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Restoring the World's First Colour Film


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#1 Brian Pritchard

Brian Pritchard
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Posted 22 September 2012 - 03:48 AM

If any of you are interested in the work my friend David Cleveland and I did on restoring the Lee-Turner film you will find more details on my website: http://www.brianprit...ner_Project.htm
Despite some reports which say it was a digital restoration, the first step was to copy the entire frame including perfs onto 35mm Kodak F G Dupe Pos 2366 or Dupe Neg 2234. We had original negs and prints. We used Smoke to combine the r, g and b images to give the colour images after the 35mm film had been scanned at 4K on an Arriscan. No other work was done on the digital images.

Because the film was 1 1/2" wide with round perfs and there were only about 5000 frames, I built a gate and we placed the frames by hand copying each one on a Neilsen Hordell optical printer. The most amazing thing was that we did not have to adjust the exposure for the r, g and b frames. Mr Turner was obviously a very skilled photographer. Most books say that the film was shot at 48fps but this is not so, the films look right when projected at 16fps.
Brian
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