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Buck Rogers in the 25th Century as TV movies

dkerin

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While I was doing some basement repairs in the house, always fun... I was playing eps of Buck in the background.   And I was thinking of that flashback to Buck before launch, and how it can add to an extended pilot episode!    I like the idea of a dream, as adding it all would be too much.  But in The Guardians we even get to see Buck at the time of the accident that freezes him.   And nice catch on putting in Anne Lockhart's picture in Planet of the Slave Girls.   Good continuity addition.

I do remember watching it as a kid and wondering why in the space battle scenes that suddenly there were Draconian Marauders blowing up.   Clearly not enough time to get those shots of the new bad guy ship composited.   

Buck is definitely a product of its time, but it is still a really fun product.   Glad you are doing these, as it has rekindled my inner-Buck!
 

lapis molari

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Fans of Buck Rogers who live near Windsor Canada, or in neighboring Detroit, are in for a treat! I wish I were there for their Comicon!
Buck-Rogers-40th-Anniversary-Experience-Windsor-ComiCon-2019.jpg


I intend to continue work on my work-print next year, but first my color correcting skills need to get better. In the mean time, I'm excited to see Gil, Erin, and Felix are still doing conventions!
 

bionicbob

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HAPPY BUCK ROGERS DAY!

40 years ago today, Sept 20, 1979, BUCK ROGERS IN THE 25TH CENTURY premiered on NBC!
:D
 

lapis molari

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I've improved Buck Rogers "Awakening" extended edition. :D

The latest version:
- Starts with Buck's freezing accident in his shuttle in 1987 (heavily trimmed flashback from s2 episode "The Guardians"), as a pre-opening-credits scene.
- Before that I've added a page of text with images about Buck's from 1928 to 1979.
- Twiki has two more lines of text (voiced by Mel Blanc of course!). Two bidi-bidi's had silence after them while Felix Silla continued to move his head and arms as if Twiki was still speaking. Now he is.
- The opening and closing song are now in true stereo (instead of the blu-ray's dual-mono), using the Intrada CD.
- Buck's dream of his mom, before he goes to Anarchia is changed. The conversation is no longer about "Buck being too proud" (the main point of the flashback in The Guardians). Now it's about "You might die on your flight" (a prescient referral to the 1986 Challenger explosion). And the transition into Anarchia is much improved. Watch the clip and let me know what you think (pw: fanedit.org):

 

lapis molari

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And an updated cover to go with the improved Buck Rogers Workprint fanedit. :)

Buck%20Rogers%20s1e01%20Awakening%20(1h48m)%20cover.jpg
 

lapis molari

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Good news for the few but loyal Buck Rogers fans on FE: I've improved my Vegas color correction skills enough to declare victory on my extended edition of the Buck Rogers movie / pilot! :)

This thread is moved from Workprint to In-The-Works. My goal is to complete a set of 4 (or 6) Buck Rogers movies, so even though the first movie is now completed I will keep using this thread until I complete the set. I think the clarity of what I'm working on and what's available is better served by keeping the entire project together in one thread.

To give a taste of what the future holds (corny pun intended), here are the covers for the next two movies. (coming soon, probably next month).
Buck%20Rogers%20s1e02%20Planet%20Of%20The%20Slave%20Girls%20(1h40m)%20cover.jpg

Buck%20Rogers%20s1e04%20The%20Plot%20to%20Kill%20a%20City%20(1h38m)%20cover.jpg
 

dkerin

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Have your edit playing in the background while working!   As a kid from the scifi 70s, I'm definitely looking forward to your continuing Buck edits!
 

TM2YC

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This is now on ifdb. Thread moved. Amazing cover art by the way.
 

Zarius

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Review of the extended pilot written as requested :D
 

lapis molari

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Zarius said:
Review of the extended pilot written as requested :D

Oh man, I'm banging my head against the wall for not checking the double opening credits! :blush:

I just checked my files: I did copy the theatrical (sexy song) opening without on-screen credits from the blu-ray. I didn't copy the credit-free opening from the TV version (either I missed it or it's not included).

I'll check the disc over the weekend: if it does include the credit-less opening for the TV version, I'll copy that and I can update the edit. If the Madman blu-ray does not include that, then I'll leave it as is. I don't want to use the credit-free sexy song, because I think that makes no sense, and I don't want to cut all the frames with TV-version credits, because that would be abrupt.

Glad you enjoyed the rest! And thank you for the fast review.
 

The Shade

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I watched it last night. This is a near perfect edit. Yes, the double credits was surprising, but I could not fault it since I considered it a limitation of the video source material. Video, Audio and editing were very nicely done. As for the fun factor, this was an absolute 10. It brought back so many memories. I loved it!!
 

lapis molari

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Good news: I can fix the 30 seconds of repeating credits!

The last part of the theatrical credit-less opening + a copy-past of the 3 Draconian hatchet fighters (the short shot is re-used later on) gives a frame-for-frame replacement of the shots with repeating credits.

