Audio commentary

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An audio commentary is an additional audio track, usually digital, consisting of a lecture or comments by one or more speakers, that plays in real time with a video.wikipedia
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The Criterion Collection

CriterionCriterion CollectionHome Vision Entertainment
The Criterion Collection company, for example, produced high-quality "deluxe" editions of classic films on laserdisc, using the best available prints and re-edited versions. The first audio commentary was featured on the Criterion Collection release of the original King Kong movie, on laserdisc in December 1984.
The Criterion Collection's second catalog title, King Kong (1933), was the debut of the scene-specific audio commentary contained in a separate analog channel of the laserdisc.

Cabin Fever (2002 film)

Cabin Fever20022002 film of the same name
He is a strong proponent of the educational use of audio commentary, having recorded five commentary tracks for his debut, Cabin Fever.
Cabin Fever was released on DVD in March 2004, which includes audio commentary tracks with director Eli Roth and the main cast as well as a featurette entitled "Beneath the Skin", which provides a behind the scenes look on the film.

Brian Cox (physicist)

Brian CoxProfessor Brian CoxProf. Brian Cox
The science-fiction movie Sunshine (directed by Danny Boyle) contains an audio track with physicist Brian Cox. The author and professor, who served as an advisor on the production, discusses scientific accuracies (and inaccuracies) depicted in the movie.
On the DVD release, he provides an audio commentary where he discusses scientific accuracies (and inaccuracies) depicted in the film.

Contact (1997 American film)

Contactfilm of the same nameContact'' (1997 American film)
The decline of the laserdisc format and the increasing popularity of DVD was highlighted in the fall of 1997, when simultaneous laserdisc and DVD editions of the movie Contact were released.
Among the special features, the DVD contains three separate audio commentaries by director Zemeckis and producer Starkey, another by visual effects supervisors Ken Ralston and Stephen Rosenbaum, along with one by star Jodie Foster.

List of The Simpsons home video releases

DVD boxsetThe Last Temptation of Homerboxset
The fourth, fifth and sixth season box sets of The Simpsons contain special "illustrated commentaries" on selected episodes, where two animation directors draw on screen while commenting on the episode. This is achieved by using subtitle data to produce the drawings overlaid on top of the video in sync with the audio commentary track.

Schism (song)

SchismSchism" (song)
* The 2005 DVD of "Schism" from Tool, contains dual-commentary by David Yow.
The DVD contains the music video, audio commentary by David Yow, and a remix by Lustmord.

Mystery Science Theater 3000

Satellite of LoveMST3KMystery Science Theater 3000: The Return
Some DVDs feature commentaries with on-screen video enhancements, such as telestrator prompts, (allowing the director or commentator to "draw" on the screen, pointing out specific details), or the Ghostbusters "video commentary", where one of the subtitle tracks is used to add silhouettes of the speakers in a manner where they seem to be in a theater commenting on the movie as it was screened for them in the style of Mystery Science Theater 3000. Mystery Science Theater 3000 head writer and on-screen host Michael J. Nelson has started his own website to sell downloadable commentaries called RiffTrax.
Further, the riffing style from MST3K is considered part of the influence for DVD commentaries and successful YouTube reviewers and Let's Play-style commentators.

King Kong (1933 film)

King Kongfilm of the same name1933 film
The first audio commentary was featured on the Criterion Collection release of the original King Kong movie, on laserdisc in December 1984.
In 1984, King Kong was one of the first films to be released on LaserDisc by the Criterion Collection, and was the very first movie to have an audio commentary track included.

This Is Spinal Tap

Spinal TapThis Is Spın̈al Tapchoice veg to their cod-pieces
The 2000 DVD of This Is Spinal Tap features a commentary by the three members of the band, in character. They relate how they felt slighted by the film, and how the director (Marty di Bergi in the film) did a "hack job" with the documentary. The commentary is another added element to the fiction of the band. Actors Michael McKean, Christopher Guest and Harry Shearer had previously recorded a commentary for a Criterion Collection DVD which had gone out of print. Similarly, the DVD of series 1 of the BBC sitcom I'm Alan Partridge features commentary from the characters of Alan and his assistant, Lynne. Like Spinal Tap, Alan is heard to be frustrated at how the show makes him appear.
It included an audio commentary track with Christopher Guest, Michael McKean and Harry Shearer; a second audio commentary track with Rob Reiner, Karen Murphy, Robert Leighton and Kent Beyda; 79 minutes of deleted scenes; Spinal Tap: The Final Tour, the original twenty-minute short they shot to pitch the film; two trailers that feature Rob Reiner showing a film about cheese rolling (because "Spinal Tap" itself was still in the editing room); a TV promo, Heavy Metal Memories; and a music video for "Hell Hole".

Cannibal! The Musical

Cannibal
The commentary on Trey Parker's Cannibal! The Musical (aka Alferd Packer: The Musical) is notable in that the commentators — cast and crew — start out sober at the beginning. As the movie progresses, the group drinks and gets more and more inebriated. A similar commentary, featuring many of the participants from that commentary, was recorded for Orgazmo.
The DVD contains a "Drunken Director's Commentary" where Parker and Stone along with most of the cast get drunk as they watch the film, although there are a few times when the commentary cuts out (either because the recorder was turned off or they spoke of things they later decided nobody should hear).

