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Official Message Warner USA

July 30, 2010 | Other

As soon that the fan world learned that ‘Johnny B Goode’ was replaced by ‘Don’t Be Cruel’ on the opening credits of ‘Elvis On Tour’, hundreds of reactions where written on various message boards. Lots of fans are blaming Warner or EPE (who don’t even own the On Tour footage) for not doing a good job on this release.

Tom Lucas, VP Marketing manager of Warner USA, explains: The moment Warner decided to release a restored version for ‘Elvis On Tour’, they contacted all the composers and publishers for the songs that are included in the movie. In case of ‘Johnny B Goode’, they never received any reaction from composer Chuck Burry or his publisher.
Warner tried to contact them for a very long time, but never received any reply or contract. It is not the case that Warner did not want to pay enough money to include the song, they simply did not receive an offer to pay for it.

Warner had two options left: forget the whole project and put it back in the vault, or release it with another intro. The fact that they choose ‘Don’t Be Cruel’ and the editing that was used on it, is food for another discussion. Although the opening (only 87sec!) is altered, we still are very happy that we can enjoy the rest of the movie in great quality!

benny scott wrote on July 30, 2010
Really don't understand Chuck Berry and/or the publishing company . Chuck, who in the past complained a lot being screwed in the past in accordance with royalties ( and it's true, he has been ), now has the chance to earn some ( without any doubt a serious amount ) money, but just does not reply or react ! Strange, the more Warner was prepaired to pay enough money. Always El.
circleG wrote on July 30, 2010
why didn't anyone jump in a car and go see him? i would have!
burninglove92 wrote on July 30, 2010
this doesn't really bother me however i would of love to keep it to its originallity it wouldn't go past me if chuck berry and co purposely ignored Warner either for warner to release it and then sue them or just to annoy chucks competition because lets face it elvis is more popular than chuck ever was and is. TCB
Pietro S wrote on July 30, 2010
Maybe Chuck Berry is dead and no-one noticed it? :) But I'm glad statement has been done: now we know the truth ;)
Steve B. wrote on July 30, 2010
I was very disappointed in the screening last night. The sound was way too low and I wasn't impressed with the image quality. I have heard others, who were at different venues, say the sound was great at their screening. Maybe I just picked a bad theatre. One positive note, my four year old LOVED it.
ranskal wrote on July 30, 2010
This really doesn't bother me at all. Steve - I wish I could have seen it in a theater, that would have been awesome. My guess is the issues were with the theater you were at. Just looking at the available clips, it looks and sounds amazing! Good news about your 4 year old!
Dan wrote on July 30, 2010
Saw the film last night. Not sure I would use the term "restored". I was dissapointed in both picture and sound quality. The best part of the evening was the 20 minute "making of", which did give some insight into the films background. There was abosolutely NO PREVIOUSLY UNSEEN FOOTAGE at all during the show. The films was dark, colors were flat and the sound was "Tinny and dull". I know it wasn't the theater, becasue the sound during the "making of" featurette was great! All in all, considering what we know about the tons of hours of footage and what they really could have done with the sound, I was dissapointed. Stick to your VHS copy of the film. The Blu-Ray might offer slightly better picture quality, but not that much better. I'l just hold my breath for another 38 years....sigh!
2kisses&3scarfs wrote on July 30, 2010
I saw EOT in the theater last night and it was GREAT to see Elvis on the big screen again! However, I was very disappointed that there was NO UNSEEN FOOTAGE as promised. I personally did not see any "remastered" difference in this film. My original VHS copy looks the same, and it has JBG!
marco31768 wrote on July 30, 2010
That's incredible !
Brian Quinn wrote on July 30, 2010
It appears from a trawl of various message boards that almost everyone enjoyed themselves who saw the film. Attendance was varied throughout the country from a mere handful to 'sell-outs and several towns having to put extra shows on. Further, for most people, the main problem was the volume of the film being too low in contrast to the 'making of' segment shown prior to the main event which apparently had great sound. Other complaints were the lack of new footage which had been promised, the absence of Johnny B. Goode and the picture quality not being up to par in certain parts. I do have empathy with the sound problem as I feel rock music should be played loud to create excitement in the crowd. Elvis' 'live' concerts were always loud. Will be interesting to learn of the final box-office total. In addition to enjoying Elvis on the big screen fans were also intoduced to the forthcoming 'Viva Elvis' Show and CD - a good marketing opportunity that was not missed.
