Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

The scuttlebutt on Criterion, Eclipse, and Janus Films. Lists and polls are STRONGLY discouraged.
Message
Author
User avatar
Shrew
The Untamed One
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 2:22 am

Re: Ingmar Bergman's Cinema

#26 Post by Shrew » Mon Nov 26, 2018 6:46 pm

Fellini is precisely a director that probably has too many rights holders for a box like this to work. Several of his early films are still with Studiocanal, Cohen has City of Women, Arrow has some of the late films (in the US too or just UK?), etc.

User avatar
hearthesilence
Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2005 4:22 am
Location: NYC

Re: Ingmar Bergman's Cinema

#27 Post by hearthesilence » Mon Nov 26, 2018 7:23 pm

Jim Jarmusch owns all of his films, and given the size of his filmography, a comprehensive box set would be pretty affordable compared to the Bergman set.

Wim Wenders may have all the rights to his as well (or at least most of them), and he's currently restoring every title.

But it would be impressive to see another gargantuan filmography like Bergman's collected in one spot.

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: Ingmar Bergman's Cinema

#28 Post by domino harvey » Mon Nov 26, 2018 7:32 pm

While most if not all of these names are well-known to the majority of us on the forum, I think many of you are setting yourselves up for disappointment if you think they'll get this treatment

User avatar
dwk
Joined: Sat Jun 12, 2010 6:10 pm

Re: Ingmar Bergman's Cinema

#29 Post by dwk » Mon Nov 26, 2018 8:42 pm

Other than Kurosawa, I think a Truffaut set is possible. mk2 seems to now control at least 18 of his 21 films (Fahrenheit 451 is Universal, Day for Night is Warner Brothers, and The Story of Adele H may be with mk2, but it isn't listed on their site.)

Zack567
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2018 8:11 pm

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#30 Post by Zack567 » Mon Nov 26, 2018 11:19 pm

The box set I would be most interested in would be Antonioni's complete films (ok, they could leave out the last 2-3 films and it would be no great loss). IMHO he's the second greatest director after Bergman, and from a commercial point of view he's one of the canonical "Art film" names - I'm sure there would be a market. Also, there was Italian government/foundation support behind the recent restorations of all his films, and I assume that support also involved making hiqh quality digital masters.

MongooseCmr
Joined: Sat Dec 15, 2012 11:50 pm

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#31 Post by MongooseCmr » Mon Nov 26, 2018 11:40 pm

I think the key thing for Criterion business wise is who a) is popular and acclaimed enough to warrant a box set, but b) does not have enough individually popular titles to give spines to. Ray and Lloyd seem like shoe-ins for this, whereas someone like Jarmusch mentioned above clearly sells enough of each title to get a new mainline release for each license they acquire.

User avatar
Skrmng Skll Th Thd
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2018 12:32 pm

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#32 Post by Skrmng Skll Th Thd » Mon Nov 26, 2018 11:46 pm

I'd jump on a Mizoguchi box faster than the Bergman, personally. I guess the problem is how many of his films are in suitable shape for good scans. Certainly all the Eclipse titles could be upgraded. I've seen all of his extant films via back channels, though, and the quality varies wildly. No way would a Mizoguchi box sell a tenth of the Bergman box, but if his other fans are like me, they'll gladly buy even an imperfect box, poor quality fragments and all, just to have it all together.

User avatar
Luke M
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 9:21 pm

Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#33 Post by Luke M » Tue Nov 27, 2018 2:13 am

I love all these ideas. I think Kurosawa is the next logical choice. There’s still 9 Eclipse releases that could be upgraded to blu-rays not to mention others that had individual dvd releases including RAN which may or not be available. As far as foreign releases go, Kurosawa’s films are probably amongst the most popular in the collection.

User avatar
DRW.mov
Joined: Thu Sep 15, 2016 2:43 pm
Location: Los Angeles, CA

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#34 Post by DRW.mov » Tue Nov 27, 2018 4:04 am

Fassbinder makes the most sense, but we’d have to wait for the Foundation to complete a few more major restorations. I wouldn’t be surprised if in four or five years we see a similar year for Fassbinder, bringing BRD back to disc and a career spanning box. The two directors that they could do right now at the drop of a hate would be Almodóvar and Kaurismäki. Every Almodóvar film is with Sony (save for one with Pathe and one with MGM) and just about every Kaurismäki film is still owned by him under Match Factory (I think Man Without a Past is still with Sony, but that’s not much of a challenge). Of these three Almodóvar would far and away be the most lucritive choice as his films are incredibly popular and a good deal of his early have have been very hard to come by for a while, though he and Kaurismäki are both still active filmmakers and I don’t know how much they would want to do a “career spanning” set if said career is just going to outgrow the box.

