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yotsuya

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Join date
2-Dec-2008
Last activity
26-Feb-2020
Posts
1,592

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Post
#937370
Topic
HBO Star Wars preservations
Time

Well, I can’t speak for the American market, but the BBC wanted copies destroyed or returned when the contract was up. I suspect that some US stations might have kept the contract going for years so they may have kept a copy that they might air periodically. But one a contract was up and not renewed, the tapes went back or got wiped. With the BBC’s bad archiving, lots of things got lost because of this. The occasional stray turns up that didn’t get destroyed or returned so the policy is well documented in hopes more strays turn up.

So my guess is that tapes sent out for broadcast were wiped afterward.

Post
#937267
Topic
Harmy's RETURN OF THE JEDI Despecialized Edition HD (AVCHD DVD9 & NTSC DVD5 available!!! SEE FIRST POST!!!)
Time

TV’s Frink said:

yotsuya said:

I think 4k home media is largely a waste. For most titles, DVD is still good.

I read those two things and decided not to read on.

Most movies weren’t made with such detail in mind. Most don’t need that level of detail to tell the story. New movies look great in 1080p, but 720p for HD broadcast for fine for most. For those who sit far across room from the screen and are more interested in the story, 480p is plenty. I still watch DVD’s And I don’t bother with Blu-ray from Netflix. Now a movie like Interstellar… that is a Blu-ray movie. When you watch for the visuals then more pixels becomes important. Vital. I’d love to see Lawrence of Arabia in a 4k or higher projection. But for the latest comedy or a typical silver screen classic… DVD works.

Post
#937065
Topic
Remastering the 1981 Episode IV Title/Crawl/Flyover
Time

I have extracted the Title fade and the crawl from TESB and ANH blu-rays respctively. I manually removed the excess black background from the Title after using some video processes to isolate the color portion and forcing everything else to black. It would have been much simpler if the title wasn’t black text with a yellow border. There was just no easy way to do it. I matched the fade out to the LD source. I used almost the same process to get the crawl, but I had to add a layer to bring out the area where it fades. I didn’t need to edit the individual frames since there was nothing black that I needed to keep so it is a simple lighten layer. I need to still tweak the starfield, but I have the alignment between the starfield a moons. This rendering is just a draft of where it is now. I’m checking the alignment, star brightness, star placement, and pan for issues and overt differences from the original. The flyover at the end is just a place holder and is from TN1’s SSE bonus 81 Crawl sequence.

https://vimeo.com/165022953
password: OT

Post
#936878
Topic
Harmy's RETURN OF THE JEDI Despecialized Edition HD (AVCHD DVD9 & NTSC DVD5 available!!! SEE FIRST POST!!!)
Time

I think 4k displays are a great thing. I think 4k (or higher) preservations of of titles is awesome. I think 4k home media is largely a waste. For most titles, DVD is still good. For high detail films, Blu-ray is pretty much all you need. Going higher produces diminishing returns and it won’t help most titles. Most titles aren’t 4k ready. I believe that 4k maxes out what 35mm film can capture. Higher is good for things shot on larger film stock, but those aren’t as common. I don’t think the average person is going to be able to tell the difference between 1080p and 4k. I think the extra display pixels will do more for the content than increasing the resolution of the content.

I know there are many people out there who will have a setup that enables them to really tell the difference, but they are a minority (though I’m not so sure that this site doesn’t lean the other way). 4k is more suited to 3D and gaming than motion pictures.

Post
#936847
Topic
Remastering the 1981 Episode IV Title/Crawl/Flyover
Time

towne32 said:

So until we find out what he has, if anything, might as well keep improving our skills by working on a remaster.

Well we’ve already seen a list of at least some of the scans he has done, so I don’t think the “if anything” is really valid. But you’re correct that you’re proceeding how you best can, given that you don’t have those scans or know when it would be possible.

What he has scanned doesn’t really tell us what shape it is in. What we need to do a proper restoration is a scan that contains a proper starfield and the final frame. If he has something like that and someone with the right skills restores it (stabilizing and removing damage) then what I’m trying to accomplish can be scrapped, but if it isn’t complete than my project might serve as a guide to fixing it. I really hope he has something. That is what I really want.

Post
#936489
Topic
Remastering the 1981 Episode IV Title/Crawl/Flyover
Time

We are all anxious to see what Poita has been up to, but I have heard of no time estimates so far. Besides, using similar techniques as Harmy uses would create a version that is appropriate to tack on to the Despecialized Edition. So until we find out what he has, if anything, might as well keep improving our skills by working on a remaster.

