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Interstellar - ColorMatching BluRay to 70mm

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I recently purchased a projector and went abouts setting it up and tweaking all the settings that I could. I decided to put in my Interstellar BluRay so I could see the magnificent Black Hole projected at 125" to relive the experience from in theaters.

I continued to scrub through the film, in awe at how well it looked. Then I came to the scene on Miller’s planet (the water one…giant waves…you’ve seen it) and remembered the 70mm film cell that came with the BluRay. The frame I possess is of Dr. Brand (Anne Hathaway) stuck underneath the wreckage in the water, which is why i remembered the cell.

I thought it would be a good idea to calibrate my projector using that shot because I had an “accurate version” to hold in my hand. I soon became frustrated because my efforts ceased to come close to what was on the cell. I looked up numerous settings that others with the same projector had posted online, and none came close. Most turned out to be awful to look at.


…And then it occurred to me, that maybe it wasn’t my projector at fault. It might just be the BluRay itself!


It’s been over a year since I watched the film last on BluRay and this seen seems to lack most of the color I remember from watching it in the theater. For the most part, the film looks great, but this scene in particular is very washed out. I know that other Nolan films, like The Dark Knight, have been given some love and attention on the forums, so I looked to see if anyone has tackled Interstellar.

The Raiders of the Lost Ark - 35 mm regrade by Dr.Dre is a great Topic, as are all of Dr.Dre’s color endeavors, but it’s the older films that get the regrades.

I ripped the Film off of the BluRay and found the same frame as the physical 70mm I have.

BluRay frame 102559

I did my best to photograph the Film cell with even white light, because I lack a legit film scanner and scanning on my printer bed produced unusable results. After photographing I spent close to an hour adjusting the white balance, contrast and vibrance to match what it looks like in real life. It now looks damn near identical -

70mm Film Cell - Brand under Wreckage

With Dr.Dre’s ColorMatching Tool I came up with this

ColorLUT - BluRay

When comparing the before and after, I can’t resist giving the rest of the Film such treatment.

http://screenshotcomparison.com/comparison/187160

I would love to hear other’s input and ideas concerning the BluRay and 70mm cells.

Thank You Dr.Dre for your amazing tools!

It doesn’t hurt to offer help, but it always hurts to disregard those that do. VEXED MEDIA, LLC.

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The regraded screenshot is a little harsh on my eyes, but maybe I’m just too used to the grayish BD. I’m definitely interested in seeing more frames (or maybe even a whole clip) regraded to match the 70mm. You can find people all over the Internet who have posted images of the frames they acquired, so it shouldn’t be too hard for get a look at other 70mm frames for reference.

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Christopher Nolan’s movies are processed photochemically without the use of digital intermediates, and from this comparison it’s obvious the digital master was done independently from the photochemical reveal resulting in digital copies that differ greatly from film prints in terms of colour and contrast. I assume having someone come up with a digital master that matches a film print would be time consuming as hell and so don’t bother which IMO is a criminal oversight.

BTW, Anne Hathaway’s face is brighter in the film cell than in the blu-ray screenshot.

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fmalover said:

Christopher Nolan’s movies are processed photochemically without the use of digital intermediates, and from this comparison it’s obvious the digital master was done independently from the photochemical reveal resulting in digital copies that differ greatly from film prints in terms of colour and contrast. I assume having someone come up with a digital master that matches a film print would be time consuming as hell and so don’t bother which IMO is a criminal oversight.

BTW, Anne Hathaway’s face is brighter in the film cell than in the blu-ray screenshot.

This! Also, the IMAX scenes in the Blu-Ray lack the punch. From the 70mm film cells that I’ve seen, the contrast is much deeper and the details are sharper on film than on the BD. Good luck for your project though!

What I’m most interested is in seeing the 2.40:1 to 1.43:1 version, as it was meant to be seen. I hope Nolan releases the IMAX scenes on another edition of the film, as he did with TDK Trilogy.

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Hi, been thinking about this film, is there an open-matte 16:9 version? Thanks.

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The Blu-Ray is 16:9. There is no open matte version of Interstellar. The film was shot on 35mm anamorphic (2.35:1) and IMAX 65mm (1.43:1). The Bluray emulates the IMAX experience by switching between full 2.40:1 and 1.78:1 (cropped vertically from 1.43:1). The DVD is constant 2.40:1.

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Papai2013 said:

The Blu-Ray is 16:9. There is no open matte version of Interstellar. The film was shot on 35mm anamorphic (2.35:1) and IMAX 65mm (1.43:1). The Bluray emulates the IMAX experience by switching between full 2.40:1 and 1.78:1 (cropped vertically from 1.43:1). The DVD is constant 2.40:1.

Thought I saw a 1.43:1 IMAX frame that on the BD is 2.35/2.40:1, has anyone else noticed this?

