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Hey Brian, do you think Shout! can look into this show?

RE: Perfect Strangers

Some people have suggested that Perfect Strangers can get further season releases simply by cutting out music. That's actually hard to do with this series, because most of the songs are sung by Larry and Balki themselves. Cutting out those songs would result in the wholesale mutilation of numerous scenes. (If you don't believe me, picture watching the bibbi-bobka episode without the parts with the bibbi-bobka ditty - which is sung to the tune of "Limbo Rock." If they dropped the dang ditty they're doomed, so to speak.)

Unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately, depending on how you look at it) this show won't come out at all until a balance is struck between a realistic production target and the necessary music rights. I should note that many people once thought a Moonlighting DVD series release was impossible because of music costs, but miraculously the entire series was released virtually unscathed on DVD.

We're patient, if the wait means it gets done right.

I do think picking up Perfect Strangers would be a real coup for Shout!

RE: Perfect Strangers

crispycomments: I'm not sure that would work. Usually, DVDs are pressed in large, and I mean LARGE quantities, so maybe if enough people were willing to buy it, it might work, but otherwise, I doubt it.

RE: Perfect Strangers

WB on demand released Classic TV Christmas and one of the episodes is Perfect Strangers. I took a chance and bought the dvd and love it! Let's hope if Shout can't release Perfect Strangers that WB will release the season on demand purchase.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Maybe I'm not using the correct terminology, but when I refer to manufacture on demand, I don't necessarily mean burning DVD-Rs... I'm also talking about the possibility of taking pre-orders (maybe even charging people in advance if need be) and then pressing up a limited run of real DVDs.  It seemed to me it would be risk-free if a company like Shout only paid to produce however many DVDs the fans were willing to commit to buying in advance.  Thus manufacturing them...based on how much of a demand there is. :)  With the option of doing future pressings later if it's a big success?  Just an idea.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Manufacture on demand can't work for an indie label with our model.  Manufacture on demand is literally people burning DVD-Rs.  That requires people whose job it is to encode and string together several episodes onto a disc and then burn however many there are in the set.  We don't do any of that stuff in house.  We use outside production vendors and they have minimum numbers.  Even if we did do it in house, the money required to pay for encodes and the editing together of episodes is too costly for an indie.  You might not think so, but you're also not thinking with knowledge of the numbers.  It's not free.  And it's not just the cost of the disc. 

We pay for our clones of the studios' masters.  So we'd have to pay for Digibeta masters, encoding, "authoring" and the man hours of burning onto discs.  All for what?  One person that ordered a $20 set?  It's just not reasonable for us, while WB can get away with it because they're not paying for new masters and the amount of money it costs them to encode and "author" and burn discs is chump change.

Brian


Follow me on Twitter! (@BWard028)

RE: Perfect Strangers

I loved this show growing up.

RE: Perfect Strangers

I love the pre-order manufacture-on-demand idea. Seems risk-free!

pdftv - I don't think I misunderstood...like I said, I can see Brian's point about businesses (although I still choose to be hopeful because of his previous comment that Perfect Strangers season 1/2 sales were actually good by Shout's standards) ... I merely thought his post wasn't addressing the original point about "small profit" being better than none at all (in terms of Warner or any studio licensing their shows out to smaller companies and thus making a small profit, vs. not licensing/leaving in vault and making NO profit.  Anyway, I'm just repeating myself now, so I'll stop. :)

RE: Perfect Strangers

Would it cut down on costs at all if you just did by a pre-order sales only?  At least then you wouldn't be manufacturing any extra copies unnecessarily.

RE: Perfect Strangers



----- Original Post -----
by crispycomments at 6/30/2010 11:55:01 PM

All that you say about businesses makes sense, Brian, but (forgive me if I'm wrong), wasn't tazz765 referring to the "small profit" the studio would make by licensing a show to a company like Shout... vs. no profit at all if they refuse to license and just let it sit in their vault?  I feel the same way...I can't understand why a studio would have a no-licensing policy if they can't make any money selling it themselves.  Better to let Shout release the shows and at least they'd make *some* money that way, right?

