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poita

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Join date
11-Sep-2012
Last activity
18-Oct-2017
Posts
2675

Post History

Post
#1119654
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

I’m staying in Bathurst for the next two days seeing a specialist re my arm. Will be offline until Friday.

Post
#1119138
Topic
The problem of Owen Lars
Time

Possessed said:

Well I think it was at least before post production, I remember an interview with Mark where he said George pulled him aside before shooting the scene and told him so he would know to react stronger than expected.

Kershner pulled him aside just before they shot the scene, and told Hamill that George knows this, I know this, and now you know this. the implication was that if this leaks, it will have come from YOU.
On the set, David Prowse said ‘Obi Wan killed your father’, so the crew and other actors didn’t know the truth.
Even Harrison Ford only found out at the screening.
It was one of the best kept secrets ever, I can’t imagine them pulling it off now.

Post
#1119132
Topic
I'm finally getting the OOT on vhs
Time

rodneyfaile said:

I can’t imagine parting with anything Star Wars related. I don’t like the prequels but there is no way I’d ever get rid of my Phantom Menace VHS even.

Just curious, what would a VHS look like on a 65" screen?

I don’t know, but I was playing VHS on a 140" screen last night.
A lot depends on what you feed the composite video signal through before it hits the television.

Running through a Teranex, it looks passable, but still soft.

Post
#1118352
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

The trailer images look great, much more like a movie than a soap opera.

It has gotten me excited about this project. Hopefully the print is in good shape, it is described as ‘very good’ but that is often in the eye of the beholder 😃

The Phantom Menace print is on its way to me, I’ll be going through and inspecting and repairing any damage once it arrives here, hopefully within the next two weeks. I’ll post some photos of the reels once it arrives.

Post
#1117967
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

Okay, I’ve decided to go ahead with this, there seems to be a lot of people who would appreciate the Theatrical Version being preserved.

Any help going forwards much appreciated, the level of cleaning and scanning we can afford will depend quite a bit on donations going forwards.

Thanks to everyone that has shown interest so far, I haven’t seen the film since 1999, will be interesting to see how it looks.

Post
#1117299
Topic
Theatrical TPM Discussion Thread
Time

LHSmarchingredcoat said:

poita said:

Very much needed the total cost to me will be in the arena of five grand, so every bit anyone can chip in certainly helps.
I would love to contribute a little each month to a scan! What’s the best way to do that?

If you want to contribute each month or so, feel free to do so via paypal, or if you want to do something a bit different, you could download nicehash (https://miner.nicehash.com) and mine bitcoin now and again when your computer is idle, using the address in my signature, that would contribute a few dollars per month, and is kind of fun.

This post has been edited.

Post
#1117094
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

Thanks for the people who have shown interest so far, nice to see a couple of Aussies in there as well.

Everyone who has donated, if it all goes ahead, I’ll be sending details soon for the file-store, as I have anything to show, it will pop in there first.
I’ll be looking for people to help look for missing frames, and scanning errors etc. and will need help aligning the DTS tracks to the scans and other fun stuff.

I’ll be making a decision on Friday on TPM.

Post
#1116574
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

The DoF on that second shot would make me think it was not shot on HDCAM, though it could have been composited later to have the shallow focus plane.

Post
#1116572
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

RU.08 said:

Yeah I know we need to scan higher than 2K, just letting people know what we have. We’re not going to get 4K detail out of the print. Would they have produced prints straight from the digital files, or do they output a negative digitally to strike prints from?

Good question.

These days they do film outs directly quite often for prints, but with the large print run for TPM, and the technology of the day, then they would have had to have been striking prints from a neg.

Post
#1116511
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

All of the first unit footage for AOTC was recorded on (multiple) outboard recorders, the second unit often shot straight to HDCAM.

Post
#1116334
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

ZigZig said:

Of memory, all scenes of TPM were analogically filmed with Arriflex lenses except for one scene shooted directly in HDCAM.

90% of the film was processed digitally, which leaves still 10% of “natural” scenes, but the entire film was processed through a Digital Intermediate at 2K (but Poita’s remark is quite relevant).
Eventually, there were 2 final masters : one Kodak 35mm and one TI at 1280x1024.

The first LD/DVD/HDTV master was made from InterPositive ; the last BR master was made with a new scan directly from the 35mm master, fully scene by scene color-regraded.

On the other hand, AOTC and ROTS were digitally filmed with Sony cams at 2K.

I’ll try to find the exact information tonight.

I don’t know about the DI but TPM was shot on Arri 435ES and 535B cameras, the lenses were mostly Hawk anamorphics, shot at a 4.5 aperture when on set. Yet again, George wanted a soft look, like that on Star Wars where he shot often through nylon stocking (old school even at the time), so they shot a lot of TPM through a Tiffen ProMist soft filter, to try and achieve a similar look. They shot on Kodak 320T 5277, which is categorised as a low contrast stock, but it depends how you shoot it. Out in the desert they used EXR 5248, which is a slow stock, but light is rarely an issue outside in the desert sun.

Which scene was shot in HDCAM? That is really interesting.

