You should be able to salvage the QT movies. If they were produced by your company, you may be able to go back to the original files and do a new compression of them using a more modern codec, like H.264.
If you have any older versions of Director around and a machine running Windows 98 or ME, then you might be able to open the original .dir files and extract the graphics. You might even be able to update the content, although that may be more painful than its worth.
Can I convert it for Shockwave and the Web or will there be too many lingo issues?
You can't readily convert it for Shockwave use without first updating the file format to a newer version. You should start with updating the files in Director 7 which is the first version (IIRC) to use QT3 (the "modern" QuickTime for Windows engine). Development using Director underwent some major changes between 5 and 7 with the introduction of behavior scripts and sprite spans etc., so you should get your content working in D7 before progressing as this step will be the hardest. How complicated is impossible to say without seeing it, but I don't think you should give up without trying.
Thank you very much for your answers. They gave me hope!
I gained acces to Director MX on an XP machine and could open the files. I can now estimate how much work needs to be done. The main issue is color depth: 256 colors! And I have access to about half of the original videos so I could recompres those.
Output for the Web is another matter altogether.We'll cross that bridge when we get there.
I have succesfully updated director 5 movies on my Mac, but had to do it with an older Mac running system 9.2. I upgraded from director 5 to director 6. From there I was able to upgrade to director MX (8.5) under system OSX on the same computer. If you have a Mac version of the director file and want to send it to me for upgrade (on a CD?) let me know. Send me an email at email@example.com with "director 5" in the subject.
I do educational software for deaf kids, so I understand your dilemma!
Glad to know I'm not the only one following a crooked path. Fortunately (?) all my work files were on a PC.
Actually, I could probably upgrade the PC file on the Mac. I used to
create PC programs by transferring the Mac file to a PC and running
the PC director app on the file. So one should be able to go the
other direction. If you'd like me to try you can send me a small
file by email and I'll give it a go. I could then email it back, and
if the process works we could transfer the rest of the files via CD.