Universal-Where are Double Indemnity/This Gun For Hire etc ?

Discussion in 'DVD' started by FrankXS, Feb 21, 2004.

  1. FrankXS

    FrankXS Stunt Coordinator

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    Universal is doing a great job bringing many of its' catalog sets out ie: Abbott and Costello/Ma and Pa Kettle/Francis the Mule. WHEN will they get around to a lot of the 1930/1940's Paramount titles that they have the rights to such as :

    Double Indemnity
    This Gun For Hire
    Blue Dahlia
    General Died at Dawn
    The Major and the Minor
    Duck Soup/Monkey Business/Animal Crackers/Cocoanuts
    Midnight
    Easy Living
    The Buccaneer
    Union Pacific
    Northwest Mounted Police
    One Hundred Men and a Girl/a Deanna Durbin set
    and many, many more
     
  2. Steve Schaffer

    Steve Schaffer Producer

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    Double Indemnity is out, I have a copy, but have had it for a couple of years so it might be oop. It's in a Snapper with Universal and Image logos on it.
     
  3. Craig Beam

    Craig Beam Screenwriter

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    Yeah, the Image DOUBLE INDEMNITY is WAAAAAAAAAAY out of print. I keep hoping it gets the Criterion treatment, but at this point anything's better than nothing at all. C'mon Universal!!!
     
  4. GlennH

    GlennH Cinematographer

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    Yes, that Image release of Double Indemnity has been OOP for awhile now. I've heard the transfer is not so good. I never got around to getting that one.

    Maybe if the Warner set of Marx Brothers does well Universal will release theirs.
     
  5. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    I already have Double Indemnity and Duck Soup but would kill for This Gun for Hire and The Blue Dahlia, and would also like to pick up the Major & the Minor.
     
  6. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    i would love to see The Ladd/Lake noirs as well.
    i would think they would be just as saleable as...Francis The Talking Mule (but what do i know).

    i've heard that the Deanna Durbins were going to b released in a box set this year, but i would think the actual product would be more in line with te A&C and Kettle and Airport packs (all of which sport very stylish jacket design) rather than single discs in a large box.

    of the ones on your list, i would love to see Midnight. a wonderful Claudette Colbert comedy (co-written by Billy Wilder) with a great supporting turn from John Barrymore.

    given the slant of their catalog releases, i expect that will be some time in coming though.
     
  7. Derek_McL

    Derek_McL Second Unit

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    Paul I think you'll be lucky to see Midnight but you never know. On a positive note one Paramount film I didn't realise was coming is Cecil B. Demillle's The Plainsman (1936)with Gary Cooper and Jean Arthur which is buried among a few other westerns in June.

    The Deanna Durbins are available here in the UK : there is a boxset out, you can also buy them individually and there is a second boxset out next month ! The Marx brothers are out too in a boxset minus The Cocoanuts. I never thought I would see the day that I thought Universal UK were doing a better job than their US counterpart !

    I said this before but I'm disappointed by Universal's release of Ma and Pa Kettle and Francis the Talking Mule ahead of so many Paramount classics of the 30s and 40s. A reissue of Double Indemnity is long overdue : that can hardly be called an obscure title, its probably the best film noir of them all !

    I'm still praying for a W.C.Fields set like the Abbott and Costello ones. Some of his titles were rumoured but I hope we get some of the Paramounts like Its A Gift as well his Universals like My Little Chickadee and Never Give A Sucker An Even Break.
     
  8. John Hodson

    John Hodson Producer

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    ...which are

    The Spoilers
    War Arrow
    No Name On The Bullet
    Albuquerque
    Whispering Smith
    The Plainsman
    When The Daltons Rode


    The reason there's no fanfare I suppose is that these will be the usual barebones affairs from Universal, but the bright note is that I can pick them up for under £5 delivered. Let's hope the image quality - particularly on my most wanted of these The Plainsman, The Spoilers and Whispering Smith - is up to scratch (without the scratches [​IMG] )

    I'm confident too that Double Indemnity will appear, loaded with extras (when I see it on TV, the prints look in terrible shape), in the fullness of time. I read a rumour that Cameron Crowe was eager to make his taped interviews with Billy Wilder available.

