U.S. Versions of Godzilla Movies... Lost?

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Postby Legion » Sat Sep 04, 2010 4:58 pm

walshiam wrote:^^More than that was edited..........much more.


Aside from two shots of Minya, the Toho logo and the credits being moved to the end of movie...what else was changed?
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Postby walshiam » Sat Sep 04, 2010 5:01 pm

All scenes with blood.
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Postby Legion » Sat Sep 04, 2010 5:11 pm

walshiam wrote:All scenes with blood.


Not in the version I first saw in the 1980s.
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Postby SeaHawk » Sat Sep 04, 2010 6:47 pm

Legion wrote:
walshiam wrote:All scenes with blood.


Not in the version I first saw in the 1980s.


I think that the Australian DVD in question had the more "graphic" shots edited out, and that the original American release always had them.
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Postby ebirahsmeg1 » Sat Sep 04, 2010 8:48 pm

walshiam wrote:All scenes with blood.


I don't remember the blood being cut (perhaps it was for Australia/European versions?). I assume you're talking about the scene where they rip her ear rings off...I could have sworn seeing those scenes intact in the AIP version I saw growing up. But assuming it was cut...how much screen time did that take up...5 seconds? Sorry, when it comes to the "heavily edited" claims, you're grasping at straws here. G54, G Raids Again, KKvsGodzilla, GTTHM, TOMG..those were heavily edited....the AIP DAM was not.
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Postby walshiam » Sat Sep 04, 2010 10:47 pm

^The "operation" was cut as well (the part where the incision was made). And yes, it's the Aussie cut that is on the R4 disc.
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Postby KaiserGhidorah » Sun Sep 05, 2010 12:01 am

There are wonderfully done widescreen reconstructions of these films with AIP dubs out there that do exist online but for obvious reasons, I cannot state where. Smog Monster and DAM are excellent and both have english credits and titles intact. Smoggie was just as I remember it as a child which thrilled me quite so and I'm glad to have it again.

I haven't seen one yet for SOG (which I'm hoping for) but the Sea Monster reconstruction was a bit iffy. Unfortunately, I do not count that one as a true reconstruction as the edits aren't the same as the version seen on tv and vhs from so many years ago. Also, there are parts of the film where it switches from the AIP dub to the International and back to the AIP dub again. It's quite funny actually to hear it play out this way.

As far as Godzilla 1985, I did manage to acquire the Monsters HD version which has minor differences from the vhs version I still have. There also exists an 'updated' version of the american hd version where subtitles are included which I believe the author did take some liberty with. The dialogue is mostly the same but some new stuff was added that wasn't there before.

As far as TOMG is concerned, I'm quite satisfied with the CM effort. I didn't care for the prologue but I enjoyed the uncut international version probably just as much as I did the edited version I grew up with. I did think about trying to find the edited version but haven't really invested the time in doing so.
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Postby kpa » Mon Sep 06, 2010 4:56 am

walshiam wrote:They are not public domain titles since Toho has reclaimed rights to those titles since AIP and others no longer exist.


That's not exactly how it worked in most cases. Toho and other Japanese studios like Daiei (now Kadokawa) would sell the foreign rights for a set number of years with an option to renew. If the expiration date arrived and the licensee did not pay to renew, the rights to the film (including any US versions) would revert back to the Japanese studio.

In the cases of AIP, the company was bought by Filmways who in turn merged with Orion which was later purchased by MGM. As long as that hodgepodge of companies paid the fees as the right came up for renewal, Toho recognized the chain of ownership for the films they'd licensed to AIP. DESTROY ALL MONSTERS and SMOG MONSTER never had to be reclaimed by Toho because those films automatically reverted to them when Orion/MGM decided not to renew the rights.

The same situation applied when Classic Media bought the UPA and Golden Books film and TV libraries... Toho recognized CM as an extension of their deal with previous licensees. When the time came to renew the rights, CM paid for and kept the Godzilla movies, RODAN, and WOTG. They chose not to renew other UPA titles like LAST DAYS OF PLANET EARTH and ESPY so those films reverted back to Toho.

TitanoGoji16 wrote:Every time I see this topic brought up in the DVD Forums, the explanation is always "Toho isn't sure who owns the right to these dubs and prefers to not deal with it," or something along those lines.

