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bdev

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Join date
8-Dec-2005
Last activity
2-Mar-2008
Posts
84

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Post
#277696
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
All,

I've taken the project as far as I can, and I will shortly be handing off all materials to a few different people in hopes that they will be able to get the second disc done. The first disc has been done for a while. Somewhat fittingly, right as I was about to burn discs with the source material, my video card crapped out and that computer is out of commission for the moment. I have other discs floating around with the material on it, so it's not lost or anything, but just another setback for a project wrought with setbacks.

Sorry for the delay,
--bdev

PS - the deleted scenes are from workprints, so there are lots of print damage and missing sound elements. I don't believe that a watchable extended version could be constructed.

PPS - According to Gilliam (from the book Gilliam on Gilliam), Criterion offered him the chance to make a restored cut (to the original 3+ hour running time) when the laserdisc was made, a la Brazil. This project was never started due to financial constraints (the projected cost was 250k dollars at the time) and because Gilliam was burned out at that point. Perhaps with newer digital editing equipment, the cost could now be lower. Columbia certainly doesn't seem to give a damn about it, so maybe it's obtainable.
Post
#272170
Topic
Dead Presidents and Menace II Society
Time
Zar,

I have artwork for dead presidents and can modify the information on the back if you can give me some idea of what's on your disc. I have the Menace II Society laserdiscs as well, so maybe I can cook some artwork up for that as well, but no promises!

Can you PM me your email address so I can send the file? (Your PM's are off, by the way)

--bdev
Post
#271609
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
The problem with DVD-Lab is that the menu size (or pixel ratio) it wants is different from Encore for some reason, so I'd have to do all of the menus over. I also don't have access to a full version. The labs here actually have Scenarist in them - though I can't actually get a copy for my own computer - but that would also require extensive changes to every menu, and I don't want to read a 600 page manual just to make one damn disc.

My computer is now free of Encore. A very disturbing aspect in all of this is the horseshit support from Adobe. I never once got an answer that didn't place blame on some other vendor's product (cinemacraft, soft encode, windows, athlon, etc, etc). I'm far from the only person who has had problems with this glorified beta software, although my guess is that I stuck with it longer than most. Why are software developers such a touchy lot? I also had the save knee-jerk alibi-filled defense from the guy who authored the junk hd2dvd software that just doubled every 5th frame or whatever it did.

Alright, now I feel better.

--bdev
Post
#271518
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Plan B isn't working either. For some reason, it gets past the "building slideshow" step and then starts importing video, which it does repeatedly for about 2 hours. The hard drive then fills up (on the laptop, mind you) and then I get some weird error about "reaching the end of the stream without a start point." Apparently I'm the first person to ever get this error as there is no info about it on the internet.

I will try to figure out more about this bug, but if I can't get it, I will have to start over from scratch in some other (competent) program. I'm glad I'm using this through an institutional version of the whole post-production pack. I would be irate if I had paid full price for a personal use version.

I will keep updating here, but for right now I'm sort of just spinning my tires.

--bdev
Post
#271113
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
So, I've pretty much given up hope that this version of disc two will compile. It has crashed two computer several times over, so there's no real way it can happen. I even ramped the virtual memory up to 5 gigs ... nuthin'

Plan B is to make each series of slides into a slideshow. This approach is sub-optimal in that, depending on the dvd player, there may be numbers shown on the screen during flipping through them; my Sony player displays an obnoxious blue bar on the top. My hope with going the extra step of making them into menus was that everyone's machine would have displayed the content in the same manner, but that's just not possible.

I have archived all of my source content (4 dvds), so if someone with an extremely fast Intel based computer and Encore wants to give it a shot at some point, let me know, but for right now I'm just going to do it this way.

--bdev
Post
#270879
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Encore is such a steaming piece of crap on a stick that I don't even bother worrying about what it's published limitations are anymore.

I'm just going through right now and proof-reading each frame, which requires it to communicate with photoshop. I can about 30 frames done, and then it crashes. I pretty much have to save every time I make a change with anything. Supposedly it's not meant to be run on AMD processors, and I think that's probably the main problem since my laptop is an intel and it hasn't had too many problems yet. I have to compile on that computer, as I've mentioned before.