    Which would be nice.

    ---
    So many films, so little time...
     
  9. Charles H

    Charles H Screenwriter

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    Unversal is releasing 3 Paramount films--their first from the Paramount catalog since last May: THE PLAINSMAN, WAKE ISLAND, and WHISPERING SMITH. WHISPERING SMITH is particulary auspicious since it has no video precedent. WHEN THE DALTONS RODE, ALBUQUERQUE, and NIGHT PASSAGE (released in last year's Western Legends catalog) were also new to any videoformat).

    THE MAJOR AND THE MINOR, Wilder's first American film, would be a terrific addition. That would leave for the Wilder completist: A FOREIGN AFFAIR, THE SPIRIT OF ST. LOUIS, FEODORA...and ACE IN THE HOLE (aka THE BIG CARNIVAL). The last, a fascinating film from Paramount, has never been available on video...although there were rumors about a special edition. Even Wilder's first film in French--MAUVAISE GRAINE (1934)--is available on DVD.
     
  10. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    Buddy Buddy is on dvd?!?
     
  11. Eric Peterson

    Eric Peterson Cinematographer

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    Nope! Neither is "Five Graves to Cairo".

    If all of the remaining Wilder's were released, I'd be one happy man, but with Universal holding the rights to many of them, I fear that day will never come.

    I honestly think that Universal thinks nobody wants these old films. I'd love to sit in on one of their board meetings.
     
  12. RafaelPires

    RafaelPires Supporting Actor

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    Let's not forget:
    -The Cat and the Canary;
    -The Palm Beach Story;
    -Beau Gest;
    -Desire;
    -Angel;
    -Arise, My Love;
    -Bluebeard's Eighth Wife;
    -So Proudly We Hail!;
    -The Gilded Lily;
    -Lady in the Dark;
    -I Married a Witch;
    -California
    -No Man of Her Own (Gable and Lombard);
    -Hold Back the Dawn;
    -If I Had a Million;
    -The Westerner;
    -No Time for Love;
    -Remember The Night(wonderful movie starring Stanwyck and MacMurray!!!);
    -To Each His Own;
    -Swing High, Swing Low;
    -Frenchman's Creek;
    -Designing for Living;
    -Kitty;
    -Morocco;
    -Five Graves to Cairo;
    -The Big Clock;
    -So Evil My Love;
    -The Uninvited;
    -Ministry of Fear;
    -Golden Earrings,
    -
    plus some Carole Lombard (Rumba, Bolero, True Confession, The Princess Come Across, Hands Across the Table) flicks as well as more Bing Crosby (We're Not Dressing, Anything Goes, Dr. Rhythm, Waikiki Wedding, Sing You Sinners, Dixie).
    And Universal, what about some teen musical with Donald O'Connor, Gloria Jean and Peggy Ryan (though I think they will never be released). And I'm dying for the Deanna Durbin's box sets.
    And I know I'm forgetting a lot, but since the lack of releases from Universal is tremendous, we can't expect them to put all of this in a minute.
    At least all the titles mentioned in this thread deserves to be on dvd, are you reading this Universal???
     
  13. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    great list Rafael.

    i had completely forgotten about Hold Back The Dawn ( another Billy Wilder co-script), Palm Bach Story, and the others.

    yeah 50-60 catalog titles per year, with the majority seeming to be films from the last 20 years, doesn't bode well for seeing many of these anytime soon.
    (soon being the next 3-4 yrs)
     
  14. Ben_D

    Ben_D Agent

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    I have to second Remember the Night. It's been on my wish list for years, and now that a lot of other classics have made it to disc, it's now on my top ten.
     

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