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The OOT on DVD - then what?

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Hi guys.

I’ve been thinking about this for quite a while and I hope this will generate a bit of discussion/heated debate. Please no flaming! I’m just playing devil’s advocate here for the sake of debate. So here goes:

What if Lucas actually did release the OOT on DVD, ie lets say he caved in to fan demands/critics and actually did release the OOT on DVD? What happens when the next ‘new’ format of media comes out, because lets face it, new technology is unavoidable and the main reason for this site is to get the OOT on a high definition (whatever you want to call it) medium.

My question is, where does it stop? Sure, it would be awesome for us to have the OOT on DVD NOW because now in 2004, the DVD format is the highest level of technology available to consumers. But in 10-15 years time, do you really think the DVD will be your medium of choice? I know some people on this forum have stated they will not upgrade their systems in the future etc etc, but you cannot say with certainty that you will not update your technology to get a better home theatre experience because time will tell and you will change as a consumer, your perspective will shift from what you are thinking now! The cost of technology will come down, new, better, more advanced and cheaper systems will come down the line, just like Beta to VHS, from VHS to DVD. Consumers will keep up, just like we’ve kept up with DVD’s and high definition systems.

I guess what I’m asking is, do we honestly expect Lucasfilm (and other film companies for that matter) to re-release the OOT on every new media that comes out in the future? We know new formats are going to come, that is the nature of technology! What if tomorrow, in 6 months, in a year we had our OOT on DVD? Lets also say in 20 years, the DVD format is outdated, lets say we look back at DVD’s, shake our heads at this ‘simple’ technology and just laugh, like we do now with ‘ancient’ technology (ie Beta video tapes). Would we then start up a new site to get the OT on “Super DVD” or whatever new high-tech system is now in our home?

Whose to say in 20 years time our kids won’t be on a site just like this, campaigning to get the OOT on the newest media of their generation? Because by this time, they won’t even remember what a DVD is!

Technology will always evolve but should we expect the OOT to evolve with technology or should we at some point stop and just cherish what we have? I think this is what Lucas is saying when he says he won’t release the OOT on DVD, because he realises that at some point you do have to stop. His biggest problem is his compulsion to continuously EDIT the films, over and over again.

Should we accept the fact that the OOT is out there as an official release on VHS and just move on? Because whose to say in 20 years time, the exact same scenario we have now, won’t be playing out? Ie the campaign to have our favourite films released officially on the latest medium that exists.

Thoughts?

-Figrin

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It will be quite some time before a format replaces DVD as much as DVD has replaced everything else. Just because it will be updated doesn't mean you shouldn't take advantage of it. If you looked it at from that point of view... what would be the point of releasing any movie on DVD if it will just be "outdated?"

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So, you were against issuing "Citizen Kane" on disc? "Casablanca"? "Birth of a Nation"? Those were all previously avaialble in one format or another. Yes, technology moves on, but there's no reason not to bring these works with it. As for the OT, the technology of home theaters hasn't even really gotten to the point where we can view the picture in the same detail as the original 70mm prints, so any further improvement in the FORMAT and TRANSFER would be welcomed, by me at least.
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Like INv8r_ZIM said, until home technology becomes more advanced so that it passes the quality of the 70mm prints then the quest to get the OOT on dvd - or whatever format is the norm in the future - lives on.


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Thanks for your responses guys, it is interesting reading your responses. Don't get me wrong, I am 100% behind the OT on DVD cause, as I said in my initial post, I'm just playing devils advocate, hey I'm bored ok!

I'll shut up now, interested to see what others think....post on.

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Originally posted by: INv8r_ZIM
the technology of home theaters hasn't even really gotten to the point where we can view the picture in the same detail as the original 70mm prints



The OT wasn't filmed on 70mm, was it? I was under the impression that was 35mm and blown up for 70mm.

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I have to say that there is a certain logic in your thinking. Mainly because I'm of the mind set that I have to draw the line at some point inspite of advancing technology. These current DVDs of Star Wars that are coming out are the last editions of them that I will purchase unless the original versions are made available. I've been through enough format changes to last the rest of my life. And as always, there are those things that were released on an outdated format that simply will not ever be released or upgraded to the newer formats. I have records that will never be seen on CD and I have stuff on VHS that will never be seen on a DVD. So along with the new technology, I'm forced to keep working pieces of outdated hardware around just to be able to enjoy something that just happens to be on an outdated format.