This makes no sense to me. This is Toho's stuff, shouldn't they be making sure who has rights to it?


I've seen a few people make those claims about the American versions and dubs and I don't buy it one bit. I've spoken to Toho and Kadokawa about this, I've seen the old AIP contracts for some of the films, and have some personal experience with Toho and Classic Media while working on the Godzilla DVDs. Over and over again, what I was told and what I read stated exactly what I posted above... if the US distributor did not pay the licensing fees as they periodically came up for renewal the rights for the US versions revert back to the Japanese studio.

If Toho and Kadokawa had doubts about this they would not have allowed Classic Media, Shout! Factory, or Media Blasters to use the American dubs on any of the recent Godzilla and Gamera DVDs.

The only possible exception I know of GODZILLA 1985. Toho believes the film has reverted back to them, but apparently there's some issue that their lawyers are unsure about. They haven't told me what that problem is, but until Toho is sure it's resolved they can't/won't make any version of that film available for US distribution.

The reason why some of the films are now being released with international dubs is simple... the US dubs were not made by Toho or Kadokawa so the Japanese studios do not have materials for those versions. The old American dubs were made decades ago, and some of the distributors no longer exist, or the films have changed hands many times. The US contracts for DESTROY ALL MONSTERS state that, when the rights expired, all elements had to be shipped back to Toho or destroyed. Toho doesn't have them so it's pretty obvious that Orion/MGM decided to save some money on postage.

So when Sony or Media Blasters pick up a Toho movie like GODZILLA VS THE SEA MONSTER, SON OF GODZILLA, or SPACE AMOEBA they generally go with the international dub because a) Toho made it and has the materials for it, and b) the international dub is made to sync up with the Japanese version (and vice versa). To the general public, an English dub is an English dub so using the Titra dub or the international version is not going to make a big difference in sales. From a business standpoint (which is the main focus of these companies) there's no real motivation to spend extra time and money tracking down and acquiring the US versions, doing whatever restoration may be needed for the materials, and dealing with edits done on those versions when Toho already has an English dub ready to use.

I know Classic Media had problems finding usable materials for some of the US versions. Same with Media Blasters for FRANKENSTEIN CONQUERS THE WORLD. And Shout has been dealing with the same issues for the Gamera DVDs.

I'd love to see the old US versions preserved exactly as they were originally released. But that would most likely take a company that's knowledgeable about these films and also willing to lose money on titles that don't sell huge numbers. I think that's extremely unlikely... as fantastic a job has been doing on the Gamera discs, paying for GAMMERA THE INVINCIBLE was beyond their budget so it wasn't included on the DVD. It will be up to fans to preserve those versions many of us grew up with.

Goji 84 wrote:So the R4 Madman DVD uses the Walter Reade version of SEA MONSTER..? Hmm, did not know that. They did release the AIP version of DESTROY ALL MONSTERS, so I suppose I shouldn't be all that surprised. I'm sure the quality is less than stellar though..


Madman's DVDs of SEA MONSTER and DAM have the the international dubs, not the US versions. There was another Australian label that released unlicensed DVDs of some Godzilla films, including some US dubs. But those were pretty poor quality.

walshiam wrote:The bad thing about their DAM is that it's edited. It's not the whole picture.


I have the Madman Showa DVD set and a s far as I can tell DAM is complete. The autopsy sequence and the bit where Kyoko's earrings are torn off are intact, blood and all. The Minya reaction shot is there as well.

If you're talking about the AIP version, I have a copied transferred from a 16mm TV print and the "bloody" scenes are in the movie.
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Postby August » Mon Sep 06, 2010 5:49 am

kpa wrote:...as fantastic a job [Shout! Factory] has been doing on the Gamera discs, paying for GAMMERA THE INVINCIBLE was beyond their budget so it wasn't included on the DVD.


That's not true — we found the price to be an outrageous demand after all of the hoops that the UCLA Film Archive made us jump through, and felt that it was an insult, and this is why Cliff MacMillan refused to pay their "ransom" for this title.
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Postby jellydonut25 » Mon Sep 06, 2010 12:01 pm

August wrote:
kpa wrote:...as fantastic a job [Shout! Factory] has been doing on the Gamera discs, paying for GAMMERA THE INVINCIBLE was beyond their budget so it wasn't included on the DVD.


