Wow... I've also tried to shrink memory footprint, but in another method: blitting straight from packed data. apperantly, the unpacking was reasonable (speed/FPS - wise), but the blitting method (Lock() and Unlock() ) was too slow for my game :-\
so now i'm just loading the data from my own packed resource file.
also, a question about measuring memory footprint: does the task manager (winXP) memory usage gives the result i'm looking for? does it include video memory along with system memory?