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Sony's ''Clean Version'' [Sanitized Movies]

Zarius

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Yes, the very censored edits of movies that ''entertain'' you on in-flight movies and occasional tv transmissions are being distributed officially.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment will announce today its “Clean Version” initiative, which “allows viewers to screen the broadcast or airline versions of select Sony films, free from certain mature content.” Rather than forcing consumers to choose whether to buy the original or “clean” cut of a given movie, Sony will instead make these “edited for content” versions available at no additional charge as one of the “extras” included with the theatrical version of the films that are part of the program, purchased on iTunes, VUDU, and FandangoNOW.

Sony’s “Clean Version” project, now under way, launches with the following 24 films, all of them including the option to screen the version “adapted for a wider audience”:

50 First Dates
Battle Of The Year
Big Daddy
Captain Phillips
Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon
Easy A
Elysium
Ghostbusters
Ghostbusters II
Goosebumps
Grown Ups
Grown Ups 2
Hancock
Inferno
Moneyball
Pixels
Spider-Man
Spider-Man 2
Spider-Man 3
The Amazing Spider-Man
The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Step Brothers
Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby
White House Down

https://www.yahoo.com/movies/sony-c...ect-films-home-video-exclusive-160201339.html
 

addiesin

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available at no additional charge as one of the “extras”

That's the part I care about. If this quote was different, I would foresee a repeat of a problem that hasn't been around since "Full-Screen" 4:3 DVDs and TVs went out of style. That problem was that there were often two versions of a movie, one being the original release, and another being an edited version. Not a problem if you know what you're buying, but a big problem when it came to gifts. For example, not THAT long ago (but still years ago), I was gifted a "full screen" pan and scan version of The Dark Knight. It remains in its cellophane shrink-wrap to this day. Thankfully these censored versions are not being sold separately so the same mistake can't be repeated on a wide scale.
 

MusicEd921

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addiesin said:
available at no additional charge as one of the “extras”

That's the part I care about. If this quote was different, I would foresee a repeat of a problem that hasn't been around since "Full-Screen" 4:3 DVDs and TVs went out of style. That problem was that there were often two versions of a movie, one being the original release, and another being an edited version. Not a problem if you know what you're buying, but a big problem when it came to gifts. For example, not THAT long ago (but still years ago), I was gifted a "full screen" pan and scan version of The Dark Knight. It remains in its cellophane shrink-wrap to this day. Thankfully these censored versions are not being sold separately so the same mistake can't be repeated on a wide scale.

:-/  I remember my World is not Enough fullscreen DVD that was a gift.  Hard to watch.

Back on topic.....I think this is a great idea.
 

dangermouse

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This is brilliant. Nice to watch movies as a family without the *awkward* moments. :)
 

TV's Frink

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Bah, no Snakes on a Plane.

Or this...

 

iridium_ionizer

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dangermouse said:
This is brilliant. Nice to watch movies as a family without the *awkward* moments. :)
Yes, this would be one of the few good reasons (the other being convenience) to use the studios' streaming service. Sure, they could turn it off whenever they want to, but in the mean time you can watch the movies with kids that all of their friends at school all already talking about. And without fast-forwarding, covering eyes, or explaining situations. 

I guess this may be what the studios were waiting on - the opportunity to monetize the already existing airplane edits. In the past, movie studios have sued companies that try to profit from releasing sanitized edits. CleanFlicks (2000-2006) rented sanitized copies of DVDs while storing the unedited copies in the rental store. VidAngel (2014-2016) streamed sanitized edits while holding an unedited DVD for every stream. Both of these continued past their death-by-lawsuit date, but they essentially had to change their business models to the extent that they lost all of their appeal. ClearPlay seemed to avoid the same fate by making its own line of DVD players that mute and skip a regular DVD according to a data file that can be downloaded from their website. 

Of course, a separate topic is whether sanitizing (or bowlderizing) of a film decreases its artistic merit, violates the author's intent, or prevents it from being challenging and thought-provoking to its viewers.
 

Problem Eliminator

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I was just wondering the other day about TV and airline versions of movies. More specifically, wondering if the differences are catalogued anywhere. I know some are listed on IFDB as Preservations. I don't care too much about "clean" versions of movies, but alternate cuts are interesting to me - for example, the TV version of The Birdcage contains several extra scenes not available on home video, and apparently the airline version of Meet Joe Black is a whole hour shorter than the original cut.

Edit: I guess IMDB does an alright job of cataloguing the differences in alternate versions.
 

DigModiFicaTion

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In similar news, VidAngel apparently won their lawsuit just released a new streaming filtering system. I'd assume that they met with the companies (netflix, amazon, etc.) to get this to go through while they battle the mouse ears and other studios.
http://variety.com/2017/biz/news/vidangel-netflix-amazon-filtering-launch-1202464295/


I know lots of people on here don't like the censoring approach, but honestly, I've turned off a few movies that had pointless content in them. I personally like this Burger King approach to media "have it your way"
 

DigModiFicaTion

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Well I did a little more looking into it and it seems that VidAngel didn't get the permissions afterall. I like the idea, but they obviously don't get that they are fanediting and cannot sell such a product legally.