User avatar
swo17
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 10:25 am
Location: SLC, UT

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#35 Post by swo17 » Tue Nov 27, 2018 11:06 am

I've always hoped that the complete works of Fassbinder would one day be compiled into a boxset that's literally built to look like a house.
I would like to build a house with my films. Some are the cellars, others the walls, still others the windows. But I hope in the end it will be a house.

User avatar
MichaelB
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 6:20 pm
Location: Worthing
Contact:

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#36 Post by MichaelB » Tue Nov 27, 2018 11:09 am

DRW.mov wrote:
Tue Nov 27, 2018 4:04 am
Of these three Almodóvar would far and away be the most lucritive choice as his films are incredibly popular and a good deal of his early have have been very hard to come by for a while, though he and Kaurismäki are both still active filmmakers and I don’t know how much they would want to do a “career spanning” set if said career is just going to outgrow the box.
Kaurismäki is constantly threatening to retire, and the increasingly big gaps between his films (from two a year at the turn of the 1990s to one every five years in the 2000s) suggests that he's definitely winding down.

User avatar
What A Disgrace
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 10:34 pm
Contact:

Re: Ingmar Bergman's Cinema

#37 Post by What A Disgrace » Tue Nov 27, 2018 11:20 am

Calvin wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 6:44 pm
Didn't Kiarostami's son say that Criterion were prepping a big box set of his work for 2019?
I was actually expecting this release, but had doubts about the Bergman due to, I assumed, complicated rights issues.

Chaplin and Lloyd are obvious possibilities, since they own the distribution rights to most of their works. They could conceivably cut a deal with Flicker Alley/whoever to do an absolutely complete Chaplin, maybe?

User avatar
tenia
Ask Me About My Bassoon
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:13 am

Re: Ingmar Bergman's Cinema

#38 Post by tenia » Tue Nov 27, 2018 11:26 am

Wouldn't Ozu be an easy logistical choice ? Many of his movies have been recently lavishly restored, and IIRC, Criterion owns most of them.
Godard might be an easier choice, technically wise though, since most of his movies exist in HD, which isn't the case with the early Ozus.
domino harvey wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 7:32 pm
While most if not all of these names are well-known to the majority of us on the forum, I think many of you are setting yourselves up for disappointment if you think they'll get this treatment
I feel like I missed where this conversation stems from : has Criterion hinted they are going to do another similar huge set ? I mean, it's not as if these type of sets are frequent amongst their line-up.
Except a possible Lloyd set that might the only practical way for them to FINALLY release these movies and be done with it, I don't see the Bergman set as anything else than an exception.

User avatar
Shrew
The Untamed One
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 2:22 am

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#39 Post by Shrew » Tue Nov 27, 2018 11:49 am

Were the Godzilla movies a streaming only deal on Filmstruck? Because that would be an obvious big seller and would continue in the Zatoichi/Lone Wolf and Cub vein.

Bergman was the perfect storm of rights lining up, new restorations, a ton of blu debuts and OOP rescues, and a well-known name that could be sold to the mass market. Positioning sets like this and the Olympic set in the holiday season with coverage in places like the NY Times is an attempt to draw in a bigger crowd than just cinephiles and collectors. I'm sure lots of Bergman's were sold to people who needed an fancy gift and recognized the Bergman name. Lots of these sets will probably sit on shelves, flaunting their owner's taste, and maybe one day Seventh Seal or Persona gets popped in. And aside from Kurosawa (how the elements/restorations for his 40s films?), Fellini (too many rights holders), and Chaplin (but how many people will buy a box of silents, especially ones mostly already released on bluray?), I'm not sure there's any other director with the same sort of cache in the Criterion arsenal.

User avatar
tenia
Ask Me About My Bassoon
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:13 am

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#40 Post by tenia » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:22 pm

Technically wise, I don't think it'd be a good idea to release the Kurosawa movies. Out of 30 movies, about a third would be worth it in HD, but these are the ones already available individually : Rashomon, Ikiru, Seven Samurai, Throne of Blood, The Hidden Fortress, Yojimbo, Sanjuro, High and Low, Dodesukaden, Kagemusha, Ran, Dreams and Madadayo.
Most of his early movies either haven't been restored in years and are available through dated HD masters only (Red Beard, Stray Dog, I Live In Fear) or have elements that will prevent having a good result anyway (especially Drunken Angel, but his early movies like The Most Beautiful or The Men Who Tread on the Tiger's Tail probably too).
The Lower Depths and The Bad Sleep Well are in HD masters that barely are HD.