It's like old 78 records. Most of those recordings were never upgraded to 33 rpm records and therefore every flea market you go to, there is always some one with a huge stack of old 78s. These recording deserve to be preserved, but will they. Yes. On 78 rpm records.

Yes, I've had people tell me that I can have anything on VHS transfered to DVD. Well, there is a little thing on VHS tapes called a copy guard that prevents ANY and ALL types of transfers. So what do I do? Sit by and watch as the tape degrades little by little each year and when it is finally gone just shed a tear and move on?

The main problem with advancing technology is that HD/Blue Ray DVDs won't be able to be watched on current DVD players and I suspect vice versa. Anyway, I did digress.

For the moment, I say release the original versions on DVD and let that be the end. However, in 20 years time the same discussion could be happening all over again. Personally I'm waiting for the day that I can punch up on my TV what ever I want to see, when I want to see it and not have to worry about purchasing any format. The whole thing would be stored on some kind of computer system and beamed into my house via satalite. Movies and TV on demand. That would be great. Imagine. No DVDs, VHS tapes, records, or CDs to take up space. You just flip on the TV, punch up the menu, highlite what you want to watch, and hit play. Now that is technoloty worth waiting for.
Keeping The Star Wars Hoiliday Special alive. Once person at a time. Stir, stir, whip, whip, stir, beat, beat.
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For me personally, the format is irrelevant. I'm not here to see the OT released on DVD specifically, I'm here because I want the OT to remain available ALWAYS. regardless of what the future brings. All I want from Lucas is his acknowledgement that, while he has the right as an artist to change his work, he also has a duty to preserve an important piece of Cinema history as it was embraced by the population at large. It is the OT that changed the movie landscape irrevocably, not the SEs. Regardless of whether Lucas considers them workprints, they were released to the public and absorbed in that form for 20 years. It would be like if Davinci invented a time machine and suddenly appeared in the Louvre tomorrow, demanding to be given the Mona Lisa so he could rework the painting, perhaps add teeth to the smile that, while beloved by the world, was not how he truly envisioned it. Who wins in that scenario? Does Davinci get his painting back and the world loses the Mona Lisa, or is Davinci denied access to his work due to its historical significance?

Lucas is in a unique position that he can rework his films and still preserve their original presentation. Such being the case, there shouldn't be any question as to the manner in which he should conduct himself. There's also the issue of owner ship. George created the OT, and says he therefore has the right to change them. However, George "Sold" the OT to us, the movie going public, for 20 years before deciding to go back and change things. We paid for the OT, our money, fandom and loyalty are what enabled Lucas to go back 20 years later and rework the films. As such, he can not claim complete and total ownership over the OT, not on moral grounds anyways. Morally, he created something, and sold it to the world, and the world in turn paid him a hefty sum for it. Now, with that money, George is taking the OT away from the world, changing it, and giving it back, and asking for more money for it on top of everything. That's just not right.

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Well said Pagz. Well said.
Keeping The Star Wars Hoiliday Special alive. Once person at a time. Stir, stir, whip, whip, stir, beat, beat.
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The original Trilogy, in it's original theatrical cut, are up there with the classic movies of all time, and as such should be made available in whatever format becomes available and dominant in the future if only to preserve the film for future generations, of course there will come a point in the not too distant future where the quality of the format will actually be equal to or surpass the best quality presentation possible, in that case the quality will not advance but the film should still be released on each successive format and made available to the consumer, providing the demand exists. It's up to the consumer on how they choose to keep up with new advances in technology. Where I draw the line is at the multiple releasing of the same title on the one format with only slight variations.

Considering how George has always been so strict with how his films are presented theatrically, making sure that the films are presented with the best quality picture and sound, It's a shame that if you want to see his finest work the best you can do is watch a 9 year old video-cassette or Laser disc ( or a bootleg DVD-R of a laser-disc...... but that of course would be illegal mmmmm.)
and seeing as laser-disc has gone the way of the dodo, and VHS is in it's dying days, there aren't too many options left open to the fans and loyal audience who made the films a hit in the first place.

as far as I am concerned as long as the first (deifnitive) version of the film is available in the most up to date format, George can keep tinkering (spoiling) with it to his hearts content with Special editions, it's up to me where I draw the line in terms of keeping up with each rehash.
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Good points, Buddy-x-wing. I think the OT should be released in whatever format and/or current standard is considered to be the most reasonable for your average viewer at any given time. Right now, dvd is the most reasonable format. There are 100's of millions of dvd players out there, the quality of the presentation is currently top-notch, and they don't deteriorate over time. DVD is the current standard, and it is reasonable that your if average person wished to see a movie on dvd, and the movie was available, that they would be able to view it. And at any time, as DVDs don't degrade.

