Many of you will know the fantastic doco series called Movie Magic. The stop motion episode was one of the things that got me into animation. I would love a copy of it, but all I can find are low res versions of youtube. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHG2aao4CVk
I was thinking of showing this to a class I am about to teach, but the compression and resolution are shocking. Then I thought- I have most of this footage on dvd. I'll start lining it up.
I wasn't actually planning to sit down and reconstruct the whole thing, but I thought I'd stick it in the editor and just start on the Jason footage. Then, maybe one rainy day, I would try and complete it.
Well I didn't get far. Only a few clips in I got stuck. I couldn't find the frame. Not only is the dvd severely cropped, but there is footage missing from it! Try and find this frame (and the 30 surrounding it).
Why would they cut this? It's a little piece of history. It actually shows the master at work, as in the next frame a few of the skeletons move, but the rear plate and most of the skeletons don't. Like he realised his mistake (of leaving in the surface gauge), and decided to re-shoot the frame and cut it out later. There are lots of frames where Harryhausen seems to have forgotten to move the puppets in the skeleton sequence. A testament to just how hard the process of animating this epic scene was.
Strange to cut out a second of footage, and just plain ignorant to crop it to 16x9.
Is there a better version? I read that the blu-ray is also cropped.
I think I heard that they edited out the frames with the surface gauge for the DVD release.
I may have a VHS recorded off air of that Movie Magic episode, not sure. I do have Jason on VHS tape, the Harryhausen Collection release, which might not have the surface gauges edited out. It would be 4:3 ratio. (And a vhs player I could loan you.) But not sure how to get it onto a computer. My old Perception Video Recorder card worked to capture analog video on Pentiums 1 to 3, but couldn't capture live video on the Pentium 4 that I still have in the studio, it was no longer fully compatible.
i got that taped off foxtel from the 90s I'm pretty sure its a better copy…when do you need it by ..i will try and dig it out.
The class is on Thursday, but I really want a better copy just for me. There was also one that had James and the Giant Peach featured, but I can't find that one online.
Yep i got that one to …just got to find them….we have loads of ancient vhs stashed in boxes here somewhere.
I suspect by the time we got them off the vhs the quality wouldn't be much better than whats already on youtube. But I can't find the James one there yet.