Post
#936331
Topic
Remastering the 1981 Episode IV Title/Crawl/Flyover
Time

You could do that if you have access to those sources and know how to align the images. I still don’t know if that would be high enough quality or if you could recover enough detail. I’m more comfortable remastering it from other sources. That is something I can do and I have access to everything I need. At the moment the flyover is the issue, but there are many ways to address that. I need it to match in quality to the GOUT, the Despecialized Edition, and the 35mm film scan (I hear we are soon to see a second version of it).

Post
#936224
Topic
Remastering the 1981 Episode IV Title/Crawl/Flyover
Time

The 1981 Title/Crawl/Flyover is the version seen by everyone on broadcast and home video between 1983 and 1996. It exists out there in many forms, but not one of them is up to even the standards of the 2006 GOUT. Some come close, but the 2006 GOUT was transferred from the master video tape (with the 1981 crawl replaced with the original 1977 crawl) to DVD, making it much higher quality than the 400 lines of video stored on any of the LD versions. Since this is the version I watched so much at home (such as the SciFi Channel premier in 1992), it is the version I want if I am going to watch the original cut of Star Wars. To get it at an acceptable quality, it will have to be remastered. Now, if we were just making it from scratch, you couldn’t say that. The goal here is to take existing elements and recombine them back into an accurate version of the 1981 sequence. The other option is a scan of the print, but the only one currently available suffers from a variety of issues, not the least of which is a lack of a starfield to speak of.

First up, the starfield.

Here is the first place where TESB comes in. When the created the 1981 sequence, they used the starfield from TESB. But it isn’t the straight starfield. It is offset so you can’t just lift the TESB starfield. Add to that it is at a sligltly different angle and there is some lens distortion and it becomes very difficult to use the TESB sequence starfield. Darth Lucas has noted that they reuse the same starfield over and over and found that most of the missing left side can be found. I thought about that, but after examining what is at hand, I have taken the route of pulling what I can from the best sources. Team Negative 1’s bonus with the SSE release isn’t completely lacking in stars, but it has only the brightest and you have to manipulate the image and pick the right frames to get what few are there. I started with that as one layer. Then I turned to the LD sources. The Japanese Special Collection is eliminated right away because of how it is cropped. The Definitive Edition LD (or the Faces version which uses the same source video) is the next best source. I could have gone with one of the newer archived versions, but my goto version for the DE is my TR47 set. I aligned the two starfields and painted out the stars that were on the 35mm scan. A more accurate version could use that for the left side and the TESB to recover even more stars on the rest of the screen, but that would create an imbalance so I stuck with just that. I did find a way to create a diffuse background layer of stars. The result is this:

A careful examination reveals that the moons do not move in sync with the starfield, meaning they were composited in later. A remaster must take this into account, which is why I created the starfield and moons on different layers. The moons and planet are the same in all versions, but the placement was different in the 1981 crawl. They are easy to recover from whichever version of the sequence you thing they look the best in. I used a layering of the SSE and the blu-ray.

Then we come to the other reason the TESB crawl is important. If you watch the video I posted, you will notice that each of the ANH crawls has the title receed at different rates. However, if you compare the 1981 sequence to TESB (something I just noticed this morning), you will see it exactly matches until it fades out (it is a simple fade out while the TESB title continues to receed for a few more frames (until the crawl starts) before vanishing. That means isolating the title from the TESB stars will give an accurate element for the title. The 97 SE (and subsequent DVD and BR releases) reused the crawl from the 1981 sequence, so separating that from the stars will give a good element to remaster that. Not quite as simple as it sounds, but not impossible.

That takes us to the flyover. That is probably the hardest part of the entire sequence. The 77, 81, and 97 versions all seem similar, but the 77 sequence has a noticable black line around the Star Destroyer as it crosses over the moon. They recomped it in 1981 to eliminate that artifact and used the same elements in the 1997 SE (but with the 1977 starfield, moons, and planet behind them).

I have not decided how I want to proceed with the flyover. The BR version has issues with the lasers. The broadcast version of the SE isn’t very clear (similar DNR to the GOUT and LD’s) and the two SSE versions are grainy. Perhaps some combination, but I have not decided how I want to proceed.