I will update the edit as soon as I have time (closed schools make life a little hectic right now), and PM everyone who has the current version.

@"Zarius", thank you again for bringing this to my attention. :cool:

To make up for the inconvenience of having to re-download in a few days, here are covers for every Buck episode. In the process of figuring out which bits I want to re-purpose in my edits, I found it helpful to create these.
Buck%20poster%20collage.jpg
 

Zarius

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Glad to know it's fixable, happy to have helped ;)
 

lapis molari

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Running the title fix now!

The TV-version textless opening credits are not included on the blu-ray, so I had to make due with the textless opening credits from the Theatrical version (with the sexy song). That cuts off early, and I can't mix and match footage from the two versions because they have different framing, color, and grain. That'd be a headache to match up in Vegas.

Instead, I replaced the offending shot of 3 Hatchet Fighters with that same shot from the "Ardala Returns" episode (that reuse of the shot has the best duration match).

In all, I lose 2.5 seconds. There was a clunky transition in the original music, I've now smoothed that out a bit. So that works out fine.

Now I have to rerun the commentary track (its opening and closing music are matched to the main track). Updated PMs go out later today. :cool:
 

MusicEd921

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Please include me on one of those PM's good sir!
 

keithbk

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Definitely want to see this one. PM me as well.
 

lapis molari

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The next installment is Planet of the Slave Girls, now sub-titled Slavery and Sorcery.

The most glaring distraction in this adventure is to fix the frequent use of incorrect spaceship shots. I'm:
- Replacing shots of incorrect spaceships (where they change design in mid-flight) with correct shots (I scoured all the episodes for useful clips).
- Changing shots of incorrect numbers of spaceships (adding ships in shots). Thank you Sony Vegas for making this not-too-frustrating.

A smaller improvement is to delay the reveal of the Desert Nomads that chase Buck and Duke on their walk to the mountain. Originally they were shown immediately (then stalk Buck for a long time before they fight). There was no build up of suspense because the viewer knew all along what was coming. Delaying their first appearance creates the impression that Buck only has to worry about the sun during his desert walk. Then we find out that, oh no!, even in the desert there are enemies.

This creates a new transition from Nomads to New Chicago. The videoclip shows two options for that transition: first with the original panning view of the New Chicago skyline, second with a static shot of that skyline (same length but taken from another episode). I like the second better because it contrasts more calmly and clearly with the panning shot of the Nomads. I realize this is a tiny detail to focus on, but in the effort to lift an edit from good to great we can't focus only on the big improvements. What do you think? pw: fanedit.org

 

keithbk

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lapis molari said:
The next installment is Planet of the Slave Girls, now sub-titled Slavery and Sorcery.

The most glaring distraction in this adventure is to fix the frequent use of incorrect spaceship shots. I'm:
- Replacing shots of incorrect spaceships (where they change design in mid-flight) with correct shots (I scoured all the episodes for useful clips).
- Changing shots of incorrect numbers of spaceships (adding ships in shots). Thank you Sony Vegas for making this not-too-frustrating.

A smaller improvement is to delay the reveal of the Desert Nomads that chase Buck and Duke on their walk to the mountain. Originally they were shown immediately (then stalk Buck for a long time before they fight). There was no build up of suspense because the viewer knew all along what was coming. Delaying their first appearance creates the impression that Buck only has to worry about the sun during his desert walk. Then we find out that, oh no!, even in the desert there are enemies.

This creates a new transition from Nomads to New Chicago. The videoclip shows two options for that transition: first with the original panning view of the New Chicago skyline, second with a static shot of that skyline (same length but taken from another episode). I like the second better because it contrasts more calmly and clearly with the panning shot of the Nomads. I realize this is a tiny detail to focus on, but in the effort to lift an edit from good to great we can't focus only on the big improvements. What do you think? pw: fanedit.org


Sounds good to me.

I watched your extended edition TWICE and REALLY loved it. The ONLY spot where the addition stuck out is the "very ball-sy" line (right after the Old Chicago graveyard scene). The shot is a close-up static shot, but gives way to a motion shot where he's tossing a large stick. I don't know if the line could be re-ordered in any way to actually work, but it doesn't "feel" right where it is.

Look forward to the next film!
 

lapis molari

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@"keithbk" , yeah, that clunky transition is in the original Theatrical version. I tried shifting that shot earlier or later, but sticking with the original order is the least jarring option.

Watched it twice? Thanks for the compliment. :cool:
 

lapis molari

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Thank you everyone for your enthusiastic posts and PMs for my Buck Rogers edit. We have more Buck fans on the forum than I had realized. While this labor of love is its own reward, your enthusiasm is a great extra motivator to complete the set. :heart:

Here's a nice moment from the second adventure. During the final battle Buck meets Brigadier Gordon, played by Buster Crabbe who played Buck Rogers in the 1930s. Talk about a Man Out of his Time! The enemy now consistently flies Scorpion fighters, no more (mid-flight changing) Hatchet fighters. Pw: fanedit.org.

 
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