Mid-Week Poll: Do You Collect Discs in Special Packaging?

This week, Warner Bros. re-released ‘Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory’ (previously available in a Digibook, and then in a standard Blu-ray keepcase) into a new “Ultimate Collector’s Edition” box set. This follows a number of similarly elaborate disc packages such as ‘Ben-Hur‘ and ‘Citizen Kane‘. Are you the type of collector who buys up these fancy disc packages, or do you eschew the box sets and Digibooks in favor of simple, straightforward cases? Or do you throw away the packaging altogether and toss the discs into binders or a multi-disc changer? Vote in our poll after the break.

I’ve always had a collector’s mentality. The physical presence of a good disc package is a big part of the appeal for me. After all, any individual disc will spend more time sitting on my shelf than it will being played on my HT screen. So why not have it look good on the shelf? In the DVD days, I often imported fancy, swag-filled box sets for films like ‘Amélie’ and ‘Kill Bill’ from other countries. The movie is stored in a leather-bound book? Bring it on! It comes with an action figure and soundtrack CD? Sign me up!

These days, because I’m running short on space, I’ve had to pare back on my purchases of bulky box sets, unless I really love the movie. However, I’m still a sucker for a good Digibook or Steelbook.

How about you? Is fancy disc packaging a selling point for you, or a big turn-off?

Do You Collect Discs in Special Packaging?

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  1. Lahrs

    I try to avoid the odd packaging as I do not have room to store bulky box sets. Usually, the special packaging is for an ultimate or similar special edition release, and I have never found the justification to spend extra money on extras that I may view once.

    With that said, I do own a few boxed sets of television series, as many times it is much cheaper to buy all the disks as a set rather than in individual seasons. For those sets, I put the disks in a binder (forgot to check that option in the poll) and store the box. Every other ‘normal’ disk gets put on the shelf as is.

  2. Alex

    When the collection starts getting large, shelf space becomes a serious premium. I would love to be able to own the collector’s sets of Ben-Hur, Willy Wonka, Gone with the Wind, and Ten Commandments, but to fit those sets, I would have to give up nearly 50 other movies. The extras are nifty, but they’re just not worth it.

    However, I do like digibooks. They don’t take up much more space than the standard keepcase, and they let the special titles stand out a bit in the collection. The only problem with them is that there’s no place to store my dvd copy (for titles that I’ve upgraded) that I normally put in a tyvex sleeve and tuck into the keepcase for later viewing/ripping.

    • Alex

      Out of curiosity, are other people as OCD about alphabetizing their collection as I am? If my wife is mad it me, she’ll move a disc and I’m stuck twitching until I’ve been through the whole set with a find the culprit and re-order it. Do you guys have any alternate organizational methods? Perhaps that could be another mid-week poll sometime down the line.

      • Josh Zyber

        Good idea, Alex. I’ll see if I can put something together in a future poll. The hard part will be coming up with all the different options for organization that people may use. Personally, I have my collection segmented by discs I’ve watched, discs I haven’t watched but that I’ve seen the movie before, and discs I haven’t watched with movies I’ve also never seen. 🙂

      • Jason

        All of my standard keep cases are alphabetized and are tucked away in dresser drawers. My digibooks, steelcases and television series are on a separate shelves but are also alphabetized. I keep the specialty boxsets and custom sets on the top shelves of my bookcases where they can be viewed. I keep my collection organized with DVDProfiler and am able to keep track of where everything is that way. I just exceeded 1000 movies in my collection. My collection is in a separate room off of my home theater. When I have guests over I let them peruse my collection via my HTPC.

      • i have but here lately i have been dividing them up into parts. watched over n over- must haves-eh ?-and getting rid of. i have box sets. but no box set for one movie. i stopped that back in 98 when grease came out its in this odd shape bod and the CD sucks and keeps falling out. i did get one for silverado when they re released it on dvd a few years back but tossed the box on my closet shelve.

      • YES, and I alphabitize by format. However, it really rubs some of my friends wrong to see James Bond at the top of my collection, before the As. I explain “That’s because its 007”.

        So, you go thorugh, and you have 0-Z Blu-rays, then 0-Z TV shows, then 0-Z DVDs, then 0-Z HD-DVDs, then 0-Z Music discs (usually LPCM or DTS MA discs with little or no video – the exception is Fantasia and U2 Rattle and Hum, so they get organized into their own set). Then in the bedroom the laserdiscs are organized in Alphabetical order, and then the games.

        I bite people’s heads off when they take a movie off the shelf, and do not put it back in the same order.

        Now what really gets me is when you have movie series, and the second or third movie doesn’t have the same name as the first movie in the set. It drives me nuts, but I usually decide to keep the movies together and in order rather than alphabitizing those. Usually, in cases like that, I will try to buy the movies in a boxed set if I can.

  3. Drew

    I feel like Josh took the words right out of my mouth.

    “I’ve always had a collector’s mentality. The physical presence of a good disc package is a big part of the appeal for me. After all, any individual disc will spend more time sitting on my shelf than it will being played on my HT screen. So why not have it look good on the shelf? In the DVD days, I often imported fancy, swag-filled box sets for films like ‘Amélie’ and ‘Kill Bill’ from other countries. The movie is stored in a leather-bound book? Bring it on! It comes with an action figure and soundtrack CD? Sign me up!”

