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Resolving myself to this issue of Pan & Scan: Where we stand....

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ronald Epstein, May 7, 2002.

  1. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    John,
    you are our dream advocate. We need some motivated dudes JUST LIKE YOU to help get this "organization" rolling. Let's get some offical backing behind those grass-roots efforts of yours which are so effective. Then we can start handing out flyers and brochures explaining the difference between 'theater' and 'modified' versions as well [​IMG]
    BTW, do you fill out customer complaints about the lack of widescreen at the Walmart too? I heard from an industry "insider" that what you're doing...returning the opened DVD to walmart in protest of lack of WS sends a *big* message to their marketing dept and to the studio. Keep it up!
    dave [​IMG]
    p.s. I'm in the Wash DC area. Are you near by? We need to start organizing...
     
  2. Karl Englebright

    Karl Englebright Stunt Coordinator

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  3. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    Well, we've got one person saying it does make a difference to buy a pan-and-scan disc and return it, but someone else said it doesn't, just makes it a pain for the store. I don't know who's right.
     
  4. Jeff Swindoll

    Jeff Swindoll Supporting Actor

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  5. Peka J

    Peka J Agent

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    I don't know what Walmart corporate policy is regarding carrying P & S versions versus OAR, but at my local Walmart, they usually (perhaps always) carry both versions when a movie is available in both versions on seperate disks, and they give them equal shelf space. I noticed the other day that both versions of Ocean's Eleven were given equal (and substantial) shelf space, and the widescreen version was selling much better than the fullscreen version.

    I know some people would like only the widescreen available so people are forced to watch the movie in its correct format, but as long as both are available, my Walmart seems to be doing a fair job of stocking and displaying both equally so the customer can decide which they want. I don't if this Walmart is unusual or if this is common, but if it is common, then perhaps Walmart isn't the boogeyman that it's being made out to be. Plus, in my experience, the widescreen versions seem to sell much better, and I would think Walmart management would notice that and not go out of their way to prefer P & S to the detriment of OAR.
     
  6. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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  7. Qui-Gon John

    Qui-Gon John Producer

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    Quick P&S question. I was going through my DVD's to make sure that all the ones I bought are OAR only. Well my daughter bought, but keeps with our collection, The Princess Diaries. I noticed it is Full Frame. From the way it's such a small point in the disk 'features' I think this may be the only version they put out. It does not have a banner across the top of the case that says FULL FRAME VERSION or anything like that. I also looked on the shelf in Blockbuster and they only have that version, no surprise there, eh. Anyway, other than this one, and possibly Gremlins and Groundhog Day which I picked up for free, and of course Sopranos Seas. 1 & 2, I am happy to report my collection is all OAR.
     
  8. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    The Princess Diaries was most certainly released in both p&s and OAR versions. The OAR is 1.85, anamorphically enhanced and does say widescreen across the top of the dvd.

    Also I'm a bit confused. Groundhog Day is availabe in it's OAR (I didn't even realize that there was a p&s version). And the Sopranos are a tv show. I don't get HBO, but if they are broadcast 1.33, and show up that way on dvd, they are OAR.
     
  9. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    I think what John meant was that to a casual shopper who happened accross the P/S version...they wouldn't know that there was even a widescreen version to look for upon seeing the P/S copy.
    This is cause for serious customer confusion. I even have a pro-OAR friend who bought someone at work the P/S version of Grinch (live action)--he didn't even realize it was P/S until after the gift was opened and I asked him why he had chosen the P/S version to buy. His reponse was that he just assumed it was widescreen and didn't realize that there were 2 versions for sale.
    Members of this forum are DVD-release-info-savy...we read dvdfile and we know when a title is coming out in dual-version form. We know when a collectors SE edition is coming a few months later (if the info is available on the web). That's not an approach that applies to most DVD consumers...even the ones who don't mind or prefer widescreen.
    This is why dual-packging of aspect ratios is a BAD idea.
    One purchase. 2 aspect ratios. It's the better solution.
    -dave
     
  10. Qui-Gon John

    Qui-Gon John Producer

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    Thanks Dave.

    If there are 2 versions of this and the WideScreen does say WIDESCREEN across the top, I wish they would have done that with the FULL FRAME version. I'm pretty sure I looked it over good and the only place I se mention of either is in the little box on back marked "Features".

    And George, I said possible on Gremlins and Groundhog Day, I have to pull them out and check. And yep, on a technicality about Sopranos, I really meant "Full Frame" which in this case is the OAR.

    Wonder if I could trade Princess Diaries for WideScreen, I doubt it. Well, not something I'd watch a hell of a lot myself anyway.
     
  11. David Lambert

    David Lambert Executive Producer

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    Sopranos DVDs are in widescreen, which is how it is broadcast on HBO. When I got my 16x9 TV, the first TV-on-DVD product I put in was The Sopranos. 2nd was Stargate SG-1.
     
