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Old TV shows in HD?

Old 02-05-08, 04:27 PM
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Old TV shows in HD?

For old shows like Mary Tyler Moore or the Rockford Files, would there be any advantages (image-wise) in waiting for a HD-DVD or Blu-ray release?

If so, does anyone know of studio plans along these lines?

I've been buying collections as they come out but am thinking maybe I should stop and wait...
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Old 02-05-08, 04:39 PM
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I don't know much about HD, but someone had told me before that old TV shows cannot be converted to HD. The only thing I can think of is maybe shows on tape cannot be converted while those on film can, but I really don't know.
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Old 02-05-08, 04:54 PM
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They have done Trek. I would guess that many shows shot on film from say before the 70s are lost or had been tossed and only tapes exist.
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Old 02-05-08, 05:09 PM
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It all depends on how the shows were edited. Some shows are were edited on film and others were edited on videotape. You could made hd versions if they were edited on film, and you can't if they were edited on video tape.
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Old 02-05-08, 05:12 PM
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Many shows may have had their film elements lost, but I'm pretty sure that at least some of the classics have not. Shows like Andy Griffith, Dick Van Dyke, I Love Lucy (I think), and hopefully many others should still be available, and they would look awesome in HD.
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Old 02-05-08, 05:20 PM
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Don't get your hopes up for old tv shows (outside of Star Trek, which is an obvious one) like MTM or Rockford in HD any time soon, if at all. Many here believe HD will remain a niche format -- there is a thread here devoted to that debate. Even if HD sales were to comprise 25% of total home video sales, which would be a phenomenal leap from what they are out now, we can presume only the most popular of TV shows (along with brand new TV releases) would be considered prime for high-def.

When it comes down it, I don't think most enthusiasts are willing to plop down the kind of money that high-def season sets of these shows would demand (let alone the average Joe, who wouldn't notice an improvement over an upscaled DVD). Again, Star Trek is one exception here. I think Fox wisely believes that there will never be rabid demand for Mary Tyler Moore in high def.

Of classic shows that stand a chance on high def, I think a likely candidate would have to be The Twilight Zone. It is one of the flagship properties of a smaller studio, Image Entertainment, and they have released it umpteen times as it is on SD-DVD. As much as it pains me to say it, I would actually buy them in high def.

Last edited by Dane Marvin; 02-05-08 at 05:23 PM.
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Old 02-05-08, 05:46 PM
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TV shows, old and new, are an area where HDM has failed miserably.
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Old 02-05-08, 06:04 PM
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Most classic television shows before the early 80's was shot on film and will look spectacular in HD. It's the shows shot on videotape(think many 80's-90's sitcoms) that will not look any better in HD. For instance the classic British show from the 60's, The Prisoner, was shot on film and is coming to Blu-ray within the next year(at least in the UK). I expect it to dwarf the available dvds in resolution.
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Old 02-05-08, 07:06 PM
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The Rockford Files might be released in HD, but it's highly unlikely. Sales for the DVD season sets of The Rockford Files have been decent, but the studios wouldn't make any money off a HD disc release of TRF. Most shows (besides Star Trek) of that era don't exactly fit the demographic of the HD crowd. The Marry Tyler Moore Show will never see a HD disc release. It sells poorly on DVD; it would sell even worse on a HD disc format. Three seasons still need to be released on DVD yet. The last DVD season set of The Marry Tyler Moore Show was released in June of 06'.

Only a few old shows would really have that "awesome" factor, if it was released on a HD disc format. Mission: Impossible, Hawaii Five-O, and a few others would look really stunning. Sales for both shows on DVD are good (Hawaii Five-O sales are actually impressive, because of the state itself loving the show so much, they buy it too), but I don't see those two seeing a HD release for awhile.

Keep collecting TV on DVD sets. If you stop buying your favorite shows, you'll be bored for a long time.
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Old 02-05-08, 07:52 PM
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I think that the best use of HD media for TV shows is to put high-bitrate SD video on the discs so that we can get an entire season on 1 HD disc. (as an example)
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Old 02-05-08, 08:00 PM
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Excuse my ignorance if this has been covered before but what about shows like "The Equalizer" which was shown in HD on (was it HDNet or Universal HD). Was this true HD or just manipulated or stretched? I notice the upcoming DVD release is not widescreen.
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Old 02-05-08, 09:21 PM
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Originally Posted by tikigod
I notice the upcoming DVD release is not widescreen.
Which is good, because it was shot 4:3.
I say this because I've seen pre-high-def shows broadcast on HD channel stretched or cropped. Maybe I've been living under a rock, but since when is high-def locked into a particular aspect ratio?
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Old 02-06-08, 03:11 AM
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I have been watching The Equalizer on Universal HD and the framing is very impressive with no cut off heads etc.Maybe it was even shot 16:9 protected originally.NBC also showed one episode of Miami Vice in HD and that show WAS filmed 16:9 protected originally.BTW all big studios have most original tv series original film stock in environmentally protected massive vaults,i have seen Universal's vault with my own eyes.So future HD editions of any filmed material is certainly a possibility.Some shows (Seinfield) already has HD masters done.A clip of I Love Lucy in HD was used in an Apple Commercial and i have heard that show will be mastered in HD in the future.

Last edited by AlainDelon; 02-06-08 at 03:23 AM.
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Old 02-08-08, 12:02 AM
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hogan`s heroes and gilligans island would be fascinating on blu-ray.
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Old 02-08-08, 12:19 AM
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I would love to have more TV shows in HD and have bought every one offered to date. I really don't know why there are so few out right now. Surely a season of any popular show would move more copies then Mr. Woodcock.
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