I think you misunderstood Brian's comment. I think he's saying that releasing Perfect Strangers wouldn't be profitable for Shout! Factory because even if the 1st set sold well by Shout! Factory's standards, future releases would sell fewer copies and Shout! Factory would lose money on the deal.

RE: Perfect Strangers

All that you say about businesses makes sense, Brian, but (forgive me if I'm wrong), wasn't tazz765 referring to the "small profit" the studio would make by licensing a show to a company like Shout... vs. no profit at all if they refuse to license and just let it sit in their vault?  I feel the same way...I can't understand why a studio would have a no-licensing policy if they can't make any money selling it themselves.  Better to let Shout release the shows and at least they'd make *some* money that way, right?

RE: Perfect Strangers

You said "small profit."  I think the point that you're missing is that not only are those titles not making a "small profit," but they're losing money.  It costs money to transfer masters, encode, author, create menus, QC the discs, pay overhead for the folks doing all of these things and manufacture the discs and packaging.  Then, you have to pay for the marketing and, often times, even pay retail stores for prime placement on their shelves.  If you don't sell enough sets, you don't recoup the costs of all that.  And each subsequent volume sells fewer than the last.  So if the first set didn't sell enough to pay the bills and you know you're going to sell even fewer of the second or third volumes, why would you pay the astronomical amount of money to create the sets?  And if you're a big studio, you're paying even more.  It's a business.  You can't stay in business by throwing away money.

Brian


Follow me on Twitter! (@BWard028)

RE: Perfect Strangers

I never understood that reasoning by any big company. A series didn't do the numbers that a large company like yours was expecting so you shelf it (making you no money) but you refuse to license it to a smaller company (which makes you some money). Instead you rather leave it sitting on the shelf instead of making a least a small profit off of it. Maybe I don't have the education as some of these people running these companies but something about this makes no sense to me.

----- Original Post -----
by Dan T at 6/29/2010 6:40:41 PM

Thanks for explaining Brian. Having shout release P.S. would make thousands of fans happy for sure!! Just a question, if W.B. was unhappy with the sales, and likely shelves it, why would they have a problem with parting with it??

RE: Perfect Strangers

Thanks for explaining Brian. Having shout release P.S. would make thousands of fans happy for sure!! Just a question, if W.B. was unhappy with the sales, and likely shelves it, why would they have a problem with parting with it??

RE: Perfect Strangers

The problem is that no one anticipated that there would be a desire to own full seasons of a TV series.  When the music was first cleared, it was done so for broadcast only, not a retail release.  Networks and/or production companies originally paid for the music on a per-broadcast basis, meaning every time the episode airs with that music attached, the labels get a certain amount of money.  Royalties.  But if the episode is put onto home video or DVD, the label hasn't given permission for that.  Therefore, the music has to be cleared again for home video use.  And because they have no clue how many times that episode with their songs will be played on DVD, they usually charge a premium to make sure they get their "fair share."

Hope this helps with understanding the clearance issue.

Brian


Follow me on Twitter! (@BWard028)

RE: Perfect Strangers

I totally agree with you Quack, it does ****! I'll never totally understand it either. It should be if they paid for the music and cleared it the first time for the initial airing of all the episodes they should NOT have to re-clear it a second time and pay for it again for the DVD releases but that's just how it is. It's probably an opportunity to make even more money thing and in the case of these shows 20 years ago DVD releases weren't even a thought since the format was just beginning to come out at that time.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Forgive me, but I don't get why it's such a big deal now, if they were able to use it the first time around, paid for it then, why should they have to pay again?  Just because it's a DVD release?  I guess I'll never understand it, and think it all sucks. :(

RE: Perfect Strangers

First of all thanks to Mr. Ward for always reading our suggestions and passing them along to the people who have the final say in these things, that means a great deal to a community such as this one. Shout may not be able to get all the shows we want for us but he's always reading the forums and passing along our suggestions..he's done a great job :)

