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"A Star Is Born" Garland in 6k resolution


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#1 of 194 OFFLINE   Danoldrati

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Posted May 23 2008 - 12:06 AM

'Star' to be born in new light
Warner Bros. restoring George Cukor's 1954 film

By Carolyn Giardina

May 23, 2008, 01:00 AM
Warner Bros. Motion Picture Imaging is restoring George Cukor's 1954 "A Star Is Born" in 6K resolution.

The film, starring Judy Garland and James Mason, is believed to be the first restoration project where the scanning, restoration work and mastering will be completed at that resolution.

Digital film restoration is most commonly accomplished at 2K, though an increasing number have been using 4K. A 4K file contains four times as much picture information -- measured in pixels -- as a 2K file, and 6K contains 2 1/4 times as much as a 4K file.

Ned Price, vp mastering, Warner Bros. Technical Operations, said that the facility's reason to go to higher resolution was because "The original camera negative contains more information than 2K, though 2K is today's typical display resolution. But we anticipate higher display resolution in the future. So we are attempting to preserve the asset, rather than just create an element for exhibition."

The key goal of the project is preservation, but the restored version of the film will also eventually be released on Blu-ray Disc and standard DVD.

"There has been photochemical work done on this particular title, but with new digital tools we are able to retrieve the original color balance of the faded negative in a way that we could not reproduce photochemically," Price said. "We made film preservation elements since the film had differential fading, meaning ... the edges of the film had more oxygen and deteriorated quicker. By scanning it, we're able to get a completely flat field of color."

Numerous restoration industry leaders share the belief that the community needs to step up to a resolution higher than 2K for restoration and preservation. Still, opinions vary, as more storage and bandwidth is needed to handle these larger files, which along with cost, is a challenge.

"6K is typically a costly proposition, so that's why we are testing the waters on 'A Star is Born,' " Price said. "As the size of data is more easily managed and the tools become more accessible, we will increase our resolution."

Restoration of "A Star Is Born" is expected to take four to six months. Said Price: "Our expectation is that the restoration would live for easily 100 years."

Warner Bros. Motion Picture Imaging, the studio's digital post and restoration facility, has recently restored such titles as "Bonnie and Clyde," "Dirty Harry," "Cool Hand Luke" and "How the West Was Won."

#2 of 194 OFFLINE   Eric Peterson

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Posted May 23 2008 - 12:20 AM

Great news! I hope that they also restore and release the original 30s version. It's in desperate need of a rescue from PD hell!!

#3 of 194 OFFLINE   Simon Howson

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Posted May 23 2008 - 12:44 AM

This is great news. I think A Star is Born is the first CinemaScope masterpiece. I just hope when this release makes it to Blu-ray and DVD that they present it with seamless branching option so you can skip the still sequences if you want to. It is good that we have them, Haver did some great work, but when I watch the film I find the still image sequences quite disrupting.

#4 of 194 OFFLINE   Lord Dalek

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Posted May 23 2008 - 01:08 AM

Nothing on whether or not the lost scenes from the film have been reinstated or not.

#5 of 194 OFFLINE   Scooter

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Posted May 23 2008 - 01:24 AM

I look forward to this as well. I attended the AFI Premier of this at Radio City. Sat right in front of Liza and next to James Mason.

#6 of 194 OFFLINE   JohnRa

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Posted May 23 2008 - 01:47 AM

This is the most exciting news I have read lately. I love this movie and am really looking forward to seeing the results. It gets more and more difficult to resist Blu-ray. Posted Image

#7 of 194 OFFLINE   Richard M S

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Posted May 23 2008 - 03:04 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scooter
I look forward to this as well. I attended the AFI Premier of this at Radio City. Sat right in front of Liza and next to James Mason.


Hey Scooter, I was there as well! What a fantastic night that was to see the film and the restored sequences on such a large screen.

I am really looking forward to the eventual release of this film as well, and it may be the catalyst to move me to purchase a Blu-ray player.

#8 of 194 OFFLINE   Mike*HTF

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Posted May 23 2008 - 03:35 AM

Thanks for that post -

Does anyone (Jack Theaston?) know what level you would need to scan a film to achieve the equivalent of 35mm?

#9 of 194 OFFLINE   Brian Borst

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Posted May 23 2008 - 03:37 AM

Excuse me for asking this (perhaps dumb) question, but what good would a 6K transfer do, to a regular 35mm film? That already has a 4K resolution, doesn't it? Or does it has to do with the fact that it's Cinemascope (it's anamorphic, and 6K would give a far better transfer?)?
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#10 of 194 OFFLINE   Simon Howson

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Posted May 23 2008 - 04:59 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Borst
Excuse me for asking this (perhaps dumb) question, but what good would a 6K transfer do, to a regular 35mm film? That already has a 4K resolution, doesn't it? Or does it has to do with the fact that it's Cinemascope (it's anamorphic, and 6K would give a far better transfer?)?

