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Alien 1979 35mm scan opportunity

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With BATB almost funded, I have the opportunity to scan an Alien print. This fabulous print is faded red, no doubt missing many frames, and was described as being “splicy”! Here are some pics:

After a quick color correction:

Quick color correction:

Bluray (frame accurate):

The last picture above appears to be completely unfaded, or has low fade. Notice that the Bluray blues have been way over-boosted to the point that blacks in that shot appear as a dark blue. Here’s a quick re-grade of the Bluray:

Although most of the print is faded, I believe there will be other unfaded sections in it from other splices, but that’s something we won’t really know until we have it scanned. Even though the images above are just photos on a light table, and don’t show the full projected colors, it is very clear that the Bluray colors are not print accurate at all - notice that black level!!

Once scanned this will passed on to PDB for restoration and release. Special thanks go to Williarob for putting me in contact with the collector.

Scanning cost is €720. If you are interested in helping please contact me by PM.

This post has been edited.

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Good news about the acquisition of the ALIEN print.

If there was a film that I would like to see in a grindhouse-quality, it would be that film. Seeing all the print-marks and color deterioration mixed with the film’s production design—the unkept, dirty quality of the Nostromo–are a good fit.

Count me in.

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I thought I’d have a look at that shot on the DVDs. This is interesting - here’s the older DVD:

Regrade:

Auto color-balance:

The 2003 DVD:

They both have pretty much the same color grading, and the regrade is less aggressive than the BD to bring the colors to match the photo of the print. Notice the auto-balance though, this is what happened when I did the same thing with the Bluray screenshots:

You can see that it remains more teal. The 4k restoration of Alien featured on the Bluray was probably made using pre-color graded film elements. In this shot it is the flashing lights that appears to give it the original blue-grading, and it appears that this was digitally enhanced similar to the Matrix’s green color grading on Bluray.

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Yeah that’s a really good question. I’m not sure about that specific scene, most of the print will be badly faded, although we can recover the colours of course. The print has sections spliced in from other prints, and sometimes those have lower fade or no fade at all, and we (PDB and I) have seen one section that comprises several minutes that we know has no fade at all!

Check out the soundtracks in the photos - they all look like glorious mono… except the first one that looks to be stereo! We might end up with quite a funky soundtrack. 😄

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By the way if there’s any Britons here, Alien is playing in 70MM at the Prince Charles Cinema in London on the 1st, 3rd, and 7th of June (details here). If you go please take notes and then tell us how it compares to the Bluray colour grading, contrast, and black levels. 😃

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RU.08 said:

Check out the soundtracks in the photos - they all look like glorious mono… except the first one that looks to be stereo! We might end up with quite a funky soundtrack. 😄

Those look like stereo optical tracks to me - two stripes. They probably look like similar channels in those sections because they’re dialogue scenes, i.e. common information to be directed to the centre by the decoder.

I’m certainly not aware of the existence of a mono Alien mix, anyway…

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RU.08 said:

By the way if there’s any Britons here, Alien is playing in 70MM at the Prince Charles Cinema in London on the 1st, 3rd, and 7th of June (details here). If you go please take notes and then tell us how it compares to the Bluray colour grading, contrast, and black levels. 😃

No promises but I’ll try. 😃

Recent captures…

*The Hunger Games HDTV 1080p (UK theatrical alternate version: not on Blu-ray)

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Looks good, how many reels are there in total?

Donations welcome: paypal.me/poit
bitcoin:13QDjXjt7w7BFiQc4Q7wpRGPtYKYchnm8x
Help get The Original Trilogy preserved!

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Good question, I don’t know off-hand. We think it’s a UK print given that we found it in Europe, although it could be a US print. And of course there are two or three different stocks (probably all Kodak stocks) in the print.

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Well seeing as there are no surviving original Alien prints that are not fading, I think this is a really important project to get done.

I’ll send you a PM, I hope enough people chip in to get this done before the prints are all faded too far to be salvageable.

Donations welcome: paypal.me/poit
bitcoin:13QDjXjt7w7BFiQc4Q7wpRGPtYKYchnm8x
Help get The Original Trilogy preserved!

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Yeah, I might be able to give a little help on this one.

Worst May the 4th EVER.

Ol’ George has the GOUT, I see.

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RU.08 said:

By the way if there’s any Britons here, Alien is playing in 70MM at the Prince Charles Cinema in London on the 1st, 3rd, and 7th of June (details here). If you go please take notes and then tell us how it compares to the Bluray colour grading, contrast, and black levels. 😃
Had tickets but had to miss it sadly, I saw aliens there tho

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Yes, we should be able to get onto it soon. I’ll need some donations to make it happen of course, so feel free to send me a private message if you’re interested in making a pledge towards the scanning cost!

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