lvisfan wrote on July 30, 2010
We saw it at a theater in Tallahassee Florida last night and it was awful as far as the sound. The theater only had one channel of the audio piped in. You couldn't hear most of the backup singers, guitar, piano and orchestra. The picture was great though...however this theater didn't fill the screen with the movie. It was shrunk down down too much. The manager said it was coming down the satellite that was and they couldn't do anything about it. But I see here that others have had better experiences. The Don't Be Cruel in place of JBG just looked lame! Warner needed to try a bit harder in my opinion to get in touch with Chuck Berry's people.
bspringsteen1 wrote on July 30, 2010
I also had the opportunity to see EOT on the big screen last night and I truly enjoyed it. The movie played great on the big screen and it was so much more impressive then seeing it on tv. Our theather had a really good size crowd that varied in age group from young to old. I would also have to say that everybody stayed in their seats until the credits were finally over and then they clapped. The picture quality was not too good and I would not blame the theather since it was recently built. I saw no previously unseen footage and if they needed to find some, just go to YouTube and type om EOT and you will see how much they have out there. It was my first opportunity to ever see an Elvis movie on the big screen and it was well worth it!
dgirl wrote on July 30, 2010
From all the varying accounts of those that saw this in the theater, I would say this would be much more enjoyable on DVD & blu-ray on a nice hi-def TV large screen. It just has to look better than my washed-out VHS version. As for the JBG omission, it was a terrible version with Elvis sounding tired. Just compare it to the 1969 Vegas version. But it did play well over the credits film-wise.
TCB16 wrote on July 30, 2010
I don't think it takes away from the movie. I enjoyed seeing it in theatres, the doc at the beginning was interesting. I was personally glad to be able to see Elvis on the big screen. I was impressed by the size of the crowd and the range in age from toddlers to seniors. A very enjoyable event.
benny scott wrote on July 30, 2010
Hi dgirl, I think you're absolutely right ! A good quality TV, widescreen, and I'm sure the picture-quality will be OK, like you wrote should be better than on VHS. Of course I ordered my DVd-copy ( not on Blu-ray, my player is normal DVD), but I 'll keep my VHS copy anyway, JBG is on it ! Always El.
lray wrote on July 30, 2010
I saw it in Rewood City, CA in a big theater with a very large screen. Theaters in the Bay Area are all up to date and modern. so I have to say in my case both the picture and sound quality were superb, top notch, outstanding!!! What else can I say.
lray wrote on July 30, 2010
Sorry for the spelling. That should be Redwood City.
Steve V wrote on July 30, 2010
Quite true dgril & Benny. Many times a movie looks bland and the sound muffled in the theater. I bet this will look great on a hi-def TV whether its DVD or blu-ray. The transfer should be light years ahead of old VHS technology. If it isn't then something went terribly wrong.
benny scott wrote on July 30, 2010
Hi Steve, after reading Iray's posting ( up to date theater and very large screen and a superb sound and picture ) I think we can be sure now this will very good on a modern tv-screen.Think we're in for a treat ! Always El.
Dixieland Rock wrote on July 30, 2010
I agree with you Benny. I recently pulled out my vhs copy of "Elvis On Tour" and played it on a big screen, hi-definition tv for the first time. I must say, even the vhs version on a hi-def blew me away compared to seeing it previously on the older tv sets. Even the sound was so much cleaner & clearer. Keep in mind, I'm talking about a 20 year old VHS. So I have no doubts that the updated DVD/Blu-Ray versions of "Elvis On Tour" will be an incredible experience viewed on a hi-def tv. Just watching my VHS on hi-def really was a treat. I say, bring on the new updated version on dvd/blu-ray.
benny scott wrote on July 30, 2010
Yes Dixie , looks like we all will enjoy the so long-awaited documentary. We all had to have a lot of patience, but in the end : bingo ! I'm happy for all of us ! Always El.
catmommeg wrote on July 30, 2010
I saw it last night and thought it was great. To be able to see Elvis in the movies again with other fans? Can't say I ever had that opportunity before. Sound was excellent,so was the picture - both were clear, and the sound was loud, just the way I like it. Fans were mostly in their 40's, but some older and a few younger in their teens, which was good to see. The original with JBG is being shown here on TV tonight, so I'll be checking that out as well as seeing it again during Elvis Week in Memphis.Thumbs up to Warner & EPE for bringing this to DVD.
