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The sad, slow death of TCM.


ootsy
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1 minute ago, Kikiki said:

I suppose it’s technically a legit piece of cinematic history, but not so sure about the “classic” part. 

There's no arguing with facts: it's a film.

A film, I might add, which has a scene involving something called "space herpes"

The scene is on youtube. I won't post it. Really, now, I can - perhaps- see TCM playing this at 3 AM Sunday morning, but... 🤨

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8 hours ago, unwatchable said:

The Ice Pirates?? 🤨

I saw that on the schedule and thought - classic???  Someone else said they saw this in the theater in 1984 and felt ripped off and I concur. There are some classics from 1984 - Amadeus comes to mind, but I guess it doesn't fit a pirate theme - but this film was a complete turkey.  I hardly think that "space herpes" is classic.  It MIGHT fit into Underground it is so bad, but not really under any other banner. 

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So the TCM negotiation with the film distributor (or whatever this is) was sort of, "OK, you guys want 'All About Eve' again?  This time it's gonna cost you.  You gotta take 'Ice Pirates' or the deal is off.  And you gotta run the Pirate piece of junk three times a week for 7 weeks."   Ok, I'm just making this up --but you all know that.  

As people point out here and there, these all seem to be bundles of deal packages where TCM has to run questionable stuff to get the movies they really want.  

And Mr. Gorman, I went to see this mess in the theater too, but I was 27!  I had already seen "Amadeus."  And who knows but that Salieri didn't have a little bit of pirate in him.  He had that little outlaw twinkle in his eye!  (The one without the eyepatch)

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Ice Pirates was a funny spoof of serious SiFi Outer Space epics, a lot of 30s 40s 50s films are as MR. GORMAN puts it also piles of excrement, they are just well polished ones and also are not Classics . I for one welcome the new additions , the previous rotations have been getting pretty stale.

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2 hours ago, brianNH said:

So the TCM negotiation with the film distributor (or whatever this is) was sort of, "OK, you guys want 'All About Eve' again?  This time it's gonna cost you.  You gotta take 'Ice Pirates' or the deal is off.  And you gotta run the Pirate piece of junk three times a week for 7 weeks."   Ok, I'm just making this up --but you all know that.  

As people point out here and there, these all seem to be bundles of deal packages where TCM has to run questionable stuff to get the movies they really want.  

And Mr. Gorman, I went to see this mess in the theater too, but I was 27!  I had already seen "Amadeus."  And who knows but that Salieri didn't have a little bit of pirate in him.  He had that little outlaw twinkle in his eye!  (The one without the eyepatch)

 Ice Pirates was made by MGM in 1984, so it is actually part of that original Turner Library that Warner Brothers acquired under the deal with Turner in 1996. So this is a case of TCM trotting out something they actually own.  If you ever peruse MovieCollectorOH's big database of everything TCM has shown, you'll see some of the titles not shown since the 1990s are C- westerns made by MGM or Warner Brothers in the 50s and 60s. As TCM made more deals with more studios, they didn't need to show these bad films again. But for some reason, they feel the need to trot out Ice Pirates from time to time to pad the schedule. 

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2 hours ago, brianNH said:

Well, that certainly puts the kibosh on that theory!  Thanks, LS.  

It amazes me the amount of knowledge you people have out there.  Comes in handy sometimes, doesn't it?!

Not for long.  There will be another time.

Honestly, I was expecting to see some sort of out-of-place dance number.  Maybe an homage to Busby Berkeley or something like that.

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If TCM is to die, it will be due to all the streaming services out there, many of which carry FREE classic content, such as the  Tubi service and The Roku Channel.  I recently looked for the old 70s drama series  called Family and found it on Tubi, and it had been restored to a nice HD picture too.  Paid services like Amazon Prime, Criterion Channel, Hulu, etc. have tons of old stuff too.   The old traditional format used by TCM will be doomed eventually.  Even live TV is dinosaur nowadays.  10-15 years ago I watched live TV with friends and I said, "Pause it right there and rewind," and they looked at me like I just spoke some alien language.  But nowadays, that's ALL viewers know how to do!  You can pause, rewind, fast forward any content, even live TV.  If you watch live streaming, you don't have to worry about missing anything like you used to do.

 

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13 hours ago, brianNH said:

So the TCM negotiation with the film distributor (or whatever this is) was sort of, "OK, you guys want 'All About Eve' again?  This time it's gonna cost you.  You gotta take 'Ice Pirates' or the deal is off.  And you gotta run the Pirate piece of junk three times a week for 7 weeks."   Ok, I'm just making this up --but you all know that.  

A plausible scenario, indeed, but at the risk of sounding like a know-it-all, The Ice Pirates was an MGM release, so TCM probably can ... and probably does ... show it for free as many times as they want.

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Thanks, Sewhite, for the confirmation of the "Ice Pirates" studio release.  I believe I am hearing Neville Brand in "Tora! Tora! Tora!" telling me, "Confirmation? There's your confirmation, Captain!"

Now I'll have to check out "Endangered Species" -- because of Mr. Gorman's excellent track record so far with recommendations.

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ENDANGERED SPECIES (1982) is a decent movie, Brian from NH.  At least it's much better than Urich's movie THE ICE PIRATES!

