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Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends UK Series 1-2 Original Broadcast Version Reconstruction

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Hi. I have seen some Thomas and Friends topics in the category, but there’s one thing I really want to recreate and that is the Original Broadcast Version (OBV) of Series 1-2 of Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends. Now, the OBV of these first two seasons was only broadcast in the UK and therefore, will use the original British narration by the former drummer of the Beatles himself, Ringo Starr.

I’m trying to get all the materials for this recreation. Here are the materials I already have:
-A blank version of the intro (meaning no text on the screen whatsoever)
-The Bevan font (for use in the intro and closing credits)
-UK audio of every episode from Series 1
-The Clearwater and Britt Allcroft Logos from 1984 (Series 1) and 1986 (Series 2)
-Video footage of the nameboard sequences from Series 1 (with one of them I had to recreate myself)

Here are the materials I still need, but will be easy to obtain or make:
-Video footage of the Series 1-2 episodes themselves (meaning without the intro or the closing credits)
-A still of the final shot of every second episode (2, 4, 6, 8, and so on until 52)
-UK audio of every episode from Series 2
-Video footage of the nameboard sequences from Series 2 (probably no recreations here)

Now, I also need to put in the Bevan text, but Filmora didn’t work the way I wanted to with that job, so I need another option.

At last, the hardest material to find, and that is software that can recreate the yellow vertical line split transition in between episodes. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, then watch this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wudv_SxaEIk

If anybody knows of a program that can help me with this project, then that would be awesome! Thank you.

UncutIsSuperior

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 (Edited)

JawsTDS said:

I have some of original masters sourced from foreign dubs with the original Clearwater card and all intact. Might be of use to you. PM me.

Do they have any on-screen bugs? And keep in mind, I’m wanting to recreate the OBV of the entire Series 1 and 2. This means that I need the first 52 episodes, 26 per series. Also, in Series 1, “Dirty Objects” needs to be paired with “Off the Rails”, and “Down the Mine” with “Thomas’ Christmas Party”.

UncutIsSuperior

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 (Edited)

I’d love to see a project like this. Tried attempting something like this with Sony Movie Studio Platinum a little while ago taking my VHS transfers and overlaying the episodes with the DVD footage but no luck. I did however remaster the audio by overlaying the VHS audio with that of the 2004 DVD’s which was something.

For the “episode” footage, might I suggest using the 2004 UK DVDs (which use the 1998 remasters) rather than the current Restored versions as they more closely reflect the broadcast/VHS versions.

Another good source for this project would be the 2005 Australian “Truckloads of Fun” DVD which oddly enough uses the original Clearwater masters Series 1 episodes, plus “Tenders and Turntables”, “Trouble in the Shed” and “Off the Rails” even use the CW logos and nameboards as they appears on the 1985-1992 VHS releases. The original masters for the other Series 1 and 2 episodes are also used but they are the singular TV rerun versions with no nameboards and CW logos replaced with the 1991/2 Britt Allcroft Company logos. The episodes from this DVD have been uploaded on YouTube but a couple of episodes have been blocked by HiT Entertainment;

Truckloads of Fun (AUS DVD)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOdYxZaASO4&list=PLonGtgtV8MRdkv3qsbdDoYiYkIyQQt_-K

Also on a side note, Series 3 had an “early narration” (by Michael Angelis) for the first 16 episodes which were only released on the original 1991 VHS tapes then later redone for TV broadcast and later VHS/DVD releases, as did 8 episodes from Series 4. I’ve already done a preservation of these myself but they’re also on YouTube;

Time for Trouble and other stories (Early Narration)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h2Y7ZzXx90&t=193s

Trust Thomas and other stories (Early Narration)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=64bYN8csEfA&t=297s

Rock and Roll and other stories (Early Narration)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hg0UjeyL5VI&list=PL1XR64NRWmn5pZT8xj1RERC0T5yDxdjwz

Back to your main goal, I really hope you pull this off and I’d love to help any way I can. I’ve already transferred my Series 1, 2 and 3 VHS tapes to DVD which I’m happy to share with you if they’ll be of any use. Also, Series 2 needs to have the “Screen Legends” ident included!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6TskJ-lKo0o

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Also on a side note, Series 3 had an “early narration” (by Michael Angelis) for the first 16 episodes which were only released on the original 1991 VHS tapes then later redone for TV broadcast and later VHS/DVD releases, as did 8 episodes from Series 4. I’ve already done a preservation of these myself but they’re also on YouTube;

Time for Trouble and other stories (Early Narration)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h2Y7ZzXx90&t=193s

Trust Thomas and other stories (Early Narration)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=64bYN8csEfA&t=297s

Rock and Roll and other stories (Early Narration)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hg0UjeyL5VI&list=PL1XR64NRWmn5pZT8xj1RERC0T5yDxdjwz

Back to your main goal, I really hope you pull this off and I’d love to help any way I can. I’ve already transferred my Series 1, 2 and 3 VHS tapes to DVD which I’m happy to share with you if they’ll be of any use.