Next I wanted to answer or at least try to answer the question that was asked about music rights/clearances. The big deal with it is that some of this music, when you go to clear it is downright expensive..some of you would have heart attacks if you saw the prices attached to some of the music studios need to clear for some shows. Not just Perfect Strangers per se. I'll give a huge example of a show that still isn't out for that reason--The Wonder Years. Everyone wants it of course but the problem is music clearance. BIG time problem there. Almost every episode of that show uses music and the problem is, the music that's used actually fits each episode or what's going on in each episode so you can't just do music replacement there. In that show's case it's going to have to be all or nothing. And if they go all in on it, and it looks like that's what Fox wants to do, it will cost supposedly-and again supposedly from what I read-well upwards of 10 MILLION just to clear all of it. That show is a textbook example of a series-wide music clearance NIGHTMARE! The music isn't just minor unheard of music either, it's almost all major major artists and bands-The Beatles, Rolling Stones, etc so that alone will be a massive project. We all saw what happened when Conan O'Brien ran a Beatles song during one of his last NBC shows without clearing it first-massive, big tiume fine is what NBC got for that. If Fox pulls it off God bless 'em but it's gonna be tough. Anyway, that example should be a good one to give you all an idea why music clearance issues are a big deal sometimes.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Wow, I had no idea dvd authoring companies charged more based on what they think studios can afford... instead of just a standard rate for a certain number of dvds.  Thanks for explaining.  I'm glad you guys at Shout get a better deal... but what a shame this increases sales expectations for the larger studios (and dooms a lot of shows we fans are craving).  Now I have a better understanding why studios only seem to stick to the most current/popular shows...but I still hate it. :)  Wish a dvd authoring business would start up with more competitive pricing!

I also wish WB (and others) would just license more stuff out... They won't make *any* money leaving shows in their vaults, so I can't understand it.

Anyway, thanks a lot for letting us know and giving PS fans some hope.

RE: Perfect Strangers

We can only hope.  Thanks Brian.


Please bring "Starman" the 1986-87 tv series, Silver Spoons seasons 2 & beyond and Jennifer Slept Here to DVD.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Studios need most titles to sell a minimum of 100,000+  units to consider it a success.  This isn't due to greed, mind you.  Major studios pay a lot more than we do to author and replicate discs, because authoring houses know they can afford it.  But it's also because they can charge major studios these prices that allow us to be able to get by with considerably lower prices.  So it's a symbiotic cycle.

But, it's because of the amount of money it takes to create the sets that studios won't consider releasing a subsequent set, if the first didn't quite sell up to their expectations or projections.  The number I saw on Perfect Strangers would actually be pretty decent for a smaller company like us.  I just don't know if it's something they'd be willing to part with.

Still... I've forwarded the suggestion onto the powers-that-be.  We'll see what they say.

Brian


Follow me on Twitter! (@BWard028)

RE: Perfect Strangers

:(

I don't know what studio standards are... impossibly high?  Do they expect everything to sell like Friends, The Simpsons, or other shows that are still on the air/syndicated everywhere and thus have more public awareness?  I'm sure if PS were airing somewhere today, it would pick up new fans/potential dvd customers.  (And us old-timers could at least tape it off TV in case it's never released!  I wish.)

I wonder if Perfect Strangers sold well by a smaller company (like Shout)'s standards...  Would you guys be interested in continuing if WB miraculously agreed to license?

RE: Perfect Strangers

Perfect Strangers really didn't sell as well as you might assume.  Not by studio standards, anyway.  So I wouldn't be surprised if they shelve it.

Brian


Follow me on Twitter! (@BWard028)

RE: Perfect Strangers

I'll actually believe Growing Pains S2 will be released when I hear a more exact date than 2011. Until then I'm not getting my hopes up.

