Rodgers And Hammerstein

Discussion in 'DVD' started by RobertSiegel, Mar 12, 2004.

  1. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
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    I have been with this forum a week now and absolutely love it. Sorry I mis-spelled Rodgers on the post title, don't know how to change it.

    I am wondering if there are many people out there who would like to see special editions of the Rodgers and Hammerstein movies? These films are so well known. Every day across America there are 100 productions of their work (live theatre), yet it seems Fox doesn't pay much attention to the titles (CAROUSEL, KING AND I, OKLAHOMA, SOUTH PACIFIC). Even the remake of State Fair (which was Cinemascope). The transfers already available are great, but there is no enhancement for widescreen, and absolutely no extras (King has only a few). The laserdisc of KING AND I had more extras than the dvd does. There are 15 minute shorts on each of these films made during release, and I am sure some wonderful commentaries and extras could be had, including music only tracks...what a dream!!

    Fox, if you read this, please do something special with these films, they are among the most grand of films in your library. Also, one would never object to a 40th anniversary release of SOUND OF MUSIC for 2005. There are programs that show the cast reunited that have aired, Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer could do a 2nd commentary, they could show footage of the film winning Best Picture and Director, footage taken in L.A. at the 25th anniversary, show some excerpts from the touring SING A LONG SOUND OF MUSIC,and much more I am sure. How about a package that looks like the Swiss Alps? I would pay a good price for a box set, and God willing, it would finally have DTS. I am not complaing about the current set, it's loaded, but for the 40th, it would be nice :) This is by a large margin my all time favorite film. With Fox releasing so many High Definition video cassettes, I am really shocked this wasn't released yet, that's the day I will buy a JVC player.


    Also a note to Universal, who owns the rights to the only unreleased R&H musical, FLOWER DRUM SONG....."we're impatiently waiting."
     
  2. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    hey Robert, welcome to HTF.



    yes! very much!
    i have to disagree with you though, the current discs for Oklahoma! and Carosuel, don't look very good at all- at least not on a very big screen.
    the first Planet Of the Apes - another non-anamorphic widescreen film was light years better than either of those two.
    in both of the last two chats with Fox, they've been asked about re0visiting these and both times the answer was they aren't planning on it.
    i saw some clips from Oklahoma that were shown in a HD PBS special on R&H and the clip looked incredible!
    if any film in their library deserved to be called a 'Studio Classic' its that one.
     
  3. GlennH

    GlennH Cinematographer

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    Yes, periodically there are threads here bemoaning the fact that the R&H musicals really need the SE treatment. But there have been no indications from Fox that anything is imminent or planned. Most recently, this was the reply in the Fox Chat of Jan. 12, 2004:

    I would disagree with your statement that the current transfers, though non-anamorphic, are "great." I think they have a lot of problems with video noise. And THE SOUND OF MUSIC has an excessive amount of edge-enhancement.

    Unfortunately, these were released early on, before Fox got religion on DVD. These days Fox releases generally look terrific. But these musicals really need a revisit. I'd buy again.
     
  4. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
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    Paul, I have to agree with you, I meant to say the soundtracks were well restored, the pictures are just so-so on most. Also missing is a 4.1 soundtrack on most of these, this makes for much better separation, and would allow sound closer to the original releases.

    I really hope Fox revisits these, and does some remasters, these films are awesome! Dvdreview.com has a past story in depth of the complete newest transfer, sorry for some reason it won't allow me to enter a link here.If you go to the site, then to Reviews, click SOUND OF MUSIC then at the very bottom is the link to the story.
     
  5. Jefferson

    Jefferson Supporting Actor

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    Sorry to dig this up from the depths,
    but, one of my peeves is
    that SEs have not been planned
    for the Rodgers and Hammerstein titles.

    I've posted in the past about this,
    saying that in the VHS and laserdisc
    era, these titles:
    OKLAHOMA!, CAROUSEL, SOUTH PACIFIC, KING
    AND I
    and STATE FAIR (I exclude Sound of Music,
    as it is the only R and H anamorphic SE out there)....

    ...were among the best selling titles
    ever released.