Post
#936212
Topic
Remastering the 1981 Episode IV Title/Crawl/Flyover
Time

This has come up in a number of other threads and since I am determined that someone needs to do it (I’m trying, but it is taxing my skills), I thought there should be a thread to discuss it.

What better way to start than with a video that shows 4 title sequences together - the original 77 sequence, the 1981 sequence, the 1997 SE sequence and the TESB sequence. Why include the TESB sequence? well, that will become clear later. It shares to things in common with the 1981 sequence that are important for comparison. The versions I have used are the 2006 GOUT, the TR47 version of the Definitive Edition LD, the broadcast version of the 97 SE, and the 2006 GOUT of TESB.

https://vimeo.com/160390349
password OT

Post
#936192
Topic
Estimating the original colors of the original Star Wars trilogy
Time

AntcuFaalb said:

yotsuya said:
From what we have seen from the Technicolor scans of Star Wars, there is some green tint, and DrDre has noticed a additional red tint, but in terms of contrast and saturation, the colors seem to very much match our other sources.

The two 35mm IB Technicolor scans poita has had done for our team have some considerable differences from our '80s Eastman dupe LPP scan, even when each is corrected to their respective print. As noted earlier, the techs tend to be more contrasty and are more saturated.

Well, the clips and images I’ve seen don’t really show that. I’m also comparing them to what I’ve been doing to restore the colors to both the GOUT and BR as well as reference photos. I see the color difference, but not the contrast or saturation. And from what I’ve seen, the other prints have some pretty serious issues that arise from the photo duplication process. You may be quite correct, but I haven’t seen it.

Post
#936136
Topic
Harmy's Despecialized Star Wars 1977 - Color Adjustment Project for v2.7 (released)
Time

It’s all what you are familiar and comfortable with. I like Windows and Android, Mac is OK bit a bit confusing, but Linux is just a maze (or was the last time messed with it). My wife is Mac all the way and my best friend is a Linux guru. I’ve tried them all and I stick withe the one I know the best. I also use legacy software so switching isn’t really an option.

Post
#936041
Topic
Estimating the original colors of the original Star Wars trilogy
Time

AntcuFaalb said:

yotsuya said:

For our beloved 1977 Star Wars, this does mean we can’t be 100% certain of the quality of the extant prints. Lucas obviously had the best one.

No, Lucas had to borrow a 35mm IB Technicolor print from a collector to use as a reference for the 97SE. This particular collector was fortunate enough to receive his print back from LFL when they were done.

Serves me right for listening to what GL had to say. I was under the impression that he had a print in his personal collection that they used.

yotsuya said:

the Technicolor prints are a bit off in a variety of ways. I’m thinking, since they were shutting down production in 77, that they are probably print control issues rather than fade issues.

The Technicolor IB process introduces color changes independent of quality control. IB Technicolor prints tend to have greater contrast, saturation, and are shifted toward green. They may be fade-free, but this doesn’t mean that they’re truly accurate to their source.

Well, the early Technicolor process had many color issues. They refined it as time went on to the point where next to 70mm, a Technicolor print was probably the highest quality image that audiences could see. From what we have seen from the Technicolor scans of Star Wars, there is some green tint, and DrDre has noticed a additional red tint, but in terms of contrast and saturation, the colors seem to very much match our other sources.

Post
#935477
Topic
Estimating the original colors of the original Star Wars trilogy
Time

One thing to note, with a Technicolor print, you do not get very much added grain. That is a huge benefit in clarity. As a frequent viewer of TCM, I can tell you that they usually just telecine the prints they have on file in the archive for broadcast. You can really tell that the quality of some of the early Technicolor prints was not that great as even at 720p there is some obvious misalignment. It doesn’t diminish the fantastic colors or the fairly sharp image. Not as sharp as the high quality black and white, but sharper than some of the other color formats. Though I think with access to the original negatives and the color separations, modern computer technology could achieve a higher alignment. From what Mike Verta has done, I think you could even scan one of those old Technicolor prints and realign the color and adjust for any fading or printing issues and achive a decent (for home viewing or broadcast) HD picture quality.

For our beloved 1977 Star Wars, this does mean we can’t be 100% certain of the quality of the extant prints. Lucas obviously had the best one. They are a good reference, but the images that DrDre has been showing us tend to show that the Technicolor prints are a bit off in a variety of ways. I’m thinking, since they were shutting down production in 77, that they are probably print control issues rather than fade issues. I think if we combine information we are gathering about the color film stock prints with what we have on the Technicolor prints we will be about as close as we can get. We need to identify how the colors are different and apply that to a technicolor print scan to get as close to the original as is possible at this point.

