"THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

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martin arias

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"THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostThu Dec 22, 2016 3:39 am

Anyone knows if this is going to happen anytime soon? It's been now more than a year since its discovery, and there are no release announcements of the nearly complete version on DVD or Blu-Ray anywhere!

Someone knows something?

thanks

Martin
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LouieD

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostSun Dec 25, 2016 2:11 pm

Patience. It took over 85 years to find the second reel.
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BenModel

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostMon Dec 26, 2016 12:29 pm

…and it's under copyright.
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R. Cat

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostMon Dec 26, 2016 2:36 pm

BenModel wrote:…and it's under copyright.


Good point. Being under copyright may be good news though. Instead of a public domain release we may eventually be treated to a licensed 2k mastered collection of early Laurel & Hardy films on BD with rediscovered and restored Battle of the Century as centerpiece. There should be enough collector interest in a well promoted release of this stature to warrant it.
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bigshot

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostMon Dec 26, 2016 2:59 pm

They haven't even released the sound L&H shorts on blu-ray. I wouldn't hold my breath for silent ones.
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martin arias

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostMon Dec 26, 2016 3:05 pm

I don't think I'll be able to wait another 85 years to watch it!

There was also a complete print of Charley Chase's THE WAY OF ALL PANTS over there, and no news at all of anyone attempting to release it.


m.
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R. Cat

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostMon Dec 26, 2016 3:46 pm

bigshot wrote:They haven't even released the sound L&H shorts on blu-ray. I wouldn't hold my breath for silent ones.


Noted, although BD is starting to look like the go-to medium for compilations as we're in a period of transition between DVD, BD and digital downloads. For collectors, the sell through market has gradually tipped toward BD as players are now as dirt cheap as DVD players ...and BD players are backwards compatible. BD also gives the rights holder some promotional advantage as well if the titles haven't been legitimately released before (no double dipping).

You are correct that the sound shorts haven't been officially released. There are gray market releases, but print to print quality varies significantly with little if any restoration.

Hopefully the Hal Roach Studio rights will be in one place to make licensing a little easier. Now, if only there was a Laurel & Hardy biographical film in the works ...like Chaplin's... it would move things along very nicely.

You're right of course, holding one's breath won't make any of this happen.
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Salty Dog

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostMon Dec 26, 2016 3:59 pm

The sounds shorts came out in a great box set in the USA a couple of years ago, though admittedly DVD, not Blu Ray. Unfortunately, the rights owners to the silent shorts are not the same as the talkie films, which is why in the USA in VHS and early DVD days, it was easier to find the silent films than the talkies, but now that's reversed.
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Little Caesar

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostMon Dec 26, 2016 7:20 pm

The US home video rights to the L&H silent catalog are held by Corinth films. I actually posted a query on the firm's facebook wall sometime last year (before the rediscovery of the second reel) and received this honest, but still disappointing response:

We do have the rights, but it is a huge financial endeavor to restore and remaster the silent collection and make a Blu-ray/DVD box set. We had a deal in place to sublicense said endeavor to a bigger company that specializes in such things, but the deal fell apart at the last minute. We have to be very careful about what we invest our financial resources in at this point, so unfortunately we'll have to put this on the back burner for a while. We are ALWAYS open to the possibility of sublicensing the rights to a company that is in a position to undertake this project and benefit from it. In the meantime, let me know if you'd be interested in receiving our home video catalog. We have some really neat stuff coming up.
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R. Cat

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostTue Dec 27, 2016 2:08 am

Salty Dog wrote:The sounds shorts came out in a great box set in the USA a couple of years ago, though admittedly DVD, not Blu Ray. Unfortunately, the rights owners to the silent shorts are not the same as the talkie films, which is why in the USA in VHS and early DVD days, it was easier to find the silent films than the talkies, but now that's reversed.


You're correct about the DVD set and RHI Entertainment is indeed legit. The source print quality is inconsistent, but overall it's a great set. I need to watch these again. Haven't seen any Blu-Ray availability yet. It would be nice to see this set upgraded.
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Little Caesar

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostTue May 02, 2017 8:10 pm

I have no idea if this portends a home video release of any sort, but Criterion has posted a clip of the rediscovered second reel of The Battle of the Century on its youtube page.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UrbVZ1nfWkk

Last edited by silentfilm on Wed May 03, 2017 11:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Embedd YouTube link
Never cry over spilt milk, because it may have been poisoned. - W.C. Fields
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maliejandra

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostWed May 03, 2017 6:32 am

They're showing it at Cinevent. You should come out!
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Silas

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostSun May 07, 2017 10:38 am

If Criterion is posting a clip from the restored Battle of the Century... how likely is it that they will be releasing it on Blu-ray? And maybe with other L&H silent shorts? They've done a wonderful job with Chaplin and Lloyd. Sounds like a perfect match to me.
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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostSat Jun 24, 2017 7:35 pm

Silas wrote:If Criterion is posting a clip from the restored Battle of the Century... how likely is it that they will be releasing it on Blu-ray? And maybe with other L&H silent shorts? They've done a wonderful job with Chaplin and Lloyd. Sounds like a perfect match to me.

It's far and away the most promising sign that we've seen of a possible home video release, thus far! I'd sure love to be able to retire the heavily reconstructed versions of THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY (1927) with the much closer to complete version, as no doubt, would many other Laurel & Hardy aficionados! Hard to believe it's already been 2 years since the announcement of the complete 16mm BOTC Reel 2's discovery!

Hopefully, if/when this does get released, it'll be to both DVD and Blu-ray formats! :D

CHEERS! :)
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MartyMar

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostWed Nov 15, 2017 1:25 am

LouieD wrote:Patience. It took over 85 years to find the second reel.


I hope it doesn't take another 80 years lol. I don't have that long left! :lol:
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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostWed Nov 15, 2017 9:53 am

I hope if it does get released they use the wonderful, original authentic sounding score created by Vince Giordano for the MOMA screenings in 2016. The work is already done.
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bigshot

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostWed Nov 15, 2017 11:16 am

A friend of mine told me there was still some of BotC missing... something in the setup in the first reel. Is that right?
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Thad Komorowski

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Re: "THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY" ON DVD?

PostWed Nov 15, 2017 11:42 am

The first reel is still missing the final scene in which Eugene Pallette sells Stan and Ollie the insurance policy. For the SabuCat/UCLA restoration, we utilized surviving stills and title recreations (by David Gerstein) to make up for the missing footage. We also corrected a stretch of footage that was out of frame in the second reel. The embedded Criterion clip—which has had no work done on it—is not from our version.

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