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Old 09-24-07, 02:34 PM   #1
tylergfoster
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Universal remastering titles for their "Franchise Collections"

Universal is remastering nearly ALL the films that go in their "Franchise Collections", (unless they have already very recently been remastered, such as The Jerk). Sadly they are not doing this for their Double Features (because they simply contain old pressings of the original discs), but what can you do?

Whenever a new Franchise Collection comes out I see a thread pop up asking about it so perhaps we can create a definitive thread here.

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NOTE: These titles are NOT available individually of the sets listed. To get the new transfers, you MUST buy the Franchise Collection editions.

Remastered and Re-Formatted Titles (new transfer, new specifications)
Beethoven [1.85 16x9 from 1.33 full frame] (Pooch Pack)
Big Fat Liar [1.85 16x9 from 1.33 full frame] (Family Fun Pack)
Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid [1.85 16x9 from 1.85 letterbox] (Steve Martin)
Do the Right Thing [1.85 16x9 from 1.66 letterbox] (Spike Lee)
Dragnet [1.85 16x9 from 1.78 16x9] (Tom Hanks)
The Eiger Sanction [2.35 16x9 from 2.35 letterbox] (Eastwood American)
Firestarter [2.35 16x9 from 2.35 letterbox (Image release)]
Ghost Dad [1.85 16x9 from 1.33 full frame] (4 Movie Marathon Family Comedy)
The Great Outdoors [1.85 16x9 from 1.85 letterbox] (John Candy)
Hellfighters [2.35 16x9 from 2.35 letterbox] (John Wayne Screen Legend)
High Plains Drifter [2.35 16x9 from 2.35 letterbox] (Eastwood Western)
Joe Kidd [2.35 16x9 from 2.35 letterbox] (Eastwood Western)
Leave it to Beaver [1.85 16x9 from 1.33 full frame] (Family Favorites)
The Lonely Guy [1.85 16x9 from 1.85 letterbox] (Steve Martin)
Kindergarten Cop [1.85 16x9 from 1.33 full frame] (Arnold Schwarzenegger, Family Comedy Pack)
Mo' Better Blues [1.85 16x9 from 1.78 16x9] (Spike Lee, Denzel Washington)
Problem Child [1.85 16x9 from 1.33 full frame] (Family Comedy Pack)
The Quest [2.35 16x9 from 2.35 letterbox] (Van Damme Fight Pack)
Rooster Cogburn (...and the lady) [2.35 16x9 from 2.35 letterbox] (John Wayne Screen Legend)
The Secret of My Success [1.85 16x9 from 1.85 letterbox] (Michael J. Fox)
Smokey and the Bandit [1.85 16x9 from 1.85 letterbox] (Pursuit Pack)
Sudden Death [2.35 from 1.33 full frame] (Van Damme Four Feature Film Set)
Timecop [2.35 16x9 from 1.33 full frame] (Van Damme Fight Pack - Quadruple Feature)* OUT OF PRINT (now available from Warner Bros. in WS in a double feature w/Bloodsport)
Tremors [1.85 16x9 from 1.85 letterbox] (Tremors)
Tremors 2: Aftershocks [1.85 16x9 from 1.85 letterbox] (Tremors)
Twins [1.85 16x9 from 1.33 full frame] (Arnold Schwarzenegger)
Vertigo [1.85 16x9 from 1.85 letterbox] (Alfred Hitchcock Masterpiece Collection)
The War Wagon [2.35 16x9 from 2.35 letterbox] (John Wayne Screen Legend)

HD-DVD/DVD Combo Format Remasters (new transfer and/or new specifications, SD-DVD side)
Army of Darkness [1.85 16x9 from 1.85 letterbox]

Remastered Titles (new transfer but same specifications)
*The Beguiled (Eastwood American)
The 'Burbs (Tom Hanks)
*Coogan's Bluff (Eastwood American)
*Crooklyn (Spike Lee)
Darkman (Darkman)
Darkman II: The Return of Durant (Darkman)
Darkman III: Die Darkman Die! (Darkman)
*Flipper (Family Favorites)
*For Love or Money (Michael J. Fox)
Greedy (Michael J. Fox)
The Hard Way (Michael J. Fox)
*The Hurricane (Denzel Washington)
*Jungle Fever (Spike Lee)
*The Little Rascals (Family Favorites)
Reap the Wild Wind (John Wayne Screen Legend)
*Smokey and the Bandit II (Pursuit Pack)
The Spoilers (John Wayne Screen Legend)
*Tremors 3: Back to Perfection (Tremors)
*Two Mules For Sister Sara (Eastwood Western)
*Uncle Buck (John Candy)

*Unconfirmed. If you have confirmation please tell me.