That's not true — we found the price to be an outrageous demand after all of the hoops that the UCLA Film Archive made us jump through, and felt that it was an insult, and this is why Cliff MacMillan refused to pay their "ransom" for this title.
well, that SOUNDS to me like keith is fairly accurate then. If Shout budgeted, say (just for example) 10,000 for Gammera the Invincible, and UCLA wanted 2,000,000 - then it's outside what Shout budgeted...
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Postby August » Mon Sep 06, 2010 4:45 pm

No, that's not correct — Keith didn't work on the project and neither did you — that wasn't the point. The point was, we were talking with UCLA, got all of the appropriate paperwork (which they had already given us a hard time with), and once that was all said and done, they told us we had to give them a hefty donation or we couldn't use the elements (which was never mentioned before). Cliff felt insulted by this, and I agreed, and he refused to pay what amounted to a form of extortion — but that didn't mean we couldn't afford it within the budget. They pulled a fast one on us, and we refused to kowtow to their bullsh*t. Period. Please don't read into it what isn't there, or imply things that have no validity to the truth. Thank you. :)
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Postby Legion » Mon Sep 06, 2010 4:47 pm

August, come on man. Don't act so insulted. Relax a little, my friend.
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Postby August » Mon Sep 06, 2010 4:51 pm

Thanks, Legion, but I don't need to relax and I'm not insulted; just setting the record straight. People imply things, interpret their own stories, and these get swept into the mainstream (especially by folks like Keith whose word is taken as Gospel by a lot of fans). At that point, it's hard to filter it out, so it needs to be nipped in the bud. That's all. No harm, no foul. But, people can't just *imagine* what happened and then believe that's the truth. Look how long it took to set the "two endings" for KING KONG VS. GODZILLA straight, and that myth is still floating out there. We have nothing to hide — why would anyone think that? — so it's not up to a third party's "interpretation". It's pretty straight-forward. UCLA put a proverbial gun to our heads, after pistol whipping us, and we told them, "FU"! :P
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Postby jellydonut25 » Mon Sep 06, 2010 5:07 pm

It still SOUNDS to me like a certain thing was budgeted and then didn't come into the budget...I'm not implying any sort of cash shortage or anything...

it'd be like if I got a quote from U-Haul on a truck for $1,000 and then when I went to go make the reservation they said, "Actually, due to some issue we don't feel like explaining, it will be $10,000"

I had a quote and verbal agreement for $1,000 and they tried to extort me and I told them to piss-off...


and all of that can be summed up in the simple phrase, "outside the budget"

not trying to spread any rumors or anything...
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Postby Flame of Udin » Mon Sep 06, 2010 6:31 pm

jellydonut25 wrote:It still SOUNDS to me like a certain thing was budgeted and then didn't come into the budget...I'm not implying any sort of cash shortage or anything...

it'd be like if I got a quote from U-Haul on a truck for $1,000 and then when I went to go make the reservation they said, "Actually, due to some issue we don't feel like explaining, it will be $10,000"

I had a quote and verbal agreement for $1,000 and they tried to extort me and I told them to piss-off...


and all of that can be summed up in the simple phrase, "outside the budget"

not trying to spread any rumors or anything...


OK, I think we can move on from the Gamera issue. August worked on the DVD and he said his peace so the matter should be closed. No use getting him to repeat what he already stated numerous times. geez.
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Postby kpa » Tue Sep 07, 2010 5:05 am

Before we do that, Flame, I'd like to clear up a few things. What I posted in this thread regarding Shout! Factory and GAMMERA THE INVINCIBLE came directly from information Cliff Macmillan shared in a series of emails we exchanged early this year. Here's an exact quote, minus the dollar amounts since I don't think it's my place to make those figures public.

