Updates on Charlie Chaplin Collection from Warner-MK2?

Peter Apruzzese

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Ask and ye shall receive:

MARCH 18 | Charlie Chaplin classics The Gold Rush, The Great Dictator, Limelight and Modern Times arrive on DVD from Warner Home Video on July 1. The titles are the first of 10 that WHV will release under the Chaplin Collection under a licensing agreement with M2K, which owns the rights to the Chaplin catalog.

The DVDs are priced at $29.95. Prebook is April 29 for merchandisers and May 20 for single orders. The films have been digitally restored, and the double-disc DVDs include never-before-seen footage, behind-the-scene glimpses and home movie footage. The DVDs also include interviews with Chaplin's family, retrospective documentaries and a six-minute excerpt of unfinished 1919 film The Professor that mirrors Limelight.

A second wave of Chaplin films will be released this fall.
 

Rain

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Unfortunately that announcement says nothing about whether both versions of the films that were later re-edited will be included.
 

Patrick McCart

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Charlie Chaplin classics The Gold Rush, The Great Dictator, Limelight and Modern Times arrive on DVD from Warner Home Video on July 1.
Thanks for the replies.

As for both versions, there was a press release somewhere that multiple versions would be on DVD when applicable (for example, City Lights and The Great Dictator were never altered in re-release, save for CL's new score). It's on DVDFile's site, I think. Logistically, there is no reason why multiple versions of the films can't be on the same set... For the shorter films, they can have both on one disc. For Limelight, Modern Times, and A King In New York, the two versions can be seamlessly branched (although, King might get only one version...the American version isn't the one approved by Chaplin.)

I was thinking it would be 11 discs since it would look like this:

The Kid/The Idle Class
A Woman of Paris/Sunnyside
The Gold Rush/Pay Day
The Circus/A Day's Pleasure
City Lights
Modern Times
The Great Dictator
Mons. Verdoux
Limelight
A King In New York
The Chaplin Revue (with Shoulder Arms, A Dog's Life, and The Pilgrim)

Perhaps The Chaplin Revue isn't being counted?
 

Rain

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...there was a press release somewhere that multiple versions would be on DVD when applicable...
While I do remember hearing something about it, I was under the impression that it was not yet official at the time. And I have not heard anything further on the matter since.

Besides which, studios have been known to change their minds.

Until I see this on the official specs, I would assume it is a certainty.
 

Greg_S_H

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Wasn't it determined we'd finally be getting a restored silent Gold Rush? I'll take a look at upgrading on the rest and probably will, but TGR is a must.
 

Brian PB

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Full press release available at davisdvd.com here . It gives specs on the four sets being released (both versions of Gold Rush will be on that set, for instance).

WOW--these really look great. Gonna have to feed the piggy bank.
 

Patrick McCart

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Brian, many thanks for the link!

It looks like I'll be replacing my DVDs of The Gold Rush, The Great Dictator, and Modern Times... the new DVDs suprisingly will retain all the material from the laserdiscs.

As for The Gold Rush, Neil Brand did most of the scores for the recent "Best Arbuckle/Keaton Collection" and they're excellent.

I'm a little irked by the 5.1 remixes, but they'll at least have the original mono (according to MK2's site).

As soon as they reveal info for City Lights and The Circus, some lucky fellow on eBay is going to get a rare and OOP DVD set.
 

Rain

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So pardon my ignorance, but are these versions of Modern Times and The Great Dictator the same cuts as those released by Image?

I am not sure if those two films ended up getting recut by Chaplin later or not.

Or does this pretty much just affect The Gold Rush?
 

Patrick McCart

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The Great Dictator (along with Mons. Verdoux and City Lights) has never been editorially changed save for either an alternate copyright card or re-scoring credits (in the case of City Lights)

The First Nationals were either edited or step-printed (16fps simulated...yuch). The Circus was step-printed and scored. A Woman of Paris had a few insert shots added in for the 1978 release. The Chaplin Revue has been shown sometimes sans A Dog's Life.
 

Brandon Conway

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Since it was released in the sound era (1936), I don't believe there is any alternate cut to Modern Times.

And I am so excited about these releases. I was getting worried that they would be delayed since we were told June '03 so long ago and we hadn't heard any news recently.

Now I just gotta find the $$$ to get them all....
 

Mark Zimmer

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The Image disc contains the full original Modern Times; Chaplin recut it for reasons known only to him to eliminate the punchline from the nonsense song. I think that's the only significant alteration. No idea, though, on whether both versions (or which version) will be on the upcoming disc.
 

DeeF

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Has anyone else noted that Chaplin's reputation as a great and influential movie director has been slipping in recent years?

In the 70s, when A Woman of Paris was seen at some film festivals, it was a huge event, instantly catapulted into the Top 10 movie events of the year (although 50 years old, almost no one had seen it).

Now, Chaplin movies rarely get into the Top 100 lists, and if they do, they are behind Keaton films like The General.

I love The General, and it certainly deserves its reputation, but Chaplin deserves more attention than he is getting. His silent films made during the sound era were all singular events. What happened since that time?

This is just an observation, nothing more.
 

Brandon Conway

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I think it's a backlash result of Keaton's work growing in respect and popularity. For some reason, people must pit the two against each other. I enjoy them both, though for different reasons. Why can't everyone? I have no idea.
 

DeeF

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Sorry, these last posts are probably in the wrong thread. I've started this same debate over in Movies.
 

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