RonD wrote on July 30, 2010
I originally saw the first show of the tour in Buffalo in 1972. I believe it was April 7th, 1972 with Elvis wearing the light blue jump suit. It was great seeing this film back on the big screen and I'd have to say without a doubt the picture quality was superior to the original released in 1972 which I saw seven times when it was released. The audio quality is perfect but it was not near loud enough to capture the live concert feel in the theater last evening. When I viewed the original release they had the sound cranked up and it was definitely like seeing Elvis in concert on that tour. Personally I'm okay with them having to substitute JBG but they should have picked the single version of Burning Love and faded it out as the credits ended. Don't Be Cruel was definitely the wrong song selection and very poorly edited.
Raleighroadace wrote on July 30, 2010
Suspicious Minds would have been a good choice to play over the opening credits.I also copied my vhs to dvd a few years ago and I also have it on my sky box.I am hoping the blu ray version will be worth the wait and I hope it's as good as the picture on The Last Waltz dvd,which was recorded in 1976 and has an amazing picture and sound.
Steve B. wrote on July 30, 2010
I guess we just picked the wrong theatre to view the film. The sound system I have in my living room sounds better than what we heard last night.
GeoElvis wrote on July 30, 2010
Seen the movie last night, glad to see the King on the big screen again! But the theatre I seen it in had very low sound and the picture was very Dark! Really bummed me out! I really missed Johnny B at the begining, was always my favorite part, Dont be cruel just didn't seem to fit with the sequence. And where on earth was all the unseen footage?? What a let down! But so glad to see all the fans in the theatre, as I left the screening a little boy in front of me turned to his father and said,"Elvis is the man,that movie was so cool dad!" Priceless!! Long Live the King!!!
LonElvis wrote on July 30, 2010
I saw the movie last night and the theater was packed and nobody left until the credits ended. That's when they busted into applause. They also applauded after American Trilogy. It was a great time! The movie (with the multiple screens) really plays better on the big screen. The sound was great and the picture was clear. It was a little dream come true to see an Elvis movie at the theater. I am 36 and have never had that opportunity before. I would go see it again tonight if it played more than one night.
Big Daddy Dan wrote on July 30, 2010
I made a hour trek from Hagerstown Maryland to Columbia Maryland with my wife and friends to see the movie . I must say the theater was great. Massive screen. I enjoyed the making of documentry. When I saw its picture and sound, I thought I would get much of the same with the movie. That didnt happen. As soon as the movie started, the sound and picture went down hill. I was ready to rock and roll. The volume was way to low for me and a few others arounfd me fealt the same. No billboards or any Elvis related anything in the complex. all of that being said, it was still a thrill to see our guy on the big screen. Just emagine how much more successful this could have been if there were some advertising to the public. Only us di-hard fans really knew about it. Two of the people in my group were casual fans, but left the theater with a greater respect and admiration for Elvis.
Mofoca22 wrote on July 31, 2010
what was the song lineup because they advertise are you lonesome tonight and hound dog on there. are the lost performance songs all in there? i sure hope they are because that would actually make the dvd more complete. i could careless about johnny b goode. if i want to hear that id put my video on lol. im excited about the dvd release.
Jesse Garon Presley wrote on July 31, 2010
to some of you who saw On Tour in a Theater near you or anything the in your eyes low quality of sound and film must be credited to the theather near you because others who went to a theater and saw In Tour were deeply impressed because of the quality for both sound and picture and those reactions i did not only read on here i saw samples of the remastered footage and sound and i was deeply impressed it was like new footage seeing for the first time it looked like nothing like the old version of On Tour and some of you who saw the not so impressive version that does absolutley not mean that it will be like that on dvd or blu-ray most certainly not because i saw the preview and it looked and sounded awesome no bad sound and not bad picture not even close,i'm affraid you have to blame your local theatre for seeing an not so good quality version.
