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Star Trek Remastered in HD


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#1 Tenolian Bell

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Posted 17 September 2006 - 01:49 PM

With HD broadcast becoming more popular, the looming shut off of the NTSC signal, and HD-DVD/Blu-ray. Old shows need to be remastered for the new medium. What they are doing with Star Trek sets an interesting precedent for remastering old sci-fi shows for HD.

Of course using the original camera negative from 1966 they have retransferred it to 1080P. They have remastered the original recorded audio for stereo surround sound. They have re-recorded the Star Trek title and theme music for stereo surround sound.

The surprising part of this is that they are are also upgrading the visual effects. They are replacing all of the shots of model space ships and drawn planets with CGI elements in HD resolution. All transporter effects, laser fire, and electronic explosions will be recreated with current technology GCI. The painted background art for planets will be given more depth with current CGI technology.

These changes are in preparation to broadcast the original Star Trek in HD and for HD-DVD/Blu-ray disk sets.

www.startrek.com
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#2 Filip Plesha

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 07:29 PM

In my mind, at this point in time, it's not supose to be realistic, it's supose to be film history. The crappy effects are part of the whole original Star Trek look and feel.

But I guess they are looking more at it as a product which is supose to entertain the audience on the same level as a modern show would.
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#3 Marty Hamrick

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 08:17 AM

In my mind, at this point in time, it's not supose to be realistic, it's supose to be film history. The crappy effects are part of the whole original Star Trek look and feel.


I would initially agree with that,but the series of Star Trek movies erased a lot of the "tradition" that surrounds the old show.The Klingons,for example, were made completely different in the movies than in the old 60's series.

I don't think Star Trek fans will be too upset.
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#4 Leo Anthony Vale

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 11:48 AM

I would initially agree with that,but the series of Star Trek movies erased a lot of the "tradition" that surrounds the old show.The Klingons,for example, were made completely different in the movies than in the old 60's series.

I don't think Star Trek fans will be too upset.


---But the less than perfect look of the old FX shots are a better match to the studio sets than slick pootertoons would be.
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#5 John Holland

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 11:59 AM

And the awful lighting . John Holland ,London.
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#6 Mitch Gross

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 04:38 PM

And the awful lighting . John Holland ,London.

Hey, you have a problem with the shadow of a fern on the back wall of a spaceship?
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#7 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 23 September 2006 - 06:24 AM

Hi,

I don't think the lighting was particularly awful; I think they were trying to do something a bit new and special, and it hasn't stood the test of time very well, but I suspect for all the fact that it was a fairly quickly-produced TV series, someone, somewhere, was trying.

Phil
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#8 Tim Partridge

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Posted 23 September 2006 - 06:43 AM

It was the ONLY way anyone knew how to light sci-fi TV in the old Hollywood studio system- STAR TREK was a Desilu production and that company had a very uniform "filmed tv" look (check out Karl Freund's not at all expressionist work on the I LOVE LUCY show). It's all very good, high-end three point hard light and nothing else, because that is all they did. It's not like THE NEXT GENERATION where all the new DPs were inspired by Jordan Cronenwerth, low fill high contrast glam/genre look (and twenty years of cinematography transition that happened just after STAR TREK TOS).

Howie Schwartz's work on BATMAN from the same time as STAR TREK TOS was something truly special from that era. All the rest of genre tv, STAR TREK included, was just standard Irwin Allen quality fare. B movies on TV.

Hey, at least STAR TREK The original series wasn't edited on video...
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#9 Leo Anthony Vale

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Posted 23 September 2006 - 01:55 PM

It was the ONLY way anyone knew how to light sci-fi TV in the old Hollywood studio system- STAR TREK was a Desilu production and that company had a very uniform "filmed tv" look (check out Karl Freund's not at all expressionist work on the I LOVE LUCY show). It's all very good, high-end three point hard light and nothing else, because that is all they did. It's not like THE NEXT GENERATION where all the new DPs were inspired by Jordan Cronenwerth, low fill high contrast glam/genre look (and twenty years of cinematography transition that happened just after STAR TREK TOS).


