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Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

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Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Old 08-11-11, 04:19 AM
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Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

This can be labels that have gone out of business, changed drastically over the last decade (such as pre-Starz Anchor Bay), or a discontinued film series on a larger label (MGM's Midnite Movies, for example).

I write this post because, when I think of my earliest DVD days & first films I purchased, I often find myself nostalgic about DVD labels that no longer exist. Particularly Elite Entertainment. Being a horror buff, some of my earliest DVD purchases were Elite titles (Re-Animator, Night of the Living Dead, Evil Dead, Communion...). This leads me to think of other once-promising but inactive cult labels such as Subversive Cinema & NoShame. I also think about the Anchor Bay of the early 2000's, back when they released a lot of obscure titles, years before they merged with Starz (Image Entertainment was also much more interesting around this time).

And, of course, I miss MGM's Midnite Movie double features. They were really on a roll in 2007, but it seems their merging with Fox brought about different priorities (I'm aware of MGM's recent MOD DVDs, but those just aren't the same).

I thought this thread might be a nice place to honor DVD labels that no longer are (what they used to be). Hell, feel free to remember DVD retailers you used to order from years ago (remember when Digital Eyes existed independently of DVD Planet?).

Also, what DVD labels do you think are currently soldering on most honorably & continuing to dig up interesting new titles (as opposed to mere reissues)?
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Old 08-11-11, 06:27 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Well, as far as soldiering on goes, I think Shout would have to win the prize there. Of the new material I've bought this year, their product has been more than everyone else's combined.
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Old 08-11-11, 09:14 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Digiview.

I used to get those from Walmart quite a bit. For a buck they were pretty good quality. Plus I liked the thinpak packaging as it took up very little space.
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Old 08-11-11, 09:16 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

I don't think this is what you mean, but it got me thinking about the old days of Reel.com and all of those delicious coupons.
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Old 08-11-11, 09:50 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Shout! taking over the Mystery Science Theater line has been a major improvement (even though they're still not putting episode numbers on the spines of the cases), and the fact that they're putting out titles like the Gamera movies in 16x9 widescreen with the original Japanese audio is pretty fantastic.

And along a similar line, I also like the way Sony/Toho finally started releasing the Godzilla movies with the original Japanese audio also.

I can't think of any older group I really miss, I never really had any kind of loyalty to any one label. I just bought what I liked. And while we've lost some older labels, the two franchises I just noted are great examples of moving the product forward.
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Old 08-11-11, 09:56 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

I miss the old Tartan Asia Extreme line. It's around now as Palisades Tartan Asia Extreme, but it's not anything like it used to be.
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Old 08-11-11, 10:51 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Catcom was a great budget label that wasn't widely distributed and is now listed as defunct. They put out a lot of double-feature DVDs that included drive-in theater intermission trailers in between movies- I bought a few just to get the trailers. They had 3 TV commercials discs that were pretty good too (except one had many commercials stolen from the Voyager "Television Toys" laserdisc.)

Brentwood was another interesting budget label- their quality varied (some movies were straight from VHS tapes, others were decent) but they had some obscure stuff like "Incoming Freshmen" and "TNT Jackson". I liked their 10-movie sets which you could usually find for $15. They put out some of their titles in cardboard sleeves for the dollar store market, but looks like those only had one run. Mill Creek seems to have picked up some of the stuff Brentwood was putting out, but a lot of their multi-film sets have two movies compressed onto a single layer so I have no choice but to avoid them.

Paramount might as well be defunct with the amount of titles that are now out of print.
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Old 08-11-11, 12:22 PM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Originally Posted by dogmatica View Post
I don't think this is what you mean, but it got me thinking about the old days of Reel.com and all of those delicious coupons.
I came in here thinking the same.
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Old 08-11-11, 12:22 PM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

My first thought was USA, which had Nurse Betty and a few other feature films, plus most of the major sports, back in the day when highlights were about all you could get on packaged media. Things are much better now so I guess I don't miss them all that much.
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Old 08-11-11, 12:33 PM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

I miss Palm, and their "Directors Series" music video DVDs. YouTube killed it for anyone who just wanted to watch the videos, though the DVD special features were what made them worth it.
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Old 08-11-11, 12:42 PM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Originally Posted by dogmatica View Post
I don't think this is what you mean, but it got me thinking about the old days of Reel.com and all of those delicious coupons.
Originally Posted by Dean Kousoulas View Post
I came in here thinking the same.
I think I got Titanic there for 50% plus The Shining as a free throw-in. Ugh, I think I never opened that The Shining snapper.