Colonel wrote on July 31, 2010
I wouldn't have any more luck if I tried to reach Chuck Burry (!), but it was fairly easy for me to reach his son via email once. Guess Warner Bros. should have much better possibilities than me....
lray wrote on July 31, 2010
Yes Jesse I agree. I already left my comment below. But to follow up I should add that Bridge and Trilogy were both stunning in sound and picture, very very impressive in my theater and a reminder of why we are Elvis fans. To respond to those that have said the volume was too low, that could have been fixed by asking for them to raise the volume. Our screening also started off too soft but after Don't Be Cruel I noticed that the volume was turned up and sounded dead on. If it was still showing there, I would go back and see it again.
tigerpawl wrote on July 31, 2010
It really does not make since why a big company like Warner can not get a hold of Chuck Berry himself, agent, lawyer, family member, his dog etc. Is the song Promised Land at the ending credits I remember the song being at the end of the movie. It is sad to hear that the movie experience in the new theaters was not a good one.
elvis_aotc wrote on July 31, 2010
If you know the film Chuck(y)... Now he is killing Elvis products. But i think it is a bit easy to say from Warner that they "tried" to have contact with Chuck(y). To try is not good enough. You know the saying, "when there is a will, there is a way" If i had worked at Warner, surely JBG was in On Tour. It is not from this time that you can not reach a person like Chuck Burry when you are a compagny like Warner. And they even say that they tried to reach him for a very long time??? That sounds really stupid... Well, Warner can make it up with a special edition if money isn't a problem and do it right for once. I only think with this edion it will sell less and again a reason for Warner not to bring out a special edition. So the circle is round again. First they make mistakes, than complane about that fact that it doesn't sell. Again a exuse not to bring out a special edition, so hours of unreleased material will stay in a "climate controled room" forever. Shame, shame shame!!!
Herman wrote on July 31, 2010
I just don't like it because it's not the original movie anymore. It would make a big difference if they put some extra unreleased material in it to make it even to the fans: a different beginning but unreleased material than no one would complane I guess.
GEORGE (GK) wrote on August 01, 2010
Warner Brothers, should have worked harder to keep "Johnny B. Goode" in the film. I went to see the movie, in New York. Same thing here, the "Special Featurette, on the making of "Elvis-On Tour" shown before the movie, sounded amazing. The Surround sound mix was great !! When they played bits from the movie, in the featurette, I said to myself," if the movie sounds as good, as this, this is going to be great !! Well when the movie, started, I was so disappointed, no "Johnny B.Goode" and a bad dubbing of "Don't Be Cruel" in its place. And the sound, wasn't as good as the featurette !! The sound, was too low and the mix wasn't in "surround sound" like the featurette was. Howver the movie did good on the big screen, but it didn't look any different, than the original movie. I can only hope that in 2012 the movie is re-released again, in even better sound and picture and we get maybe a "Special edition" with new footage added to the film. Even better, someone should go back and go through all the unreleased Film footage and make a whole new concert movie, and this time, they could call the film "Standing Room Only", the original title of the film, before they changed it to "Elvis On Tour".
elvis_aotc wrote on August 01, 2010
Warner wants to make easy money with Elvis products with less energy, but at the end the loose money with this policy. First line of mistakes was the DVD That's The Way It Is, now they do the same with On Tour. In the past Elvis did sell, and the movie compagnies found ways to sell Elvis products over and over again. First you had the film area. Than they put the stuff for the first time on VHS and later for the first time on DVD, and now we have Blu-Ray. But if a compagny like Warner can't see that times have changed and can't see that you can't do the same trick over and over again, than they are doomed to fail and not only with Elvis products. It costs money to make money. That is showing with the big selling movies, they cost loads of money. But i think Warner is still living in the past....., let's make a quick dollar, with less money......
Herman wrote on August 01, 2010
You're right George (GK), and I say: long live Rick Schmidlin (restored That's the way it is) and also Paramount pictures because they always gives us 5.1 sound !
elvis_aotc wrote on August 01, 2010
RandyCute: Warner is offending the fans. There should be a several hours special edition of On Tour, not a cheap rip off that isn't original. And for the comment from Herman, the 5.1 sound is really terrible with Elvis TTWII and i ain't got a cheap 5.1 surround system. Warner...., learn from the releases Elvis Aloha From Hawaii (TV Special) and Elvis 68 Comback special (TV Special) They are not perfect, but the effort is much, much better than Warner is doing... The good news about the Aloha is, that JBG is in it. Yes, Sony/ BMG and EPE did a good job with that, can't say that about Warner...
elvis_aotc wrote on August 01, 2010
RandyCute: Forgot to say RandyCute, a 5 year old kid could accomplish more than Warner does... ;-)
Herman wrote on August 01, 2010
elvis_aotc, don't listen 5.1 on a cheap set because every 5.1 sounds terrible when you have a cheap surround-set. Pay a little more when you will buy a new set and listen to TTWII again: the 5.1 sound on this dvd is really great. If On Tour has the same sound & picture as TTWII that would be great !
