First of all, thanks for taking the time to answer some questions from our readers. Before we start though, please can you tell us about Signal One Entertainment and the people behind the label, as well as a little about yourself?

Thanks to you and everyone who's taken the time to write in - it's very much appreciated.

Signal One is a one man band, but the releases are the product of the enormous talent and hard work of a number of people, including respected DVD/Blu-ray authoring guru David Mackenzie, designer Graham Humphreys, documentary film-maker Robert Fischer, all-round whiz kid Michael Brooke, and all of the good people who contribute by recording commentaries or agreeing to be interviewed.

Andrew Easter would like to know why you decided to start a label during a time in which the home entertainment industry seems to be moving towards digital and the DVD/Blu-ray market appears to be falling?

I've been in the video distribution business for a number of years and although it's impossible to argue with the numbers when it comes to the very real decline in the market, it's clear that well-produced editions of great films (and even less-well known films) still matter a great deal to those people who care passionately about cinema. There are things which a Blu-ray can deliver which streaming or downloading simply can't. Great encoding and quality extras make the experience of watching a decent edition very special.

Gary Hutchins asks, Signal One are the new kids on the block, but unlike the dodgy boy band, you have made quite a splash with lots of praise from critics and collectors alike. Do you put this down to how you have approached your releases with holding back from release dates to add additional extras, and having excellent encoding and overall picture quality?

First of all I'm very pleased that that's what people think about the label. I couldn't be happier with that response, and I've worked hard to make sure that S1 rewards those who choose to invest by buying any one of its releases. I think that paying attention to detail and working with the best, most passionate, dedicated people means that the end result is of the highest possible standard. I know it can be disappointing when release dates get shifted around, but I only ever do this when it means that new and exciting extras can be included (like those I now have for THE SEVEN-UPS!).

Patrick would like to know which companies you look up to, both in the UK and further afield, and how you think the overall market will look in ten years time?

I think I'm like everyone else in admiring great labels such as Arrow, Masters of Cinema and BFI. They've set a standard which I aspire to. Overseas labels like Mondo Macabro and Synapse do incredible work, and of course there's Criterion too. For me, all of these labels take such care in selecting and releasing titles, that it's almost unthinkable that they won't always have an audience. I think that the market for what these labels do is a solid one and that physical releasing has many years left in it yet.

James Johnson is wondering if you have plans to release outside of the United Kingdom?

Unfortunately I just don't have the resources to make that kind of a move right now. Also - as a lot of you will probably already know - most of the titles out in S1 editions are already available in overseas versions, which means that rights wouldn't be available to me. It's interesting to see Arrow and Criterion crossing the pond to become international distributors - and it'll be exciting to see how both labels do as they expand.

Next, a question from Konstantinos. What studios do you have a deal with and are there any particular genres/decades you will draw your attention to or that you are in particular favour of?

Up to now I have only dealt with Fox and MGM titles, but I'm exploring other avenues. In terms of genres and decades, I decided at the start not to impose any rules other than presenting great films which have never had UK Blu-ray editions, and to give them the best treatment possible. Throughout the coming year, S1 will be releasing films from a wide variety of genres and decades (directed by the likes of Fritz Lang, Henry Hathaway and Peter Yates), some of which have never had UK DVD releases.

We received a number of questions about whether certain titles are likely to be released from Signal One, but one actor's filmography kept cropping up repeatedly. So... any plans for some Charles Bronson titles in the future?

I'm very keen to get more Bronson out on Blu-ray. He's a great actor and the films are wonderful. So for now I'll just say that I'm working on it! I've also taken note of all the other suggestions that have been made - all of which I appreciate.

Next, a topic that always grinds peoples gears! Paul asks; to what extent do the BBFC certification fees impact upon the budget of a small niche British distribution company? Do these fees impinge upon the money available for extras?

BBFC fees are a significant expense - anyone can see how much it costs by using the their fee calculator tool online. My resources are modest and paying for classifications does mean that money which could have been spent on extras is used up.

This question is from Benedict Keeler; What's your general ethos? As it stands, I very much enjoy your stripped-back approach - standard blue Amaray cases, no-nonsense artwork/menu design, often BD-25 discs but packed with special features and with high-quality encode (apparently done by Lyris/David Mackenzie). Will you be sticking to this format going forward, or will you start to branch out a bit more? I've noticed other small Blu-ray labels dabble in packaging (slipcovers, steelbooks, box sets), add booklets or bonus discs, or other extras like art cards and posters. Could you ever see yourself doing this, or would you rather concentrate on the discs themselves?

Thanks for the nice comments! To some degree the decisions about the approach so far have been motivated by financial constraints. I have avoided special packaging and booklets so that I can focus on producing more on-disc features. David's a brilliant encoder, and I'll always take his advice if he says we need to use a BD50. In the future, I'd like to be able to offer something a bit special for collectors, but this will never be at the expense of good quality extras.

Hurricane Alex would like to know which title has been the office favourite so far? What is the favourite extra feature? and what title that is likely impossible to get hold of due to rights that would be a dream come true for Signal One Entertainment to release?

On the Beach has a very special place in my heart because it took me such a lot of work to get all those extras together, and everyone involved was so generous with their time, and so enthusiastic about the fact the film was getting such reverential treatment. It was also the first to be reviewed by Mondo-Digital and DVD Beaver, and it was so pleasing to see that they thought it was a good disc. But it's the sort of job where each project becomes your favourite. I was so pleased with how Black Widow turned out - especially those great interviews with Bass and Hall.

And finally, a question from ourselves! Can you divulge any exclusive information to whet some appetites?

I'm on the verge of making an official announcement about upcoming releases so I won't reveal all just yet, but I can let it slip that the cracking thrillers Kiss of Death (1947) and Eyewitness (1981) will feature among them...

Thanks James for your time, and many thanks to our readers for their questions.

And thanks very much again from me.

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