I would love for you to share your transfers of Series 1 and 2 with me, as long as they have “Percy Runs Away” and “Coal” together as they originally aired on Children’s ITV. (complete with the name board sequences in between) Just so you know, I consider those “early narrations” for Series 3 and 4 more as prototypes than as the original version, so I’ll just use my UK Series 1-11 Classic Collection DVD set for Series 3 and 4. Thanks for your willing to share your tapes with me.

UncutIsSuperior

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 (Edited)

That’s fine, I’ll PM you when they’re up. With “Percy Runs Away” and “Coal”, from what I understand the didn’t have nameboards inbetween when they were originally broadcast, just freeze-frame credits for “Percy Runs Away” and original intro for “Coal”. This was also the case on the original 1985 Kaleidoscope VHS releases. This was then altered for the 1988 and 1992 rereleases where they replaced the end credits of “Percy Runs Away” with “Coal”'s end credits (no idea why) and with “Coal” they did the regular intro THEN the nameboards. You’ll understand what I mean when you see them. If you want to recreate the OBV of those two episodes, use the Kaleidoscope 1985 VHS versions, or if you want to have a nameboard sequence, use the 1988/1992 versions.

That’s fine about Series 3 and 4. For me, the early prototype narration is my definitive version as it’s the first version I heard. I just thought they’d be nice to have as an alternate audio track.

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alloneword said:

If you want to recreate the OBV of those two episodes, use the Kaleidoscope 1985 VHS versions, or if you want to have a nameboard sequence, use the 1988/1992 versions.

I definitely want a nameboard sequence in between “Percy Runs Away” and “Coal”, just like every other pair of episodes from Series 1 and 2, so where can I find the 1988 or 1992 re-releases of the Kaleidoscope VHS tapes? Thank you.

UncutIsSuperior

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UncutIsSuperior said:

alloneword said:

If you want to recreate the OBV of those two episodes, use the Kaleidoscope 1985 VHS versions, or if you want to have a nameboard sequence, use the 1988/1992 versions.

I definitely want a nameboard sequence in between “Percy Runs Away” and “Coal”, just like every other pair of episodes from Series 1 and 2, so where can I find the 1988 or 1992 re-releases of the Kaleidoscope VHS tapes? Thank you.

I have the 1992 rerelease which is in the process of being uploaded. 😃

I’ll PM you when they’re up.

This is the version I have, but this is not MY upload.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OebTUorKJfI

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 (Edited)

I’ve just started my own preservation of this seeing as I’m having more success now. Unlike UncutIsSuperior’s, I’m going to be using already existing sources rather than creating my own and overlaying DVD footage over VHS where possible and only using VHS footage when there is no alternative. So the “episode” footage will be taken from the 2004 DVD’s, the opening titles (except for the episode titles shots) will be taken from the “Truckloads of Fun” AUS DVD, and VHS for the episodes title shots, nameboards, Screen Legends/Pickwick video logos, scrolling credits and any transition effects. I’ve even gone as far as to overlay the Screen Legends promo which I’m quite impressed with so far.

I’ve started with Series 2 mainly for 2 reasons. One, all the nameboard sequences are the same order throughtout unlike Series 1 so less work there, and two, It’s my favourite season. So far, I’ve just about finished “Thomas, Percy and the Coal AoS” and will do the other two Series 2 VHS’s, then I’ll move on to Series 1, then I will redo Series 3. Series 3 for the first 16 episodes because as already stated, they all have an early prototype narration my Michael Angelis and the early VHS’s have Series 2-style freeze-frame end credits. The opening titles, like Series 1 and 2 will be lifted from “ToF” AUS DVD.

The only drawback is that the transitions between VHS and DVD will me noticeable and Sony Movie Studio Platinum 12 doesn’t have a colour-match plugin but with the results I have, it’s a huge step up from my own VHSrips.

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alloneword said:

I’ve just started my own preservation of this seeing as I’m having more success now. Unlike UncutIsSuperior’s, I’m going to be using already existing sources rather than creating my own and overlaying DVD footage over VHS where possible and only using VHS footage when there is no alternative. So the “episode” footage will be taken from the 2004 DVD’s, the opening titles (except for the episode titles shots) will be taken from the “Truckloads of Fun” AUS DVD, and VHS for the episodes title shots, nameboards, Screen Legends/Pickwick video logos, scrolling credits and any transition effects. I’ve even gone as far as to overlay the Screen Legends promo which I’m quite impressed with so far.

I’ve started with Series 2 mainly for 2 reasons. One, all the nameboard sequences are the same order throughtout unlike Series 1 so less work there, and two, It’s my favourite season. So far, I’ve just about finished “Thomas, Percy and the Coal AoS” and will do the other two Series 2 VHS’s, then I’ll move on to Series 1, then I will redo Series 3. Series 3 for the first 16 episodes because as already stated, they all have an early prototype narration my Michael Angelis and the early VHS’s have Series 2-style freeze-frame end credits. The opening titles, like Series 1 and 2 will be lifted from “ToF” AUS DVD.