RE: Perfect Strangers

I don't know how accurate the music rights issue is.  WB seems to change their story a lot.  First they said Alice wasn't being released because the TV favorites sets sold poorly (at least according to what is posted on tvshowsondvd).  Then at their last chat they said it was the masters being in poor condition.  I don't remember Perfect Strangers S3 having a lot of music (but I may just not be remembering).  They're finally releasing Growing Pains S2 and Family Matters just got released, along with S5 of Fresh Prince so I'd like to think there's still hope for Perfect Strangers.  It would be better if Shout! could get it but right now that doesn't look like its happenning anytime soon.


Please bring "Starman" the 1986-87 tv series, Silver Spoons seasons 2 & beyond and Jennifer Slept Here to DVD.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Since I don't have a clue what all the music rights mean....seriously?  What's the big deal?  I guess I'll never understand why music rights hold shows back from being released.  If I was an artist and I did a theme song or music for a show almost 20 years ago, I could care less if the show came out on DVD.  Idk :(  It's just really sad that it could keep huge fans from getting their shows.

RE: Perfect Strangers



----- Original Post -----
by fonziefanatic at 6/23/2010 7:07:44 PM

Actually, the issue is one of music licensing. Seasons 1 & 2 sold well, however music for subsequent seasons have music issues. Tvshowsondvd.com can confirm this.

I know that with Perfect Strangers, the issue is not poor sales, but high music costs. It would be awesome if Shout! Factory could release seasons 3-8, even if it means changing the music. I'm sure the fans would be happy just to have the episodes.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Actually, the issue is one of music licensing. Seasons 1 & 2 sold well, however music for subsequent seasons have music issues. Tvshowsondvd.com can confirm this.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Yes Perfect Strangers.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Hardly any of my favorite shows from the '80s have received a complete release on DVD... the apparent abandonment of Family Ties and Perfect Strangers hurts the most. :(  I simply can't believe the first release of PS didn't sell, especially considering it was one of the most popular long-running sitcoms of it's time AND requested year after year in those chats Home Theater Forum does with Warner Bros.  Maybe they had unrealistic expectations for it, or maybe they never intended to continue ("here, you can have one boxset so you'll stop nagging us about it and you can't say we didn't *try*.  Now shaddup!")  I'm kidding.  Mostly. ;)

I'm sad that WB apparently doesn't want to license stuff and would rather just sit on it.  I'd be sooo happy if Shout continued Perfect Strangers, but I guess it would take a miracle.  ("It's my life and my dream and nothing's gonna stop me now!"  Boy do we need that feel-good inspiring entertainment today.)

RE: Perfect Strangers

Any chance Shout! would be interested in this Brian?

RE: Perfect Strangers

I agree.  The show really hits its stride in Season 3.  The middle seasons' episodes were the best.

RE: Perfect Strangers

most shows dont become great/really funny until the later seasons. Growing Pains and Perfect Strangers are prime examples.

RE: Perfect Strangers

I have been waiting for Perfect Strangers Season 3 forever. I bought the Season 1/2 set and truly enjoyed it and was not aware that no further season were released. Season 3/4  has some of the funniest episodes,  as it was when the show hit its stride. Please look into releasing.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Yes Perfect Strangers MUST come out.  It would sell great too.  I've been witness to at least 2 times somebody has come into a DVD place and asked where to buy the series only to be told it wasn't available.

All I need is original network cuts, bonus features with the original cast, plus the original pilot with Louie Anderson and I could die a happy man.

Make it happen Shout!  With your new Warner deal I know you can.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Ugh, Season three is when the physical relationship started between balky and cousin larry. I have NO desire to revisit that unfortunate part of television history.


"On the 6th day the Lord created BRAIN WARD, and on the 7th he rested, cause making BRAIN WARD was exhausting"

RE: Perfect Strangers

Please try to release the rest of the series. Some of the best episodes were in the later seasons.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Yeah, Warner confirmed last night that there are no more "Perfect Strangers" DVDs planned.

RE: Perfect Strangers

Please Shout! look into this.  WB apparently has no immediate plans to release S3.


Please bring "Starman" the 1986-87 tv series, Silver Spoons seasons 2 & beyond and Jennifer Slept Here to DVD.

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