It'd be interesting though to see if Criterion can get new restorations performed on those who allow it (elements-wise), and if they can upgrade their Yojimbo / Sanjuro with the better restorations already available.

User avatar
dwk
Joined: Sat Jun 12, 2010 6:10 pm

Re: Ingmar Bergman's Cinema

#41 Post by dwk » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:26 pm

tenia wrote:
Tue Nov 27, 2018 11:26 am
...
I feel like I missed where this conversation stems from : has Criterion hinted they are going to do another similar huge set ? I mean, it's not as if these type of sets are frequent amongst their line-up.
They haven't hinted at anything, but 2019 will be Criterion's 35 anniversary and see them release spine #1000. Both offer the excuse to do a set like Bergman to highlight one of the other major names that is identified with Criterion.

User avatar
tenia
Ask Me About My Bassoon
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:13 am

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#42 Post by tenia » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:44 pm

Oh OK, I didn't realise it was the anniversary, nor that it would coincide with the 1000th spine. I understand how it might indeed generate the potential for some kind of very specific mammoth release.

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#43 Post by domino harvey » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:46 pm

I don't think it takes a crystal ball to recognize that a company selling a lot of something is probably going to find a way to sell something similar

User avatar
ShellOilJunior
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2009 7:17 am

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#44 Post by ShellOilJunior » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:58 pm

I thought I heard something about Red Beard being restored and shown at Venice in 2015 or 2016.

User avatar
tenia
Ask Me About My Bassoon
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:13 am

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#45 Post by tenia » Tue Nov 27, 2018 1:17 pm

domino harvey wrote:
Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:46 pm
I don't think it takes a crystal ball to recognize that a company selling a lot of something is probably going to find a way to sell something similar
It might also be as another member wrote some kind of perfect alignment of the planets that might be very hard, if not impossible, to replicate. The market is what it is : versatile, but also volatile and declining. Maybe even a Kurosawa set won't sell as well. I'm quite sure Criterion has releases they thought would be huge sellers and turned out the opposite.

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#46 Post by domino harvey » Tue Nov 27, 2018 1:20 pm

Oh, I agree, which is why I hope most members are not getting their hopes up in advance. I think a similar Kurosawa set is inevitable. But just about every other idea I've seen floated here other than a Truffaut box seems unlikely to move units outside of the usual numbers for any Criterion release

User avatar
tenia
Ask Me About My Bassoon
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:13 am

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#47 Post by tenia » Tue Nov 27, 2018 1:28 pm

I'm not sure a Truffaut set would sell as much, though I seem to recall his appeal in the US is huge.

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#48 Post by domino harvey » Tue Nov 27, 2018 1:32 pm

I honestly don't know that anything will ever sell like a Bergman box, but I think Truffaut and Kurosawa have enough name recognition still to sell more than average

User avatar
Lowry_Sam
Joined: Mon Jul 05, 2010 3:35 pm
Location: San Francisco, CA

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#49 Post by Lowry_Sam » Tue Nov 27, 2018 1:52 pm

tenia wrote:
Tue Nov 27, 2018 1:28 pm
I'm not sure a Truffaut set would sell as much, though I seem to recall his appeal in the US is huge.
I agree. I’d buy a Malle box before I’d buy a Truffaut, though I’d expect a Truffaut box would sell better in the US. There are only a few Truffaut titles I really feel the need to have on disc.

User avatar
Shrew
The Untamed One
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 2:22 am

Re: Post-Bergman Boxing Speculation

#50 Post by Shrew » Tue Nov 27, 2018 2:17 pm

My bet on spine 1000 is still Citizen Kane. And for a 35th anniversary, I'd expect them to do more a big brand retrospective box like the essential art house set.

I agree that Truffaut would be the next best thing in terms of behind-the-scenes stars aligning and name recognition. The key is whether the average college-educated baby boomer has heard of the director and maybe seen one of their films before? I think that applies to Truffaut in the US, though he's still behind Bergman or Kurosawa. However, does mk2 really own the US rights to most of Truffaut's films? Or in other words, who licensed those Truffauts to Twilight Time (though I guess those are now out of print)?

Kurosawa and Ozu could work, as studio stability in Japan and Janus's relationship with them means rights are easier to collect. But as tenia pointed out, we haven't gotten any auteurist attempt to restore all of a certain director's films, and the restorations are more focused on key works. And any early films have pretty poor elements.

I do think we could get a Ray box, maybe as a centennial in 2021, but that would probably be a labor of love on Criterion's part than a blockbuster seller. I don't know who sales of the Apu set were, but I worry Ray has never had major name recognition in the US outside of cinephiles. He seems much more well-known in the UK.

Post Reply