Zatoichi question

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Brandon Conway, Dec 1, 2003.

  1. Brandon Conway

    Brandon Conway captveg

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    Okay, I just watched the first film of the series, The Tale of Zatoichi. Now, I know that Home Vision has released the first 11 films, and that those insert cards in the DVDs says they will release 17 total. I also know that AnimEigo release the 20th film, Zatoichi meets Yojimbo. I also found here that they will be releasing the following:

    16 - Zatoichi the Outlaw / The Blind Swordsman's Rescue
    21 - Zatoichi Goes to the Fire Festival
    22 - Zatoichi Meets the One-Armed Swordsman
    23 - Zatoichi at Large
    24 - Zatoichi in Desperation
    25 - Zatoichi's Conspiracy

    So my question is this: which other six films are HVE releasing of the Zatoichi films? It seems their options are 12-15, 17-19, 26. And after that, who will be releasing the other two films left over?

    Thanks in advance. [​IMG]
     
  2. Ash Atchison

    Ash Atchison Agent

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    No. 26 (Zatoichi, 1989) is being released by Media Blasters. The fate of No. 14 (Zatoichi's Pilgrimage) is still hazy as far as I know.

    Man, trying to keep up with these is brutal.
     
  3. Brandon Conway

    Brandon Conway captveg

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    Thanks [​IMG]

    Follow up question: is there any compelling reason that AnimEigo has the rights to 16 when HVE has rights to the other first 19?
     
  4. Ash Atchison

    Ash Atchison Agent

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    I had a brain lapse while writing the original post. Check it again.

    As for why the rights are scattered... I'm not exactly sure. I know that while most of these were produced by the Daiei Films, a handful weren't, which may explain things a bit.
     
  5. Brandon Conway

    Brandon Conway captveg

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    Thanks again. [​IMG]

    So, the releases are as follows:

    HVE: 1-13, 15, 17-19
    Anim: 16, 20-25
    MB: 26

    And 14 is unknown.
     
  6. Ash Atchison

    Ash Atchison Agent

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    ... and if we're lucky, Miramax will actually release Kitano's Zatoichi sometime before the apocalypse.
     
  7. Jason Hennigan

    Jason Hennigan Stunt Coordinator

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    Animeigo chose the Zatoichi films they have I think because they stood out better than the films that HV got (i.e. Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo is a more marketable title).

    I don't know why Media Blasters has any Zatoichi film, as it doesn't fit with the rest of their Tokyo Shock line.
     
  8. Brandon Conway

    Brandon Conway captveg

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    Ash - you may want to email thedigitalbits.com with your info about Media Blasters distributing the R1 Zatoichi 26. They're looking for info according to their 12/10/03 update. [​IMG]
     
  9. Ash Atchison

    Ash Atchison Agent

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    Already ahead of you...
     
  10. Brandon Conway

    Brandon Conway captveg

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    Well, aren't you the speedster. :p)
     
  11. Matt_P

    Matt_P Second Unit

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    For someone who hasn't seen any films from this series, what would you recommend as a starting point? Should I go in order, or are there a few standout/standalone films in the series that are worth starting with? Since I probably won't get the whole series, what parts are the best/essential?

    Thanks.
     
  12. Jim_K

    Jim_K Executive Producer

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    Matt

    Start at the beginning, you'll appreciate it a hell of a lot more. Standouts would be the first 3, On the Road (#5), Zatoichi and the Chest of Gold (#6), Fight Zatoichi Fight (#8).

    Also
    Zatoichi and the Chess Expert (#12) - Not on DVD yet
    Zatoichi at the Fire Festival (#21) - coming soon from Animego
    Bloody Smoke Road - (#17) - ?

    There are 5 out of the 26 films that I haven't seen yet.

    If you don't want to plunk down the cash rent them through Netflix as they carry all 11 of the HVE films.
     
  13. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    are these the same series that IFC shows on (what i think is called) their samuraii saturday?

    i've caught a few and found them very entertaining...
     
  14. Peter M Fitzgerald

    Peter M Fitzgerald Screenwriter

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    Ted,

    Yup, these are the same films. The HOME VISION releases are the films IFC has shown, while ANIMEIGO's releases are later films in the series that haven't gotten any television exposure in the USA, as far as I know.
     
  15. Brandon Conway

    Brandon Conway captveg

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    nevermind [​IMG]
     
  16. Mikko Rasinkangas

    Mikko Rasinkangas Stunt Coordinator

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    Question.

    I've recently purchased all of Animeigo's Zatoichi dvd's since they were on sale at DvdSoon. So far I've seen only Kitano's Zatoichi, but none of the others.

    Will I be missing much if I start with the Animeigo releases without seeing any of the earlier films? Are the movies connected in any way other than the main character?

    I haven't bought any of the Home vision discs. I'm on a holding pattern until I come a across a good deal. I'm also waiting for the likely re-releases of parts 1 and 2. Home Vision has hinted that they'll release remastered anamorphic versions of those two.

    Btw, if anyone's interested, I've done matching custom spines for the Zatoichi dvd's. You can find them here: http://img131.exs.cx/my.php?loc=img1...e=zatoichi.gif
     
  17. Russell G

    Russell G Fake Shemp

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    I'm curious about these as well. I currently have the entire Lone wolf and Cub series on order, although I haven't watched any of them yet. I have enjoyed Lady Snowblood, and the LWAC manga. Are the Zatoichi films a safe bet if you like the above? I'm seriously considering getting into these if I enjoy the LWAC flicks as much as I expect to. Any opinions on the flims and quality of the DVD's would be appreciated
     
  18. Mark Zimmer

    Mark Zimmer Producer

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    No, there's really not much in the way of continuity except a general gradual development of the character. One could watch them completely out of order (excepting #26, which is much later than all the others) and really not miss much. I would start with #1,though, since it is meant to be the introduction to the character.

    All have been released now except the indefinitely AWOL #14, the rights to which apparently are held by the star's estate for some reason. I've not heard of anyone moving an inch on getting that one released to DVD, but since there's not much continuity its absence isn't a good enough reason not to launch in on the project. These films are a lot of fun.

    Animeigo is offering a box for its volumes, if that sort of thing interests you; I picked it up when they offered it free with purchase of a volume in the set (they had the same deal with Lone Wolf & Cub). A Paul Champagne metal box for all of them would be a nifty idea.

    Russell, if you like the LWAC manga you most likely will find Zatoichi right up your alley.
     
  19. Joe Szott

    Joe Szott Screenwriter

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    The zatoichi movies are the equivalent to our 007 films. All you need understand is that Z is on the run, blind, and an incredible bad ass with a sword. There might be minor carryovers from one film to the next, but they are like old serial pieces, each is a self-contained vignette that stands on its own.

    If you like Lone Wold and Cub or similar manga/anime, I don't see how you couldn't enjoy Zatoichi. I dare you to not not like it! [​IMG]
     
  20. David_Blackwell

    David_Blackwell Screenwriter

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    So how do they compare to Kitano's Zatoichi?
     

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