The only drawback is that the transitions between VHS and DVD will me noticeable and Sony Movie Studio Platinum 12 doesn’t have a colour-match plugin but with the results I have, it’s a huge step up from my own VHSrips.

That would be nice, but do you even know how to do the yellow vertical line split transition in between episodes? If so, could you please teach it to me?

UncutIsSuperior

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UncutIsSuperior said:

alloneword said:

I’ve just started my own preservation of this seeing as I’m having more success now. Unlike UncutIsSuperior’s, I’m going to be using already existing sources rather than creating my own and overlaying DVD footage over VHS where possible and only using VHS footage when there is no alternative. So the “episode” footage will be taken from the 2004 DVD’s, the opening titles (except for the episode titles shots) will be taken from the “Truckloads of Fun” AUS DVD, and VHS for the episodes title shots, nameboards, Screen Legends/Pickwick video logos, scrolling credits and any transition effects. I’ve even gone as far as to overlay the Screen Legends promo which I’m quite impressed with so far.

I’ve started with Series 2 mainly for 2 reasons. One, all the nameboard sequences are the same order throughtout unlike Series 1 so less work there, and two, It’s my favourite season. So far, I’ve just about finished “Thomas, Percy and the Coal AoS” and will do the other two Series 2 VHS’s, then I’ll move on to Series 1, then I will redo Series 3. Series 3 for the first 16 episodes because as already stated, they all have an early prototype narration my Michael Angelis and the early VHS’s have Series 2-style freeze-frame end credits. The opening titles, like Series 1 and 2 will be lifted from “ToF” AUS DVD.

The only drawback is that the transitions between VHS and DVD will me noticeable and Sony Movie Studio Platinum 12 doesn’t have a colour-match plugin but with the results I have, it’s a huge step up from my own VHSrips.

That would be nice, but do you even know how to do the yellow vertical line split transition in between episodes? If so, could you please teach it to me?

I don’t sadly. Like I say, I’m not “creating” or “recreating” any elements myself. I’m using VHS footage for the yellow line transition effects. One thing I have noticed is while I’ve been overlaying the DVD footage over the VHS footage of the episodes themselves (frame-accurate), the 2004 DVDs are missing the footage where the yellow line wipes would be anyway so for your project, even if you to figue out how to to the yellow line, you may run into some issues there as you won’t have the correct episode frames to apply it to. That’s what I’ve noticed for Series 2. May not be an issue for Series 1.

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Just a little update;

Series is mostly done but I still need to do some freeze-frame credits but replacing the last two still credits with screenshots. It’s coming out well so far. All the DVD episode overlaying is done and I even reconstructed the Screen Legends promo as best I could. I could only do it with footage with didn’t have any effects done to the promo trailer itself. My only issue with the VHS footage is the shift in colour and brightness when it goes from DVD back to VHS (ie. even 2nd episode that leads into scrolling credits). I’ve tried dabbling with the colour corrector plug-ins but I wasn’t happy with my progress. Even if I got close with one episode, it would still be way off on another, so I just left them as they are for now. Like i said before, all warts aside, it’s still a huge leap in quality than just watching bare-bone VHSrips. I already did a remastered audio track for Series 2 via Audacity long before I attempted this (again, sourced primarily from 2004 DVD’s and AUS ToF) which has been ported over to this. So just a few more tweeks left for Series 2 and I’ll release it.

I’ve just started work on Series 1 with the first eight episodes, which is largly the same approach, plus thanks to AUS ToF, I can do some overlaying with some of the nameboard shots. One issue I’ve run into is the the framing on AUS ToF for these shots is shifted a bit, so it’s a bit of a job overlaying and matching seemlessly. The yellow line transitions at the begining of each episode (so far) is working as (unlike Series 2) the 2004 DVD maintains the footage in it’s barest form, so I’m able to crop the DVD frame-by-frame inside the yellow line/borders. Not bad for a newbee like me. The end of each episode doesn’t give me the option to do this, so it’s all VHS footage there. Opening credits for this will be just like Series 2 but the trouble here is the AUS ToF DVD has slightly fewer frames so the odd VHS frame will still be in there sadly. The theme tune, I want to keep it retro and true to how it sounded on VHS (the mixing/mastering of the theme varied between Series’) so that’ll be straight from AUS ToF.

As a break from Series 1, I thought I’d also attempt Series 3, buy restoring the original title’s and 1991 VHS freeze-frame credits for Episodes 1-16 and using the early MA narration. DVD episode footage is fine but the two S3 episodes from AUS ToF opening titles frames are not idetical as they have been for S1 and 2. Plus the episode footage themselves has blurry frames unlike the 2004 DVD. I was really hoping for Series 3 to look the best out of my restorations by having around 95% DVD footage and only have VHS for end credits. Nevermind.

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Would love to see a release on this one day, such an interesting topic.

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OneEcchiBoi said:

Would love to see a release on this one day, such an interesting topic.

It’s taking longer than I’d expected for a number of reasons, but it’ll be nice to have this done in time for the original series’ 35th anniversary.