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 Post subject: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 11 Feb 2024, 14:06 
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It's Pat!: The Movie (1994) [2751 AS]

Recently bought a lot of discs that included this gem. Have only seen one or two bashings of it on Youtube and those says it all. Knowing that this made only $60,000 at the Box Office, how did make it on to LD? I know there are lots of bad movies on LD, of course. But this already lost millions and wasn't the production cost like $10 a piece?. I see no traces of this being any more popluar after it came out on VHS. Was it some sort of contract that had to be fullfilled on some of these?
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 Post subject: Re: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 11 Feb 2024, 15:24 
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It’s the same reason there is a Night at the Roxbury LD. The SNL to home video pipeline was well established by that point. I guarantee you It’s Pat made a lot more than $60,000 in VHS rentals. It would have sat on a shelf next to Best of Eddie Murphy SNL tapes and Wayne’s Word making very reliable revenue.
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 Post subject: Re: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 11 Feb 2024, 23:29 
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I will let Ben Affleck explain why
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 Post subject: Re: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 12 Feb 2024, 00:08 
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OK, this seems reasonable. Just thought that at LD-release still was unexpected. VHS for sure, but I guess that it was a bigger US-market for rental LD's than I thought. Here in Norway LD's were for sale only and a very small market at that.
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 Post subject: Re: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 12 Feb 2024, 03:16 
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I didn’t mean to imply that anyone rented It’s Pat on LD, just that Lorne Michaels has his customers coming and going and it all fuels itself.
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 Post subject: Re: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 12 Feb 2024, 12:09 
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totto-t wrote:
OK, this seems reasonable. Just thought that at LD-release still was unexpected. VHS for sure, but I guess that it was a bigger US-market for rental LD's than I thought. Here in Norway LD's were for sale only and a very small market at that.



The US rental market for LD was also very much non-existent so that’s not really the reason that a movie like “It’s Pat” would be pressed.

Here’s another way to look at it in addition to what was said by Zeta and substance. VHS is actually more expensive to manufacture than an LD based on what goes into it. Really think about that. In the early days of VHS rentals, a tape would typically cost a rental store about $90 to buy from the manufacturer. This is no joke. And the only way the rental shop could re-coup that cost was to at least (in my opinion) have it rented at least 50 times. The only reason that VHS “seemed” to get cheaper as a rental & buying format was a combination of increased demand which in turn reduces cost for mass production + advertising on the tape to further offset cost (the 1989 Batman film is one of the first releases to do this). Regardless of all this, a rental tape of an obscure film still would run about $90 to purchase because once again it’s about demand even in the glory years of VHS.

Now compare that to LD. So…. LD is cheaper to make than VHS. The retail prices of LD titles for just about any movie were pretty consistent regardless if a title was mainstream or obscure. The prices weren’t cheaper than mainstream VHS titles but that was a given since the LD format never hit mass acceptance but thrived anyway with the niche audience that really loved and supported it. And that is also another reason why “It’s Pat” and many other unpopular or obscure titles made it on LD. It didn’t cost much to make so why not press it. It may never be a big seller but somebody will still buy it if priced right.
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 Post subject: Re: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 12 Feb 2024, 20:20 
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I noticed a pattern in the current physical media market. Some of the biggest box office flops of the past couple of years had their physical media (and digital) releases with the highest retail price tags, like $35-40 compared to the common $22-$25 range (for new releases). They stay high without any discount for a few months then show up at Netflix or HBO Max for free (within subscription). Maybe this is a new (final) milking tactic.

I mean these are stupid movies that you would expect $25 at launch and $15 a few weeks after (and still struggle to sell many copies). I speculate that these movies interest a small crowd (determined by the box office sales already) and the number of sales is pretty static regardless of marketing or cost, so why not make the per unit cost high. After a few months, their expected audience already bought the physical media (and digital) copies at the high cost, not many sales are expected from there on even if they discount heavily, so let’s release it to subscription base platforms.

Maybe I am confusing the topic but I think the same logic applied in the past. Based on the box office success, they anticipated a niche customer base for physical media sales. Like Ldfan said, printing LDs weren’t that costly compared to VHS. Why not make a few extra grand since you know there is at least a small crowd who will buy this disc as Signo pointed with the SNL hype.

Back to Ben Affleck (or Matt Damon, the same person really), I think the studios can have the same like in the DVD days if they stop licensing their films to subscription base platforms. Yeah the technology moved and the DVDs aren’t the thing anymore but the digital copies can easily replace that revenue. They just need to sell movies a la cart, purchase digital rights at DVD like retail prices or 24 hour rentals. Netflix, HBO, Prime and such have their own exclusives anyway. They can (try) still survive without the catalog and major movie titles. I just hate it that for the reasons Matt Damon explains we aren’t getting good movies anymore. It is the same no risk cookie cutter films over and over again. In the past we had titles like Blade Runner which tanked in theaters but became a legend in home video. It is a shame that will never happen again.
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 Post subject: Re: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 12 Feb 2024, 20:20 
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ldfan wrote:
totto-t wrote:
OK, this seems reasonable. Just thought that at LD-release still was unexpected. VHS for sure, but I guess that it was a bigger US-market for rental LD's than I thought. Here in Norway LD's were for sale only and a very small market at that.