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Those are behind-the-scenes shots and only a few seconds long. None of the IMAX scenes (full length) are presented in the BD, in their original aspect ratio.

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TheSkeletonMan939 said:

The regraded screenshot is a little harsh on my eyes, but maybe I’m just too used to the grayish BD. I’m definitely interested in seeing more frames (or maybe even a whole clip) regraded to match the 70mm. You can find people all over the Internet who have posted images of the frames they acquired, so it shouldn’t be too hard for get a look at other 70mm frames for reference.

I just saw a 70mm showing last night. The colors in the regrade look correct to me. It had very strong blue-orange contrast, and not the green overtones of that BD frame posted. I couldn’t tell you about sharpness.

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How does the LUT hold up on other shots? Sometimes one frame is enough to get pretty good results. I used a single shot for my own TDK regrade, which was pretty close to the screener. Granted, I had to try different shots, but the results were pretty awesome. Maybe it works here too.

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archimedes said:

How does the LUT hold up on other shots? Sometimes one frame is enough to get pretty good results. I used a single shot for my own TDK regrade, which was pretty close to the screener. Granted, I had to try different shots, but the results were pretty awesome. Maybe it works here too.

From the same scene.

It doesn’t hurt to offer help, but it always hurts to disregard those that do. VEXED MEDIA, LLC.

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They look good but should be a bit more contrast y, like the prints. Bringing down the gamma a bit would make the image look more contrast y while not blowing up highlights as happens by increasing contrast. It will also help make the colours more punchy.

However, hold on a sec, the colours on the IMAX 70mm print should not reflect projected colours. In fact, the lamp temperature would actually make the colours on the print appear warmer than they are in the source. So, the blue-ish tint in the IMAX 70mm film cell sould not show up during projection. The 70mm print was intentionally struck cooler to compensate for the Kelvin temperature of the IMAX bulbs which should make the image slightly more yellow.

As for regular 70mm looking blue-ish, I don’t know whether all the theatrical versions of Interstellar (35mm, 70mm, IMAX 15/70) had the exact same colour timing. It is well known that even individual 35mm prints of other films have varied from each other in look, so this shouldn’t come as a surprise. there is bound to be differences in an organic process as opposed to digital, which is less fun.

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That 70mm correction seems to match up with how I remember the movie looking in IMAX.

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TServo2049 said:

That 70mm correction seems to match up with how I remember the movie looking in IMAX.

Ok. Feel good to be proven wrong, as I like these colours. 😃

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The one on the right matches my memory.

“After a time, you may find that having, is not so pleasing a thing after all, as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true.” - Spock
"People who alter or destroy works of art and our cultural heritage for profit or as an exercise of power are barbarians." - George Lucas

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I honestly can’t remember how the film color looked theatrically, but I think it would be neat to see it regraded like this.

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I will say that it didn’t feel this yellow when I was watching it, but my eyes were probably used to it, especially that far into the movie. I have been told by PDB, who saw it in multiple formats, that the 70mm did look yellow.

My memory keeps telling me that the spacesuits appeared white and the water appeared a little more blue, but I just know that I looked at the right images and they definitely made me think of how it looked in IMAX. (For the record, I have not seen Interstellar since the theaters, and I only saw it in IMAX.)

What I can tell you without any hesitation, is that it did NOT look like the images on the left. Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a single movie in theaters that looks like the images on the left - at least not on film.

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^…^ said:

It looks great!

I wonder if the LUT works well also with other scenes; may you post some examples?

I’m sure that a fully corrected version of the film will have to be done on a scene by scene basis. I plan on using images of the 70mm frames people received with their Blu-Ray copies as a reference for each of the scenes. If you would like to help me hunt as many images down of the 70mm frames that would most helpful (make sure it’s a reasonably large image). You can PM me what you find or paste links here I suppose (I want to refrain from endless posts of images here) and that will save me the trouble of searching everything myself.

For the moment I will apply the LUT to other scenes and see what that looks like, but I don’t think it will serve other scenes quite the same.

-VM

It doesn’t hurt to offer help, but it always hurts to disregard those that do. VEXED MEDIA, LLC.

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Here are some other interesting comparisons between the trailer and BluRay to hold you over.

BluRay
BluRay

Trailer
Trailer

BluRay
BluRay

Trailer
Trailer

BluRay
BluRay

Trailer
Trailer
(notice the more yellow skintones, and hair in the trailer. Has a slight green hue which they pulled out for the BluRay)

Of course trailer colors are never final, I don’t believe the final film looked EXACTLY as the trailer does but it presents the obvious fact that the BluRay does not represent what was played in theaters.


For your viewing pleasure


I took this frame from the BluRay:
BluRay
…and this 70mm cell I found:
70mm-cell
…and matched the BluRay to it to result in something wonderful!

