name='John Hodson']Steve, I don't think that's quite right. All the films in the 9 disc box are part of the Granada International catalogue (as is Black Narcissus
- so no rights problems there). Granada bought out Carlton and ITVDVD is Granada's name for their own in-house DVD label and has been for the past couple of years. The 9-disc set was a HMV exclusive initially, but has been generally available for some while; it was produced by Granada, though some sets used discs which were clearly marked 'Carlton' (no doubt using old stock). HMV's 'exclusive' deal is not unusual, they've done quite a few similar deals with, for instance, Warners. The set has been cheap for some time now, but never, I think this cheap, HMV having wrung much of the commercial juice out of it.
I suspect Black Narcissus
wasn't included in the initial set because Granada signed a licensing deal for Network to market the title and presumably wanted to give them a free run, at least at first.
The 11 disc set, still from Granada, but now on their ITVDVD label, includes Black Narcissus
, Network having had their 'breathing space', and also The Tales of Hoffman
, which I *think* I'm right in saying is a Studio Canal title - it's far from unusual for ITV DVD box sets (and those from Optimum), to include discs authored by themselves, Studio Canal (who own Optimum), and Network, the three companies having a seemingly cosy working arrangement.
Granada have been working hard restoring much of the cream of their catalogue in the past 3-4 years; a prime example is the second incarnation of the David Lean Collection, coming again August with 10 newly restored films - the previous 9 disc set (and both are on the ITVDVD label) was only launched just over a year ago.
I've never been able to compare the transfers of the discs in the 9-disc P&P set and those in the 11 - have you seen both and are they definitely the same?