Post
#935451
Topic
team negative1 - star wars 1977 - 35mm theatrical version (release details and updates)
Time

I’ve tried to find a good DTS decoder with no luck. The best I’ve been able to do is to turn it into a lossy AAC file that I can then split apart. Since I keep having to go through a lossy stage, I’m thinking I might as well just stick to the multi-track AC3 audio. And I have a lot of 5.1 versions because I figured out how to extract the surround information from the Dolby Stereo encoded tracks (i.e., the original 1977 Dolby Stereo of Star Wars) and how the LFE signal was extracted.

Post
#935086
Topic
Star Wars Custom Blu Ray Set
Time

I took some time and created a better starfield. I was able to retrieve the brightest stars from the 81 crawl that TN1 included with the SSE. The medium stars are from the TR46 LD preservation of the DE. I included a diffuse field of stars in the background that were the result of some filtering I tried to do that failed, but it did produce a field of very dim stars. I was trying to filter the dimmest stars from the Grindhouse TESB opening crawl. I pulled the planet and moons from an overly of the SSE and the BR (the moons and planets lined up perfectly - so did the stars but I filtered them out). The did not line up perfectly with the 81 crawl. I had to resize each one individually. I cropped the image to to the SSE planet. That is a fair match to the cropping in TR47. I usually work with layers and this one has 4 visible and some other reference layers (such as the full TR47 starfield. I would have used the JSC or the OUTRules, but both share the JSC cropping of the image. I opted for the most complete starfield I could find. Next up, the running background plate for the crawl and flyover.

Post
#934593
Topic
Star Wars Custom Blu Ray Set
Time

Funny, what I’m lacking to finish mine is a stable image. I’m downloading both your versions to see if either of them will work. The starfield is not simple. It is quite complex and to recreate it properly you have to match it to a video of the original 1981 crawl. I’m using my copy of the TR47 archive that I’ve had for many years. It has many flaws, but it is at 24fps, not 30 as many LD preservations are, and the stars are clearly visible at the key points (when the crawl vanishes and just before the blockade runner appears.

Before and after those key points, the starfield doesn’t moves and it is pretty simple. Between, those two spots the starfiled stretches as it moves and the moons are not fixed against the starfield. There is a star right next to the smaller moon and you can actually see their relative positions change.

The one hurdle I have not even gotten to (because I don’t have a stable flyover) is the blue engine glow that covers the screen. I had some thoughts on that, but haven’t exactly figured out the mechanics of how to create a matt so the stars don’t bleed through the star destroyer, but the blue covers both. I was thinking of duplicating the star destroyer layer and use the brighten layer to make the starts shine through the blue glow and they a matted star destroyer over the top.

I’m much better editing single images than moving images. I have several tools that let me pull out the stars on the LD and make them look more like the stars from the SSE and BR versions. I haven’t completed my final rendering of the stars. I found that the photography of the TESB starfield and the 81 crawl starfield are very different so I was going to go through and use both to create something. I plan on using the LD starfield as is to start with, reduce and sharpen the stars, then copy over the TESB stars where the LD stars don’t look right (there are several places where the low LD resolution makes clumps).

My goal is to have a version of the 81 crawl that fits with the GOUT or the SSE so my goal was a modest 720p version. But considering the quality of the 35mm scans, that should work if rendered at 1080p.

Post
#934530
Topic
Estimating the original colors of the original Star Wars trilogy
Time

The thing I keep coming up with when looking at correcting ANH is that you can’t go too bright. I feel strongly that some of the crushed blacks in the DVD/BR are supposed to be. That is why few of us remember seeing the garbage mattes or Darth Vader’s red eyes until we saw it on TV. Those things are artifacts of a presentation that is too bright. Funny how my attempts to color correct Star Wars are leading to me looking at other movies differently. I’m not just comparing it to on set photographs, but to other movies. I think that because ANH is filled with sand and artificial corridors (either in white or gray) we tend to think of it as a fairly low color movie, but R2, Threepio, the many lights, laser blasts, explosion, and light sabers, as well as some props and costumes, are actually quite colorful and a lot of times those colors are diminished too much, I think in reaction to the almost neon tone of the DVD/BR releases. I think doing a sample correction to compare it to a particular color reference is great, but those brightened versions are way too bright. I prefer the darker version done just with the algorithm.