I would've thought that 4K would be more than enough given the coarse grain structure of Eastmancolor stocks of that vintage.

But maybe they did some tests and found that 6K was an improvement?

Or maybe they worked out that 6K doesn't cost that much more than 4K, so thought they should use the extra resolution in the interests of future proofing?

Maybe having a 6K scan of the negative means they can go back to that master in 5 or 10 years time as digital restoration tools improve, thus meaning they won't have to scan the negative ever again.

Or maybe it is just a bit of over kill to ensure the board that they are doing an absolute cutting edge restoration.

#11 of 194 OFFLINE   Darren Gross

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Posted May 23 2008 - 05:09 AM

I wish they would just pay off the guy that has the complete prints and finally release it full restored. I'm sure transferring at 6K would cost more than whatever the guy wants.

#12 of 194 OFFLINE   Paul Hillenbrand

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Posted May 23 2008 - 06:30 AM

A Star Is Born Coming to Blu-ray scanned-restored-masterd @ 6K resolution:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blu-ray.com
Warner Brothers has revealed that they are currently restoring the 1964 classic 'A Star is Born' at 6K resolution, in hopes of soon releasing it as a Blu-ray disc. The film, which stars Judy Garland and James Mason, will be the first film to be completely mastered at 6K - from scanning to restoring to mastering - and is expected to take six months to complete.

Paul

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#13 of 194 OFFLINE   Brian Borst

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Posted May 23 2008 - 06:35 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon Howson
I would've thought that 4K would be more than enough given the coarse grain structure of Eastmancolor stocks of that vintage.

But maybe they did some tests and found that 6K was an improvement?

Or maybe they worked out that 6K doesn't cost that much more than 4K, so thought they should use the extra resolution in the interests of future proofing?

Maybe having a 6K scan of the negative means they can go back to that master in 5 or 10 years time as digital restoration tools improve, thus meaning they won't have to scan the negative ever again.

Or maybe it is just a bit of over kill to ensure the board that they are doing an absolute cutting edge restoration.

Probably all those options Posted Image. I'm sure they want to test it, because they want to use it on films that are going to need it (Ben-Hur perhaps/probably). Although on this one, it seems indeed a bit like overkill.
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#14 of 194 OFFLINE   MatthewA

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Posted May 23 2008 - 07:22 AM

I saw this on HDNet movies, and it looked pretty good, but not perfect. The Blu-Ray should be sensational!

But I'm surprised they would do 6K. Would an early Cinemascope production have that much info on its OCN to begin with?

Enough is enough, Disney. No more evasions or excuses. We DEMAND the release Song of the South on Blu-ray along with the uncut version of Bedknobs and Broomsticks on Blu-ray. I am going to boycott The Walt Disney Company until then.


#15 of 194 OFFLINE   MatthewA

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Posted May 23 2008 - 07:26 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Darren Gross
I wish they would just pay off the guy that has the complete prints and finally release it full restored. I'm sure transferring at 6K would cost more than whatever the guy wants.

My guess is that Warner has given up on trying to deal with him. Perhaps he's afraid of going to jail, like the one collector who had one of the negatives to the cut numbers when they were first reconstructing it it.

Enough is enough, Disney. No more evasions or excuses. We DEMAND the release Song of the South on Blu-ray along with the uncut version of Bedknobs and Broomsticks on Blu-ray. I am going to boycott The Walt Disney Company until then.


#16 of 194 OFFLINE   Russell G

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Posted May 23 2008 - 08:16 AM

This sounds pretty interesting. I never seen it. Are the lost scenes part of what was originally shown upon it's itintial release, or a directors cut thing? I'm outta the loop.

#17 of 194 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted May 23 2008 - 08:39 AM

I doubt that the OCN has 6k information, but there's no harm in harvesting an image at 6k via a Northlight, and downrezzing to 4k, which should perform nicely.

Taking the project through all phases at 6k would seem like overkill, especially in dirt cleanup, but a nice (albeit expensive) experiment nonetheless.

Warner is, and has been, extremely quality conscious with their in-house restoration projects.

RAH

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#18 of 194 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted May 23 2008 - 08:49 AM

I doubt that the OCN has 6k information, but there's no harm in harvesting an image at 6k via a Northlight, and downrezzing to 4k, which should perform nicely.

Taking the project through all phases at 6k would seem like overkill, especially in dirt cleanup, but a nice (albeit expensive) experiment nonetheless.

Warner is, and has been, extremely quality conscious with their in-house restoration projects.

RAH

"All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did." T.E. Lawrence


#19 of 194 OFFLINE   Matt Hough

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Posted May 23 2008 - 09:37 AM

For a movie as fine as this one, nothing is too good.

(Yep, I'm a fan!)

#20 of 194 OFFLINE   Douglas Monce

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Posted May 23 2008 - 11:01 AM

Will this still have the missing scenes with audio only, or has that footage been found?

Great to see another classic coming! Thank you Warner!!!

Doug
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