'I Love Lucy' was a multi camera sit-com.
Desilu made comedies which are usually high key.
Desilu also made westerns and crime shows. 'The Untouchables' was Desilu.
These tended to have more dramatic lighting.

I wouldn't say Desilu had a house style.

As for three point hard light, big budget studio features were using it a lot.

'Star Trek' did use wide angles quite a bit. which is always nice to look at.

Also it premiered in the second year that the networks went all color.
The standard guidelines for lighting color for TV called for frighteningly low light ratios.

PS some items from a Wikipedia article about "God's ten-star general in the war against media pornography"

-That Canada is using science fiction to somehow destroy the United States, citing William Shatner's Canadian nationality and the fact that the X-Files is filmed in Canada.

-That Star Trek is pornographic and that it is part of the New World Order.

http://en.wikipedia....ristian_Webster
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#10 Tim Partridge

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Posted 23 September 2006 - 02:39 PM

'I Love Lucy' was a multi camera sit-com.
Desilu made comedies which are usually high key.
Desilu also made westerns and crime shows. 'The Untouchables' was Desilu.
These tended to have more dramatic lighting.

I wouldn't say Desilu had a house style.

As for three point hard light, big budget studio features were using it a lot.

'Star Trek' did use wide angles quite a bit. which is always nice to look at.

Also it premiered in the second year that the networks went all color.
The standard guidelines for lighting color for TV called for frighteningly low light ratios.


I've never considered anything DESILU made to not look like it was made for the TV of the time. Best check\ out the UNTOUCHABLES again.

I'm not implying that three point hard was a low budget thing (I called it "old Hollywood studio"), just that STAR TREK adhered to that old, traditional, generic look of sci-fi which Irwin Allen (a B pic specialist) seemed to be the greatest exponent of during that period. Photographically, STAR TREK sits comfortably between VOYAGE TO THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA and TIME TUNNEL. Infact, I'd call STAR TREK photographically interchangable with LOST IN SPACE.

Leo-

would love to hear your opinions on Schwartz's BATMAN (movie and TV show).
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#11 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 24 September 2006 - 01:28 AM

Is this thread saying that 40 year old film stocks allowed for as much daring when it came to lighting as can now be done with the new film stocks? Were the choice of lights and camera gear every bit as agile as they are now, or are we talking, Icebergs dead ahead when we talk about lighting design for color television shows in the late 60's?
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#12 John Adolfi

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 11:21 AM

In some ways I like the look. Colors were pronounced and you could see everything.
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#13 John Holland

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 11:31 AM

To be fair it wasnt just american tv shows lit this way in the mid/lateish 60s , Hollywood movies suffered from same poop lighting ,unlike in europe , until the [Rebel ] Conrad Hall , and a few others changed it and had loads of crap from the old farts who ran the studio system . John Holland , London.
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#14 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 12:25 PM

In some ways I like the look. Colors were pronounced and you could see everything.


I agree.

Comic Book Colors with great storylines behind them.
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#15 Leo Anthony Vale

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 03:14 PM

I've never considered anything DESILU made to not look like it was made for the TV of the time. Best check\ out the UNTOUCHABLES again.

I'm not implying that three point hard was a low budget thing (I called it "old Hollywood studio"), just that STAR TREK adhered to that old, traditional, generic look of sci-fi which Irwin Allen (a B pic specialist) seemed to be the greatest exponent of during that period. Photographically, STAR TREK sits comfortably between VOYAGE TO THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA and TIME TUNNEL. Infact, I'd call STAR TREK photographically interchangable with LOST IN SPACE.

Leo-

would love to hear your opinions on Schwartz's BATMAN (movie and TV show).


---I'm from a part of town where the ABC affilate's signal was blocked by a large hill.
And we didn't have a color set.

So I didn't get a good idea of the picture quality on ABC shows back then.
Haven't seen 'Time Tunnel' since then. Caught some 'Voyage...' episodes in the late 70s on a B/W set.
So I can't judge those.
Irwin Allen shows definitely had the better, more expensive looking sets.