Also:  If yer chick is a redhead . . . I recommend playing RED HOT LOVIN' [you'll never guess the band].  → So, like, yer chick'll either dig the tune or hit you over the head with a shovel.   😇

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 I couldn't catch The Big Street last night, so I went to "Watch TCM" on Roku assuming it would be there. After all, it was probably Lucille Ball's best dramatic role and best film, plus TCM's parent company owns it (RKO film) so no broadcast rights issues. Nope. Not there. But Ice Pirates was. This is the second time I have recently looked for a film on Watch TCM where I knew there were no rights problems but the film was not considered important enough by TCM to post. The last time was not too long ago with the rarely shown "The Phantom of Paris" (1931) with John Gilbert in probably his best talking role. I think originally it was going to star Lon Chaney but then his illness/death made that impossible.  But it didn't rate with the "curators" apparently. I just needed to grouse. Thanks for listening.

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1 hour ago, LsDoorMat said:

 I couldn't catch The Big Street last night, so I went to "Watch TCM" on Roku assuming it would be there. After all, it was probably Lucille Ball's best dramatic role and best film, plus TCM's parent company owns it (RKO film) so no broadcast rights issues. Nope. Not there. But Ice Pirates was. This is the second time I have recently looked for a film on Watch TCM where I knew there were no rights problems but the film was not considered important enough by TCM to post. The last time was not too long ago with the rarely shown "The Phantom of Paris" (1931) with John Gilbert in probably his best talking role. I think originally it was going to star Lon Chaney but then his illness/death made that impossible.  But it didn't rate with the "curators" apparently. I just needed to grouse. Thanks for listening.

I sympathize with your disappointment.  One positive I can offer is The Big Street is currently scheduled to be shown again on TCM on Nov. 8 at 10:15 AM ET.  Perhaps you can catch it then, or perhaps it will be another chance for TCM to include it on WatchTCM.

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On 10/20/2021 at 8:59 AM, LsDoorMat said:

 Ice Pirates was made by MGM in 1984, so it is actually part of that original Turner Library that Warner Brothers acquired under the deal with Turner in 1996. So this is a case of TCM trotting out something they actually own.  If you ever peruse MovieCollectorOH's big database of everything TCM has shown, you'll see some of the titles not shown since the 1990s are C- westerns made by MGM or Warner Brothers in the 50s and 60s. As TCM made more deals with more studios, they didn't need to show these bad films again. But for some reason, they feel the need to trot out Ice Pirates from time to time to pad the schedule. 

TCM does not own the rights to any of the distributor's films. Especially MGM's. According to Charlie Tabesh, VP of Programming at TCM, they have to lease every film they show on the channel.

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49 minutes ago, fxreyman said:

TCM does not own the rights to any of the distributor's films. Especially MGM's. According to Charlie Tabesh, VP of Programming at TCM, they have to lease every film they show on the channel.

Technically correct. But TCM and Warner Brothers have the same parent company and so have a mutual interest in TCM thriving. It's why you see so much of Bogart on TCM (WB contract actor) and not so much Bing Crosby (largely a Paramount contract player). 

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3 hours ago, LsDoorMat said:

 I couldn't catch The Big Street last night, so I went to "Watch TCM" on Roku assuming it would be there. After all, it was probably Lucille Ball's best dramatic role and best film, plus TCM's parent company owns it (RKO film) so no broadcast rights issues. Nope. Not there. But Ice Pirates was. This is the second time I have recently looked for a film on Watch TCM where I knew there were no rights problems but the film was not considered important enough by TCM to post. The last time was not too long ago with the rarely shown "The Phantom of Paris" (1931) with John Gilbert in probably his best talking role. I think originally it was going to star Lon Chaney but then his illness/death made that impossible.  But it didn't rate with the "curators" apparently. I just needed to grouse. Thanks for listening.

Rights for broadcast don't always include streaming rights or posting to on-demand sites such as Watch TCM or a cable company's on-demand platform.  There still could be a rights issue for on-demand viewing in this case.  We won't know for sure unless someone privy to the details comes forth with the reason(s) why.

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  • 9 months later...
On 9/20/2021 at 6:40 PM, Mr. Gorman said:

TCM started in 1994 and, at the time, said that 1968 was the 'cut-off' year of the films they [mostly] intended to air -- do I have that right?  

You’re wrong.  I watched 1990s TCM almost from the start & they showed movies that were only ten years old (1980s).

If they follow that same formula, they can show movies as recently as 2012.

So really… nothing’s changed in terms of age of films presented.

 

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On 10/20/2021 at 2:42 AM, LsDoorMat said:

I saw that on the schedule and thought - classic???

Maybe "Classically Bad"?

On 10/22/2021 at 10:01 AM, LsDoorMat said:

But it didn't rate with the "curators" apparently.

When a channel (or theater) rents a movie from the distributer/owner, the number of times it can be shown is dictated. A theater can rent say, NOSFERATU for one, two or three showings over a weekend.  A theater not only pays upfront, but a percentage of the ticket sales! Think about what that's like for a drive-in when it pours all weekend!

TCM is no different which is why you'll often see a movie broadcast twice in the same month. I can't imagine how streaming works. I'd guess it's renting/leasing films on a month to month basis based on "new arrivals" and "leaving soon" tags. I'll bet they're grouped & bundled just like network rental/leases too.

Ads or subscriptions pay for streaming channel operations, I'd guess.

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On 10/6/2021 at 8:00 AM, LsDoorMat said:

I think that this may also have something to do with TCM being in some kind  of partnership with Criterion, and since Criterion has lots of foreign films in its collection, you are seeing more of them. 

This actually got me wondering what the schedule would look like if TCM spontaneously cut the partnership with Criterion and severed all ties with them.

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