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D.I.Y. DVD commentaries


I'm sorry Hal...
Political User
Me and a friend of mine have spent some time recently on a new website.
The idea behind our site is creating Alternate DVD commentary tracks for films that we love (and I must admit, hate). In Feb 2002, no greater source than Roger Ebert himself placed on a column at Yahoo Internet life, saying he would love to see us film fans doing commentaries for films, rather than as he puts it 'Inside Jobs' i.e. the directors, visual effects guys, actors etc. Have a look what he says on:


Now these commentaries on DVDs are fantastic, allows us almost to sit in with the people who made the films, listen to those kooky inside stories, in-jokes, ideas, feelings about the films they spent so long working on for our viewing pleasure.

But, with a few exceptions (listen to Ben Affleck on the Armageddon commentary for instance), most of the times these commentaries are mind-numbingly boring! Most of the time they get just too technical, or they talk about their films with all the flash and sizzle of a coma victim just come round, trying to get their bearings. If anyone has the DVD for Fawlty Towers, listen to the commentary and u will see what I mean. Huge gaps of complete silence, intersperced with the occasional bit of information we can already see on the screen.

A Friend and I took Ebert up on his challenge, (despite the fact that the first commentary was recorded in January, before Ebert wrote his column .... but we won't go there!) and have created a website where we've placed our own commentaries, recorded and encoded into MP3, for people to download and listen to along with the film. Admittedly the files have to be seperated out into 4mb chunks, because 2 hours of audio is alot to download, even as an MP3, but in the world of broadband, they shouldn't take long to get.

Now, I must admit that our own commentaries are heavily entertainment led, we're sitting having fun with the film, pointing out subtle little details that made us laugh, or slating the bits we hated, or just completly losing the plot and wandering off on our own little tangents, having fun in our own little world.

My question is, Is there a market for this on the internet? We've had the site up for a few months, and have had nearly 4Gb downloaded from us so far ... but does this idea really hold wide appeal?

Would you download a commentary of a film off of the internet and sit and watch it with the commentary playing? I know the market for film reviews is large on the internet, but is there space for reviews that take 2 hours to listen to, and to get the best effect you have to have the original film anyways?

Or does this idea get ur juices flowing? Wouldn't you love to spend a couple of hours in the company of a couple of guys, pointing out little things they've seen, little things that got their goat, perhaps seeing the film you have had in your collection for so long in a whole new light? Could u see people from all over the world making their own commentaries, sharing them between eachother, almost like a Fellowship of the Film?

If u had the chance ... what films would u do a commentary of? Is there a film u've seen that is so great u just want to share your love of it with the world? Or is there one that's so bad it just makes ur blood boil, and u need to release it somewhere?

Well, just putting Ideas out there, see what you think. If the idea has wetted ur appetite, let us know, and if u wanna see what I do with my spare time, a look in my sig wouldn't hurt :)

XP Abuser

if you could persuade the film companys to actually put your commentary on the dvd now there would be something i know what you mean about lame commentary sometimes sounds like the persons stoned out there head i think its a novel idea about the commentary i enjoy some humour but downloading massive files then managing to sync it up with the movie seems a tiresome process. especially for people with slow net

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