I wouldn't call 'Lost in Space' and 'Star Trek' photographically interchangable.
I must have eventually seen some LiS episodes in color, but my memories of it are solidly B/W.
I can't say if it used as much colored light as 'Trek'.
I recall it as standard TV lighting. Mostly that big overcast daylight desert planet.

Trek's lighting strikes me as being goofier. All the overly dramatic Joan Crawford lighting on close ups that didn't match the wider shots. Not that I didn't enjoy it. I tended to be disappointed in episodes where the lighting wasn't as Shatneresque.
With all the colored light and wide angles it wasn't band, like the tasteful lighting on the newer Treks.

Most of the 'Batman' I watched was in snowy ghosty B/W. The decent signal color was still at least 15-20 years back.
I'll have check the movie out of the library and get back to you on it.
What sticks with me most about the movie is that every shot of some thing floating at sea has the same cloud formation in the background.
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#16 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 06:16 PM

I liked the photography of the original "Star Trek" -- no, it's not on the level of what Freddie Young was doing in the mid 1960's for David Lean, but it certainly was one of the better photographed color TV shows on the air at the time. I can imagine it was quite a challenge to shoot that show back then.

And I agree that in some ways, it was more enjoyable than the blander lighting of many "Next Generation" episodes, especially the early episodes which couldn't figure out which era of cinematography they wanted to be in...
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#17 Patrick McGowan

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 07:54 PM

The surprising part of this is that they are are also upgrading the visual effects. They are replacing all of the shots of model space ships and drawn planets with CGI elements in HD resolution. All transporter effects, laser fire, and electronic explosions will be recreated with current technology GCI. The painted background art for planets will be given more depth with current CGI technology.


That sounds truly awful.

Hey, remember when this happened to another Sci-Fi franchise with "Star" in the title?

How did that turn out?

I hope they can digitally fix Shatner's... everything.
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#18 Tenolian Bell

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 07:07 PM

That sounds truly awful.

Hey, remember when this happened to another Sci-Fi franchise with "Star" in the title?

How did that turn out?


There is a difference.

Star Wars added elements that were not in the original.

Star Trek won't add anything new. The graphics will remain the same, only updating the original look to HD resolution.
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#19 Patrick McGowan

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 09:53 PM

Alright, I'm sorry. I just thought I read this:

They are replacing all of the shots of model space ships and drawn planets with CGI elements in HD resolution. All transporter effects, laser fire, and electronic explosions will be recreated with current technology GCI. The painted background art for planets will be given more depth with current CGI technology.


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#20 Leo Anthony Vale

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Posted 27 September 2006 - 11:56 AM

There is a difference.

Star Wars added elements that were not in the original.

Star Trek won't add anything new. The graphics will remain the same, only updating the original look to HD resolution.


Oh, no?

From startrek.com:

The most noticeable change will be redoing many of the special effects, created with 1960s technology, with 21st century computer-generated imagery (CGI). Upgrades include:

Space ship exteriors ? The Enterprise, as well as other starships, will be replaced with state of the art CGI-created ships. The new computer-generated Enterprise is based on the exact measurements of the original model, which now rests in the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.
Show opening ? The Enterprise and planets seen in the main title sequence will be redone, giving them depth and dimension for the first time.
Galaxy shots ? All the graphics of the galaxy, so frequently seen through the viewscreen on the Enterprise's bridge, will be redone.
Exteriors ? The battle scenes, planets and ships from other cultures (notably the Romulan Bird of Prey and Klingon Battle Cruisers) will be updated.
Background scenes ? Some of the iconic, yet flat, matte paintings used as backdrops for the strange, new worlds explored by the Enterprise crew will get a CGI face-lift, adding atmosphere and lighting.
The refurbished episodes also feature higher quality sound for the famous opening theme. The original score by Emmy Award-winning composer Alexander Courage, has been re-recorded in state-of-the-art digital stereo audio with an orchestra and a female singer belting out the famous vocals. A digitally remastered version of William Shatner's classic original recording of the 38-word "Space, the final frontier..." monologue continues to open each episode.

http://www.startrek....icle/23775.html

At least they're no adding new scenes.
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