Looney Tunes Platinum Collection Blu-Ray

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Postby FleischerFan » Thu Sep 22, 2011 10:37 am

WoodpeckerWoody wrote:Wenn will Warner lern.:befuddled:shame:

Learn what? How to make the maximum profit out of the assets they control?

WBHV has discerned two distinct markets for their vintage cartoons. One market is hard core collectors like us. The Golden Collections and now this Platinum Collection are aimed at us. We don't mind shelling out for a fairly expensive set of discs. We like the bonus features. We want a copy of every Warners and M-G-M (and Popeye) cartoon they can release.

However, we are a SMALL, small niche market. We just don't command that much in the way of sales. Profitable? Yes. Mega-profitable? Sadly, no.

WBHV also knows there is another, much wider market out there that is only casually interested in classic cartoons. They either want them as the occasional break from watching feature films or as "electronic babysitters" for their kids. They do not care about bonus features. They do not care about the vast majority of Looney Tunes/Merries Melodies (especially the ones that don't feature the "star" characters). They basically want the same group of cartoons that television showed over and over again while they were growing up. And they want them at a much cheaper price point.

So WBHV releases these "Spotlight Collections." It's a way to make more money off the same titles.

The more money WBHV makes, the more likely they are to release more cartoons. Instead of being hostile to these releases, I welcome them. More revenue from the Looney Tunes means it's far more likely that restoration efforts will continue and we'll continue to see more releases on home video.

WoodpeckerWoody wrote:Yeah, maby they could get more titles out if they didn't spend time on doing that.
Releasing this smaller Blu-Ray set is hardly taking much time and effort on WBHV's part. They are simply burning more copies of discs they have already assembled. The heavy lifting was done for the Platinum set. All this smaller set requires is some new box & label art.

If you think that scrapping this smaller set would mean WBHV would automatically be spending its time preparing another low-selling, larger Platinum Collection, I think you are being naive.

In fact, the inverse is true. The less total revenue WBHV can generate, the less likely they are to continue releasing these cartoons.

It's revenue, not lack of resources that has driven WBHV's decision to suspend the Popeye series, for example. And it's revenue that is driving their decision to include so many previously released titles on sets such as these.
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Postby Toonatic » Thu Sep 22, 2011 12:42 pm

Don't forget, these kind of releases like the Showcase are helping WHV to pay back for the restorations they did for the sets and any previous set and may help fund some money for future restorations.

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Postby King Delbert » Thu Sep 22, 2011 12:56 pm

Toonatic wrote:Don't forget, these kind of releases like the Showcase are helping WHV to pay back for the restorations they did for the sets and any previous set and may help fund some money for future restorations.


Honestly folks, if the DVD department doesn't bring in enough money to pay for its staff, and the restoration costs and the boxes and the labels, then that department goes good-bye, that's it, everyone's fired. Every department at Warner Bros. has to earn its keep. It doesn't matter if Harry Potter or the Dark Knight (there's an sequal to the Dark Knight coming up by the way because my cousin was at the filming for it, but I digress) makes millions and billions; they have to earn their keep. The Showcase collection (which was my idea for the name of a Looney Tunes collection), the spotlight collection, the Tweety and Sylvester Super Stars disc, and the re-releases of He's Your Dog, Charlie Brown, You're in Love, Charlie Brown, and How the Grinch Stole Christmas (albeit with Universal owned product) are perfect examples on how they can earn back more money without having to pay a cent or not as much.
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Postby Woody Woodpecker » Thu Sep 22, 2011 2:00 pm

FleischerFan wrote:Learn what? How to make the maximum profit out of the assets they control?

WBHV has discerned two distinct markets for their vintage cartoons. One market is hard core collectors like us. The Golden Collections and now this Platinum Collection are aimed at us. We don't mind shelling out for a fairly expensive set of discs. We like the bonus features. We want a copy of every Warners and M-G-M (and Popeye) cartoon they can release.

However, we are a SMALL, small niche market. We just don't command that much in the way of sales. Profitable? Yes. Mega-profitable? Sadly, no.

