Why do some DVD’s not have subtitles?

One of the questions that keeps coming up among the Hear2day community is around the issue of subtitling on DVD’s in South Africa. Why do some DVD’s have subtitles and others don’t? Why can’t all DVD’s have subtitles? It would seem that subtitles are available on nearly all DVD’s that are manufactured intentionally, but when it comes to locally supplied DVD’s, it’s a different story. Hear2day has tried to make it easier for people who rent movies from Mr VIDEO by running a campaign where every DVD with subtitles has a sticker easily identifying that subtitles are available. This is a start, but the real issue needs to be addressed at on a supply level.

We wrote to NuMetro and asked them why not all DVD’s which they release here in SA have subtitles available. This is there response:

Nu Metro Home Entertainment represents five international studios (Warner Bros., Sony, Paramount / Dreamworks, Universal, BBC) plus a large slate of independently produced content (both local and international content) which they release each month.  Almost all content from the international studios is subtitled for DVD release.

Product from the Independent slate is handled differently.  When bringing in the material for subtitling, we have encountered problems due to the conversion process required from NTSC to Pal and the time frame that we have to complete this in.