Don't understand what all the conflict is about...it is a documentary after all. It is more about visuals than anything else. Sigourney Weaver does a fine job, so does David Attenborough. All the majestic scenery in my opinion makes up for what some perceive to be a fault with Weaver's narration. I actually prefer Weaver myself, however I have no complaint with either. At any rate, sit back, relax, and enjoy the spectacle of what is perhaps the finest nature documentary that has ever been made! Find something more worthwhile to argue about...like why is Nancy Pelosi allowed to negotiate with our enemies? :)
For what it's worth, I think Sigorney Weaver does a great job narrating. Maybe people that saw the BCC version first are used to and thus prefer Attenborough(which is fine) - but it doesnt make Sigorney sub-par...
I have had the Region 2 version since Christmas 06. Love it. I was brought up on Attenborough and would not listen to it any other way. By the way, I purchased a Pioneer DV-383, that is region free and converts a PAL signal to NTSC if you need it to. Does a great job of it too. My Region 2 Planet Earth looks outstanding - almost HD quality. It does that for only about $90, so bloody inexpensive too. At that price it could break after a year and I would still have my moneys worth. Don't expect it to though. My last Pioneer lasted about 6 years.
Exactly. As for the suggestion made in one of these threads that Attenborough's narration was replaced with Weavers for make the show easier to advertise and market in America:
1) Again, the necessity of replacing the narration arose from the need to edit the episodes for time. If Attenborough had been williing/available/affordable I'm sure Discovery would have been delighted to have him. (Many documentaries made for U.S. television - not to mention many commercials created purely for the U.S. market - feature British narrators to lend a touch of imagined "class" to the product.)
2) The fact that Weaver did the narration was never advertised or made much of. The promos for the series didn't even *have* a voice over track - just music, sound effects, visuals and on-screen text ("5 years in the making", "2000 production days", "An epic television event") I wasn't even sure who the narrator was until Weaver's credit flashed briefly across the screen at the end of episode 2. I knew I recognized the voice, but I couldn't quite place it, and I missed the part of the episode 1 credits.)
And yes, of course Discovery made the decisions about how the series was presented in America. Why would the Beeb be involved?
As for the crack someone made in one of these threads about "that American actress who hasn't worked since the last 'Alien' sequel" - one of the *many* films Weaver has done since "Alien Resurrection" was "The Ice Storm" - for which she won the *British* Academy of Film and Television Arts Award as Best Actress. So somebody over there recognizes talent when they see it. <g>
Personally, I'm getting the BBC version. But I see no reason to dump all over poor Sigourney. (Especially when the dumping is mostly being done by people who haven't even heard her narration.)
I really don't understand why the issue of narration continues to be discussed. It's very simple: If you want the Attenborough version, buy the BBC edition here, and if you want Weaver, buy the Discovery version from their store. Why is that so hard?
the problem was that until a few days ago there was no clear statement about who would be nattaring the amazon version of the dvd. this lead many to wonder what they would be getting. it was not until people threatened to cancel pre orders and contacted amazon that amazon finally clarified that the version here is indeed the David Attenborough version.
<simply owning a region-free player won't cut it. North American TVs do not display PAL video the way British TVs can>
It seems like you have a lot of knowledge about this stuff... so are you saying that if I purchase the Amazon version (Standard DVD set, BBC w/ Attenborough) it may not play on a "plain old" DVD player (I have no clue if mine is region-free...if that is something "special" then I probably do not)?? You also mentioned something about N.A. TV's not displaying video like British TV's. Does that mean the show will appear corrupted or something?? I have a Samsung DLP HDTV. If you reply, please speak in layman terms as I am not "Technologically" advanced!!!! Thanks!!
<<simply owning a region-free player won't cut it. North American TVs do not display PAL video the way British TVs can>>
> It seems like you have a lot of knowledge about this stuff... so are you saying that if I purchase the Amazon version (Standard DVD set, BBC w/ Attenborough) it may not play on a "plain old" DVD player (I have no clue if mine is region-free...if that is something "special" then I probably do not)?? <
My comment above was in reply to someone who had opened up a side-issue by raising the idea of importing a DVD intended for use in another country to watch here. This has absolutely nothing to do with the edition of "Planet Earth" being sold by the BBC here. This edition is intended for the North American market, conforms to the North American broadcast standard (NTSC) and is coded for region 1 (region codes are intended to control DVD distribution, mostly to prevent people in a country where a film hasn't even been released theatrically from importing DVDs from a country where it has come and gone from theaters.)
The only way you would run into trouble is if you went to Amazon.co.uk (the British Amazon site) and imported the region 2 disc which conforms to the PAL broadcast standard (which is not compatible with N.A. TV equipment.)
All of this stuff is basically irrelevant for American movie and TV fans except the handful who have a need to import international DVDs that were not released in this country or which were released in altered form. The question arose because this page mistakenly listed Sigourney Weaver as the narrator for the edition being sold here, and people wondered if they'd have to import a set from the U.K. to get the Attenborough narration and the additional footage. Since we now know the answer to that question is "No", the whole thing is now moot.
My issue with wanting the Weaver version as an American is that I fear that whenever they compare landmass sizes in the Limey version they're going to say things like "Blahblah is about the same size as southern east-central Leicestershirehamton, which is meaningless to me. I want to hear that something is the same size as, say Texas or New York. What do those measily shire places mean to me?
So where can I get the Weaver version cheap? I preordered this version back at the beginning of March when it listed Weaver as the narrator. I have many Attenborough DVDs, but Weaver was a blessing. No more choppy sound. David is wonderful, but his age is sounding in his voice and he is no longer pleasant to listen to. I enjoy Weaver much better. Is the Discovery Channel Store the only place to get the Weaver version?
The only place the Weaver version is available is at the Discovery Channel Store online at: http://shopping.discovery.com/product-65140.html. It can also be purchased on Ebay, but neither of these places is all that "cheap". It will run you around $80+ either place.
I'm with you that I much preferred the Weaver version...probably because that is the one I heard first, so I was used to her (and I like the script better). Then when I heard of the "controversy" over the change in narrator, I listened to the other version and didn't understand why his version was all that special. Anyway, hope that helps. I recently purchased this for my dad for father's day, and it is en route to me as I type.