Olympics

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Will_B, Aug 24, 2005.

  1. Will_B

    Will_B Producer

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    This discussion is about the Olympics on DVD, or, more precisely, the lack of any DVD box sets of any past Olympics broadcasts.

    Since 1992 I've kept a vhs tape I'd recorded off air of the Olympics in Barcelona, the women's gymnastics competition where the "Unified Team" (former USSR turning into free nations) did such an outstanding job.

    I finally transferred what I had to my own personal-use DVDR, and although I enjoyed the process of converting my one home recording to DVD, my tape was more sentimental than professional: mine has a whole bunch of other random bits as I flipped the channels back then, and it ends with Sandra Bernhart dancing next-to-nude on a stage -- for which I'm pretty sure she won the silver.

    But given that I didn't even have the whole gymanstics competition recorded, it occurred to me that there's probably an official Olympics website where all the Olympics events are sold on professional level DVDs, much like Cirque de Soleil sells it's shows.

    So I did a search for Barcelona, Olympics, 1992, DVD, and my impression is that the Olympics company doesn't care about its past events.

    Can anyone shed some light on this?

    What I found on Amazon is that some fly by night companies sometimes used to release cheap VHS tapes containing small bits of footage licensed from NBC (or whatever network ram the cameras at the events), but they frequenly drop out the sound since they can't be bothered with the music rights, rarely show entire routines, and, more egregiously, only include the Americans, even when the winners were (as in Barcelona) not the Americans. That can't be all there is, is there?

    Barcelona was the Olympics with Tatiana Gutsu, she won the gold, and I'd love to know if there's a legitimate DVD of it available.
     
  2. andrew markworthy

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    Will, I don't think that what you're looking for is available. Generally there is an official film which can vary from the straightforward documentary (e.g. as for the recent Athens games or, and I mean this with the greatest of respect, Tokyo Olympiad) to the rather more arty (Pieces of Eight, where eight film directors covered eight different events in rather different ways - it was for one of the 70s Olympics, but I can't remember which one off the top of my head).

    However, detailed coverage of each individual sport doesn't exist, to the best of my knowledge. If you find anything to the contrary, please let us know.
     
  3. Will_B

    Will_B Producer

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    I've essentially found that the heritage of the Olympic games is left to bootleggers. Inconceivable, but it seems that the Olympics hasn't caught the TV-on-DVD wave.

    With the success of TV-on-DVD, it stands to reason that NBC or the Olympics Committee will eventually realize that they have potential box sets just waiting to make a profit on.

    Ideally I'd like Olympics boxes to retain as much of the original broadcasts as possible, so one can watch the drama unfold naturally. The announcers at the time were already selected because of their talent so there is absolutely no need to redo what was already laid down at the time.

    (There's nothing worse than retrospective recuttings of sports when a modern narrator gives away what is to happen.)

    NBC Sports are you reading this???
     
  4. Kevin Hewell

    Kevin Hewell Cinematographer

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    I wish they would release uncut versions of the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the various Olympics, as well as the sporting events.
     
  5. Sean.S

    Sean.S Stunt Coordinator

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    I would love to see event-themed box sets from prelims to finals. The single-discs that come out (if they even do at all) aren't very good and are basically clip-show documentaries. And, sports that I love like Badminton and Softball get completely ignored.

    I'm in the process of transferring 175 hours of Athens 2004 I recorded to DVD-R off of the networks of NBC. And, yes, I'm looking forward to Torino in 2006. ^_^
     
  6. Jon Martin

    Jon Martin Cinematographer

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    The 1992 Olympics were pre-DVD so there was no DVD release. However, NBC and Blockbuster video released two volumes of events from the games, available only at Blockbuster. One tape was of the games, the other of the basketball team.

    Since 1994 I think, each games have had DVDs released. The Salt Lake one was especially good, it had the complete events for many and had extras of the complete Bob Costas in studio post win interviews.

    While I don't have it, I remember I think it was the 1994 Winter games had an excellent collection, complete with a lot of multi angle use of some of the competitions.

    So, they are out there. But, you have to get them soon after the games.
     
  7. david_hu

    david_hu Stunt Coordinator

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    There is an uncut opening ceremony of The Sydney Olympics 2000 DVD release in OZ. It's Region 4, though.
     
  8. Will_B

    Will_B Producer

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    Checking ebay turns up a Region 4, 4-DVD set in PAL format of the Greek games from 2004, but even that is only one DVD of "highlights", one DVD of "Greek highlights", and the opening and closing ceremonies (on one disc each).

    It touts itself as the only release of the 2004 Olympics games. And it isn't even available in NTSC format. So if even the most recent games aren't available as anything more than a highlight set from Region 4, I'm kind of doubting the idea that each games have had DVDs released.
     
  9. Jon Martin

    Jon Martin Cinematographer

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    Did you check on NBC.COM? They released one. While I have most of the others, I didn't order it as I taped most of what I wanted with my DVD recorder.
     
  10. Dustin James

    Dustin James Stunt Coordinator

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  11. Will_B

    Will_B Producer

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    I don't equate highlight reels with the concept of releasing entire competitions as box sets. That the Olympics has traditionally made highlight tapes, and occasional opening ceremony, is not in dispute. You can visit Amazon.com and see plenty of one-star reviews of the highlight reels, some of which have indeed been released as DVDs (with replaced music and non-Americans given short thrift).

    I am suggesting they should release box sets of the competitions. It's a simple suggestion.

    Is there demand? No one knows. But I am suggesting there may be. I notice there is a 12-DVD box set of a baseball game available (The Boston Red Sox 2004 World Series Collector's Edition), so the concept is being tested - albeit not by the Olympics. But the Olympics' past experience with highlight reels and edited opening ceremonies, could mean that someday they'll experiment with box sets.

    I'd like to see that. Wouldn't you?
     
  12. MattPeriolat

    MattPeriolat Supporting Actor

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    I'm sure either NBC, CBS or the IOC is going to want my head on a stick for this (This broadcast may not be... etc, etc, etc.) but I will admit I have TRIED to tape as much of each Olympics since Albertville in 1992. The ammount I have spent on blank tape is enormous. I need to start transfering some of my stuff onto DVD pretty soon because I can't imagine the tape lasting too much longer.

    Anyway, yeah, getting best of Olympics both from recent games and Olympics in the past would be awesome. Just don't knoww if it would ever happen.
     

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