LonElvis wrote on August 01, 2010
With all due respect, we all need to calm down and appreciate Warner for putting out Elvis on Tour on DVD and Blu-Ray. Remember that the film itself is totally unchanged. The intro itself (visually) is unchanged. We're talking about one song being replaced. Sure it would have been great to have JBG but at the end of the day we have 99% positive and 1% negative and we're acting like we have 99% negative and 1% positive. I saw the movie a the theater on Thursday and you forget all about the intro once the actual movie starts. It's as great film with great sound and great film. I am ordering the movie on DVD and look forward to watching it over and over just as I did my VHS copy.
You Dont Know Me wrote on August 18, 2010
Fair comment....... i hear the QUALITY of the Blu-Ray version is very, VERY GOOD!, not 100% excellent but still twice as clear as old videos!~
Bestoftherest8301 wrote on August 18, 2010
Whatever happended to the philosophy 'publish and be dammed'?. If Mr Berry did not have the courtesy or manners to reply (or at least his agents) then could you not assume that he wasn't that bothered. I'm sure, legally, his non response would not hold much in law and Warners would have no problem demonstrating that there was no substantive objection registered by Mr Berrt.
NOSTAB92 wrote on August 19, 2010
Well I for one believe Warner have done a great job with EOT, the Blu Ray picture looks great, the packaging is excellent and the DTS sound track simply rocks, as good as any live material released to date by Elvis in my opinion. Being shot on 16MM it looks as good as it is ever going to get, it is simply not possible to extract more picture quality from the source film material, you would need 35MM or 70MM film stock . Warner does not own the rights for Johnny B Goode so if permission is not forthcoming from the publisher then they cannot include it in the film. Similarly, they do not own the rights for the film outtakes, these are owned by Turner so again these cannot be included. Well done Warner I say for releasing the movie in its original format (JBG excepted), fully restored and with a DTS soundtrack, a great package and excellent value for money.
theoldscudder wrote on August 20, 2010
I agree with LonElvis. The omission of Johnny B is no big deal. After all these years the fans should be glad that this was released at all. It's not a hot item & only hardcore Elvis fans are buying this. I think we should be grateful that it was released at all.
waymore44 wrote on August 24, 2010
I bought the blu-ray version but my HDTV is in storage so I can't enjoy it like I will later. I was DISAPPOINTED with the intro. I also bought the regular DVD. Reason: I recorded Elvis oN Tour off of digital cable a few months ago and it has the original intro. I'm going to load that intro into my computer and the new DVD as well and fix it. The intro will be from the telecast I put on DVD and then it will segway to the new version. I A-B'd my "copy" with the new improved DVD and the picture quality of the intro was so little that it's worth me doing my little project. THEN, I will have the movie the way it should be. I noticed two other things that are slightly different but are improvements. In the 50's montage where there's an instrumental "Don'T Be Cruel" then it switches to Ed Sullivan performance is much smoother now. The other thing I noticed is in "Polk Salad Annie" near the end where he's just going off and then stops to pull up his belt...that was edited a little differently to hide that, if I remember correctly. It wasn't as obvious, I guess is what I'm saying.
Tony D. wrote on August 25, 2010
I have boycotted this incomplete and no frills release, in wait for the expected re-issue in a couple of years. It took about 3 attemps to get both the "Aloha" and the 68 TV special dvd releases right and almost complete, so this will be the same no doubt. When it gets re-released, I expect to see at least a few new 'extras' and the film to be restored to how it was and should be.
ttwiise wrote on August 26, 2010
I loved the sound and the picture so was pleasantly surprised with this blu ray as many had slated it. HOWEVER the omission of JBG is unforgivable, I would have rather they waited till it was cleared. Also there is a line on the film on about 75% of the footage, very noticable in HD revealing the fact that a master copy was not used to produce this release, again shoddy