--bdev
Post
#270658
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Yes, I'm probably not to a gig of menus yet. I think there are like 5 gigs of psd files, but so far it's showing only like 3gb on disc total with a whole bunch of video and audio elements mixed in.

I'm hoping that I don't contribute to the discovery of the upper limit with this project.

--bdev
Post
#270611
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Yeah ... the first line of the commentary says something like "At some point, we all go too far."

And yes, you guys are right, each text frame is actually just a menu. I was worried intially that there was some limit on how many menus you can have in sequence, but the program hasn't yelled at me yet, so I don't know. It's the best way to do it, but it's damn tedious.

--bdev
Post
#270555
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
THANK GOD!

My gut feeling was wrong. It was only that a single f'ing menu was corrupt (the one that was open when the program crashed). I was able to open the file and can now continue working on it. Luckily, you can order files by last modified in Windows, so I located it quickly. Photoshop couldn't even open it.

I have no idea when this will be completed, or if Encore can even compile a disc this complex, but I will somehow get the set out soon. There may be more swearing on the horizon, but at least in Encore the disc is looking superb!

--bdev
Post
#270553
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Alright, here's a somewhat sordid update:

I have spent the last two weeks creating links between discs two's some 1800 menus. Each one has about 3 links to make, and having that many menus on this disc slowed Encore to a crawl, so it went very slowly. Anyway, I finished making all the links at 1 am last night and started going through each one again just checking for typos. I got through 50 or so menus when Encore pulled its favorite "Abnormal condition ... Save and exit" popup window. I saved and shut down for the evening. I got up this morning and tried to open the disc and I got a new "Cannot read photoshop file" window that does not allow me to open this disc.

In short, about 14 days of work just went down the shitter. I will continue to attempt to open the files, but its already failed on two different computers. My next step is to start removing menus from the content cache to see if it's just one menu that's tripping it up, but my gut is telling me that there's an irreversible error written into the project now that won't allow access.

So where does that put the project? I really don't want to come this far and just give up, so I may have to employ some other navigation paradigm that will allow me to construct it much more quickly and hopefully get this POS Encore to actually do its job. Instead of having each slide be a menu, I may just make them into slideshows. I really don't like doing this, but it might be the only way as I don't really have two more weeks to do that same damn thing again.

What's extremely frustrating is that right after I set the last link, I thought "I should burn it to a disc now," but I didn't since Encore had been behaving recently.

--bdev
Post
#268866
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Okay then. If there are official releases with the English track, then there's no reason to worry about it. I will make a companion cover and sneak it in the torrent though, and maybe some menus so those so inclined can reauthor those discs to match.

Can you comment on the quality of that czech disc?

--bdev

EDIT: Go for it on the Hughes' films!

EDIT2: I wish we could upload new icons.
Post
#268851
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Yes. I will probably do that then.

If anyone is interested, the place that has it for sale is trashpalace.com. I guess he specializes in long-lost animation and snuff films or something.

Which begs the question: What's more depressing, sending 19 dollars to trashpalace.com for an old cartoon, or finding that that email is a "Verified Business Memeber" with 400 sales on PayPal?
Post
#268847
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Okay ... I know this is the project that won't die ... or won't be born ... or something, but I have a quick query to those following along:

I just placed an order for the little known but highly influential 1961 Czech feature Baron Prasil which is referenced in the Criterion laserdisc quite a few times. The version I purchased is a non-official dvd-r, and the only official version I see around anywhere is from yesasia.com that has a japanese dub and no english option.

Depending on the quality of this DVD-R when it arrives, I may include it as an addendum to this set. Is there any interest in me doing so? It will probably increase the size of the torrent file to somewhere around 10 GB.

--bdev
Post
#268787
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
I forgot to loop the main menu on disc two, so if you let the whole cut of "How About You" play to the end, the disc will stop rather than play it again or just hold. I didn't catch the error until I had already sent out a few sets. You can either just download the corrected disc from demonoid, or I can send you an additional one.