IMPORTANT NOTES
- With the exception of Ghost Dad, all of these are correctly noted on the packaging.
- Many of these are missing the bonus features (production notes, bios, trailers) from their standalone releases, although most often trailers are included. There is no new bonus content on any of them. Most notably, The Franchise Collection edition of The Hard Way is missing the featurette and music video.
- Universal's Quadruple Features (and most of the other Franchise Collections) are on single-sided discs and do not contain any bonus features for any of the films (Street Figher, Life, Kicking and Screaming, etc). The entirety of disc space is taken up by the two films per disc.
- Universal's new Movie Marathon collections do not contain any transfers created for the releases in question. All of them use previously existing discs.
- Only the Beethoven Pooch Pack contains the widescreen transfer and not the Double Feature.
- Smokey and the Bandit is anamorphic in the Pursuit Pack, but there is a more recent Special Edition of the movie as well.
- Vertigo is the only title on this list to not be in a Double/Quadruple Feature or Franchise Collection package. Many Hitchcocks were reissued individually by Universal and while Vertigo is not yet one of them, it is the most likely to be released separately of its set.
- Timecop is in the first Van Damme Quadruple Feature, which is out of print. The replacement Van Damme release contains Sudden Death and Lionheart instead of Timecop and Street Fighter. Sudden Death is remastered and in WS for the first time, but Lionheart is not. It is still full frame.

Upcoming Titles
None.

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Hopefully Universal manages to patch together a John Cleese set so we can have Fierce Creatures in Widescreen, or a Zemeckis as I think Death Becomes Her has never been WS either.

If you know any more titles, please let me know.

Last edited by tylergfoster; 05-12-12 at 10:22 PM.
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Old 09-24-07, 02:50 PM   #2
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Where did you get this info?

When are the releases planned and will their packaging be changed, or will they just be sneaked onto the market?
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Old 09-24-07, 03:35 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravenous
Where did you get this info?

When are the releases planned and will their packaging be changed, or will they just be sneaked onto the market?
These are all already released. You cannot get the films individually, you must purchase them in the (Franchise Collections) named at the end of each listing, i.e. Arnold Schwarzenegger Comedy Favorites or The Darkman Trilogy. The packaging for these films correctly notes their remastered and re-formatted info.
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Old 09-24-07, 03:44 PM   #4
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What exactly does remastered mean? Does that mean Uncle Buck is getting a new transfer? It was already 16:9.
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Old 09-24-07, 03:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Subgeniusguy
What exactly does remastered mean? Does that mean Uncle Buck is getting a new transfer? It was already 16:9.
It means that on the John Candy Comedy Favorites Collection it probably features a new transfer. I doubt it's a revelation but I imagine mainly colors are a little stronger and some grain is probably wiped out. If anyone can confirm/disconfirm this, that would be helpful. I know for certain The 'Burbs was remastered for the Tom Hanks Collection despite being previously available, like Uncle Buck, in 16x9.

