Tom & Jerry

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Tom & Jerry

Post by GeorgeC » May 14th, 2005, 4:26 am

I've got to hand it to WB --

Just when you think this company is starting to get its act together on classic animation releases on DVD, their beancounters and lawyers turn up to remind people WHY their home video department is the most universally reviled when it comes to their treatment of classic animation releases on home video!

I'm posting WB's legalese response to the fact that three Tom & Jerry cartoons were EDITED on the supposedly advertised UNCUT Volume One release for the classic cat & mouse series...

Here goes the B.S. Don't say I didn't warn you!

A member from the Golden Age Cartoon Forum posted this response from a Warners Rep:

"From the Home Theater Forum

Just heard from Warner Brother's animation department
regarding your question concerning the Tom & Jerry
Collection.

Here is their response...



quote:
Warner Home Video has recently released the Tom & Jerry Spotlight Collection: The Premiere Volume two-disc DVD. There have been some questions about which versions of these cartoon shorts are available on the DVD set (edited vs. uncut). The Spotlight Collection contains a variety of original animated shorts produced between 1943-1956, including uncut versions of some early cartoons that were first shown in theaters, along with some versions edited for television. The DVD packaging correctly refers to the cartoon shorts as "remastered"; it does not state that all the shorts are uncut."



If you're really interested in how upset many people are regarding this, take a gander at the threads here http://forums.goldenagecartoons.com/sho ... ge=1&pp=10




This is what we call a disconnect between the beancounters and understanding your target audience. I can't fathom WHY WB doesn't get that this is a PR fiasco and a slap in the face to people that want to get pristine, UNEDITED copies of these cartoons!

This only touches one aspect of the controversy regarding WB.

It appears that there are also major problems with the use of DVNR (Digital Video Noise Reduction) on some cartoons on the previously released Looney Tunes collections. Unfortunately while DVNR can remove scratches from old films, it has a tendency to ERASE INK LINES on animated shorts because DVNR programs interpret those lines as scratches! Of course, WB hasn't addressed these problems directly and it's just infuriating more people and probably contributing to a bigger bootleg for DVD-Rs mastered from previous laserdisc collections of Looney Tunes.

And WB Home Video only has itself to blame for this because they listened to their beancounters and their @%@% lawyers!

It's amazing these people are so condescending and assume that their target audience are all preschoolers, uneducated nitwits, or soccer moms looking for a program to distract their kids while they do chores. The one audience they don't want to alienate are the hardcore collectors who have nostalgic attachments to these cartoons. These are the people who will spend the most money to get the Warners sets but if WB Home Video continues to ignore quality and completeness in its DVD set releases, the collectors will spend their money elsewhere or get bootlegs.

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material

Post by ShyViolet » May 14th, 2005, 2:16 pm

What exactly was the nature of the material that was so "offensive" it had to be cut?
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Post by Ben » May 14th, 2005, 3:35 pm

I never bothered anyway. Those "Art Of Tom And Jerry" sets are really pretty cool, and offer up true uncut editions (pre-TV screenings) and are pretty clean (or as clean as I've heard the DVDs are).

As for Looney Tunes, I've gone through both sets fully and not noticed anything like missing ink lines. The cartoons here are much more pristine than the LD sets, but are not as clean as, say, Bambi. I don't think there's much missing from those cartoons as anyone would have you think - just a few moaners.

Content-wise, I'd bet on some blackface and stereotypical gags that could be seen as racist being the reasons for the cuts. And here we have a paradox - no secret that the T&J sets didn't sell very well. But that's because people were wary of buying a defective set, or waiting to see how/when WB replaced the discs. Problem is, WB sees this as a poor selling set (the limited extras and lack of restoration didn't help) and so don't think it's worth paying out for corrected masters.

Merry Go Round Broken Down, indeed! :)

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Post by GeorgeC » May 14th, 2005, 11:45 pm

Oh,

There were definitely cuts in the Tom & Jerry LD sets put out over 10 years ago.

On one of the Mammy-Two Shoes cartoons, they used a recording of June Foray's Irish maid voice instead of the original Black actress voice with the original animation. That annoyed the heck out of me because most every other short with the character WAS the original.

There was also, according to another T & J fan poster, another instance where they used reanimated white maid footage (Chuck Jones' animation unit) instead of the original Black maid animaton.

There were a few other edits/mistakes on the two sets that I bought (I skipped the Chuck Jones T & J set since I don't like those cartoons very much), but I missed most of those.

All told, there were probably at least a half-dozen mistakes on the two Art of Tom & Jerry sets that I still have. These cartoons did not undergo any kind of significant restoration but were at least chronological.

DVNR mistakes are present on the Looney Tunes sets no doubt. The problem is that they appear intermittently but are at least as bad as DVNR was on the Betty Boop VHS and LD sets that came out years ago, too. DVNR is a poor man's solution to real restoration and has the tendency to eliminate too many inklines and ALTER THE COLOR of the original shorts! While you have to be more anal than I am to notice, when you see the comparisons between original, unaltered, unrestored footage and DVNR'd footage it's shocking. DVNR is more often worse than unrestored footage and is just not the way to do film restoration. Disney is still king of restoration when it comes to all kinds of film, period. The other studios will only touch the million-plus copy sellers and they're short-changing the futures of their film libraries that way.