VHS and laserdisc are no longer reasonable. Not only do you have an availability problem since the originals versions of the OT have not been in production for years, but you also have a derioration problem. VHS tapes and laserdisc players degrade over time, and there are only incredibly limited quanties left. However, I also don't believe that the OT should necessarily be put on HD-DVD/Blu-ray and their successors until those formats become the new standard, not technology-wise, but consumer-wise.

Sorry if that was confusing.
40,000 million notches away
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personally i would be happy with the films on DVD and thats it.... just due to the fact that you can make copies upon copies.... and DVD's never get sucked up or crap like that...
again personally i've seen HD programs on HD TVs and all that kinda crap... my buddy is huge into this shit and is always one of the first people to jump on the next technological wave... but like i was saying... i've seen what some of this HD stuff looks like... and i dont find it all that impressive...
i mean from VHS to DVD was a huge leap forward i find...

DVD will be around for quite a while.... and even if its not i will be happy with my DVD's of SW
"Never. I'll never turn to the darkside. You've failed your highness. I am a jedi, like my father before me."
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If I can get them on DVD in a 480p format, I'll be happy. After that, the law of diminishing returns really starts to kick in. Sure, Star Wars in 1080i would look absolutely beautiful, if they ever get the blu-ray or HD-DVD stuff going, and going well. And in the future, 1080p will look even better. But even so, the differences between the higher quality formats is a smaller jump in quality each iteration than it is going from VHS to DVD. The DVDs would supply a high enough quality transfer for further formats by fans, just like the unaltered OT torrents do now, but even better.

How much difference in quality is there going to be between a 1080i and a 1080p transfer? Will you notice a difference (when far far in the future they make TVs that can do 1080p). Sure, you'll notice a difference. But will it be a big difference? No, not really. Sure, it'll be there. It'll be great. But if it isn't available, it won't be the same as having to rely on a VHS for your movie today in the era of DVD.

The quality of the originals I don't think are the best anyway. Lowry can obviously fix a lot of that, but we're going to hit an upper limit at some point. Regular DVDs do look great and are eminently watchable on a really big-ass TV (55"+) without too much problem, unless you get into the upper 60-inch range. Then you can really start to see some scanlines again. But with a good progressive player and a quality TV, the DVDs will suffice for a long time. And I'd certainly be happy with them now, knowing they'd never come again, in any format. Will it be perfect? No. Will it be good enough? Sure, you bet.
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hell i say if we can get them on DVD then we've accomplished something that not everyone can....
i would be more than happy with a DVD release... and im sure if he were to release the originals again he would notice such a jump in sales that he would change his tune about the originals...

no doubt about it!
"Never. I'll never turn to the darkside. You've failed your highness. I am a jedi, like my father before me."
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that's probably what is stopping him releasing the originals Luke, I doubt his ego could stand the thought the original releases outselling his new versions 10-1
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Originally posted by: buddy-x-wing
that's probably what is stopping him releasing the originals Luke, I doubt his ego could stand the thought the original releases outselling his new versions 10-1


And that, my friend, is probably the closest to the truth.

Keeping The Star Wars Hoiliday Special alive. Once person at a time. Stir, stir, whip, whip, stir, beat, beat.
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"The OT wasn't filmed on 70mm, was it? I was under the impression that was 35mm and blown up for 70mm."

I'm pretty sure ANH was shot 35mm, and blown up, but that the others were shot 70mm. Might be mistaken though. In any event, I've certainly noticed detail in the theater which is simply mush on a DVD. In any event, the format doesn't have enough resolution to accurately convey the information in a theatrical print.
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that's probably what is stopping him releasing the originals Luke, I doubt his ego could stand the thought the original releases outselling his new versions 10-1


ya i never thought about that...
i guess it would be pretty embarassing eh?

well if he had left those movies the way they were and then planned the prequels around them.... i doubt we would have as many problems as we do now...
and if he had someone else direct the movies...
"Never. I'll never turn to the darkside. You've failed your highness. I am a jedi, like my father before me."