    My thoughts exactly. I literally feel like this is my identical thought process when it comes to collecting. However, as my collection grows, and media storage, along with shelf space is in shorter and shorter supply, I’ve had to cut back on collecting all of the boxed sets and specially packaged editions. It actually really kills me. The most recent casualty was Ben-Hur. I ended up settling for the Best Buy exclusive edition because I just didn’t have anywhere to put the large boxed set. A tear was shed.

    • Drew, I’m happy to inform you that the “Ben-Hur” box is actually quite small! It’s a lot smaller than I thought it was. You can compare it with the “Blade Runner”-case! Nothing too excessive.

  4. EM

    I chose the “standard keepcases” option. Usually I keep the discs in whatever packaging they came in—for instance, I keep all my Walt Disney Treasures discs in the “collectible” but unnecessary tins—but when I have a choice for a particular title, I’m usually not drawn to inflated packaging. Years ago I bought a box set of Peanuts holiday specials instead of buying the exact same specials separately, but I made that choice only because I was finding the box set for about 5 bucks cheaper.

    Frankly, for reasons of space and convenience, I was disappointed that DVD and now Blu-ray have standardized on packaging that is taller than necessary. I would have been happier with the CD jewel-box style. A lot of LP enthusiasts have criticized CDs for the lack of space for album art, and I wouldn’t be surprised if laserdisc enthusiasts leveled similar criticisms at DVDs—but to me, the play’s the thing.

  5. I REALLY like Digibooks – its like having the best of both worlds – something collectable that can easily fit on the shelf. Now, I do have a handful of movies that do sit on top of my movie case – Gone With The Wind, Sound of Music, Ten Commandments, Gettysburg, Tron, and the Harry Potter Trunk, as well as the Fantasia laserdisc collectors edition. I have been debating on getting Wizard of Oz, but I really do not have the space for another collectors edition at this time, and I am perfectly happy, at least on that one, to have the movie only. I just wasn’t blown away with the specials on it.

    As for Willy Wonka, I have it on HD-DVD. Its not one of my all-time favorite movies, so I really do not see the reason for double-dipping that one. I like the Burton version better, and probably wouldn’t even buy that in a collectors edition if they offered it. Very few movies, in my opinion, are worthy of the price and the shelf space. Only the classics of cinema, in my opinion, deserve that honor.

    • My GF is a huge Wizard of Oz fan, and she will tell you that if you’re into that movie, you’ve GOT to get the Blu-Ray special edition package with the watch and everything else. I have to admit, it’s bonus contents and media were pretty impressive…

      • I think my issue is that I am not as huge of a Wizard of Oz fan as I used to be now that I have read the books. If the movie had of come out a year or two earlier before I read the books, I probably would have the set. I also bought the set for my brother for Christmas, so I have seen the bonus materials.

        My three favorite boxed sets are Gone With the Wind, Sound of Music, and then my Fantasia Laserdisc Collection (man, is that ever a conversation starter, especially since my laserdiscs are in the other room as they won’t fit on the shelves in the living room).

        Now, when I put in another shelf in the living room, and see Wizard of Oz drop below $35, I might consider picking it up. But I expect I will pick up Ben Hur before I pick up Oz.

  6. I love special packaging for movies that I love. Unfortunately, I feel like Blu-Ray is lagging behind in the creativity that DVD showed in the past.

    For instance, I’m really glad I got the 3 Lord Of The Rings 4-disc “book” editions, and the Argonaths bookends to hold them all up. Once I get the LOTR Blu-Ray collection, I’ll give away the old DVDs and pop the Blus into that packaging; it was just too great.

    I’m wondering if others of you out there are doing the same (converting more recent/Blu-Ray packages that are boring into “cooler/more elaborate” DVD packaging from the past)?

    Oh, and I totally toss out slipcovers that are identical to the keepcase underneath. (ex- gone: Pulp Fiction, kept: Iron Man)

  7. I buy the extravagant box sets if and when I love the movie. It’s as simple as that. Unfortunately, a lot of these have to be imported at a higher cost. I had to buy “Ben-Hur” and “Gone With The Wind” from Amazon.com, with increased shipping costs and the risk of a customs fee.

    These true ‘special editions’ (instead of the overused phrase on discs with little to no extra content) remind me of LaserDiscs – especially my “My Fair Lady” and “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”. Both are packed with goodies such as the CD, the script, litho’s, a film cell etc. Very loveRly!

  8. lordbowler

    The best “Special Packaging” discs I like are the DigiBook or the Steel Packaging.

    I’ve been very happy with the DigiBook releases and would prefer them to the oversized boxes that do not fit on a standard shelf. When the packaging exceeds the space of 5 standard disc packages for one movie, its getting too large.

    I picked up Goonies Special Edition Blu-Ray and that was borderline, taller than normal cases and as wide as 4 discs. But its all contained in a box which includes the standard case with the movie disc.

    I prefer this type of packaging over the TMNT Movie Package which had the movies in plastic holder glued to a cardboard box. I understand wanting the Pizza Theme, but I wish they gave us the movies in standard cases or double Blu-Ray cases inside the box.