Last edited by tylergfoster; 09-24-07 at 03:55 PM.
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Old 09-24-07, 03:58 PM   #6
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I assume these are on double sided discs =(
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Old 09-24-07, 04:11 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeyOhhhh
I assume these are on double sided discs =(
The Tom Hanks, Steve Martin, Michael J. Fox, Clint Eastwood and Darkman sets have single-sided dual layer discs. The Arnold Schwarzenegger set has a single double-sided disc (for Twins and Cop) and then a single-sided disc for Junior.
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Old 09-24-07, 06:29 PM   #8
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Does anyone know if the flippers will be redone as single sided DVDs? The HAMMER HORROR COLLECTION would really be great if they did that, but would involve correcting the menus to. Probably not going to happen. I HATE flippers....
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Old 09-24-07, 07:56 PM   #9
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Buy two copies and print your own labels for them. You can record them onto VHS too.
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Old 09-25-07, 11:44 AM   #10
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Spike Lee is also double-sided discs.
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Old 09-25-07, 01:26 PM   #11
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Dammit! I saw High Plains Drifter in Wal-Mart last week and wondered if it was anamorphic or just a repackaged version of the letterboxed title. THe box was not specific, so I didn't buy it.

Just a note, it was by itself and not part of a set. Perhaps wal-mart is offering these individually? There were several other Eastwood titles there in the same type of packaging that I had never seen before, all individual. I specifically remember the Dollars Trilogy, but they weren't the old releases or the new 2 discers. It was totally different packaging.

Now I have to make a trip back there.

Last edited by Living Dead; 09-25-07 at 01:32 PM.
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Old 09-25-07, 01:41 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Living Dead
Dammit! I saw High Plains Drifter in Wal-Mart last week and wondered if it was anamorphic or just a repackaged version of the letterboxed title. THe box was not specific, so I didn't buy it.

Just a note, it was by itself and not part of a set. Perhaps wal-mart is offering these individually? There were several other Eastwood titles there in the same type of packaging that I had never seen before, all individual. I specifically remember the Dollars Trilogy, but they weren't the old releases or the new 2 discers. It was totally different packaging.

Now I have to make a trip back there.
I'd be careful buying the title if it's by itself, especially at Wal-Mart. It may just be a repackaging of the same old disc. It wouldn't be the first time they've had movies in different packages.
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Old 09-25-07, 01:57 PM   #13
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That's what I was thinking when I was there the first time. But I've been dying to have this movie in Anamorphic. Guess I should go with the set since that one is confirmed. Kind of sucks though, because I don't like the other movies.

Last edited by Living Dead; 09-25-07 at 02:02 PM.
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Old 09-26-07, 12:01 AM   #14
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Yeah, these are all set-only. Universal has not reissued any of these new transfers individually.
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Old 09-26-07, 02:00 AM   #15
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I have noted one other remaster -- I don't know if there are any others, but according to a thread at www.originaltrilogy.com, the DVD side of the HD-DVD Combo of Army of Darkness has a new anamorphic transfer. Like many of the Franchise Collection re-issues, the original disc was also anamorphic, but differences between the titles suggest a remaster.
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Old 09-26-07, 03:10 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Living Dead
Dammit! I saw High Plains Drifter in Wal-Mart last week and wondered if it was anamorphic or just a repackaged version of the letterboxed title. THe box was not specific, so I didn't buy it.

Just a note, it was by itself and not part of a set. Perhaps wal-mart is offering these individually? There were several other Eastwood titles there in the same type of packaging that I had never seen before, all individual. I specifically remember the Dollars Trilogy, but they weren't the old releases or the new 2 discers. It was totally different packaging.

Now I have to make a trip back there.
In the case of the Dollars trilogy, those are just re-packagings of the same previous non-anamorphic letterbox releases. The package change coincided with Fox's recent acquisition of Mgm's catalog. The newly remastered 16x9 versions are only available on the new 2-discers, available individually or in the Sergio Leone Anthology along with 'Duck, You Sucker!' (Well worth the $, btw).
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Old 09-26-07, 03:52 PM   #17
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That is great, three movies I have been waiting for in O.A.R. Leave it to Beaver, Twins and Kindergarten Cop. You have to buy the whole set, but to me it is worth it.
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Old 09-27-07, 05:36 AM   #18
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I guess I was wrong. The original Universal DVD of Army of Darkness was non-anamorphic, which helps explain why, having now bought the HD-DVD Combo and looking at the DVD side, the difference is so dramatic. While I doubt anyone wants to fork over $30 just to get a nice-looking SD-DVD with only a trailer, if you can rent it and burn it, borrow it and burn it or pick it up cheap used, I would reccommend it.
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Old 02-13-08, 09:03 PM   #19
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www.thedigitalbits.com reports...