Im assuming they are using edl (edit decision list) files for their on the fly editing. I've created edl files before to create quick family friendly versions of my movies.

Back on topic, I wonder if the popularity of such services caught the attention of Sony and spurred on their decision to release their movies edited. Perhaps the other studios will follow?
 

TomH1138

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This is a very interesting topic! I'm glad we're discussing it here. It's not fan editing, but it is editing of a sort.

I do hope the trend continues that Sony is starting (in a sense. As @"DigModiFicaTion" aptly noted, this may be in response to the VidAngel kerfuffle).

I remember my frustration when the first live-action Transformers movie came out. I had been wanting to see a live-action TF movie since I was 9 and holding Optimus Prime in my hands for the first time. I had a nephew that was 7 at the time, and he would have loved to have seen it, too...but there were pornography and masturbation jokes in it. And these jokes didn't move the plot forward, so they could be easily excised. It bothered me that I couldn't bring my 7-year-old nephew to see a movie about big toy robots. (And I don't think I was fully aware of fan editing as a hobby at that point.)

Granted, not every film would work equally well for a family-film treatment. I'm sure that there are TV versions of the American Pie movies, but is there any point to having a version squeaky clean that little kids can watch? It would probably be two minutes long, and it wouldn't give the viewer any idea of what the movie was about or why people liked it. It's possible to have a slightly less violent version of Jaws that still includes the immortal line "We're gonna need a bigger boat," but there's no way to have a clean version of American Pie  that includes the infamous "band camp" line. 

And I appreciate the fact that the original films are packaged with the clean versions. As much as I get excited about having family-friendly versions, I also believe in freedom of expression (of course). This plan seems to hit the right balance of making multiple options available for viewing.

I've also been watching the VidAngel case unfold, and will continue to look for updates on this intriguing case. It sounds like they actually have some merits to their side of things, but if they've released another filter without waiting for the first case to finish and without the studios' approval, it seems like they're needlessly stirring up trouble. There are options such as ClearPlay that haven't riled up the studios like this. Anyway, it'll be fascinating to see how this all plays out.
 

DigModiFicaTion

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Great thoughts Tom. I was under the impression that ClearPlay had gone under similar to the other editing services.

I remeber getting an edited version of the Last Samurai and it was edited phenomenally. The edits were seamless and akin to a fanfix edit. Basically the movie didn't show some of the impales, beheadings, and removed some blood from scenes. There was little to no impact to the movie. I destroyed the edit years ago, but I've fancied trying to emulate the effort as I love the story and the cinematography.
 

Dr. Chim Richalds

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https://www.theguardian.com/film/20...-protests-studio-sanitised-movies-film-makers

Looks like Sony wasn't as good about getting director consent as they stated. The title list on the home page has dwindled a bit. Kind of a shame; I wasn't so much looking to the censored aspect as much as a new trove of alt takes and even alt scenes (as these are the TV versions and not just cutting around objectionable material). 

That being said I've always wanted a clean version of Christmas Vacation (which I know is Warner)... But I have no idea what would come after "hallelujah...".  Anyone seen the TV version?
 

iridium_ionizer

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Dr. Chim Richalds said:
Looks like Sony wasn't as good about getting director consent as they stated.
I kind of think its a bit hypocritical for directors to bash Sony offering an additional, alternative version, when they clearly signed off on the edits for TV and airline viewing. Also I never hear them complaining about the "Raunchy, Unrated Cut" even when it is a worse cut. 

They only sold Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy in the theatrical cut (letterbox) DVD in the U.S. for a few months, and then years went by without it being sold at all. You could by the full-frame version or the Uncalled For Version. Only with the Rich Mahogany Version did they finally make the theatrical available in blu-ray. It is still unavailable in DVD.
 

Dr. Chim Richalds

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iridium_ionizer said:
I kind of think its a bit hypocritical for directors to bash Sony offering an additional, alternative version, when they clearly signed off on the edits for TV and airline viewing. Also I never hear them complaining about the "Raunchy, Unrated Cut" even when it is a worse cut. 

They only sold Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy in the theatrical cut (letterbox) DVD in the U.S. for a few months, and then years went by without it being sold at all. You could by the full-frame version or the Uncalled For Version. Only with the Rich Mahogany Version did they finally make the theatrical available in blu-ray. It is still unavailable in DVD.
What I'd read seems to indicate that the DGA has some kind of approval rule for cuts that is per viewing format. 

That being said, I agree that as long as (as addiesin said) you can choose your version, offering a clean version just enhances your viewing options (sometimes the clean takes are actually funnier).   I wish more directors would get behind it.  And yeah, The anchorman theatrical cut is way better than the unrated, no doubt.
 
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