Saturday, October 19, 2013

More Warner Pre-Certs

I love the uniformity of these first generation big box WB releases from the U.K. and other European countries almost as much as I love their U.S. counterparts.  Many of these are UA titles that WB held video rights to in non-U.S. territories.  I found many of these images at this comprehensive, well-organized U.K. site.

Some UAs, a number of which were never released on VHS in the U.S., or which only came out on VHS years after the European counterpart:
Nowadays, this would probably be released with the same title in all English-speaking territories.  In fact, the film probably has not been issued under the Violent Streets name in many years.
AKA Hickey and Boggs, a film never released on home video in the U.S. until this MGM MOD disc.
In the U.S., Warner Bros. did not gain video rights until the release of the "Director's Cut" in the early '90s.  This U.K. cassette dates from the early '80s and is what's known over there as a "pre-cert" video.

Some striking alternate art:

It's strange to see UA's biggest franchises under the WB seal:
Utilizing an image from Rocky II for the cover.
It's also odd to see these genre stalwarts released by the WB, reminding one that Friday the 13th, for instance, was an independent production that was a negative pickup for Paramount in the U.S. and that different deals were struck for different parts of the world:

Known in the U.S. as The Sea Gypsies, I recall seeing this as a young child on HBO under the international Shipwreck! moniker and being captivated:

Don't know if this one had a U.S. counterpart.  I'd like to see it:

1 comment:

Marc Edward Heuck said...

WHV did indeed release GARY NUMAN: THE TOURING PRINCIPLE on VHS in America. They initially put out quite a few music-related titles back in the day, often farmed from other labels, including THE KINKS: ONE FOR THE ROAD, BLONDIE: EAT TO THE BEAT, and my personal favorite, DIRE STRAITS: MAKING MOVIES.
That tape had the three best-known videos from that album - "Romeo & Juliet," "Tunnel of Love," and "Skateaway" - strung together in sequence as a 20 minute short; it even opened with the Bass W, suggesting that it could have had theatrical play, though I've never seen a print of it available in my life. Fun fact: whenever you see "Skateaway" by itself, there's always that long stretch where it's just the band playing the song out for a couple minutes on a larger-than-necessary black stage: originally, that black area was where the credits ran for the entire production, and thus it was always blacked out when the videos were separated for MTV play.