take you on both sides of the camera for all of the films, and you'll see amazing, rare poster art and studio files. Trailers and a *gorgeous* transfer of L&H's one fully-surviving color film "The Tree in a Test Tube," as well as the out-takes reel "That's That" are among the extras. Oh, yes -- I almost forgot to mention the video debut of the nearly-complete THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY, the legendary pie-fight silent film which has existed only in part for nearly 90 years. (It looks great and was worth the wait.) This region-free release is a must-have for every Laurel and Hardy admirer!"

    I have spoken with Randy about this and can tell you that most of these transfers are taken from the UCLA restorations and look incredible. THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY is as complete as is known to exist and SONS OF THE DESERT finally looks and sounds pristine. I believe the street date is sometime in early summer, with preorders going up in May.
     
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  2. Doug Otte

    Doug Otte Supporting Actor

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    Where does he state that it'll be DVD and/or Blu-ray?
     
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  3. Rob_Ray

    Rob_Ray Cinematographer

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    From Thad Komorowksi's Post:

    So that Laurel & Hardy restoration project I'm involved with is coming to Blu-Ray and DVD. Laurel & Hardy: The Definitive Restorations. June 16, 2020, from Kit Parker and Sprocket Vault. These are the versions Jeff Joseph produced with UCLA and LoC. I helped oversee these new digital restorations. You will love it.

    Contents as follows:

    Feature Films:
    Sons of the Desert
    Way Out West

    Short Subjects:
    Berth Marks (both the original and reissue soundtracks)
    The Battle of the Century (with new music track by Donald Sosin; virtually complete and restored)
    Brats (both the original and reissue soundtracks)
    Busy Bodies
    The Chimp
    Come Clean
    County Hospital
    Helpmates
    Hog Wild
    Me and My Pal
    Midnight Patrol
    The Music Box
    One Good Turn
    Scram!
    Their First Mistake
    Towed in a Hole
    Twice Two

    Bonus Materials:
    Commentaries by Randy Skretvedt and Richard W. Bann
    Never before seen video interviews as well as audio interviews with L&H co-workers
    Over 2,500 rare photos, posters, scripts and studio files
    Alternate Soundtracks
    Music Tracks
    "Ship's Reporter" Oliver Hardy Interview (restored)
    "That's That" (restored/first time on video)
    "Tree in a Test Tube" (restored from 16mm Kodachrome)
    L&H off-camera pix from Hardy's collection
    Restored Trailers

    ---

    I'm fully prepared for the onslaught of "Why isn't it complete and in order?" questions. For the same reason the Warner Archive Tex Avery discs aren't, I suspect. There is a lot of work involved restoring and releasing classic films (even the most in-demand titles like these), and a lot of obstacles to overcome, so we have to do the best with what we got, when we can. But, I can guarantee that good sales on this will ensure further volumes. Pre-order details coming soon.
     
  4. dana martin

    dana martin Producer

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    waiting:D
     
  5. williampl7@aol.com

    [email protected] Stunt Coordinator

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    Definitely purchasing this! And let us all hope the sales are great, so future volumes are released!
     
  6. warnerbro

    warnerbro Supporting Actor

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    Can't wait! Please keep us informed!
     
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  7. mark brown

    mark brown Stunt Coordinator

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    Is the project still a work in progress or is it complete? From what elements were the restorations made? Will there be any separate screenings of any of the films? CANNOT WAIT!
     
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  8. Robbie^Blackmon

    Robbie^Blackmon Stunt Coordinator

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    I hate waiting. I want this yesterday!
     
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  9. Marsh

    Marsh Stunt Coordinator

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  10. Astairefan

    Astairefan Second Unit

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    Definitely another great release to look forward to in 2020! I just wish I knew what it's gonna cost!
     
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  11. Rob_Ray

    Rob_Ray Cinematographer

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    The transfers have been completed. As far as the source elements are concerned, you'd have to ask someone who is knowledgeable about the UCLA restorations. They have been screened at various film gatherings, such as UCLA's Festival of Preservation and Cinecon in Hollywood and at various classic film gatherings in other parts of the country, but for most of the country, these have not been seen before and are a revelation. For just one example, the print of Hog Wild contains visual information on the left side of the screen that hasn't been revealed since the last time the short was screened with sound on disc. All sound on film prints since then were visually cropped.

    I have before never seen SONS OF THE DESERT look virtually pristine, with no overly tight overscanning cropping off the sides. This is a big deal for all L&H fans!
     
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  12. williampl7@aol.com

    [email protected] Stunt Coordinator

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    I would also like add a big thank you to all those involved with these restorations!
     
  13. Traveling Matt

    Traveling Matt Supporting Actor

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    This sounds amazing! I'm much more interested in the restorations continuing, where they are in the process, how funding is going, etc than I am about these releases being in volumes rather than one big box.
     
  14. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Founder
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    Been a huge L&H fan since owning a lot of their films on Super 8mm.

    Anything restoration like this is most welcomes and appreciated!
     
  15. Douglas R

    Douglas R Cinematographer

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    Looking forward to buying this especially after having the appallingly poor quality Universal UK Blu-ray “Very Best of Laurel &Hardy” which appeared to be nothing better than upscaled DVD.
     
  16. Tony Bensley

    Tony Bensley Producer

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    I eagerly await word on that, as well! I'm fairly confident an MSRP (Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price) will be listed before too long.

    CHEERS! :)
     
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  17. ahollis

    ahollis Lead Actor
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    Excellent news. I can’t wait to see this and especially the almost complete BATTLE OF THE CENTURY.
     
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  18. Mysto

    Mysto Screenwriter

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    It was L&H that got me into Super 8mm film collecting. We wait ... but it's not easy.
    The last time I was this happy about a release was when the Thin Man Blu Ray finally came out.
     
  19. timk1041

    timk1041 Second Unit

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    Fabulous!
     
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  20. Arthur Powell

    Arthur Powell Second Unit

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    Wonderful news!
     
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