I use Adobe Encore to author, which I don't suggest to anyone. A lot of the shortcut keys are different than other Adobe programs (for example, Ctrl+ to zoom in), and it doesn't feel very Adobe-ish, so I suspect that they may have just purchased the basic program from an upstart somewhere and then dressed it up a bit. The main problem is that I have really bad problems with it crashing, and I can't get a large, complex disc to compile it in. What I do as a work-around is build the discs on my main computer and then transfer over to the laptop to compile. The laptop doesn't have a dvd burner, so I have to burn all the vob's to cds and then put it back together on the desktop. It's better than just swearing at the computer when it crashes, which was the original solution.

Kind of amazing what I'll do just so I don't have to learn another program.

Let me know about the disc.

--bdev
Post
#268527
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
I don't own all of them, but I own about 60 of them, including those two. My Ambersons copy has bad laser rot, though. I try to buy only the ones with extras on them, and I don't have any that have been released on DVD. I also shy away from the foreign titles because they seem to have better luck securing the rights to those for DVD release. It's irritating to spend the cost of a new DVD on a laserdisc, and then have that same title announced by Criterion shortly after .... (49th Parallel).

--bdev
Post
#268443
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Alright guys, I just wanted to give you an update on the Munchausen project.

At this point, I have converted all content for disc two over to dvd-ready format, and will begin constructing the dvd beginning Monday. My hope for getting this done and uploaded this weekend was foolishly quixotic given the sheer quantity of material stored onto the laserdiscs. All told, I ended up with the following:
-1,748 individual slides of information, which will probably grow by twenty or so as I create navigation menus during the creation of the disc. I decided to transcribe all text to new slides, which accounts for the snail's pace of the project. Pictures interspersed in the large narrative sections of the disc were resized to fit within normal overscan limits. Pictures contained in galleries were not resized, due to time constraints and also because most of these contain important detail that resizing compromises (for example, blueprints or concept sketches). God I hope that Encore can handle this many slides.
-24 unique video elements, ranging from 15 seconds to around 10 minutes each. Four of these feature multiple audio tracks containing Gilliam's commentary as well as the original audio
-4 audio only interviews with producers, screenwriters, and other crew members. The accents are thick, but this content is crucial to the discussion of what was apparenlty a very emotional production process.

I am still debating whether or not to include an LP capture of the soundtrack as an extra, since the CD was produced, although it is out of print and too expensive for me to purchase. Also, I have four comic books that were released parallel to the movie, and wanted to incorporate them somehow, but since none of the creators of the movie had anything to do with them, I have omitted it from the project.

Keep looking back here to see where the project is. I will keep everyone updated as to its status.

Pray that my hard drive doesn't kick the bucket. I don't think I have the stamina to do this again.

--bdev
Post
#268187
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Did you cancel the Dead Presidents project ?


I haven't acutally even looked at the set yet. My copy is a beat-to-hell old rental copy, so if there are playback issues with it, I won't do anything with it. Also, I'm somewhat reticent at this point to anything containing more than a hundred or so slides. The first disc of Munchausen took me 3 days to complete; the second is almost on its second month of clogging up my computer.

--bdev
Post
#266760
Topic
Criterion Collection: Adventures of Baron Munchausen & The Fisher King
Time
Thank you for all of your compliments. Each time I do one, it gets a little better, and this one is somewhere in the middle of my first one (She's Gotta Have It) and where I'll probably end up (I'm thinking Ghostbusters or maybe Polanski's Repulsion next). I can't imagine anyone will want Repulsion though, so that's probably going to have to go on the shelf with Othello. Either way, my professional life is going to start getting pretty rough soon, so I'm going to have to hang it up pretty soon.

The reason I'm posting is that I wanted to update everyone on the Munchausen set. I'm done with the first disc, as I stated earlier, and I'm about half way through the second disc. I don't know if the rest of disc two is video (which goes quickly) or if it's more damned text to copy over, so I don't have a estimated end date yet, but I'll keep you updated.

--bdev
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