    It continually irks me
    that much lesser known and/or less
    popular titles (i.e. STAR!) are released
    in anamorphic SEs
    and the R and H titles remain
    in (my opinion) substandard releases.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Joe Caps

    Joe Caps Cinematographer

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    Robert Seigal. I have never heard about 15 min. documentaries done at the times of the films. NOthing. Nor have I ever seen anything on Fox inventories indicating they have any such items. I don't think they exist anymore.
    Can you clarify about these and what was in them?

    Further, to put music only tracks for most of these films would be tough. No raw music sessions exist for Oklahoma.
    Carousel exists in an unmixed state and would cost a LOT of time and money to put together.
    South Pacific music exists in several versions including stuff NOT in the film, such as the song Leoneliness of Evening which was shot but never even got to the first preview prints. Some of the cut scenes exist for South Pacific, except for an uncut Gotta Wash That Man Right oughta My Hair. That was cut to the bone even for the first rough cut.
    The original broadway continuity for South Pacific exists, which is the version that director Josh Logan preferred.
    There was also a special 30 min distributor reel done for Carousel that shows some of the footage that no longer exists. I have been told that the search is on for this one.
    I am told that all of Chrisotpher Plummers voice tracks exist for Sound of Music and sodo Deborah kerrs for King and I. These could be matched to film and used as an extra.
    Flower Drum Song- a recent newsletter from Rogers and Hammerstein Organization makes it clear that Univesal owns the rights and they asked consumers to contact Universal!!
    I wish Fox would give us a letterbox 1962 State Fair - Not a great film, but not a real bad one either.
     
  7. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
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    Joe, these were promotional films done when the film was released. I have seen 3 of them, King and I, Oklahoma and South Pacific, they were broadcast about 12 years ago on cable tv, and they all were made at the time of release, obviously by the fact they state "brand new, on the screen" and the film looked like the period. I had one of them on tape but would have to do a major search. You are probably right maybe they don't exist anymore. Plus, in 1973 when Sound of Music was reissued, I saw the one for that film shown here in Minneapolis at the Cooper, it was about 13-15 minutes and was very similar to ones you see on some of the classic dvd's.

    Chris Plummers tracks are there for sure, in her book Charmain Carr said she recently was invited to hear them because she is in one of the songs with him. And she said they were in great shape and sounded terrific.

    Jefferson, I totally agree with you, Fox at least could do these in anamorphic and clean up what they already have.
     
  8. Dan Hitchman

    Dan Hitchman Cinematographer

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    Maybe Joe Kane, LDI, and Robert Harris should all get together to do state-of-the-art 4k restorations of all the R&H films (restore the original negatives as best as possible for archival purposes, and then finish the job digitally). Heck, some of the Japanese telecine manufacturers have 10k (!!) film scanning coming down the pike!

    Use these ultra resolution, supervised masters as the basis of HD-DVD and regular DVD releases.

    Dan
     
  9. Joe Caps

    Joe Caps Cinematographer

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    Robert, of course the one for Sound of Music is on the DVD. But I am fascinated about the ones for Oklahom, King and I and Carousel. For them to have been shown about ten years ago, they would have to be still around and in the possession of Fox.
    Have you seen the ones for King and I and Carousel. Did they show any of the things cut from the film?
     
  10. Greg_M

    Greg_M Screenwriter

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    Chrtistopher Plumer tracks do exit. Fox had the option to include them on the laserdisc box set but Plummer said no. A friend of mine has the tracks (He worked for FOX at the time) but he won't release them to the public. I've heard them and Plummer sounds fine, no up to Andrews but still okay. Maybe in the furture.
     
  11. Jo_C

    Jo_C Second Unit

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    If I could add something to Joe Caps' statement about "Flower Drum Song"...

    All Universal currently owns of "Flower Drum Song" is the home video rights and the film's copyright (which has been renewed by Universal). All other ancilliary rights (including theatrical and television distribution) are now owned by MGM (via its pre-1996 Samuel Goldwyn Company holdings), because Goldwyn purchased certain rights to the R & H films that their estate now mainly owns.


    P.S. Recent telecasts of "Flower Drum Song" have opened with either the Goldwyn or MGM logos.
     
  12. TedD

    TedD Supporting Actor

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    Yes, Fox. Pleeeeeeze restore, re-master and re-release these titles. (And release the remake of State Fair) (and the uncut South Pacific)

    Ted
     
  13. AlanP

    AlanP Supporting Actor

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    Well, where and whom do we contact @ UNIVERSAL ???????
     

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