Any ideas what kind of film stock something like this was shot on?
Movie: Target (1968)
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late 60's 35mm film stock?
15 replies to this topic
Posted 13 August 2015 - 01:06 PM
Any ideas what kind of film stock something like this was shot on?
Movie: Target (1968)
Posted 13 August 2015 - 01:17 PM
A quick read on the subject says
Eastman Color Negative film 5248 25T introduced in 1952
Read more: http://www.motion.ko...m#ixzz3iiixegql
Posted 13 August 2015 - 01:22 PM
yeah also just found this post with some good info from David Mullen who says really prior to the 80's there was only ONE film stock from Kodak.
Seeing this film was shot way before modern day DI process how much of this look is really just the film stock itself, or is there some crazy processing tricks perhaps also used?
Posted 13 August 2015 - 02:34 PM
There was one 35mm MP color negative stock at a time except for that two year overlap between 5254 and 5247, but obviously there wasn't just one stock before the 1980's. And each time a new stock came out there was an overlap period of almost a year.
A movie released in 1968 would have been made before 5254 100T came out in the fall of 1968, so would have been shot on 5251 50T.
Posted 13 August 2015 - 02:40 PM
Processing was standard back then other than push or pull processing, though there were some ways of manipulating the image in post using an optical printer and dupe stocks. Plus some movies then were released on Technicolor dye transfer prints rather than Eastmancolor prints.
But when talking about the look of old stocks you have to figure in what you are currently looking at, an old print of a then-new negative or dupe, a new print of a now-old negative, a new print off of a new dupe made from b&w separation masters, a video transfer and then you have to know what was used for the video transfer. A lot of variables outside of simply how the original negative looked and how it was processed.
Posted 13 August 2015 - 02:43 PM
Also a few low-budget movies then in the 60's were blow-ups from 16mm color reversal, though I think "Targets" was shot in 35mm.
Posted 13 August 2015 - 07:09 PM
Blow ups from 16mm color reversal?
That sounds really interesting! I'm going to see if I can find more information regarding those kind of movies.
I wonder how they were seen in cinemas compared to normal processed 16.
Apparently, and thanks to Google and the forum, there were a few interesting directors using 16mm reversal and I'm going to start checking them out! 😊
Thank you very much!!
Posted 13 August 2015 - 07:23 PM
We're currently working on the digital restoration of a fairly well known 1970s horror film that was shot on 16mm but primarily distributed on 35. We've got 16mm and 35mm intermediate elements for scanning, but it seems the 16mm intermediates (CRIs) were actually reductions from the 35mm, because the 35mm frames actually slightly more picture, indicating the 16mm film was cropped. You'd think 16mm intermediates would be contact prints made from the 16mm A/B rolls (which are nowhere to be found), but apparently not.
David is right - the path an older film like this takes to what you see on YouTube can be a long and very weird one, full of strange twists. It's like detective work sometimes, trying to figure out what's what!
Edited by Perry Paolantonio, 13 August 2015 - 07:24 PM.
Posted 13 August 2015 - 07:42 PM
David you never cease to surprise and amaze me with your posts and what seems like endless knowledge. Thanks for your reply.
I'm also glad you listed some of the various methods that "looks" might have been derived through making copies or processing because too often I'm talking with hardcore celluloid buffs who insist on shooting on film stocks and old film cameras to get a certain "look" - when really there is far more to it than that.
Posted 14 August 2015 - 02:58 PM
I recently had a very interesting conversation with a cinematographer that was active in the years of 5254, and remembers the whole story with various versions of 5247. What he told me, pertaining to what you just said was that a handful of labs (like Eclair in France and some labs in the US I think) had their own proprietary modifications to the ECN process, which were mostly kept secret, but allowed them to change contrast without pushing or pulling. Eclair had a way of decreasing the contrast, while retaining color saturation, which they used on some french film from that time. I can't remember exactly how it was done, but it was not an optical effect, but was something done to the negative itself. If someone is interested, I might be able to find where I archived that. Things like that can't be just googled.
Posted 14 August 2015 - 03:10 PM
Sure, you can modify the gamma and thus contrast and saturation by manipulating the chemistry, processing time & temperature, etc. but I don't think it created any radically different looks. There was the TVC Lab "ChemTome" process in NYC for example, a form of chemical fogging which was sometimes combined with push-processing to extend the low-light capability of the stock.