  12. Doug D

    Doug D Stunt Coordinator

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    Why is nobody proposing boycotting Wal-Mart and these other "chain retailers" until they get the message? If it's really them that's at fault, then kick them where it hurts, and let them know they're getting kicked. The fact is, low-priced DVDs are loss leaders to get people in the store to buy other stuff, and if people who would otherwise come in the store aren't because of their DVD policies, they're losing out on other sales as well.

    I don't shop at Wal-Mart period, so I'd feel hypocritical "boycotting" them ... just like I'd feel hypocritical signing a petition for a widescreen ERNEST GOES TO CAMP movie ... but I get the impression tons of people here shop at Wal-Mart.
     
  13. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    Doug,
    if we did boycott Walmart...it wouldn't help the cause bcs the numbers of those zealous enough to actually do it wouldn't impact their bottom line. And even it it did, how would Walmart connect P/S only DVD to the issue?
    Whether or not you shop there (feel free to boycott [​IMG] ) at least *go there* and fill out a customer comments card...tell them you want your widescreen DVDs.
    yes...we should start a petition about the Earnest movies. Do you know who directed it? The first step (after calling and complaining to Disney) is to let *him* know you're unhappy and that you want *him* to call B.V. and tell them he's upset about their P/S decision.
    -dave
     
  14. Lyle_JP

    Lyle_JP Screenwriter

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  15. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    Regarding a boycott of Wal-Mart. Ain't no way we'd make a dent. However, if we got organized we could do something that would at least bring them some bad press.
    If every HTF member within driving distance of one selected Wal-Mart showed up to picket, just for a few minutes, and we were smart enough to get press coverage, it would at least get their attention.
    Some of the signs:
    "Stop cutting off the picture on my dvd!"
    "Why can't we buy The Parent Trap at Wal-Mart?"
    "Hell No, OAR won't go"
    "Pan & Scan and Napalm: both bad for children"
    and of course graphic examples showing stuff being cut off
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    Seriously, although we can't hurt them financially, I doubt if they'd be happy about press coverage of protests in front of their store (regardless of the reason).
     
  16. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Lead Actor
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    Seriously, although we can't hurt them financially, I doubt if they'd be happy about press coverage of protests in front of their store (regardless of the reason).
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    Of course you could end up like that old episode of "Frasier" that I watched yesterday. You know...where he loses his job and his "fan club" stages a rally and they end up on the six o'clock news as an example of "what if someone staged a rally and nobody came!!" [​IMG]
     
  17. JonZ

    JonZ Lead Actor

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    My 2 cents:

    "As many of you have pointed out, the problem is

    absolutely the large discount chain retailers who

    are taking the minority amount of complaints

    from store to store and threatening to reduce their

    overall purchase orders if Pan and Scan is not

    offered"

    I think the solution is to not give them a choice as many have stated.I've always said this is the solution.

    "Ok you wont buy from me, then go someonewhere else,all youll find in Letterboxed(correct OAR)titles.

    People WILL see the light if you take the time to explain (or show)it to them. Ive been explaining the benefits of letterbox for years-youd be suprised how a simple drawing on a napkin will set off a light in peoples heads.

    The same goes for TVs.

    I think,the BIGGEST push would be for TV companies to stop making 4:3 TVs. And when being able to watch Anamorphic DVDs becomes the standard (16x9 TVs come way down in price and everyone can afford one)theyll REALLY see.

    This includes the retail stores. They HAVE to do their part.A simple side by side comparison of a P&Sand 16x9 DVD both played on a widescreen TV will show even the sternest "black bar hater" what great home viewing is all about.

    People need to be educated thats all. Again I think MGMs SIMPLE example,on their inserts is a good one.

    How about if DVDs befaulted to a P&S and widescreen comparisonafter the FBI warning.Something, anything, just educate them. Most do convert (as all of us have from LD or DVD) if shown the benefits of widescreen.When I first started collecting LDs in the early 90s the difference was like night and day.I was floored really.

    Basically P&S is a loosing battle becuase (hopefully) in the future all TVs will be made for widesceen viewing-then they'll be complaining about the bars on the sides of their TVs.

    Let me state I will watch a P&S movie, JUST NOT ON DVD.

    This is becuase of cable and VHS copies that arent available yet on DVD. Im a movie lover, the film is whats important-hopefully in the future (although it may take 15years at the rate we're going)all viewing will take plae on 16x9 widescrren TVs and this will become a obsolete discussion. We'll be telling our grandkids about how we had stupid square TVs.
     
  18. Reginald Trent

    Reginald Trent Screenwriter

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    I believe it is faulty logic to think widescreen TVs will solve the problem. WS TVs does nothing for academy ratio films like Casablanca, Gone with the wind etc,. The answer is full acceptance of the Original Aspect Ratio irrespective of video display.

    And I still don't understand why the Academy doesn't show and promote OAR with demonstrations of examples during the Oscar Awards. Nor do I understand why they don't have OAR demonstrations at commercial theaters during intermissions.

    These things seem like no brainers to me.
     
  19. Qui-Gon John

    Qui-Gon John Producer

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  20. David Lambert

    David Lambert Executive Producer

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