We called for Blu-ray screenshot and Jetlag over-delivered! He went above and beyond by providing some fascinating comparisons of many of the various international editions of the Wing Commander movie DVD in addition to the Blu-ray. First up is a screenshot from the hangar deck scene when Blair and Marshall first arrive on the Tiger Claw.
The next two shots show give you a side by side comparison of the 1999 R1 non-anamorphic DVD with the newest anamorphic release. The second shot is more or less the exact same comparison but it's been scaled so that the shots have the correct aspect ratio. I'll let Jetlag explain what you're seeing:
The maximum image size, in pixels, on a DVD is fixed. On a non-anamorphic DVD the aspect ratio of the picture is 4:3, which means on a widescreen movie like Wing Commander a lot of those pixels end up in the black border on the top and bottom. On an anamorphic DVD the aspect ratio is 16:9, which is a lot closer to Wing Commander's 2.35:1, so more pixels are available to the actual picture, and less to the border.
The next comparison nicely shows off the difference in resolution between the DVD releases and the Blu-ray. That's a lot of extra screen real estate!
<LOAF> Now that's what I'm talking about.
Finally here are the shots of many of the DVD editions all together in one place. Note that the last two images are JPGs so if you're tired of waiting for screenshots to download then try those out. Jetlag also pointed out - for the technically inclined - that the actual matting on the transfer isn't vertically centered. There's 58 black lines of pixels above the image and 54 below.
<jetlag> Ok, this took way too long but check out the crop on the US releases.
We'll have even more image comparisons in a future update!
Maverick Gets Pantsed
LOAF is still scratching the surface of his 30 boxes of Academy archival materials, but when he does get a chance to dig in, he uncovers some real gems! Take for, example, Cadet Blair's sorely underrated bottom half. Everyone is all into torsos, but you can't have one without the other! (2018-02-24)
Mark Hamill Premiering New Documentary at SXSW
It's a good week for Mark Hamill fans! In addition to getting his Hollywood star, Mr. Hamill will be returning to the birthplace of Wing Commander next month to help debut a new documentary, The Director and the Jedi, about his work with Rian Johnson on the new Star Wars film. (2018-02-23)
Mark Hamill To Receive Hollywood Star
Thanks in part to his recent success resuming the role of Luke Skywalker in Star Wars, actor Mark Hamill will soon be getting a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The ceremony is set for March 8, 2018 at 11:30 am. I'd encourage Wing Commander fans nearby to go check it out, but the crowd will likely be substantial. (2018-02-22)
Banshee Kicks Off Flat Universe's Border Worlds Faction
The first Border Worlds ship for Wing Commander Flat Universe has been announced! The Banshee now joins the battle alongside four Confed and four Kilrathi craft. It's designed to be particularly effective against slower bombers such as the Broadsword or Grikath. (2018-02-21)
New 3D Prints Highlight Gemini Sector Hotness
Sonnich Johannesen has shown off some large scale and beautifully detailed 3D prints from Wing Commander Privateer. The Centurion and (not pictured) Galaxy are from Astrofossil and the Tarsus model was designed by DJFX, who posted some gorgeous pics of his own a while back. The size of each of these is impressive, and Sonnich has posted some neat pictures of these ships coming together on the printer. (2018-02-20)