So no matter what, the image is going to be a little soft, so scanning as high a resolution as we can will capture all that is there and any softness will be in the original, not as a result of the scanning.

Post
#1116327
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

The shoot was only 65 days, and then nearly two years of post production.
With that level of work, I would say most if not all of it went through a DI.

I see what you are getting at, however, we still need to scan at at least 4K as we aren’t just transferring a digital file directly from their servers, we are scanning a print.

If through some miracle the ‘2K grid’ that the print ‘originally’ was created from happened to perfectly line up with every CCD pixel on our scanner, well, umm… you see what I mean.
If we scanned at 2K we would end up reducing the resolution of the print to way below 2K as the ‘pixels’ as laid out on the film could not possibly line up perfectly with the pixels on our scanner CCD.

If that seems confusing, I’ll draw up a graphic to show what I mean.

Post
#1116305
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

Great stuff.
As mentioned, I’m trying to gauge interest, so anyone interested in seeing this happen, please throw in one or two dollars or something.
If another 20 people made even tiny donations, it would help it feel like there is an audience out there for this.
I, and others will be throwing hundreds of hours at this just for the scanning and transferring, backing up etc. even without any restoration, so it is good to feel like the work is being done because people want to see it.

To go through the process, first the reels are loaded onto a set of rewinds and inspected by hand to look for any splices, broken perforations, or any damage that might cause a problem in the scanner, and then any damage carefully repaired.

Each reel then has leader attached, and is taken to a clean room for ultrasonic cleaning. The technician will load the film into the cleaner, and again supervise the film as it moves slowly through the cleaning bath, buffers and is dried out the other side.
It is transferred onto cores, and then each one is loaded into the scanner one at a time. The hard drive array is initialised, and the reel and job numbers, timecode start points etc. are keyed into the control panel.
The film is then tensioned, the stock analysed and the density set.
The film is then focused and a test scan done.
Any last minute adjustments are done, then each frame is exposed 10 times onto the CCD. 3 passes each of Red, Green and Blue, to ensure that the full latitude is captured (at 16bits per pixel), and the tenth pass is infrared to capture any dust, hair or scratches so that they can be more easily repaired digitally.

Each frame is around 120MB, there are about 172,000 frames, and each are exposed 10 times, and after each is written to the disc, the next frame advances. At each scene change, the film stops momentarily, focus is re-done as on older prints the film tends do drift a bit from the focal plane, and the process continues until the reel is done, it is then rewound back onto its core, and packed away, and the next one loaded.

Each reel takes around 10-14 hours to scan, depending if there are any issues, and a two hour feature has around 6 or 7 reels.

Then the files have to be backed up, they are 20-23TB in size, so this takes many, many hours even with fast drives, and then transferred to HDDs to send out to be worked on.

Cleaning, scanning and transferring the files is over 100 hours of work on its own, on equipment that comes in just under eight hundred thousand US dollars.
This is why commercial scanning is so expensive, typically a commercial scan at this quality will run between $15-25K.

We are so lucky that scanning prints at truly archival quality has come along and that we are able to get this kind of thing done. With some films fading, they would be lost forever if we didn’t take on these projects ourselves.

Anyway, that is a bit of an insight into the process, in case anyone is interested in what goes into it, and why I like to be fairly choosy about which films get archived, we have limited resources, both in time and money and need to try and allocate it to the ones that are most meaningful/important to the community.

This post has been edited.

Post
#1116201
Topic
1997 Star Wars Special Edition 35mm Project
Time

I am going ahead with scanning the 1997 Star Wars-A New Hope Special Edition from two 35mm prints.

If anyone would like to help out with this, please let me know.(Check my signature for details)
I intend to have the first print scanned towards the end of November if I can get the funds together, definitely will be done before Xmas.

I’m not a fan of the Special Edition, but there are no High Definition home releases that are true to the 1997 SE Theatrical Release, the Blu-ray has a ton of changes compared to the SE you saw in cinemas in 1997.

Also, it will be helpful with restoring the Original 1977 Star Wars, as a source of frames missing from the original prints that we have (where they weren’t changed from the OT)

Any help appreciated with this, it is an expensive endeavour, but one worth doing.
Once this is done, I will be getting back to THX and the Original Trilogy.

For many this version of Star Wars was the first they saw on a cinema screen, so it deserves a preservation.

This post has been edited.

Post
#1116199
Topic
The Original Trilogy restored from 35mm prints
Time

I will be putting together a version matched to the print, so that we can see what the colour looked like and what changes were made.

I’m going ahead with ANH so any help appreciated.

Post
#1116198
Topic
The Phantom Menace on 35mm
Time

I need to make a decision on this by the end of the week.
So if anyone is interested and still on the fence, by all means speak up/donate so I can work out if I can go ahead with it or not.

Post
#1115450
Topic
Star Wars Trilogy SE bluray color regrade
Time

Ah, exporting frames is a whole other bag.
Pulling frames is part of the problem.
This is further exacerbated by then viewing the pulled frames in any given program, where the colour can look different yet again.

One way to avoid the problem is to use software that takes it into account properly, Davinci Resolve is free and works well for this and is properly colour managed.

This post has been edited.

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