MGM Renews Home Entertainment Distribution Agreement With Fox

ahollis

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Question - when was the last catalog title that MGM/Fox released, excluding the Bond Films, the Rocky Films and a MOD every month or so? This doesn't excite me since it basically only covers releases of new product. No one should get excited about this if your looking for older catalog titles. We need to still depend on Kino, Olive and Twilight Time, and thank goodness for those labels.
 

Ernest

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Ron is correct from what we see from the list of Twilight titles on sale there just isn't much of a market for older classic titles especially a title like "The Alamo" that needs a full re-mastering. Thank goodness there are some distributors that are buying the rights for older titles for Blu-Ray release. We recently saw Screen Archives release "Go Tell The Spartans" in a limited 1500 edition. So we are now going from 3000 to 1500 for some releases because of lack of interest for older titles.
 

JoHud

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The Pink Panther set is probably the only thing we should expect direct from MGM. Though given this appears to have been put on the backburner until the new movie comes out, which could easily end up in development hell at this point. So not exactly something to look forward to in the near future.
 
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JoshuaB.

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I'm happy MGM/Fox are willing to licence their respective catalogues to boutique labels--at least they're getting BD releases, with many more to come!
 

B-ROLL

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Question - when was the last catalog title that MGM/Fox released, excluding the Bond Films, the Rocky Films and a MOD every month or so? This doesn't excite me since it basically only covers releases of new product. No one should get excited about this if your looking for older catalog titles. We need to still depend on Kino, Olive and Twilight Time, and thank goodness for those labels.
TT, Criterion, and Olive all are releasing MGM/UA/ORION catalogue titles via sub-licensing with Fox. This is good news. If MGM were to be controlling the releases, there would probably be none at all.

Quoting the article:
"The Fox Home Entertainment team has delivered strong results for MGM and we look forward to more success together in the future,” said Gary Barber, chairman and CEO of MGM."
 

ahollis

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TT, Criterion, and Olive all are releasing MGM/UA/ORION catalogue titles via sub-licensing with Fox. This is good news. If MGM were to be controlling the releases, there would probably be none at all.

Quoting the article:
"The Fox Home Entertainment team has delivered strong results for MGM and we look forward to more success together in the future,” said Gary Barber, chairman and CEO of MGM."
They are not sub-licensing from Fox but directly from MGM. Fox is just a distributor for what titles MGM wants handle itself. Which are newer releases that MGM has home entertainment rights too. Just about anything older than 10 years old will end up where ever MGM wants them too. Fox does not control MGM titles.

I believe Kino an Twilight Time have said they deal with MGM directly.
 

Dr Griffin

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Now you've gone and done it. I can't wait for more DVD era masters on Blu-ray! Or (trying to contain my excitement), can we now expect DVD era masters on UHD Blu-ray!?
 
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Paul Rossen

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They are not sub-licensing from Fox but directly from MGM. Fox is just a distributor for what titles MGM wants handle itself. Which are newer releases that MGM has home entertainment rights too. Just about anything older than 10 years old will end up where ever MGM wants them too. Fox does not control MGM titles.

I believe Kino an Twilight Time have said they deal with MGM directly.
As well as Criterion Collection.
 
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Tom St Jones

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The Pink Panther set is probably the only thing we should expect direct from MGM. Though given this appears to have been put on the backburner until the new movie comes out, which could easily end up in development hell at this point. So not exactly something to look forward to in the near future.
I knew MGM were dragging their feet on the films for 'some' reason, but didn't realise til just now a new film was being planned.
Maybe this one will be actually be about the Pink Panther himself, for a change..
And yeah, it doesn't take much for a project to plunge into development hell. Always too many cooks in the kitchen, difficulties with studio, life getting in the way etc..
 

Nick*Z

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MGM's spotty record for offering HD quality transfers is and has been quite disappointing for a very long time. Granted, the studio hasn't the funds to do full blown restorations. But I fear they equally lack the interest to look to outside sources for help, like the AFI, the Film Foundation, the Library of Congress, George Eastman House, etc. et. al and so on. Certainly, The Alamo ought to be one of the movies in their deep catalog worthy of just such an alliance. But Dr Griffin is quite right here, if duly noted in his careworn sarcasm.

It's 2016, people. Blu-ray as a format is 10 years old. UHD is on the horizon and while I have no illusions about studios endeavoring to resurrect their DEEP catalog in the ultra hi-def format, at this point in the evolution of HD, I would be over the moon to see MGM merely investing more time and money to remaster its deep catalog in regular HD for 1080p. Has anyone seen A Kiss Before Dying on Blu-ray? WHAT A MESS!!! Why bother? This disc is a Frisbee and by no means a rarity for MGM releases via third party distribution. Hawaii was another HUGE disappointment. Honestly, if this is the quick n' dirty route for future catalog via their association with Fox and with third party distributors, I can honestly say I would rather have nothing at all than this!