WBHV also knows there is another, much wider market out there that is only casually interested in classic cartoons. They either want them as the occasional break from watching feature films or as "electronic babysitters" for their kids. They do not care about bonus features. They do not care about the vast majority of Looney Tunes/Merries Melodies (especially the ones that don't feature the "star" characters). They basically want the same group of cartoons that television showed over and over again while they were growing up. And they want them at a much cheaper price point.

So WBHV releases these "Spotlight Collections." It's a way to make more money off the same titles.

The more money WBHV makes, the more likely they are to release more cartoons. Instead of being hostile to these releases, I welcome them. More revenue from the Looney Tunes means it's far more likely that restoration efforts will continue and we'll continue to see more releases on home video.

Releasing this smaller Blu-Ray set is hardly taking much time and effort on WBHV's part. They are simply burning more copies of discs they have already assembled. The heavy lifting was done for the Platinum set. All this smaller set requires is some new box & label art.

If you think that scrapping this smaller set would mean WBHV would automatically be spending its time preparing another low-selling, larger Platinum Collection, I think you are being naive.

In fact, the inverse is true. The less total revenue WBHV can generate, the less likely they are to continue releasing these cartoons.

It's revenue, not lack of resources that has driven WBHV's decision to suspend the Popeye series, for example. And it's revenue that is driving their decision to include so many previously released titles on sets such as these.


Its all fine that they want make more profit but are these cheaper release any gurtine of better selling? I don't have any sale figures for Super Stars in comparison to Golden Collections or/and Spotlight collection for that matter. So I don't know.

But similar contracts would 2L of Coke Cola priced say 10$ sell better than 1L Coke Cola priced say 7$? Given the amount of extra amount of Coke Cola you could for three extra $? I don't know how accurate this Coke Cola example is for USA market but here in Iceland Coke Cola is often priced like that here in Iceland so the bigger 2L bottle is actually the better deal than the 1L bottle for the casual coke cola drinker?
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Postby FleischerFan » Thu Sep 22, 2011 4:55 pm

WoodpeckerWoody wrote:Its all fine that they want make more profit but are these cheaper release any gurtine of better selling? I don't have any sale figures for Super Stars in comparison to Golden Collections or/and Spotlight collection for that matter. So I don't know.
I can guarantee you who DOES have sales figures for the past collections: Warner Brothers Home Video.

The fact that they keep releasing a mega-set for collectors and stripped down set for the casual buyer tells you all you need to know. Had the Spotlight Collections not been profitable, they would stop releasing them.


WoodpeckerWoody wrote:But similar contracts would 2L of Coke Cola priced say 10$ sell better than 1L Coke Cola priced say 7$? Given the amount of extra amount of Coke Cola you could for three extra $?
This really what we call an "apples and oranges" comparison. You are trying to draw an analogy between two things that are not similar at all.

But even taking your example of Coca-Cola: Coca-Cola markets their beverage in a wide variety of formats: cans, bottles, 1 liter, 2 liter, six packs, 12 packs, 24 packs, etc. Some of these formats are far more economical than others, yet there are consumers for each format regardless of which size offers the best value. Otherwise Coca-Cola would only be available in one size.

So your argument simply backs up what I was saying. WBHV has discovered that they can maximize their sales of these old cartoons (thereby helping finance further restorations & releases) by offering them in two different formats - aimed at two different market segments.

As fans of these cartoons, we ought to be cheering them on; not complaining because they won't do things the way we think they should - even if our way means they lose money.
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Postby Woody Woodpecker » Thu Sep 22, 2011 7:22 pm

FleischerFan wrote:I can guarantee you who DOES have sales figures for the past collections: Warner Brothers Home Video.

The fact that they keep releasing a mega-set for collectors and stripped down set for the casual buyer tells you all you need to know. Had the Spotlight Collections not been profitable, they would stop releasing them.


This really what we call an "apples and oranges" comparison. You are trying to draw an analogy between two things that are not similar at all.