RiffTrax

RiffTrax On DemandRiffTrax.comThe Rifftones
Mystery Science Theater 3000 head writer and on-screen host Michael J. Nelson has started his own website to sell downloadable commentaries called RiffTrax.
RiffTrax is an American company that produces scripted humorous audio commentary tracks intended to be played in unison with particular television programs and films, featuring comedians Michael J. Nelson, Kevin Murphy, and Bill Corbett and others.

Shaun of the Dead

On the DVD release of Shaun of the Dead, one (of the four) commentary tracks is given over entirely to a recording of the actors who played zombies in the movie. The first cast audio commentary (including Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Kate Ashfield, Lucy Davis and Dylan Moran) also mocks audio commentaries as the cast admit that they almost never listen to them (with Simon Pegg claiming he listens to them when going to sleep), as well as Dylan Moran saying that they simply involve people saying things like "oh, we used a steadi-cam for that one because Roger had a bad knee", and that no-one was interested in hearing it.
The film was released on DVD shortly after its theatrical run in the US, with a DVD release around December 2004 in the US. Features included several audio commentaries, EPK featurettes about the film's production, pre-production video diaries and concept videos, photo galleries, bloopers, and more.

Roger Ebert

RogerEbert.comEbertfilm critic
U.S. film critic Roger Ebert has recorded DVD audio commentaries for many films, including Citizen Kane, Casablanca, Floating Weeds, Crumb, Dark City, and Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (for which Ebert also wrote the screenplay, based on a story that he co-wrote with Russ Meyer). Since losing his ability to speak due to illness, these recordings were also used to supply Ebert's collection of spoken words for his speech synthesizer since the soundtracks of his television show were too contaminated by background noise to use.
Ebert provided DVD audio commentaries for several films, including Citizen Kane, Casablanca, Dark City, Floating Weeds, Crumb, and Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (for which Ebert also wrote the screenplay, based on a story that he co-wrote with Russ Meyer).

How I Met Your Mother

And that's how I became your motherhow he met MargeHow I Met Your
The DVD release of the third season of How I Met Your Mother includes a commentary by Jason Segel and Chris Harris for the episode "The Chain of Screaming". Harris, a writer on the show, did not write this particular episode, but was included in the commentary at the request of Segel, who spent the majority of the commentary intoxicated and in only his boxers. Segel at one point places 12 condoms on the table between the two and spends the majority of the commentary insinuating a relationship between him and Harris, much to Harris' chagrin.

Tropic Thunder

#NeverGoFullRetardfilmTropic Blunder
The cast commentary of Tropic Thunder features Ben Stiller and Jack Black as themselves, while Robert Downey, Jr. is in character as Lincoln Osiris, and later Kirk Lazarus, before dropping character at the end. This is a reference to a line spoken in the film by Lazarus: "I don't drop character 'til I've done the DVD commentary."
Special features include an unrated director's cut of the film which is 12 minutes longer than the theatrical release, audio commentaries (including one featuring Stiller, Downey, and Black, with Downey providing his commentary as Lincoln Osiris, a nod to a joke in the film that Lazarus never breaks character until he completes the DVD commentary), several featurettes, deleted scenes, an alternate ending, and the Rain of Madness mockumentary.

The League of Gentlemen

League of GentlemenOn the Town with the League of Gentlemen
The Simpsons and Futurama, both Matt Groening creations, are among the few TV series to have audio commentary tracks on every episode in their season box set DVD releases. For Futurama, the commentators point out who voiced minor characters. The actors for these characters are otherwise unlisted in the ending credits. Doctor Who, Mr. Show, Red Dwarf, volumes 4 and onwards of Family Guy, the first season sets of Twin Peaks, The Shield and Goodnight Sweetheart and all episodes and specials of The League of Gentlemen are other examples of this.
In the DVD commentary on the second series, Pemberton and Shearsmith state that Papa Lazarou's speech patterns are based on their former landlord, who would phone their flat and insist on speaking only to Steve.

Step Brothers (film)

Step BrothersStep Brothers'' (film)
The commentary track for Step Brothers features the director Adam McKay, Will Ferrell, and John C. Reilly doing the bulk of the commentary as a musical performance accompanied by film composer Jon Brion and Los Angeles Clippers player Baron Davis.
For the home video release, Will Ferrell, John C. Reilly, and Adam McKay recorded a commentary track mostly in song, accompanied by Jon Brion; the track covers "the movie-making process [and] their characters' offscreen lives" in remarks that range "from the inspired to the irritatingly prolonged, but when Ferrell and Reilly really get into a good groove, they're actually funnier than the main feature".

Crumb (film)

Crumbaward-winning documentarybiography of R Crumb
U.S. film critic Roger Ebert has recorded DVD audio commentaries for many films, including Citizen Kane, Casablanca, Floating Weeds, Crumb, Dark City, and Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (for which Ebert also wrote the screenplay, based on a story that he co-wrote with Russ Meyer). Since losing his ability to speak due to illness, these recordings were also used to supply Ebert's collection of spoken words for his speech synthesizer since the soundtracks of his television show were too contaminated by background noise to use.
Ebert later clarified this in the audio commentary of the film's Criterion Collection re-release.