Universal has set The Eddie Murphy Comedy Collection for DVD on 5/27 (SRP $19.98). The 2-disc set will include The Nutty Professor, Nutty Professor II: The Klumps, Bowfinger and Life.

If this is a flipper set, then I would expect that this will not be remastered (and even contain the Nutty Professor Franchise Collection disc as Disc 1), but we'll see. Odds seem in favor of this cause the Arnold set had a flipper, although on the other hand they were remastered.

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Old 02-14-08, 04:18 PM   #20
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That's a good deal for the Eddie Murphy collection. Walmart, I suspect, might have it for under $14.
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Old 02-14-08, 04:58 PM   #21
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Another one is the John Wayne set. The set contains new 16x9 masters of The War Wagon, Hellfighters, Rooster Cogburn and the Lady . Only available in the set. The single disc versions are 4x3 letterbox. Also the single disc of Hellfighters has the trailer, the set version doesn't.
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Old 02-15-08, 11:49 AM   #22
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Their Marx Bros. and W.C. Fields Vol. 1 sets have remasters. On Marx, The Cocoanuts, Monkey Business, and Duck Soup are totally remastered and big improvements on the Image editions. Horse Feathers is the same transfer, but has some dirt/scratch removal and no greenish tint anymore. Animal Crackers is the same (interlaced and soft).

The Bank Dick on the Fields set is a new and very improved transfer compared to the Criterion edition.
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Old 02-15-08, 12:43 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PatrickMcCart
Their Marx Bros. and W.C. Fields Vol. 1 sets have remasters. On Marx, The Cocoanuts, Monkey Business, and Duck Soup are totally remastered and big improvements on the Image editions. Horse Feathers is the same transfer, but has some dirt/scratch removal and no greenish tint anymore. Animal Crackers is the same (interlaced and soft).

The Bank Dick on the Fields set is a new and very improved transfer compared to the Criterion edition.
Are any of those titles available individually from Universal? The idea here is not just that titles are better but that titles are better specifically between Universal single-disc editions and the Universal Franchise Collections because it seems like an unexpected thing for them to upgrade. Why wouldn't they stick the same old Burbs transfer from their single-disc release still widely available on the Tom Hanks Collection? On the other hand, it is likely and/or expected that a new Universal box set will look better than a very old Image release.

The reason I feel it's important is because most of these titles will never see individual release. You will almost undoubtedly never be able to buy a standalone remastered copy of Twins on DVD, because Universal doesn't seem interested in creating a Special Edition. For those who love these catalog titles from the 80's and 90's it could potentially be a surprising and underpromoted chance to get a better transfer for one of their favorite films.
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Old 02-15-08, 12:53 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rw2516
Another one is the John Wayne set. The set contains new 16x9 masters of The War Wagon, Hellfighters, Rooster Cogburn and the Lady . Only available in the set. The single disc versions are 4x3 letterbox. Also the single disc of Hellfighters has the trailer, the set version doesn't.
Any idea about any of the other Screen Legend Collections or the other Universal John Wayne collection with some westerns? I'm also going to guess that the other two films in the set are probably remastered.
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Old 02-15-08, 04:17 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by droidguy1119
Any idea about any of the other Screen Legend Collections or the other Universal John Wayne collection with some westerns? I'm also going to guess that the other two films in the set are probably remastered.
Of the other two in this Wayne set, don't know if THE SPOIILERS is remastered, and REAP THE WILD WIND has no other or previous release. The remastered westerns exclusive to Eastwood set have have been mentioned. All these Wayne and Eastwood titles with new 16x9 transfers were available as single discs in R2 for a few years before these box sets were released here. As far as I know all the Universal Screen Legends sets have at least one movie only available in the set with no other release. The Rock Hudson set has THE LAST SUNSET and couple other non-westerns. Don't know if SHENENDOAH in the Jimmy Stewart set is an upgrade over the older single disc version.

Are any Hitchcock titles anamorphic only in a set, not seperately?
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