The Pan-And-Scan Problem

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by MichaelPe, Oct 12, 2001.

  1. MichaelPe

    MichaelPe Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 1999
    Messages:
    1,115
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Maybe this is a little extreme, but I think that studios should try the following experiment before making any major decisions.
    Take a major recent release like "The Mummy Returns". If Universal wants to release two versions, they be such that:
    Pan-And-Scan Version
    • Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (no 5.1)
    • No Extras
    • One Disc
    Widescreen Ulimate Version
    • Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS
    • All the extras (commentary, features, trailers, ...)
    • Two Discs
    • Better packaging
    But, here's the important thing: both versions should cost exactly the same. (Maybe even offer a mail-in rebate as an incentive to purchase the widescreen version) [​IMG]
    Also, the Pan-And-Scan version should have a big sticker on the shrinkwrap saying something like "This DVD does not contain the movie in its proper format. Approximately 40% of the picture is missing."
    Now, J6P goes into a store and sees both versions. Honestly, which version will sell better? Furthermore, studios must force major chains like Walmart and Blockbuster to carry both versions of the DVD.
    I keep reading about how studios should include a 30-second spot at the beginning of DVDs showing the advantages of widescreen over pan-and-scan. But this isn't enough!
    The problem should be addressed in movie theaters. Right before a film starts (after the trailers), studios should include a 30-second promo showing a beautiful scene of an upcoming DVD in 2.35:1 and then gradually showing the image getting butchered to 1.33:1. Sort of like: this is your brain and this is your brain on drugs. [​IMG] Hopefully this will help the message get across better.
    PS: Maybe these suggestions were already suggested in Ron's thread, but I really didn't have the patience to read all 250+ posts. [​IMG]
    ------------------
    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/uub/Forum9/HTML/005780-2.html
    MY TOP 20 OF 2001
    [Edited last by Michael Perez on October 12, 2001 at 07:24 PM]
     
  2. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    9,306
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Right... Studios are going to make it a policy to try and convince people not to buy one of their products.
     
  3. MichaelPe

    MichaelPe Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 1999
    Messages:
    1,115
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    quote: Right... Studios are going to make it a policy to try and convince people not to buy one of their products.[/quote]
    That's exactly what they're doing by releasing a P&S-only version of a DVD (e.g. Willy Wonka). By doing this, they have essentially convinced OAR supporters to NOT buy their product.
    ------------------
    PS: I have slightly edited my original post because I realize now that it was a little too extreme. [​IMG]
    [Edited last by Michael Perez on October 12, 2001 at 11:05 AM]
     
  4. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    9,306
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I think there's a difference between making a product that may not appeal to a certain demographic and making a concerted attempt to drive potential customers away. I mean, there is a certain (flawed) logic behind releasing family movies 4:3; but how does the scenario you outline work to the studio's advantage?
    I want widescreen as much as anybody, but, let's face it, no business is going to put a label on their merchandise that basically says "This Product Sucks" ("A Michael Bay Film" notwithstanding). That's why I've basically favored a graphical logo like MGM uses on some of their discs, one that makes it clear that the disc in question is cropped without being insulting about it.
     
  5. MichaelPe

    MichaelPe Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 1999
    Messages:
    1,115
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  6. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    9,306
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    It is, generally. It's usually on the back, near the MPAA rating/run time/copyright information.
     
  7. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

    Joined:
    May 16, 2001
    Messages:
    7,563
    Likes Received:
    195
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Georgia (the state)
    Real Name:
    Patrick McCart
    I think the P&S version should cost 3 times as much...
    Remember that widescreen versions don't need as much work done on them as a cropped version.
    ------------------
    Visit my DVD review site, 24 fps DVD Reviews @ http://cztoondb.tripod.com/DVD/
    and
    The Colorized Cartoon Database @ http://cztoondb.tripod.com/
     
  8. Eugene Hsieh

    Eugene Hsieh Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    550
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    They shouldn't HAVE to do anything. It's a business afterall. I really dislike P/S, but hell if I stood to make $234524625234536234 for my company by releasing P/S movies I sure as hell would.
     
  9. Keith_R

    Keith_R Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2001
    Messages:
    1,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    110
    Location:
    FL
    Real Name:
    Kyle
    I think it has been proven before that J6P doesn't really care about P&S VS. WS. I really like this idea though of realeasing a less packed DVD VS. the packed WS DVD.
    ------------------
    -Keith-
     
  10. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2001
    Messages:
    6,190
    Likes Received:
    76
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Livonia, MI USA
    Real Name:
    Kenneth McAlinden
    Does anyone know if Universal was purposely favoring the pan & scan version of Mummy Returns as far as their rental revenue sharing agreements. It struck me a bit odd that Netflix is not stocking the widescreen version when they seemed to stock only the widescreen version of Remember the Titans previously.
    Regards,
    ------------------
    Ken McAlinden
    Livonia, MI USA
     
  11. MichaelPe

    MichaelPe Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 1999
    Messages:
    1,115
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    quote: I think the P&S version should cost 3 times as much...
    Remember that widescreen versions don't need as much work done on them as a cropped version.[/quote]
    Yes, but extras cost more. [​IMG] That's why I think it would be wise for both versions to be priced exactly the same. That way, the consumer can choose which version he/she prefers (assuming the store has both versions available side by side).
    Besides, someone who buys a pan-and-scan DVD does not care about having the best possible presentation of a film. That is why my suggestion about having no extras and no 5.1 makes sense.
    Why should studios waste their time on making a feature-packed P&S DVD when the consumer won't even care about the 5.1 sound or the extra features?
    In fact, why do these "less-informed" consumers even own DVD players? VHS should be more than sufficient for them if they, in fact, don't care about having the best possible presentation of a film.
    quote: They shouldn't HAVE to do anything. It's a business afterall. I really dislike P/S, but hell if I stood to make $234524625234536234 for my company by releasing P/S movies I sure as hell would.[/quote]
    Good point. But remember that studios are losing sales on already-released widescreen titles because the J6Ps are not buying them (or returning them after seeing those evil black bars). If studios want these widescreen titles to sell, then informing the public is the best (and most cost efficient) solution.
    Why should Warner (hypothetically) go back and spend money to master a new version of "The Matrix" with a pan-and-scan transfer, when they could simply inform the public that the widescreen version is superior? Not only would they save money, but they would sell more copies of the widescreen version that already exists.
    If consumers are well-educated, then there is no need to release DVDs in both formats. Honestly, I believe that consumers can be taught which format is superior.
    After all, these J6Ps have evolved and are buying DVD players. Why? Because they were convinced after they saw the advantages - better picture, better sound, ... I think the key word here is "convince". The less-informed crowd has to be convinced that widescreen is superior. It is simply not enough to persuade them that widescreen is better. It has to be proven to them. [​IMG]
    ------------------
    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/uub/Forum9/HTML/005780-2.html
    MY TOP 20 OF 2001
    [Edited last by Michael Perez on October 12, 2001 at 07:22 PM]
     
  12. TomRS4

    TomRS4 Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 1999
    Messages:
    50
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     

Share This Page