I've said it before, but I will say it again: I AM NOT BUYING Blu-ray to own copies of movies I ALREADY OWN on DVD looking marginally better or, in some cases, on par with what I already have in my library. I cannot speak for the rest of you, but I work for my money. It's precious to me and can be spent more prudently on acquiring catalog from other studios willing to invest the time, money and effort to provide the consumer with the biggest bang for their buck.

Shameless plug for Warner Home Video here - the custodians of so many classic movies and, in more recent times, the absolute LEADERS in Blu-ray remastering of vintage catalog. Their 2016 output to date via the Warner Archive is without peer THE MOST IMPRESSIVE of ANY studio's output. They literally put all others to shame.

To this I say, BRAVO! and THANK YOU with my credit card each time a Warner Archive release is announced. My mentality regarding upcoming MGM/FOX releases via their own or third party distribution is 'wait and see', and read a lot of external reviews from those in the know who have already had the opportunity to view the disc. With Warner, it's a vote of confidence. I can blind purchase virtually any Archive release and be assured the studio has done the utmost to satisfy my level of expectation. If it can be done at one studio (and WB has proven that it can) the model can certainly be applied (AND SHOULD BE) elsewhere in Tinsel Town. Fox? MGM? Are you boys listening?!?
 

OliverK

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Ìt seems that MGM is successfully monetizing investments in transfers that date back 10 years or longer and I for one would not like to let them have too much of my money for these releases when other studios make much more of an effort to release older titles.

To top things off they show little respect to film conservation and maintenance of their vast library via cooperation with other partners. A shocking example is the failed restoration of THE ALAMO but I am sure that inspecting their vaults would show many more titles in deplorable condition. So why should I spend money with them when little to no money is flowing back into their library?
 
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Josh Steinberg

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I fully respect those points of view. I just think, at least for me, that I have to be honest and admit to myself that MGM is no longer a functional studio, and the vast majority of these titles aren't getting new scans anytime soon, and perhaps not ever. To my eyes, a lot of these MGM masters are at least upgrades over previous non-anamorphic DVDs based on old laserdisc masters. I'd rather have an imperfect something vs a perfect nothing.
 
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Yeesh, I thought MGM was going to switch to Warner. A little disappointed to see this announcement, but oh well.

I was having a little something in mind: Since I heard that Fox has been sitting on most MGM releases they were going to market and distribute except for the ones mentioned in the press release, perhaps they and MGM should consider arranging a sub-licensing deal with WB so that the latter will co-market/distribute select Fox/MGM titles? The MGM brand was supposed to be a perfect fit for WB. (I know WB's HE library is too cluttered for them and that MGM already licenses most of their catalog titles to the smaller labels like Criteron and Kino Lorber, but yeah, now I was hoping for WB to become another third party to handle select releases even though they're huge compared to the boutique labels.)
 
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Josh Steinberg

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A switch to Warner from Fox would mean less titles coming out, not more. Many of the titles that Fox put out (either by themselves or through partnerships with labels like Kino and Twilight Time) would not pass Warner's quality control and would simply go unreleased. Paramount has licensed most of their titles to Warner, which has resulted in an almost complete stoppage of Paramount catalog titles being released.

If you want to see more MGM titles on disc, the current arrangement is probably the best possible option.
 
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OliverK

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A switch to Warner from Fox would mean less titles coming out, not more. Many of the titles that Fox put out (either by themselves or through partnerships with labels like Kino and Twilight Time) would not pass Warner's quality control and would simply go unreleased. Paramount has licensed most of their titles to Warner, which has resulted in an almost complete stoppage of Paramount catalog titles being released.

If you want to see more MGM titles on disc, the current arrangement is probably the best possible option.
This is the sad reality with MGM - one can get releases that are at least better than DVD but overall underwhelming or one can get nothing.
I try to rent what I can with MGM and to buy very little, that way I can watch the movies without giving too much of my money to them.
 

Josh Steinberg

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This is the sad reality with MGM - one can get releases that are at least better than DVD but overall underwhelming or one can get nothing.
I try to rent what I can with MGM and to buy very little, that way I can watch the movies without giving too much of my money to them.
Agreed. At least when the MGM titles get handled by smaller distributors, they have incentive to do what they can to get them as good as possible (for example, Twilight Time adding isolated scores or Criterion doing additional cleanup on the video). For a larger company like Warner (or Fox for that matter), they have so many titles that they can just crank stuff out without having to worry about each individual item, but a company like Twilight sells far fewer titles overall and at least can give a little bit more attention to them. That doesn't always happen but with MGM being in the state that it is in, some of these titles are being licensed by smaller companies showing way more passion than they have for a long time.
 

Ronald Epstein

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Been reading this thread closely.

I would rather Warner have control of the MGM library. I say that, because the studio has the money to actually do something with the titles.

On the other hand, as has been mentioned, there is a distribution deal with FOX/MGM and TWILIGHT TIME and KINO which is allowing for these titles to be released at a much more accelerated rate than would have if Warner controlled the library. At least smaller MGM titles are seeing the light of day.
 
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