Third Man on the Mountain Coming!

Discussion in 'DVD' started by DanFe, Apr 18, 2004.

  1. DanFe

    DanFe Second Unit

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    It's coming out. One of my favorite Disney movies. Now, the question: will it be OAR? IMDB says it was filmed in 35mm and deepdiscount says it will be fool frame. Oh, no. My fears about this release look to be coming true.

    Edit: Or is the OAR 1:33? Anyone know?
     
  2. Joe Caps

    Joe Caps Screenwriter

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    many questions - where did yo see that Third Man on the Mountain is being released? When is it coming out - What other Disney titles are being released with it. No website has had an announcement of this title, not even Ultimate Disney.
     
  3. Rodney

    Rodney Screenwriter
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    DDD shows it as being released on 9/7/04, but Disney's site does not show a release for this on DVD at all.

    I wonder where DDD got the info? Is this a mistake? I hope not, I would love to see this again.
     
  4. DanFe

    DanFe Second Unit

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  5. DanFe

    DanFe Second Unit

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    Still no one knows more about this? What a great movie. If its OAR was widescreen, I really don't want to buy it if they insist on 1:33.
     
  6. Joe_Pinney

    Joe_Pinney Stunt Coordinator

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    Hmm, even Amazon's got it listed. Looks like the folks at UltimateDisney.com have gotten scooped bigtime!

    Re: its OAR - like a number of other Disney live action releases of the period, it's possible that it was filmed with the possibility of being first shown on the Disney anthology TV series rather than theatrically, in which case it would have been shot open matte (and framed for 1.33:1). Naturally, we won't know more until it's released. Some of these Disney 1.33:1 releases are just fine in 1.33:1 and are not true "pan-and-scan" films as we know them. On the other hand, some ARE, and those are the ones that need to be released in their proper widescreen dimensions.
     
  7. Joe Caps

    Joe Caps Screenwriter

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    Since this was a big expensive film, with a lot of it shot on location, I doubt this would be shot as a possible tv film. I know the laserdisc had a beautiful master that actually created the look of the original film.
     
  8. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    Joe,

    Was the laser disc widescreen? This did get a theatrical release, but was showing up on Disney's tv show later that same year. What the original intent was, though, I don't know.
     
  9. Reagan

    Reagan Supporting Actor

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    I love mountain climbing movies. I love Disney movies. And I've been waiting for years to see this. So I'm excited.

    -Reagan
     
  10. DanFe

    DanFe Second Unit

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  11. Jeff Swearingen

    Jeff Swearingen Second Unit

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    sorry...delete post
     
  12. Ernest Rister

    Ernest Rister Producer

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    "At this time," director Ken Annakin recalls, "Walt had taken a shine to Switzerland and everything Swiss. He used to go there on his summer holidays every year, and adored it, and this story he felt would be the thing for all young people. No effort was spared to make it as entertaining as the holiday which Walt was taking in Switzerland proved to be for him."
    -- director Ken Annakin on Third Man on the Mountain

    "...may well become a children's classic of the screen, a sort of Tom Sawyer in the Alps."
    -- Time Magazine

    "It has the sort of high-altitude thrills to send the viewer cowering deep in his seat and the sort of moving drama to put him on the edge of it."
    -- Variety

    Third Man on the Mountain is another one of those forgotten Disney live-action gems, like Those Calloways and The Three Lives of Thomasina. It is easily one of the ten best live-action films personally produced by Walt Disney. The Matterhorn at Disneyland, CA was built specifically because of this movie and Disney's affection for Switzerland. Like many of the more personal live-action Disney dramas, this failed at the box office. It aired in two parts on Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color under the title, "Banner in the Sky" (which was the name of the book on which the film was based -- the author even makes a hidden cameo in the film). "Banner in the Sky" aired on NBC Television on February 17th (Part One) and February 24th (Part Two), 1963.

    Third Man on the Mountain was released theatrically four years earlier, on November 10th, 1959. It followed the release of Darby O'Gill and the Little People, which also flopped at the box office. If more people had supported films like Darby O'Gill and Third Man on the Mountain, perhaps the 60's would not have seen an explosion of low-budget, low-IQ comedies from the Disney studios, like The Ugly Dachsund and Monkeys Go Home.
     
  13. DanFe

    DanFe Second Unit

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    So Ernest, by what you are saying it appears that the movie is indeed meant to be 1:33 and that is its OAR?
     
  14. Joe Caps

    Joe Caps Screenwriter

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    Yikes!! I can't see anywhere in Ernest post that he measn the oar to be 1:33. Some , but not all of Disneys films are shot 1:33 and meant to be matted top and bottom in the theater. I have the laserdisx which is full screen and it never looks cramped on the sides.
    this is a wonderful movie and I'm glad that Disney is releasing this on DVD. Too bad theywon't put a music only track as this score is gorgeous.
     