Corrected_BluRay

The cell has a slightly warmer tone. Do you like the warmer tone? I kept with the cooler whites but either I’m okay with!
http://screenshotcomparison.com/comparison/208132

-VM

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It doesn’t hurt to offer help, but it always hurts to disregard those that do. VEXED MEDIA, LLC.

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About 70mm cells: I don’t know where to find them… hope someone else would chime in and help in this task!

Trailer: even if I’m aware that colors are (almost always) not the “right” ones, I prefer it, color wise.

Latest regrade: it’s nice, I like it, but too dark… try to use the BD luma “as is” - I often use this “trick”, as many BDs use the original negative as master, so colors could also be messed up - due to the technical problem to render color timing using digital manipulation, and/or deliberately revisionism… but it is supposed that contrast should be right - more or less…

[spoRv] projects: released | in progress | future | homepage: blog.spoRv.com| fan preservation forum: fanres.com|

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I’d agree with TServo2049, film prints do have a warmer push. But that warm does not feel like an overlay, or a yellow filter. It feels very organic. I saw The Dark Knight Rises in IMAX 15/70 and it also had almost the same type of colours as in the IMAX cells of Interstellar.
Lab dye colour has richer and more deeper colours than digital colour space allows. I have never seen a digitally graded film look even close to the gorgeous colours on a film print, ever!

So, I think keeping the warm tone of the film cell would make it more theatrically appropriate. But, correction has to be on a scene-by-scene basis, based on the numerous 70mm cells that are available in the internet.

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What kind of projector do you have? Would you be able to share your settings/specs?

I have a Benq w1070 do you think I can copy your settings?

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Lately I’ve tinkered with few “de-tealized” projects, and learned some new techniques; so, I’ve decided to give Interstellar a go…

The “inspired by 70mm” is a color grading made in Avisynth - no LUTs or color matching; I could make it even closer to 70mm, but in that case there would be white clipping, so I’ve chosen the best compromise, and it works well, it seems:

take a look at the comparison for the whole movie:
http://screenshotcomparison.com/comparison/216927

I’ve also compared it to the camrip - that is faaar to be considered a color reference; indeed, “as is”, it’s different (a lot) from BD and regrade; when adjusted (saturation lowered, magenta blanket removed, levels tweaked), it resemble sometimes the BD, sometimes the regrade, sometimes neither… and it happens also for subsequent shots - I suspect the autowhite and/or autogain are involved. But the fact that often is closer to the regrade than the BD, and that some members remembers (pun intended!) the colors in the theater to be closer to the 70mm scan may means it “could” be “right” - somehow…

I’m perfectly aware that it almost never happen that a single regrade setting works for a whole movie, but in this case it seems to work; still to watch it all, but I’ve tested few shots, and they look good; preparing a low def version and I’ll watch it in the next few hours, then I’ll write my conclusions.

[spoRv] projects: released | in progress | future | homepage: blog.spoRv.com| fan preservation forum: fanres.com|

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^…^ said:

Lately I’ve tinkered with few “de-tealized” projects, and learned some new techniques; so, I’ve decided to give Interstellar a go…

The “inspired by 70mm” is a color grading made in Avisynth - no LUTs or color matching; I could make it even closer to 70mm, but in that case there would be white clipping, so I’ve chosen the best compromise, and it works well, it seems:

take a look at the comparison for the whole movie:
http://screenshotcomparison.com/comparison/216927

I’ve also compared it to the camrip - that is faaar to be considered a color reference; indeed, “as is”, it’s different (a lot) from BD and regrade; when adjusted (saturation lowered, magenta blanket removed, levels tweaked), it resemble sometimes the BD, sometimes the regrade, sometimes neither… and it happens also for subsequent shots - I suspect the autowhite and/or autogain are involved. But the fact that often is closer to the regrade than the BD, and that some members remembers (pun intended!) the colors in the theater to be closer to the 70mm scan may means it “could” be “right” - somehow…

I’m perfectly aware that it almost never happen that a single regrade setting works for a whole movie, but in this case it seems to work; still to watch it all, but I’ve tested few shots, and they look good; preparing a low def version and I’ll watch it in the next few hours, then I’ll write my conclusions.

This is really cool. I would love to see more of your “de-tealized” workflow I guess you could call it. It does resemble my 70mm cell A LOT, though seeing it’s application to the whole film does make lots of scenes look unnatural. Scene by scene is obviously ideal, and if you can nail down a workflow we can work together and get this thing done pretty soon. I have a collection of around 20 film cells I downloaded all over the internet that ranges throughout the film. They would be okay references.

Seeing as how Dunkirk just came out (Saw it on 35mm planning for 70mm) this would be a good project to continue working on.

It doesn’t hurt to offer help, but it always hurts to disregard those that do. VEXED MEDIA, LLC.

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