But even taking your example of Coca-Cola: Coca-Cola markets their beverage in a wide variety of formats: cans, bottles, 1 liter, 2 liter, six packs, 12 packs, 24 packs, etc. Some of these formats are far more economical than others, yet there are consumers for each format regardless of which size offers the best value. Otherwise Coca-Cola would only be available in one size.

So your argument simply backs up what I was saying. WBHV has discovered that they can maximize their sales of these old cartoons (thereby helping finance further restorations & releases) by offering them in two different formats - aimed at two different market segments.

As fans of these cartoons, we ought to be cheering them on; not complaining because they won't do things the way we think they should - even if our way means they lose money.


For the sale figures, I don't know them but there might be little diffrences bettween more expensive collector set and more casual buyer set.

Both DVDs and Coke Cola are both bought with MONEY. I know the as products this is like comparing oranges and apples. Is also know that Coke comes in more form than the two examples I used but those are the most glaring I could find. But that's not the main point though idea as discuss the value of the product you buy. What is supposed to be the cheaper product might actually be more of an rip-off than the what appears to be the more expensive product. I.e Value for your money and thus Warner's activity of re-relesing "cheaper" sets for "casual" more like "clueless" buyer are defensibly buyer beware situation and its often forgotten in this big coporate world that customers actually have some rights get value for there money.

Since the price of this up coming showcase collection is something like 25$ (I do expect some discounted price at amazon) you are paying 1$ each, while you can get 68 cartoons (including the bonus cartoons) for 60$ (38$ on Amazon) so you pay 0,88$ for each cartoon (0,56$ for each cartoon on Amazon. So based on this the better investment for your money is actually the platinum collection not the single disc Showcase collection. I could argue further by saying that if you go by number of disc in platinum collection you pay 20$ per disc (12,76$ per disc on Amazon) which is better than paying 25$ for a single disc, especially if Warner plans to release the second disc and the bonus disc as standalone disc (all though i'm not seeing that happening)

But I can see this situation arise alot (and it has and will probably happen) if you as casual buyer want get to the other cartoons only found on the platinum collection then you are actually in bad position you have already got the showcase collection but what do you do?
a. you do could try to sell the showcase collection to get the platinum collection.
b. You stick with the showcase collection and refuse to buy the platinum collection because you hate double dipping.
c. You stick with the showcase collection and buy plantinum collection so you end up paying some 85$ for 68 cartoons but pays twice for 25 of them.

SO the best way I did say for Warner to get the most money out of everyone (collectors and soccer moms) is pocket would be releasing certain cartoons only to the Platinum line and certain cartoons only to showcase line. So if Warner had put 25 different cartoons on Showcase line and NOWHERE else (Soccer moms don't know Duck Amuck from Speedy - Daffy cartoons, I think :shame: ) then I would have gladly payed them another 25$ (as I had no other opportunity to get those cartoons), since they didn't I can save those 25$ for something more worth wile (maybe give that 25$ to rival studio). I think Warner could easily expoilt libray of more than 1000 cartoons in a manner probably more wisely then they are doing.

Because of this I think Warner's practice of repeating cartoons straight way, in set that are half of the sets that came before them, after releasing them (earlier DVDs don't count) is hurting the main goal to get everything out. Like in the days of the golden collections and the spotlight collections. Collector had no reason to give spotlight collection any change as everything was repeated there and casual buyer had no reason to give golden any change since paying for half of cartoons would be double dip. If that wasn't the case then we would have lest managed to have the half of the library out and probably better luck with finish the libraries of main star characters it's just criminal that complete library of Bugs Bunny cartoons is not available on home video (on DVDs and post medias). I think criticism Warner is getting and lest part of it, is this very fact that star characters libraries are incomplete. IF they were complete then I think the situation was much more tolerable. If the argument about unreleased cartoons was only involving one-shot cartoons of the 30's, Buddy and Bosko cartoons and Seven Arts cartoons, then I think lot of more pepole would be OK with the situation of unreleased cartoons although truth collector should want everything.

