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Author Topic: Dracula U8 400' 1979 edition
David Coppola
Film Handler

Posts: 75
From: Rochester, NY, USA
Registered: Mar 2014

 - posted September 18, 2015 07:19 AM      Profile for David Coppola     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Was just looking around Ebay at films and came across the 1979 Dracula from Universal 8.
Running time 13 minutes, 10 seconds. Kind of short for a 400' reel.

What always killed me about these 400' reels is that you could easily have fit a good 20 minute film on the reel. Instead most were like 17 minutes.

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Mike Newell
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 826
From: United Kingdom
Registered: Jun 2003

 - posted September 18, 2015 08:10 AM      Profile for Mike Newell   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 

This is actually a promotional short for the movie as opposed to a 400 digest. There is a talk at the beginning by Walter Mirisch the producer of the movie outlining how the film came about plus around a sleek 10 minutes digest of the movie. You can actually cut 4-5 minutes of this footage from this digest as additional material into the 2x400 cutdown. John Williams rousing score is problematic but with careful editing you can do it.

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John Hourigan
Master Film Handler

Posts: 301
From: Colorado U.S.A.
Registered: Sep 2003

 - posted September 18, 2015 10:41 AM      Profile for John Hourigan   Email John Hourigan       Edit/Delete Post 
Have to agree with you, David -- setting aside this particular film, "400-foot digests" were never really "400 foot" as advertised. They were usually 16 to 17 minutes, with some even clocking in below that. Same went for the "200-foot" digests, with those actually clocking in around 150 to 165 feet. Funny thing is the prices for these digests seemed to be based on the size of the reel, not the actual amount of footage itself.....hmmmmmmmm........

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Mark Silvester
Master Film Handler

Posts: 282
From: England
Registered: Oct 2007

 - posted September 18, 2015 12:15 PM      Profile for Mark Silvester   Email Mark Silvester   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Hi guys..yes I agree...priced by the reel...that could mean anything!!

But I did like the 2 x 400 from U8 as they made a great 30 plus minute featurette - always very well edited. The 1979 "Dracula" with Langella I thought was a very good digest.


Mark Silvester

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Paul Suchy
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 199
From: Westchester, IL, USA
Registered: Jun 2003

 - posted September 18, 2015 04:54 PM      Profile for Paul Suchy   Author's Homepage   Email Paul Suchy   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Disney was the worst offender with their 200' digests; the reels were five inches, but the center hub was huge and held much less film than a standard 200' reel.

Paul Suchy

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Steven J Kirk
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 873
From: Southern England
Registered: Apr 2008

 - posted September 18, 2015 05:46 PM      Profile for Steven J Kirk   Email Steven J Kirk   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
This was a good promo/digest that I have had since new but has now faded red. One of the worst faded prints I have in fact. Anyone seen better prints of this. I'd try getting another copy if I thought there was a chance it could be better.

Motion Picture High-Fidelity

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Tom Photiou
Film God

Posts: 4837
From: Plymouth U.K
Registered: Dec 2003

 - posted September 19, 2015 07:10 AM      Profile for Tom Photiou   Email Tom Photiou   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
We have both the 2 x 400 footer and also obtained the promo,
We inter spliced it in the correct order and it makes a great full 800 footer, only around 50-100 foot of duplication was left.
Unfortunately, the parts from the 400 footer have faded, so annoying yet the 2 x 400 is still very very good, although there is very slight fade but overall the colours are all good.
We now have to consider removing the "extra Bits" in order to keep it all good. A pity really.
The introduction at the start from Walter Mirish really does add to it all so we may leave this part in at the start, apart from anything when it goes from this intro with faded colour into the main film it makes the 2 x 400 stand out.

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Adrian Winchester
Film God

Posts: 2941
From: Croydon, London, UK
Registered: Aug 2004

 - posted September 19, 2015 08:09 PM      Profile for Adrian Winchester   Email Adrian Winchester   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I also cut in the scenes from the promo and in my case the degree of (significant) fade matches well!

I was sorry to chop up the promo but managed to get a scope copy to keep intact. The only trouble is that Cinevision 'edited' the promo by removing the introduction from this!

Adrian Winchester

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David Skillern
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 582
From: South Wales
Registered: Apr 2006

 - posted September 20, 2015 03:03 AM      Profile for David Skillern   Email David Skillern   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Hi all,

I have both the 2x400ft and the promo - I haven't seen the promo for a while but if memory serves me right after the Walter Mirsch introduction- there is an extended ship scene - a few scenes in the home of Donald Pleasance , the attack of Renfield and the death of Renfield with duplication of the climax and maybe Lucy's death . Could someone give me an indication of where you spliced the extra footage into the 2x 400ft ?


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