Video Corp - Japan

Location Kofu, Japan
Operational Status LaserDisc Replication Off-Line
Pioneer entered the LaserDisc biz in 1981 in a joint venture with Universal. Beginning life as Universal Pioneer, the facility in Kofu Japan produced most of the LaserDiscs for MCA DiscoVision during 1981. By the time that all the home video labels had come up to speed with LaserDisc technology, Universal Pioneer was producing nearly half the discs in the US distribution channel. MGM/UA, 20th Century Fox (later called CBS/Fox) and Warner Bros. released titles pressed in Japan. I have so few discs from the area any more that I can't give you specific numbers on the US to Japanese ratio. Titles released by Columbia Pictures Home Entertainment (later RCA/Columbia) were all mastered by Pioneer in the US, but then the masters were sent to Kofu for replication. After their first batch of discs, and when Pioneer USA had brought their quality up a bit, Columbia moved the replication to the US.

In 1982, Pioneer bought out the Universal part of the company, and changed the name to simply Pioneer Video, the name by which they still go by. Over the years, they used several other names, including LaserDisc Corporation. This Pioneer Japan mint marking example was struck from the Towa Video Widescreen release of "The Prince of Darkness".

Updated: August 4, 2004
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