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John Wayne Signature Series ?

Old 12-09-05, 08:00 AM
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John Wayne Signature Series ?

I ran a couple searches and didn't notice anything so . . .

I read a review at Amazon saying that this box set is of very poor quality - images cut, old and bad transfers, etc.

Opinions?
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Old 12-09-05, 08:26 AM
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Best of the bunch is Rio Bravo as far as image quality. Warners have already hinted very heavily at remastered versions of The Searchers and Stagecoach for '06. The current version of The Cowboys isn't very good, but no word on that being done over any time soon.
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Old 12-09-05, 08:52 AM
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expect a john ford box set with remasters for the above mentioned. search calvary trilogy for some good info.
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Old 12-09-05, 09:07 AM
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Thanks Cameron - looks like I may be better off waiting on the Ford set.
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Old 12-09-05, 10:41 AM
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I own all 4 of those movies, and the only one of questionable quality is "Stagecoach". Rio Bravo, The Searchers, and The Cowboys all have excellent image and sound transfers.

Like Cameron mentioned though, there's a supposed John Ford box coming out in '06 that'll contain both The Searchers and Stagecoach...but I can't imagine how they could improve the current picture quality on "The Seachers".
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Old 12-10-05, 01:06 AM
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They can most definetely improve on the extras! And who wouldn't when a classic is passing its 60th birthday, a complete multiple of ten, which happens only once per decade?
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Old 12-10-05, 03:18 AM
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All these transfers were done some time ago, and all could be better (The Cowboys is now getting on for a seven year old transfer that was excellent then, but can be improved); from what I hear the new remastered version of The Searchers will blow you away.
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Old 12-10-05, 04:32 AM
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Originally Posted by John Hodson
All these transfers were done some time ago, and all could be better (The Cowboys is now getting on for a seven year old transfer that was excellent then, but can be improved); from what I hear the new remastered version of The Searchers will blow you away.
John...I remember back in the early 90s when the remastered widescreen laserdisc of The Searchers came out. It was absolutely stunning...an incredible leap up from the previous hazy pan-and-scan version that was out before. I'm fairly certain that the current DVD of The Searchers uses these same elements. I will most certainly get the next release in '06, but like I said, I can't imagine how they could get the image any sharper.

Stagecoach, on the other hand, can really use the spit-and-polish treatment.
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Old 12-10-05, 12:47 PM
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Ken, I don't know if you've seen this, but there was a chat at The Bits between Robert Harris, Warner Home Video's Senior VP of Catalog Marketing, George Feltenstein, Executive Director of Publicity Ronnee Sass and Ned Price, VP of Mastering for WB Technical Operations on King Kong, and they mentioned The Searchers:

RH: We're talking about Cooper and Schoedsack. One of the later Cooper films, for which I believe he served as Executive Producer, I'm told is in the works, and that would be The Searchers…

GF: Ned, talk about The Searchers.

NP: I've pursued getting... I don't want to say acceptable, but balanced picture from the camera negative for about five years. I test the negative when we have new and more powerful color correction tools. I pull the camera negative out again, and see if I can pull the color back, and I have to say that camera negative is dead.

RH: It probably was years ago.

NP: Mean Streets, contains a clip from The Searchers, you can see the negative was completely faded in 1973.

RH: That makes sense.

NP: We've taken the VistaVision A and B roll separation masters... all 48 reels and scanned each of the records in at 4k resolution. The separations will be combined with the same "ultra-res" process we use for three-strip Technicolor negatives... we will output a new set of separation masters from the restoration.

RH: Will you be eventually recording out new separations there?

NP: Absolutely. We've been creating YCM separation masters on all of our new films at WBMPI. I'd like to make a few comments about quality. You asked why Warner Brothers would go to this degree in our mastering process. We are now mastering in 4k resolution which allows us to create new elements for the vault in full 35mm resolution. We were previously working at a small fraction of the film information which allowed us to make nice, but temporary, distribution masters. I consider high definition mastering a "rental" format, because my experience with the library is that you will have to remaster once higher resolution is available. The industry is often fooled into thinking the new "state of the art" technology will never be surpassed. Now that we're working in film resolution, we're not just getting a video master, we create a new film element to put in the vaults, which will take the form of three-strip YCMs for color features.

RH: How are the 8 perf seps fitting together on The Searchers.

NP: They're working, which is great... I did not know if they would be successful as separation masters were never proof printed up until the late 1970s.


BTW, let's hope they sort the cropping out this time too...

Last edited by John Hodson; 12-10-05 at 12:55 PM.
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