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Starz HD vs widescreen question (1 Viewer)

Shad R

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Can somebody explain to me why Spiderman 3, Twister and Superbad are all available on Starz on demand and ocasional showings in Widescreen, but their HD counterparts are not in their original aspect ratio? This seem odd considering the HD masters were made in widescreen, and they are showing standard def widescreen movies. Can someone answer this for me? I'm confused. Also, what is the point? A person who has a widescreen HD tv would WANT to watch it in widescreen HD, but instead has to choose between cropped HD or widescreen that is BOXED IN to a TV's ratio, and THEN letterboxed within that! It makes no sense! Is there a person out their with a standard television demanding widescreen presentations?(I hope so, that I would understand) Is there a person out their demanding that their HD be cropped to fit their screen? Is their a person out their who wants to watch widescreen standard def boxed into 3X4 and then letterboxed, but only wants his HD cropped? This just doesn't make any sense at all. The fact that the sd is widescreen should indicate that people want that kind of presentation, right?
 

Hanson

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Are you referring to 2.35 movies being cropped to 1.78? This has been an ongoing issue since the dawn of HD premium movies. I wonder if this is a studio issue rather than a Starz issue -- for instance, both Pirates of the Carribean and Ratatouille are 2.35, and they're Disney films. Maybe some studios are loathe to hand out HD movies in OAR to the cable companies because of piracy.
 

Marty M

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Cropping of movies has been an issue with HBO, as well. I think when HBO started showing the movies in the OAR in HD they were getting complaints about the black bars. You know the same old argument. This is probably the same issue with Starz. I don't think it is an issue with the studios at all. Thankfully HBO is starting to show more movies in OAR in HD.
 

Ernest

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It is unfortunate the movie channels have their own aspect ratio for HD and it's "fill the screen" whatever format the movie was shot in. Other than HDNet and MGM HD the other movie channels are very inconsistent with showing movies in their correct aspect ratio.
 

Hanson

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I understand that the channels feel the need to show 2.35 movies cropped to fill the screen because some newbie widescreen TV owners get upset that certain movies still have letterboxing (which is no different than showing cropped to fit a SD 4:3 screen).

However, Starz does show some movies that are OAR if it's 2.35. So I don't know if this is a channel problem or a studio problem. It's either the studio doesn't want to release the OAR version or some studios (eg, Disney) insist that they show their movies in OAR. I'm inclined to believe it's the former than the latter, but if it is the latter, more power to Disney. Even if it's because they're too lazy to create a separate cropped version. At least they're not trying to piss off viewers.
 

Marty M

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This month HBO is showing Ocean's Thirteen in OAR. I have also seen Braveheart in its OAR as well.
 

Shad R

Supporting Actor
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Ok, but why do they show some standard def movies in their original aspect ratio? It seems to me that if they are showing widescreen sd Twister, there has to be some sort of demand for it, right? I don't get why they are doing this with standard def programming, and not for hd.
 

Ken Chan

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It is entirely plausible to me that enough people know that movies are in widescreen, but don't appreciate the difference between 2.35 and 1.78. So Twister in widescreen SD is "OK" because in order to see the "premium" presentation, you get the "black bars" -- but some people buy a widescreen TV specifically to "get rid of the black bars" and are "confused" if they still see them.
 

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