The switch to ECN-2 from ECN, which caused the need to obsolete 5254, I think was prompted by new environmental laws regarding some of the chemicals involved in the "pre-hardening" step for ECN. It might have also been part of a move to allow print processors to have shorter bath times, I'm not a lab person so I don't know the details.
I just know that it caused something of a ruckus in the industry. 5247 replaced 5254 in Europe more or less in 1974-75, but Hollywood cinematographers wouldn't use it until the Series 600 version of 5247 came out in the summer of 1976 and Kodak announced that 5254 was being discontinued finally, so they had no choice at that point.
I had always thought that "Star Wars" was one of the first movies shot on the new Series 600 5247, but since they started production in April of 1976, that was too early to use it, so they must have used the earlier version of 5247, being in the U.K. where 5254 was no longer available. Perhaps ILM was one of the earlier users of the new version when they started shooting miniatures, etc. and probably "Close Encounters" got to use the Series 600 version of 5247 (they used 5254 for their 65mm footage.)
Posted 14 August 2015 - 03:27 PM
Yes, he also mentioned TVC labs and their special process. But Eclair managed to somehow separate saturation from contrast (which have a natural correlation), probably using fogging plus something else too. But the results were different from other labs, I'm told. But as you said, it probably wasn't a radical change in the image characteristics. I found our conversation archived by the way, and he mentions Le bonheur (1965) as being an example of this special treatment. Here is a screenshot. This is only a video transfer, but he says it looked like that in prints too.
Upon discussing the various versions of 5247 with this person, I also concluded that Star Wars was shot on the older version of the stock. But the thing is: even though there were two "officially" two versions of 5247, there were constant tweaks to it, so that even the early 5247 (before the series 600) was different in 1974 and in 1976. The last batches of it (which were probably used for Star Wars) didn't have some of the problems that the early batches had, like the color cast in shadows, flesh-to-neutral issues etc, or at least it was not as pronounced. Then when series 600 came out, they further continued tweaking it. It was actually a bit grainier than the previous version. Finally in 1980 or so, a third version came out (though I don't know if Kodak actually considered it to be a new series), which had noticeable differences from the 1976-1980 series 600 version. Then finally in about 1982 or so, it was re-rated to 125ASA, but I don't think they made any significant changes to the emulsion itself. So I think one could discern as much as 4 "versions" (though not officially ) of 5247 from 1974 to 1980. It's a very interesting story.
What he told me was that even 5254 was changed from 1968 till the end. It was probably a matter of taste, but he preferred the older version.
Posted 14 August 2015 - 08:32 PM
I remember how Vision print stock kept getting tweaked in the first few years after its release, mainly in terms of lowering contrast, the first batches were much more contrasty than the stock it was replacing so everyone complained, especially since Kodak underestimated how much of the old stock they needed for movies in post-production who had tested for, and planned to release on, that stock. This was the age of ever-increasing release print orders and Kodak ran out of the old print stock within a few months of the release of Vision 2383.
Posted 17 August 2015 - 09:27 AM
I was digging around online and found two interesting frames on wikipedia under "film colorization" (http:// (https://en.wikipedia...lm_colorization).
The first frame from Night of the Living Dead is from 1986 and the second frame from 2004 when it was recolored.
Outside of the actual colouring differences itself it's very easy to see how the transfer alone, copies, or whatever was used can make such a difference in image quality. The 1986 version almost looks like vaseline smeared over the image. Blurry. And funny one might call the first one a "film look" or attribute it to film stock when really it isn't so.
Edited by Dennis Hingsberg, 17 August 2015 - 09:29 AM.
Posted 17 August 2015 - 09:44 AM
Colourisation is an abomination, but anyway you're not comparing like with like. The first grab is from a VHS recording from a telecine transfer. It probably wouldn't have looked quite that bad at normal speed.
The second is from a scan.
Posted 17 August 2015 - 12:12 PM
I realize it's not "like for like" but just saying in agreement (and realizing now) with David that you can end up with varying looks just based on a transfer method alone.
Here's what is maybe a cleaner "original" before the more recent color? Maybe not.