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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK - you're a big home theater buff. You've invited 4 friends over to watch the latest DVD release. The popcorns-a-popping and a few beverages are in hand while you catch up with your friends before the movie starts. But what plays on the screen before the movie starts?


Althought it's been a while since I've been to the movies since I built my home theater - I do recall trying to figure out the answer to the movie trivia questions at the Cinema.


I'm "test-marketing" creating a video which spans about 20 minutes and is filled with movie trivia questions. Would anyone be interested in such a product?


Ideally I would offer two versions. In the corner of one it would say "Welcome to my home theater" and if people want one personalized, I could add someone's name or, "Welcome to the Smith Home Theater", etc. At the end of the trivia, a graphic saying "stay tuned for our feature presentation". Background music would fill the room as well.


Any thoughts or takers before I invest my time?
 

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Where's t he teaser???


Jeff
 

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2 questions:


What video format will it be in (vcd, dvd, vhs, divx, etc)?

Roughly, how much will it cost?
 

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I would be very interested in getting something like this! I've been toying with the idea for about a year now. I recently got Roxio Easy CD creator platinum. It has a small presentation maker that you can burn onto VCD. I've played around and made some 20-30 second clips that came out pretty cool. But something more professional would be nice.
 

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I like this idea. I seldom go to the movies, but when I do, my wife and I always try to answer those questions. Maybe you could start with a menu that would have different movie types, like action, mystery, comedy, 50's, etc. Then you could pick to match the movie you are about to watch. Also, if you could generate the questions in a random order would be cool too.


Seeing I have a DVD changer, this would work out really swell.
 

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I actually started one of these for personal use, But as I don't have a BIG SCREEN I felt it would not be the same as in a theater. I lost all of my data for it in the fatal HD crash of 2001.


I would have sent it to you if I still had it, Basically I had a list of about 100-150 questions and answers from movies etc.


"Who won the BLAH in 1976 for BLAH"

Then some pics of the person (If I had found some yet) that I was going to do in photoshop or something to change from a blur into a real person in three or four steps. But after that I realized I could downloaded a morphing program and take the pic, Blur the heck out if it, then take the un blurred pic and morph it from a blur into a normal pic. The format would be .avi I think, So it would have to be converted to mpeg for a VCD. And I would possibly have added in some hints, 1 hint per question.


I think the three step pic process might be the best way though.


I was even planning a flash intro that could be personalized. I am not great at flash, only ever did on project with it. I just like learning programs by doing something constructive Even if I never use the prog again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks to everyone for your ideas and replies.


At this point I'm not sure how much something like this will cost. It will depend on the final format (media) and the level of detail.

I want to make it affordable to everyone.


Although I love the idea, I'd be reluctant to go as far as putting pictures of people into the video because of copyright laws etc.


I have the capability to produce VCD's, but my experience is that the quality is less than watchable - worse than VHS. My original intentions was to make it available initially in VHS, SVHS and mini DV available in both Widescreen and Full Screen. This would probably be the most popular format given the user wouldn't have to get up to switch DVD's in the player - I imagine most people don't have DVD changers, but I could be wrong.


I eventually plan to offer DVD's but it may be a while.


I'll work on a "teaser".
 

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Hey all... One thing you may want to look into is the guys at digital forge DigitalForge.com and click on 'gallery'... they've been making custom intro dvd's and could probably offer some ideas on getting pretty good quality video to dvd. If I remember right, a dvd version of an existing intro they have (just customize it to say 'Your Name' home theater) is around $200 and it goes up from there for totally custom intro's.


mcascio: love the site! I remember spending about a half-hour looking through all your test renderings and such.


Anyways... just wanted to add a little something, cause I *love* the idea of custom intro stuff. :)


-john
 

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If you were to author an SVCD, the quality would be considerably better than a VCD or VHS. I did something similar using PowerPoint and a couple of programs that I found on VCD Helper . I was able to squeeze the 4:3 image into a 16:9 format and then author it onto a CD-R in SVCD format. Picture quality was pretty good.


I have sinced moved to the HTPC arena and now show the slideshow directly from PowerPoint on my computer to my projector.


Good luck mcascio on your endeavor. I know that there's a market out there for such a thing. Now if I can only figure out how to make full motion video introductions in DD....
 

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For pre-movies I have always used SVCD's of old acme toons, Johnny Bravo, PPG, Dextor, or other short 5-10 minute animated programs.


Some people watch the cartons, some talk, it works out well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
John - DigitalForge did a great job with their intros. I'm working on my own 3D intro. It'll be a while before it's complete.


The problem with VCD, SVCD and XVCD is compatiblity problems from one DVD player to the next. Tape or DVD would be more compatible across the board. Especially with my Sony DVP9000ES DVD player. It's very finicky about what it wants to play.


I'm going to attempt an XVCD burn soon. VCD is just not worthy. Unfortunately my DVD player won't play SVCD but it should play XVCD.


Great idea Snowmoon regarding playing animated shorts before the movie.
 

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I really cannot take credit for the idea. It all came from "Big" Steves movie night. We all called it wast of your life wednesdays. Many a b sci-fi, horror, or kung-fu was watched either on laser or DVD. He would be cooking dinner before the movie and would normally put on one of his vast acme laserdisks.


It usually ended up degrading into a mst3k senario quickly.
 

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Well keep us posted, mcascio... If I remember right, while browsing through your site I came upon an audio intro you had produced. Coupled with your 3D rendering abilities, I'm sure you'll put together something amazing. :)


The DigitalForge stuff is incredible... I mainly posted the link to see if you could glean from them what they're using to author their dvd's as well as the 5.1 audio...


VHS tape - $100

S-VHS tape - $125

VideoCD - $150

Digital Video (AVI or MOV) - $150

Super VideoCD (SVCD)* - $150

DVD - $200


With that sort of pricing scheme, it seems like they're doing it pretty cheap and this isn't some sort of thing where they outsource and mass-produce 1,000 DVD's that say "Welcome to Robert Smith's Home Theater" in the intro... They're all in-house one-off's.


-john
 

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Eric at Digital Forge did a great job for me. Mine is the City Cinema intro. I imagine they could do just about anything that you asked them to do.


The key to workin with them is to be patient, at least if you want a fully custom piece. We must have done 10 different versions of mine before we both were happy.
 

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I think this trivia slide-show thing being discussed may be something DigitalForge might want to look into as a 'value added' feature to make their intros more desirable to the HT masses... like an alternate track on the intro DVD they make for you. It could loop on the trivia track for about 20 or 30 slides, and that way, still be usable in the macros people run on their prontos to play the intro, then the feature presentation. It would just require some slight modification of the macro.


You could even go all-out and splice in some random trailers. Please, no coca-cola or m&m commercials, though. :D
 
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