Superbad (film)

SuperbadSuperbad (2007)2007 film of the same name
On the cast and crew commentary for Superbad, Judd Apatow orders the actors not to swear in front of his nine-year-old daughter Maude, who is also present for the recording. Actor Jonah Hill restrains himself from cursing until halfway through the movie, and he proceeds to chide Apatow for "Bring Your Daughter to Work Day." After this argument, Apatow and his daughter leave to go attend a showing of the Broadway musical Spamalot, and the remaining cast and crew begin swearing profusely immediately after their departure.
Special features include deleted scenes, an audio commentary with cast and crew, line-o-ramas (a feature most associated with Apatow films), a making-of, and a number of short featurettes.

Blood Simple

The Coen Brothers movie Blood Simple has a fake commentary written by the Coens and read by an actor posing as a film historian. This "historian" Kenneth Loring gives information about the production that almost everyone would recognize as being totally ludicrous. He claims for instance that one the opening scene was shot upside down with the actors saying their lines backwards and that some roles were reserved for Rosemary Clooney and Gene Kelly.
The 2001 DVD release also includes an audio commentary by "Kenneth Loring", the fictional artistic director of the equally fictional "Forever Young Films".

Clerks

Clerks III1994 comedy of the same nameClerk
Film directors Kevin Smith and David Fincher are notable fans of DVD audio commentary, and Fincher's "Platinum Series" release of Se7en was considered one of the most in-depth DVDs of its time, mainly due to the four audio commentary tracks, all of which feature Fincher, and cover the writing, the cast, the sound design and the cinematography. Another commentary for Se7en was included on the Criterion Collection laserdisc, which included cast member Gwyneth Paltrow, but this track has not been released on DVD. Smith's DVD for Clerks II features three audio commentaries, all featuring Smith, and he is known for bringing his stars, including Ben Affleck and Jason Lee onto his commentary tracks. Smith has recorded audio commentaries for all of his films except Zack and Miri Make a Porno, and also appeared on the Road House audio commentary after mentioning it on the 10th Anniversary DVD of Clerks. Smith has also appeared on the special edition Donnie Darko DVD, doing commentary with Richard Kelly. Fincher has recorded a track for all of his films except Alien 3, which he disowned after controversy over the production. Directors Terry Gilliam, Werner Herzog, Francis Ford Coppola, David Cronenberg, Paul Verhoeven and Steven Soderbergh are also highly respected as intelligent and informative commentators, often working with Criterion to create commentaries for their films. Soderbergh once said about DVD commentaries, "Would I, growing up, like to have had access to stuff on DVDs like this? Oh God, yeah! It's better than any film school, I think."
This version features the original letterboxed version of the film, audio commentary by Smith and various cast and crew members, seven deleted scenes from the film, a theatrical trailer, and a music video for "Can't Even Tell" performed by Soul Asylum.

Floating Weeds

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U.S. film critic Roger Ebert has recorded DVD audio commentaries for many films, including Citizen Kane, Casablanca, Floating Weeds, Crumb, Dark City, and Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (for which Ebert also wrote the screenplay, based on a story that he co-wrote with Russ Meyer). Since losing his ability to speak due to illness, these recordings were also used to supply Ebert's collection of spoken words for his speech synthesizer since the soundtracks of his television show were too contaminated by background noise to use.
An alternate audio track contains a commentary by Roger Ebert.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Angel Eyesfilm of the same nameIl buono, il brutto, il cattivo
U.S. film critic Richard Schickel has recorded DVD audio commentaries for many classic films, including Double Indemnity, Whirlpool, Side Street, Strangers on a Train, On the Waterfront, East of Eden, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, Ryan's Daughter, Dirty Harry, The Big Red One, Once Upon a Time in America, and Unforgiven.
Disc 1 contains an audio commentary with writer and critic Richard Schickel.

Michael Barrier

Barrier, Michael
Animation historians such as Jerry Beck and Michael Barrier regularly contribute commentary to selected shorts in DVD packages of animated shorts from the Golden Age of Hollywood, including the Looney Tunes Golden Collection series and the Popeye the Sailor DVD series.
Barrier also provided several audio commentaries for the first five Looney Tunes Golden Collection DVD box sets, his largest audio contributions being for the first volume.

Dark City (1998 film)

Dark City1998Dark City'' (1998 film)
U.S. film critic Roger Ebert has recorded DVD audio commentaries for many films, including Citizen Kane, Casablanca, Floating Weeds, Crumb, Dark City, and Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (for which Ebert also wrote the screenplay, based on a story that he co-wrote with Russ Meyer). Since losing his ability to speak due to illness, these recordings were also used to supply Ebert's collection of spoken words for his speech synthesizer since the soundtracks of his television show were too contaminated by background noise to use.
Ebert used it in his teaching, and also appears on a commentary track for the original DVD and the 2006 Director's Cut.