two anniversaries 11.23.2009, 8:12 AM
posted by bob stein
Just before Thanksgiving 1984, twenty-five years ago this week, The Criterion Collection was launched with the release of laserdisc editions Citizen Kane and King Kong.
In the video below critic Leonard Maltin introduces Criterion to his TV audience. Roger Smith who appears in the tape was one of Criterion's co-founders. Ron Haver, who at the time was the film-curator at the LA County Museum of Art, made the first commentary track; a brilliant real-time introduction to the wonders of King Kong.
Although its since been changed, Criterion's original logo from 1984 was based on the idea of a book turning into a disc. At the time it represented a conscious recognition that as microprocessors made their inevitable progression into all media devices, that the ways humans use and absorb media would change profoundly. The card below was distributed at the American Bookseller's Convention (now the BEA) in June of 1984.
This week in 1988 also marks the publication of Voyager's CD-Companion to Beethoven's Ninth Symphony by Robert Winter -- the title that launched the brief cd-rom era of the early 90s. In honor of that anniversary, beginning tomorrow and continuing through the end of the year, we'll start posting promo pieces for a number of Voyager's cd-roms.
Posted by bob stein on November 23, 2009 8:12 AM
sol gaitan on November 26, 2009 11:41 PM:
It is amazing how little we know about how the products we have in our hands and take for granted came to be, such as the possibility of moving back and forth in a movie or a CD without going through the painful work it took to find a particular moment on vinyl or celluloid. That you guys were foreseeing this, and acting upon your vision was truly futuristic. What you were thinking of bookstores as media stores has already been proven. The bookstore you are thinking about now is a continuation of your vision then. Hopefully, sooner than later, someone will realize that the way we stubbornly continue to push old publishing formats, is not only outdated, but wasteful of time and resources, and that it will prove to be antediluvian in a very short time. We could be there now, if someone had the clarity of mind...