"UCLA does have a print, but they made me run around in circles getting all sorts of information and then told me it was going to cost XX to borrow the print. I just can't afford to spend that plus another XX to transfer the film."
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Postby Gojiraknight » Tue Sep 07, 2010 6:27 pm

Long story short, if you want to watch Gammera the Invincible, hope you don't mind some grain...or is that not true either? Dammit!
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Postby armandv » Tue Sep 07, 2010 7:38 pm

August wrote: The point was, we were talking with UCLA, got all of the appropriate paperwork (which they had already given us a hard time with), and once that was all said and done, they told us we had to give them a hefty donation or we couldn't use the elements (which was never mentioned before). Cliff felt insulted by this, and I agreed, and he refused to pay what amounted to a form of extortion


Wow! I didn't know Carmine DePasto is now working at UCLA! :lol:

"So, if you mention extortion again, I'll have your legs broken."
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Postby walshiam » Wed Sep 08, 2010 12:01 am

"Get it in writing" are words to live by I've always said.
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Postby godziwolf » Wed Sep 08, 2010 12:21 am

August wrote:Cliff felt insulted by this, and I agreed, and he refused to pay what amounted to a form of extortion — but that didn't mean we couldn't afford it within the budget.


August, buddy, it's a simple argument here.

The reason Gamera wasn't on the DVD was because UCLA asked too much money for it. That means it wasn't within the budget.

I could buy a Ferrari tomorrow. I make enough for it. But it's not within my budget.
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Postby Goji 84 » Wed Sep 08, 2010 1:44 am

kpa wrote:
walshiam wrote:The bad thing about their DAM is that it's edited. It's not the whole picture.


I have the Madman Showa DVD set and a s far as I can tell DAM is complete. The autopsy sequence and the bit where Kyoko's earrings are torn off are intact, blood and all. The Minya reaction shot is there as well.

If you're talking about the AIP version, I have a copied transferred from a 16mm TV print and the "bloody" scenes are in the movie.


I too have a VHS copy of a 16 mm print of the AIP DAM that has all the bloody scenes intact, so I can vouch for this as well. The other little snippets of footage that were cut from the AIP version still puzzle me to this day. They just didn't really seem necessary.
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Postby August » Wed Sep 08, 2010 3:26 am

It's not an "argument", Wolf, it's closer to playing with semantics; it's not as elementary as one may believe. Also, Keith should not be quoting private e-mails on public message boards, but that's entirely another can 'o worms. With that being said, I stand by my account, as someone who actually worked on the project and participated in the process and the decision not to kowtow to UCLA's unreasonable demands. It wasn't a matter of being "beyond the budget", it was a matter of being too high of a demand, and not knuckling under, because it was beyond standard practice. Keith used Cliff's informal communique to suit his own interpretation. You might think it's "plain as day", but you would be wrong.

It's like collecting rare Godzilla toys, if someone has something you really want/need, and you feel their price is too expensive, you have to decided whether it's worth it or not. What you feel is fair and right. What you have to spend, overall, is an entirely different matter. None of you were/are privy to the budget for these discs, and to assume such things (based on a simplistic assumption) bares a lack of knowledge of the business, and leads to beliefs that have nothing to do with reality.

Despite the above, this does not make any of you lesser people, and this was not posted to belittle anyone, but on the other hand, I don't pretend to have experience in Quantum Mechanics, or how to build an Atomic Bomb, for that matter. Now, the natural reaction to that statement might be, "the movie business isn't that complex" — sure, it's not, but it's not as simple and as black and white as you may assume it to be, either.

No insults intended or implied — towards anyone — I'm just laying it out there. How you process it is up to you. Good night and good luck!
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Postby Gojiraknight » Wed Sep 08, 2010 10:09 am

Two things I've noticed lately about this board...

1.) Heated arguments over what basically amounts to semantics are getting a tad out of hand.

2.) Everyone is an expert about the business while everyone else is naive, though none more so than me.

In summation, UCLA wanted more money than Shout! was willing to pay. Thus, Shout's Gamera DVD doesn't include Gammera the Invincible.

And that is coming from someone who had nothing to do with anything!
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Postby Tyler E. Martin » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:33 pm

Gojiraknight wrote:Two things I've noticed lately about this board...

1.) Heated arguments over what basically amounts to semantics are getting a tad out of hand.

2.) Everyone is an expert about the business while everyone else is naive, though none more so than me.

In summation, UCLA wanted more money than Shout! was willing to pay. Thus, Shout's Gamera DVD doesn't include Gammera the Invincible.

And that is coming from someone who had nothing to do with anything!


This.
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Postby GFan » Thu Sep 09, 2010 3:57 pm

Well, on the bright side of things... we are getting BOTH dubs on the upcoming GAOS and GUIRON Gamera DVDs. :D :lol:
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