DVD Express (I think) and Amazon were also in those price wars (40% off all pre-orders!).

Originally Posted by DonnachaOne View Post
I miss Palm, and their "Directors Series" music video DVDs. YouTube killed it for anyone who just wanted to watch the videos, though the DVD special features were what made them worth it.
Those were some sweet packages.
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Old 08-11-11, 04:56 PM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Anchor Bay. While they didn't always have the best releases they had some really good and semi-obscure stuff. Mainly the Hammer films. Someone needs to pick up the ball on those.
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Old 08-11-11, 05:06 PM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Originally Posted by davidh777 View Post
I think I got Titanic there for 50% plus The Shining as a free throw-in. Ugh, I think I never opened that The Shining snapper.

DVD Express (I think) and Amazon were also in those price wars (40% off all pre-orders!).
Oh, Reel.com. I really miss that store. I saved an insane amount of money there. That was when pre-orders seemed to really mean something. You were guaranteed a much better deal if you pre-ordered something. I also shamelessly took advantage of their policy of matching any online competitor's price.

I think I still have a couple of sticky pads from DVD Express that they tossed in with orders.
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Old 08-11-11, 08:54 PM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Lucky 13 Cult Collectables was shaping up to be a great little budget b-movie distributer but they went under after about 6 titles.

I was bored one day and with a bit of internet sleuthing found the company that they had become and gave them a call, once I mentioned their old label they got real nervous and demanded to know who I was. I am thinking they still owe someone money.

---

Also just recently there was a decent little site called MegaMovieOutlet.com. Well actually there site was shit but their prices were good and there were a few gems to be had: Night of the Creeps (Director's Cut) only $3.
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Old 08-11-11, 09:47 PM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

So many anime distributors in the U.S. are gone or so inactive it seems like they're gone. I have to do a shout-out most of all to Central Park Media/U.S. Manga Corps, which distributed so many of the earliest anime releases on VHS in this country. I also miss Pioneer because they sent me so many DVDs when I was a regular reviewer of anime.
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Old 08-12-11, 12:48 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

I miss BCI/Eclipse, who ended releasing just a ton of incredibly interesting stuff toward the end before the rug got pulled out from under them. I really treasure their work in handling the Crown library, as though most of the Crown titles I own I bought through Mill Creek any amount of thoughtful assemblage of the materials definitely started with Cliff and BCI, and Code Red was doing some great stuff too such as Savage Streets, which I'm happy I uncharacteristically ordered promptly after release and am happy that I did. I also really liked the Toxie's Top Ten set, though I still need to get Toxie's Blood Bank.
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Old 08-12-11, 04:03 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

