Anyone who would actually cheer news that the forthcoming Bluray of Billy Wilder‘s Sabrina (Paramount, 9.9.54) will contain a cleavered 1.75:1 image truly has something wrong with them. People have been watching the beautifully boxy 1.37:1 version for decades. The 1.37 is also being shown on Vudu right now — get it while you can! A guy who usually knows what he’s talking about tells me the new 1.75 Sabrina will contain extra visual information on the sides…maybe. But it will definitely have the tops and bottoms sliced off.
The 1.37 version of Sabrina as currently offered on Vudu.
From greenbriarpictureshows: “Warners announced yesterday the forthcoming Blu-Ray release of Sabrina and Funny Face, both starring Audrey Hepburn.
“Initial excitement was tempered by disappointment that Sabrina would be a standard ratio release, that is 1.37, as noted by members of The Home Theater Forum and elsewhere. Paramount began filming Sabrina in late September, 1953, six months after the studio adopted a widescreen policy in response to popular acceptance of expanded ratios. By the time Sabrina was released in October 1954, all of an industry had embraced wide presentation, showmen following suit by updating screens to the new format.
“Sabrina was shot in open matte so that it could be shown flat without crop or scanning, which is how we’ve had it over the last sixty years…until now. Greenbriar is happy to confirm that Sabrina WILL be released by Warners in its intended 1.75, just in time for the film’s 60th birthday. Every other home video offering of the film has been flat, even HD streaming and Region 2 Blurays. Praise is due Warners for putting Sabrina right and making 2014’s spring release a Blu-Ray event we can all look forward to.
“Thanks to widescreen experts Bob Furmanek and Jack Theakston for details regarding Sabrina production and aspect ratio.”