I wonder what WB's real excuse is for the slipshod way they're handling their sets now is? If some sets aren't selling well now, isn't it THEIR DAMN FAULT for not letting these cartoons show at a decent hour on channels that people actually get?

Besides advertising and putting extras on the DVD sets, the most effective way to point out to people these cartoons STILL exist AND ADVERTISE THEM is to actually let them play on TV!

There's only so much a few thousand fans can do to promote sets, but if many of those fans DON'T LIKE the way the sets are being handled whose fault is it really?

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Post by Ben » May 15th, 2005, 9:06 am

Yep! :)

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Sheer stupidity wins again...

Post by GeorgeC » August 21st, 2006, 7:18 pm

<SIGH> As if there was not enough trouble about WB putting the EDITED versions of the Tom & Jerry cartoons on the current DVD sets!

http://tvnz.co.nz/view/page/411319/818879

Read this. You'll understand my concerns about the future home video releases

WB can't keep the tapes straight in its video library and oft-times puts the WRONG, edited version of the cartoon shorts on home video!

The rabid anti-smoking lobby strikes again!

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Post by Ben » August 21st, 2006, 10:25 pm

I can see the point on a channel like Boomerang, but our home vid releases should be uncut.

I'm still waaaay miffed at Disney for currently edited releases of Fantasia, Saludos Amigos, Make Mine Music and Melody Time.

Give the "Package Features" a Treasures tin of their own, I say, with original uncut versions. And through in Song Of The South!

As for WB, they're pretty good on the whole, and with the sheer amount of catalog that they give us I'm happy to roll with them. To be fair, only the T&J set has been truly affected so far, and they have announced a replacement program for the discs.

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Post by ShyViolet » August 22nd, 2006, 12:15 pm

Didn't the Disney company once edit out a cigar in this one cartoon with a cowboy? :roll:
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Post by PatrickvD » August 22nd, 2006, 2:32 pm

Pecos Bill had his cigarette removed in the US version of Melody Time. It's uncut in Europe I think.

Goofy had his cigarette removed from Saludos Amigos.

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Post by Ben » August 22nd, 2006, 4:37 pm

Hence why I included those titles in my roundup, Vi! ;)

In Make Mine Music, an entire 8 minute sequence (the opening short The Martyns And The Coys) is missing from the R1 DVD.

Luckily I have my VHS taping with this intact. ;)

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Post by ShyViolet » August 23rd, 2006, 2:54 pm

Ben wrote:Hence why I included those titles in my roundup, Vi! ;)
Oh, I didn't realize Pecos Bill was part of Melody Time. I still have a lot to learn... :) :oops:

As for smoking, does that mean they are going to ban the cartoon where:
click to reveal content
Huey, Dewy and Louie buy Donald a pack of cigars for his birthday....Donald finds it and thinks they've taken up smoking. To punish them, he makes them smoke the whole pack, and they get sick. Then he realizes it was a birthday present for him, and feels really bad. (You see him literally shrinking.)

I think this cartoon sends mixed messages about smoking...I think they were trying to say that it's O.K. to do it if you're old enough. Of course it should not be censored, I hope they don't ban it! This might be a real good time to get The Chronological Donald: Volume 2! :) :?
This whole issue kinda reminds me of that opening scene in Mrs. Doubtfire, when Daniel won't do the voice-over for the cartoon because it endorses smoking...(it was originally produced animation I think.)
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Post by Ben » August 23rd, 2006, 7:28 pm

Yes, Chuck Jones created that animation, I think.

I wouldn't be surprised if the Donald Duck cartoon gets moved into a "vault" area on collectors' releases like the Treasures in future and deleted from the rotating broadcast schedule.

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Post by ShyViolet » August 24th, 2006, 12:22 am

What about Lampwick and Pinnochio?? Don't tell me they're going to censor that scene where they're smoking! :shock:

After all, it was supposed to show that they were being bad.
Ben wrote: I wouldn't be surprised if the Donald Duck cartoon gets moved into a "vault" area on collectors' releases like the Treasures in future and deleted from the rotating broadcast schedule.
That cartoon did confuse me a bit as a child, but even then I think I understood that it was from a somewhat different time. :wink:
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Tom & Jerry Spotlight Collection Vol. 2 Disc Replacement

Post by William » August 24th, 2006, 4:16 pm

This news blurb on Tom & Jerry Spotlight Collection Vol. 2 comes from http://www.thedigitalbits.com/#mytwocents , scroll down to 8/24/06:

Those of you who purchased Warner's Tom & Jerry Spotlight Collection: Volume 2 will be pleased to know that the disc replacement program for Discs One and Two (on which some episodes featured incorrect audio tracks) is now in place. All you have to do is call 1-800-553-6937 and give them your address. A self-addressed stamped envelope will be sent to you so that you can return the old discs. You'll be sent corrected replacement discs within about 4 weeks. No word yet on the Volume 1 replacements.

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Post by Ben » August 25th, 2006, 2:49 pm

They're also providing new discs for the last Looney Tunes set, where some of the cartoons were presented interlaced instead of progressive.

WB really are quite good to us overall you know.

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