I'm liveblogging this thing for the first time, provided the feed doesn't crap out.
By the way, this column is far from dead.
The only thing more inarguably dorky than liveblogging technology announcements? Liveblogging not-full Q&A with an art cinema home video label. I wish the camera pulled back a bit to see how empty the room actually is. This hall might hold 200, 400, 600 people. No way to know form this vantage point.
Kim Hendrickson and Curtis Tsui ("Choy", according to the moderator, but actually "chui", for those of you who don't know how to pronounce it [see comments]) on stage now. Asked about Terry Zwigoff's early films in the Collection, since he'll be there on Thursday. Hendrickson's mic is not picking up in the feed, Tsui's is.
Hendrickson took the lead on answering a question about staying relevant in a world of declining "traditional" home video and change, but with her mic is not piping through to the feed. It is almost impossible to hear her.
I did pick up on her stressing Hulu and the breadth of titles available there. Tsui talks about their plans to go "outside" to produce video essays on their website that would better highlight the movies across social media.
This microphone screwup is why I tech things like this in advance, and these guys really should have.
A Hard Day's Night was Criterion's first 4K restoration, and Kim wanted to really focus on Richard Lester more than the "story" told in the old Miramax DVD edition (an approach I found very smart and interesting). Now WexArts director David Filipi asking Tsui about My Darling Clementine. Tsui likes having carved himself a niche doing Westerns for them.
MicrophoneGate 2014 update: Sense has prevailed, and Hendrickson was told her mic wasn't picking up on the stream, she set her mic down to share one as her turn comes. Glad I don't have to keep blowing my ears out cranking volume to hear Kim.
My Darling Clementine's theatrical cut is accepted as the preferred version by scholars. Tsui prefers the shorter version, too. He dug into some of the work he did on Red River. Asked about working with a studio owner on titles, he has to demur on specifics in most cases (approvals versus rejections on extras), but says both Red River and My Darling Clementine were easy.
Licensing: on StudioCanal titles, a big pile (including Spine #1, Grand Illusion) went out of print a while ago and rights went to Lionsgate. It's a relationship that they are actively hoping to revive, though they can't announce anything or to what extent progress may have been made.
If a director said "no extras"?: they wouldn't do it at this point, even if a title came out that way on Laserdisc or DVD. Terrence Malick came around to it, but if someone like Woody Allen said "no, absolutely not", it'd be of no interest to them.
Progress on Kiarostami's Koker Trilogy: it is being worked on, will take time, and the Iranian films are tough when it comes to the actual licensing.
Ray's Apu Trilogy will be theatrically rereleased in 2015, with an "amazing" Blu-ray, based on a massive, extensive degree of
Would Criterion begin considering TV releases with a new rise of serial TV?: They enjoyed doing the Golden Age of Television set, and could see doing more like that. "There would be a lot of fans in the audience"
Excitement about upcoming releases like Todd Haynes' Safe?: Tsui is working on Watership Down, the first animated film brought into the Collection. "Definitely has a cult following that is excited about it."
Some jackass in the audience said something about "non-art" films in the Collection, I think calling out Tootsie of all things. That guy can go fuck himself. Hendrickson sticks up for Tootsie, which had an "amazing" Criterion commentary on Laserdisc that hasn't been available since. Phil Rosenthal (Everybody Loves Raymond) and many others listened to it
On "why Armageddon and The Rock", from the same pedant in the audience: an opportunity to tell the story of special effects films. "No one was really doing that back then" (which is true). Those extras and commentary are still outstanding. Tsui: "Affleck criticizing whatever is going on on-screen" is a highlight. I agree.
Hendrickson tags on the last answer, adding how Soderbergh tore his own movie apart in a featurette about The Underneath. That entire movie was included on King of the Hill as an "extra" in full HD.
A laundry list of filmmaker names getting rattled off including Claire Denis, Edward Yang, Pasolini, others asked by the chat if more from them is coming.
Tsui has been working on Edward Yang's Brighter Summer Day for two years. Says the extras are "basically done", the restoration is taking the time. More Edward Yang is coming to the Collection, too.
Truffaut's The Soft Skin is coming "first half of next year"
Asked about favorite bonus features, Tsui thrilled by the doc of the Zatoichi star who comes off as a raging mess of an egomaniac that ended up on that magnificent box set.
Moonrise Kingdom coming in 2015
There will be more Warner Brothers releases: "a big list went around, and if half that list gets approved, it will be a happy day" My note: I hope this means The Devils is finally coming seeing release. I know WB proper will never release it.
Documentary on Burrows hits theatrical in 2015
More animated titles?: Dunno.
More Lynch, more Kieslowski.
On The Decalogue: "It's out there in the ether, they're working on big restorations out there, couldn't tell you when it might happen" hedges big-time. It would be an enormous project that it sounds like they're looking at but not sure about anything remotely concrete.