I know full well that Warner might disagree with me so each is own i guess.

But with that said I don't care if Warner wants to rip-off soccer moms. :tweety:
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Postby LooneyTunerIan » Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:13 pm

Well, there may be another way to make the Looney Tunes Platinum Collection for DVD.

But... it's rather risky.

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Postby trondmm » Fri Sep 23, 2011 6:11 am

WoodpeckerWoody wrote:SO the best way I did say for Warner to get the most money out of everyone (collectors and soccer moms) is pocket would be releasing certain cartoons only to the Platinum line and certain cartoons only to showcase line. So if Warner had put 25 different cartoons on Showcase line and NOWHERE else (Soccer moms don't know Duck Amuck from Speedy - Daffy cartoons, I think :shame: ) then I would have gladly payed them another 25$ (as I had no other opportunity to get those cartoons), since they didn't I can save those 25$ for something more worth wile (maybe give that 25$ to rival studio). I think Warner could easily expoilt libray of more than 1000 cartoons in a manner probably more wisely then they are doing.


You're missing the point.

The point is that restoring cartoons is expensive. Producing DVDs (and Blu-rays) is expensive. Once you've done all that, pressing the discs is practically free. So, the showcase collection is pretty close to 100% pure profit for Warner, and almost no risk at all. In fact - being able to reuse parts of the Golden and Platinum Collections to release Showcase and Spotlight Collections, is probably helping to make the Platinum/Golden Collections profitable.

Let's try to do some math:

(DISCLAIMER: All of these numbers are made up, but the math is not. They're used to illustrate the effect of releasing a cheaper set in addition to the big collections)

First, let's say it costs $50,000 to restore each cartoon and that the extra materials on disc 3 costs about $500,000 to produce. Producing the DVD menus and interactivity, and encoding the video will cost about $50,000 per disc. Manufacturing the glass master that's used to punch out the data layers of the discs costs $50,000. Setting up the DVD printer that creates the discs costs $50,000 and every disc you create costs 1¢. Also, the cover costs 97¢ each.

So, the fixed costs for the Platinum Collection becomes:

Disc 1:
Restoration: 25 x $50,000 = $1,250,000
Menus++: $50,000
Glass master: $50,000
Printing startup costs: $50,000
Total: $1,400,000

Disc 2:
Restoration: 25 x $50,000 = $1,250,000
Menus++: $50,000
Glass master: $50,000
Printing startup costs: $50,000
Total: $1,400,000

Disc 3:
Content: $500,000
Menus++: $50,000
Glass master: $50,000
Printing startup costs: $50,000
Total: $650,000

Total for the entire set: $3,450,000

If you produce 100,000 copies, the cost for the discs and covers are:

discs: 3 * 1¢ * 100,000 = $3,000
cover: 97¢ * 100,000 = $97,000
Total: $100,000

Full production cost for 100,000 sets: $3,550,000
Cost per set: $35.50


What about the Showcase edition? There are no cost for producing the set, just for printing discs and covers. We also use a cheaper cover, that only costs 49¢. Let's say we produce 100,000 Showcase Collections:

discs: 1¢ * 100,000 = $1,000
covers: 49¢ * 100,000 = $49,000

Total cost: $50,000
Cost per set: 50¢


Of course, it's not really fair to say that the Showcase collections should carry any of the production costs. But, this illustrates that it takes very little extra money to add a second market and generate a second income stream. There's practically no risk involved in releasing the Showcase Collection. At least not in comparison to the full project.

Now, if we give the Showcase collection its share of the production cost of the disc, the price will be:

$1,400,000 / 200,000 * 100,000 = $700,000
discs: 1¢ * 100,000 = $1,000
covers: 49¢ * 100,000 = $49,000
Total: $750,000

Cost per set: $7.50

Still pretty cheap. But, the interesting part is that this shaves $700,000 off the production cost for the Platinum Collection. And the price for that set is now down to $2,850,000 ($28,50 per set).


What if the Showcase collection sells 300,000 copies?