The US rental market for LD was also very much non-existent so that’s not really the reason that a movie like “It’s Pat” would be pressed.

Here’s another way to look at it in addition to what was said by Zeta and substance. VHS is actually more expensive to manufacture than an LD based on what goes into it. Really think about that. In the early days of VHS rentals, a tape would typically cost a rental store about $90 to buy from the manufacturer. This is no joke. And the only way the rental shop could re-coup that cost was to at least (in my opinion) have it rented at least 50 times. The only reason that VHS “seemed” to get cheaper as a rental & buying format was a combination of increased demand which in turn reduces cost for mass production + advertising on the tape to further offset cost (the 1989 Batman film is one of the first releases to do this). Regardless of all this, a rental tape of an obscure film still would run about $90 to purchase because once again it’s about demand even in the glory years of VHS.

Now compare that to LD. So…. LD is cheaper to make than VHS. The retail prices of LD titles for just about any movie were pretty consistent regardless if a title was mainstream or obscure. The prices weren’t cheaper than mainstream VHS titles but that was a given since the LD format never hit mass acceptance but thrived anyway with the niche audience that really loved and supported it. And that is also another reason why “It’s Pat” and many other unpopular or obscure titles made it on LD. It didn’t cost much to make so why not press it. It may never be a big seller but somebody will still buy it if priced right.


Why my name no capital? Shame on you :)
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 Post subject: Re: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 12 Feb 2024, 20:53 
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When I was working in video rental in the 90s most mainstream rental prices movies were $90-110. Kids tapes were usually $10-40. US LDs were $30-50. JP LDs were $40-120.

VHS doesn’t cost more to make than LD. It simply costs more to buy. In the time period I’m talking about these $100 VHS tapes were rental priced after six or nine months it would be rereleased for $25, less than the LD. They simply charged what they could charge when they could charge it. A truely huge movie like Forest Gump would debut at $20 or less because they knew sales would be so huge they make more money charging less. This is why Disney VHS was $40 and not $100 and also the reason pornos on VHS were $7. You charge what you can get. In Japan most VHS releases were designed for rental and cost significantly more than the LD. An example would be a Ghibli movie that was $100 on LD would be $150 on VHS. This was a huge part of LDs success in Japan; it was the cheaper option to own.

$25 DVDs kidna…toppled all of that.
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 Post subject: Re: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 12 Feb 2024, 21:36 
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signofzeta wrote:
When I was working in video rental in the 90s most mainstream rental prices movies were $90-110. Kids tapes were usually $10-40. US LDs were $30-50. JP LDs were $40-120.

VHS doesn’t cost more to make than LD. It simply costs more to buy. In the time period I’m talking about these $100 VHS tapes were rental priced after six or nine months it would be rereleased for $25, less than the LD. They simply charged what they could charge when they could charge it. A truely huge movie like Forest Gump would debut at $20 or less because they knew sales would be so huge they make more money charging less. This is why Disney VHS was $40 and not $100 and also the reason pornos on VHS were $7. You charge what you can get. In Japan most VHS releases were designed for rental and cost significantly more than the LD. An example would be a Ghibli movie that was $100 on LD would be $150 on VHS. This was a huge part of LDs success in Japan; it was the cheaper option to own.

$25 DVDs kidna…toppled all of that.



I think Ldfan was talking about the early days of VHS and LD. VHS tapes are more complex in build with many moving parts. Soon after its introduction, the manufacturing methods and cost improved significantly for sure. I think the only complexity LD manufacturing had was the clean room need, otherwise the materials are cheap and the stamping process is pretty simple. It is hard to say without having any inside information. Maybe they were neck to neck in the early days. LD needed clean room and VHS tapes needed complex parts. Volume sales allowed VHS manufacturing to improve a lot.
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 Post subject: Re: Why was It's Pat on LD??
PostPosted: 12 Feb 2024, 23:08 
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In the early days of LD, say 1983, they *thought* LD was cheaper to make and they had no rental customers so they charged $30 a movie when something like…Platoon or whatever, would be several times that.

Of course we now know those LDs rotted and their whole process had to be rethought. When you consider how much it costs to re-buy the LD a few times because of rot you realize they should have spent more money on the factory which would have raised the price…all the while high speed duplication and HQ are making VHS better and cheaper.

By the mid 90s I’d say it was probably $3 to make a VHS tape and $4-7 to make an LD if the movie was a single disc. This is for mass duplication. If you’re a church or a band you can obviously make VHS copies for the cost of a low end retail blank, $3-6, and a home deck whereas making your first LD will cost $1 million.

It’s very very hard to tell what it really costs to make a thing…
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