The P&S problem...and the fact that MGM may have solved it

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Donald W, Jan 29, 2002.

  1. Donald W

    Donald W Stunt Coordinator

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    I know we all hate the fact that P&S is still being used as a format for many DVD's...but for once I think that MGM may have done something right for a change...on both Jeepers Crepers and Leaglly Blonde they have the Widesreen version and the P&S version on one side of the disk, and then all the extras on the other side of the disk...Also I looked back at some of my other DVD's and found that Go and Snatch both had the WS and P&S versions all on one disk...I don't know if this changes anything at all with what MGM has done *does it lower the sound output if both versions of the film are on one side????* I know that I want all my DVD's in WS or at least if they want to have the P&S version on there done the way that MGM has done with their last 2 big DVD's...I really don't care that much about disk art if it means that I get the WS of the film on the DVD without having to hunt for it in a store
     
  2. CharlesD

    CharlesD Screenwriter

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    THe problem is that if the movie is on onelayer of the disc, the video and/or audio quality may suffer from the lack of space. If you have the P&S on one layer and the movie on the other you probably don't have room for DTS or commentary tracks etc. IF the movie is of any length it will likely have too much compression to fit it on a single layer and still have the expected video quality.

    The solution to this "problem" is simple: put the d**n movie on the DVD along with the extras. IF the studios feel they can make more money by also doing a P&S version of the movie, they can put it on a second disc, or release it later as a P&S-only "flat, round VHS copy". They can even reduce the video quality on that one and remove the time-codes & chapter stops to better re-create the VHS experience.

    Better yet if they feel the need for rental pricing, they can put flat round VHS version in the rental store (priced to rent at $110) and also sell the movie (aka OAR version) with extras to film fans for $19.95 like they do now. Everyone is happy, the casual consumer can go to Blockbuster and rent his flat, round VHS copy, and we get the movie "black bars" and all.

    No OAR = No Sale
     
  3. Donald W

    Donald W Stunt Coordinator

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    both disks have commentary track but they aren't in DTS...I just thought that it was a good idea on MGM's part to solve the problem...
     
  4. CharlesD

    CharlesD Screenwriter

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    Having both the movie and ther P&S verion on the same side is a reasonable thing to do in some cases, but it is far from being a "solution" to the "problem" IMO because of the space limitations.

    I am not willing to have video quality of the movie compromized to make room for a P&S version on the same disc. My position is that the studios should concentrate on prodcing a DVD with the movie on it with the best possible video, then they should concern themselves with the best possible audio and alternate tracks, then they should concern themselves with other extras.

    IF they feel the need for a P&S version of a film they can put on a second disc if the want. The only time it should go on the same side as the movie, is if the movie can fit on a single layer and still have excellent video quality and the available audio tracks.
     
  5. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    The problem with multiple versions is that it confuses people and brings forth the possiblity that some stores won't carry the widescreen version. I have several discs that include both versions; "Dinosaur" has both on one side though only the widescreen version has DTS, and "Shrek" doesn't have the commentary or DTS tracks on the pan and scan version, also the Spanish and French tracks are 5.1 on the widescreen version but only pro-logic on the pan and scan. While priority should ALWAYS be given to widescreen, if they can fit some sort of pan and scan version on the SAME disc, then so be it.

    The only disc I have where it's obvious quality was compromised in order to fit both versions is "All The President's Men", which fits about 140 minutes on each side. It would have looked a lot better if it had a dual-layer disc, so fitting both formats would require at least a DVD-14.

    If DVD had been announced from the beginning as being WIDESCREEN ONLY that would have been great, but the fact is one of the big promises was that it would provide BOTH formats, for people who like widescreen and people who don't. While this hasn't happened on every release, they should strive to make it that way as much as possible as long as the same movies are still being shown in pan and scan on VHS and cable. While I certainly don't mind if they leave out pan and scan, I definitely HAVE been bothered that several titles have gone out ONLY in pan and scan, or released separately and seeing only the pan and scan version in some stores. The average consumer isn't likely to know about multiple releases and just get whichever one they find first. (FOUR versions of "American Pie II" is BEYOND overkill, BTW!)

    The key word here is pleasing all of the people, all of the time, even if some of the people are wrong.
     
  6. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    By the way, what I said above goes also for anything put out in multiple-rated versions, like American Pie (available with ADDED footage) or Josie and the Pussycats or Requiem For a Dream (available as EDITED versions)- if they're going to do these, they should be available on the SAME disc.
     
  7. David Stone

    David Stone Stunt Coordinator

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  8. Donald W

    Donald W Stunt Coordinator

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    was Josie and the Pussycats edited?? I didn't know that anything was edited at all from that film or that there were 2 versions of the film...the reason that Requiem For a Dream came out at all in an edited version was that Blockbuster couldn't have the unrated version in it's stores *when it came to theaters it was unrated but would have got the NC-17, which is unfair because this film was in no way as bad as what they showed in Crash*...the one plus side was that the edited version didn't have any of the extras on the disk, the unrated version had all the extras on there...
     
  9. Donald W

    Donald W Stunt Coordinator

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    forgot to add this to my last post...Best Buy is one of the only stores that I have seen that only take the unrated versions of films like Requiem For a Dream or American Pie 1 and 2....I don't think I've ever seen them take or have the rated or edited versions in their store
     
  10. Martin Fontaine

    Martin Fontaine Supporting Actor

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    Why can't they use camera angles? Since the audio and subs are the same, this should take less space.
     
  11. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    I've heard that asked before; using camera angles for pan and scan would be more trouble than it would be worth because it would take up more space than 2 versions and always require a layer change even on movies that wouldn't otherwise need one.

    BTW "Josie and the Pussycats" was reissued by Universal in an edited version, clearly marked on the front cover as "THIS FILM EDITED FOR FAMILY VIEWING." Quite possibly the most pointless re-issue ever (the uncut version is still available, but now you have to make sure not to get the cut version instead.)
     
  12. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    I liked the idea someone on this board came up with...
    Compress the P&S version to 1MBS max with Dolby Digital 2.0 surround.
    OAR problem solved. [​IMG]
     
  13. AaronMK

    AaronMK Supporting Actor

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    The P&S problem is not that people who want P&S are not getting it in most cases, it is the fact that there is a demand for it in the first place.

    If all studios said that they would never release P&S again on DVD, P&S people would scream and holler for a year, but would then accept and then begin to prefer it once they get over the fact that their screen isn't filled and that the benefits are far greater than the costs.

    We OAR people will not ever, EVER, buy or rent unless OAR is an option.

    They may just want P&S now, but soon they will demand it with lots of extras, and will demand those on release date, and we all know what happens when Universal tries to cater to that attitude.

    If you give a mouse a cookie....

    If retail and rental outlets carried both versions in proportion to demand, my view would probably a little different, and I would not object so much to P&S being available. However, with the current state of affairs, it either cuts into quality and/or features, or makes OAR much harder to rent or buy.
     
  14. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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    I don't like p&s and widescreen on the same side of the disk simply because the p&s is taking up valuable space. I like the option of either having the p&s version as a separate DVD or have it on a second disk (as with The Mask Of Zorro).
     

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