I miss NoShame. They put out some of the most interesting giallo movies with very informative supplementary booklets and awesome extras.
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Old 08-12-11, 04:08 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Originally Posted by EdTheRipper View Post
I miss the old Tartan Asia Extreme line. It's around now as Palisades Tartan Asia Extreme, but it's not anything like it used to be.
Yeah, I have to chime in on this one. I only got the Vengeance/Oldboy discs but they were fantastic and I would have liked to gotten more from them before they went away.
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Old 08-12-11, 04:37 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Originally Posted by kidglov3s View Post
I miss BCI/Eclipse, who ended releasing just a ton of incredibly interesting stuff toward the end before the rug got pulled out from under them. I really treasure their work in handling the Crown library, as though most of the Crown titles I own I bought through Mill Creek any amount of thoughtful assemblage of the materials definitely started with Cliff and BCI, and Code Red was doing some great stuff too such as Savage Streets, which I'm happy I uncharacteristically ordered promptly after release and am happy that I did. I also really liked the Toxie's Top Ten set, though I still need to get Toxie's Blood Bank.
I miss this one as well. They were releasing many of Filmation's Saturday Morning Cartoons including Flash Gordon, The Secrets of Isis, Space Acadamy and several series based on The Archies comics, among others. I was hoping they'd continue releasing many of Filmations other Animated series, however after BCI/Eclipse went out of business I was able to get some of those titles from "Other Sources".
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Old 08-12-11, 06:58 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
Anchor Bay. While they didn't always have the best releases they had some really good and semi-obscure stuff. Mainly the Hammer films. Someone needs to pick up the ball on those.
Agreed. Languishing as DVD-Rs is a sad fate for many of those movies.
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Old 08-12-11, 07:28 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Originally Posted by mdnitoil View Post
Well, as far as soldiering on goes, I think Shout would have to win the prize there. Of the new material I've bought this year, their product has been more than everyone else's combined.
Agreed!
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Old 08-12-11, 07:28 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Originally Posted by dogmatica View Post
I don't think this is what you mean, but it got me thinking about the old days of Reel.com and all of those delicious coupons.
I hear that Bro!
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Old 08-12-11, 09:42 AM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Originally Posted by Ash Ketchum View Post
So many anime distributors in the U.S. are gone or so inactive it seems like they're gone. I have to do a shout-out most of all to Central Park Media/U.S. Manga Corps, which distributed so many of the earliest anime releases on VHS in this country. I also miss Pioneer because they sent me so many DVDs when I was a regular reviewer of anime.
Pioneer had some nice music titles as well
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Old 08-12-11, 12:53 PM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

What's the status of Media Blasters/Tokyo Shock/Shriek Show? I know I saw some of the Guilty Pleasures biker flicks go out of print.

Originally Posted by EdTheRipper View Post
I miss the old Tartan Asia Extreme line. It's around now as Palisades Tartan Asia Extreme, but it's not anything like it used to be.
Good example. I'm so glad they helped me discover films like Marebito.

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
Anchor Bay. While they didn't always have the best releases they had some really good and semi-obscure stuff. Mainly the Hammer films. Someone needs to pick up the ball on those.
Yes, it's too bad Anchor Bay/Starz isn't more like Anchor Bay UK. You can easily find many of these films on Region 2 PAL.

I've noticed, recently, that former Anchor Bay titles are being rereleased by Shout Factory & Image Entertainment (not to mention Lionsgate & Blue Underground have been doing it for a while).

Shout Factory:
Race With the Devil/Dirty Mary Crazy Larry DF
Visiting Hours/Bad Dreams DF

And Image Entertainment has upcoming release dates for DVDs and Blu-rays of dozens of AB titles, some of which aren't even OOP yet. (You can see dozens of them listed amongst pre-orders here).

It would be great if Image could reissue and even upgrade the Hammer titles. It's a disgrace that Quatermass and the Pit is still OOP. New people are discovering this film, it's become something of a curiosity amongst fans of Lovecraftian cinema.

Originally Posted by Ash Ketchum View Post
So many anime distributors in the U.S. are gone or so inactive it seems like they're gone. I have to do a shout-out most of all to Central Park Media/U.S. Manga Corps, which distributed so many of the earliest anime releases on VHS in this country. I also miss Pioneer because they sent me so many DVDs when I was a regular reviewer of anime.
Pioneer, that reminds me! Another one of the first DVDs I ever bought was Pioneer's 'Lair of the White Worm' w/ Ken Russell's commentary that was dropped for the Lionsgate/Artisan release. Pioneer's long OOP 'Bride of Re-Animator' also had a bunch of features not ported over to Lionsgate.

Originally Posted by milo bloom View Post
I can't think of any older group I really miss, I never really had any kind of loyalty to any one label.
For me it's not label loyalty so much as associating them with a particularly fantastic release. When I think Subversive Cinema, I think of their amazing 5-disc Dust Devil set (truly fascinating stuff). When I think NoShame, I think their fantastic Dark Waters Special Edition w/ the stone medallion. I think its too bad they had to go under after such exhaustive & devoted releases; very reasonably priced considering the amount of content.

I suppose a shout out is due to Barrel Entertainment, bringing to North America the long OOP Nekromantik films and Last House on Dead End Street.
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Old 08-12-11, 02:28 PM
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Re: Do you miss any defunct old DVD distributors?

Were Geneon and ADV the largest distributors whose properties ended up with Funimation?
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