  15. DanFe

    DanFe Second Unit

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    Meant for that to be a question, Joe. Sorry. Anyway, it appears that Disney will be going with 1:33. Open-matte, right?
     
  16. Ernest Rister

    Ernest Rister Producer

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    One thing is certain - Third Man on the Mountain was not shot in Scope. As we all know by now, theatrical aspect ratios for classic Disney titles of the late 50's and 60's are notoriously difficult to nail down. I'd expect Third Man to have the same 1.75:1 aspect ratio of other expensive Disney live-action titles of the period, namely Darby O'Gill, Kidnapped, and Pollyanna.

    I can state definitively that Third Man on the Mountain was *not* shot for television and released theatrically in 1959. It was an expensive film, intended for theatrical release, only shown on NBC television four years later in two parts under the title, "Banner in the Sky". Was the film produced with the knowledge that the movie would eventually air on TV? Certainly. Did this knowledge influence the shot composition? Probably. Even non-scope films made today are composed for eventual television airing.

    The Shaggy Dog was released theatrically about 6 months prior to Third Man on the Mountain. Unlike most Disney live-action films up to this point, The Shaggy Dog was originally intended for a television audience (at least, it had its roots in TV sitcoms and was developed as a possible recurring TV series on the Disney Anthology TV show). Was The Shaggy Dog actually *shot* for a TV audience? Quite possibly, although the 104-minute running time would seem to preclude showing the film even in two parts on TV without some judicious editing.

    Davy Crockett, King of the Wild Frontier was the first Disney film released in theaters that was shot for TV, but others followed (like The Misadventures of Merlin Jones). Audiences in Europe were almost bombarded with Disney made-for-TV movies in the 60's, as many episodes of the Disneyland/Walt Disney Presents/Wonderful World of Color TV show were released theatrically in Europe.

    Back to The Shaggy Dog -- Sleeping Beauty had premiered two months prior, and perhaps Walt released The Shaggy Dog to bolster the studio revenue in the wake of the box office failure of Sleeping Beauty. It's hard to believe today, but in 1959, Sleeping Beauty, Darby O'Gill and the Little People, and Third Man on the Mountain all flopped at the box office, while The Shaggy Dog went on to become one of the highest grossing films of the year, earning more revenues than Sleeping Beauty, Darby, and Third Man combined.
     
  17. oscar_merkx

    oscar_merkx Lead Actor

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    another disney film I have not seen before
     
  18. Ernest Rister

    Ernest Rister Producer

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    There are scores of great Disney live action films that have fallen off the radar for many reasons...lack of home video availability, lack of promotion, obscure airings at the wee hours of the night on the Disney channel, etc. I'd be willing to bet that the ratings for the revived "Wonderful World of Disney" on ABC would improve substantially if they actually aired the classic Walt Disney films...films like Darby O'Gill and Treasure Island and 20,000 Leagues and Kidnapped and Third Man on the Mountain and In Search of the Castaways...if these were shown instead of the low-quality junk that aired in the last few years, the show might actually have a pedigree and respect that would make each week an event for families all across North America. When people see a Disney TV show, they want to see actual Disney product, not low budget, made-for-TV remakes.

    No one can ever seriously argue that the classic Walt Disney live action films made a tremendous contribution to the art of cinema a'la Citizen Kane or Lawrence of Arabia or 2001, but they do not deserve their obscurity, either. George Lucas once said that movies are never finished, they are only abandoned. There are too many live-action Disney orphans, and it is well past time they came home.
     
  19. Joe_Pinney

    Joe_Pinney Stunt Coordinator

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    Ernest - THANK YOU SO MUCH for your information. Although I think it's a shame that it's so difficult to nail down aspect ratios of many of these films, at least I can rest assured that, if TMOTM is released in 1.33:1, I'm not getting a pan-n-scan hack job. Although I would, of course, love a true OAR transfer (possibly 1.75:1, like you say, possibly 1.66:1, again, a shame that it's so unclear), I can accept a decent 1.33:1 transfer if the image composition and framing are not distracting.

    What I'd really like to know from you, though, Ernest, is - where in blazes did you get all that terrific information?!?
     
  20. Ernest Rister

    Ernest Rister Producer

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    Books. Lots and lots of books. Amazing what you can find in them. [​IMG]

    Seriously, though, if you want an easy reference book for the films produced by Walt, I highly reccomend Leonard Maltin's The Disney Films. He did a great job scoring many interviews and review excerpts for every single feature film produced by Uncle Walt. Too bad he doesn't get in depth with the short films, then his tome would truly be definitive.
     

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