$1,400,000 / 400,000 * 300,000 = $1,050,000
discs: 1¢ * 300,000 = $3,000
covers: 49¢ * 300,000 = $147,000
Total: $1,200,000

Cost per set: $4

This also moves an additional $350,000 off the production cost for the Platinum Collection, and bring the price per set down to $25.


Reducing the production cost for the Platinum Collection down from $35,50 per set to $25 will make a huge difference for the profitability of the project. If the Showcase Collection was a totally different set of cartoons, then you wouldn't get any of these advantages, and the cost for both sets would be higher.

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Postby trondmm » Fri Sep 23, 2011 6:32 am

It should of course also be noted that since the Platinum Collection reuses so many cartoons that has already been restored and mastered in HD, the production costs for the Platinum Collection is considerably lower.

It's my understanding that the shorts for LTGC1 were not mastered in HD, so these will need a new digital transfer. The film elements were restored, though, so it'll probably be cheaper to do the process a second time. Let's assume that 40% of the restoration costs were restoration of the film elements, and that the remaining is scanning and digital post processing. In that case, any shorts from LTGC1 will cost $30,000 to restore.

I also assume that the shorts that were released in widescreen on the Bugs and Daffy SuperStars collections, were properly restored in 4:3, so that these won't need new restoration.

In that case, the set includes 30 shorts that doesn't need any work, 7 that needs a full restoration, and 13 that needs a new HD transfer.

The total restoration costs for the set will then be $740,000 instead of $2,8M

(I'm still using the same made up numbers from the last post, of course)


EDIT: Ooops, my math was a bit off here :) The correct restoration cost (using these numbers) will be $740,000. I don't know how I got it to be $530,000

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Postby Woody Woodpecker » Fri Sep 23, 2011 7:19 am

I DID on purpose ignore restoration factor simply because as my arguement was supposed to sole from customer point of view. All though there 2 sides of the story. So its fine to have some corporate point of view also. The thing is even if its cheaper for studios to do single disc releases, they have probably already made more HD transfer than they already announced for release. So my point was that they should make them come faster out, so should it relly matter if they some of them are released in box set only and some of them as standalone disc only?I have no shame in admitting that I have brought all Super Star DVDs that are not all double dips, so. Warner by doing this would be forcing me to both buy as collector and "casual" buyer. But I dont think they will listen.

But I know from own experience that there is nothing more more frustrating if you start out collecting with single DVDs when you have to re-buy some of them as part of an boxed when its much better if you could buy all disc from the box set as single DVDs if you have brought few of them as standalone releases already. And then be wise guy next time and buy the box set straight away.

Its probably cheaper for the studio to produce single disc releases than box set it might in the end turn out more expensive for the customer. But given how the average customers think as they often way to ignorant on what value they are getting for there money, its should be no surprise then that studios resort to this practice. So my suggest is this Warner if you insist on releasing Platinum collection Discs as standalone discs then release every single Platinum collection disc as standalone disc as different disc will attract different casual buyer, Is there any insurance that every casual buyer wants to buy the first disc based on its content? Maybe some would actually be more interested in the second disc and some even only interested in the bonus disc? But you will also do those favor that decide at later date to collect Looney Tunes/Merry Melodies full time.

With that said I do hope we see the Plantinum collection vol 2, very soon. Not after some 365 days from now.

IT would though be interesting to know how many cartoons have been restored and how many of the restored cartoons are still unreleased and how many are HD ready and how many are not, But I would assume that more cartoons have been restored than released. Given the fact that Warner owns at least 1655 theaterical cartoons from 1930's - 1960's including (LT/MM, Loopy de Loop, Popeye, Superman (I know its in PD but they own the masters, MGM cartoons) Its no surprise it takes lot of time and money to restore everything. As there is demand for other aspects of this library than just the LT/MM. But I'm sure Warner might have gone further with the LT/MM cartoon terms of restoration and releasing them if they only owned those cartoons that they originally made. But thats only an if and but game so I wont go into that we might very well had no further luck than we have already had getting LT/MM released on home video.
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