future proofing





















Future Proofing (archival negative cutting)

Future proofing is a buzz word that is bantered about these days. It refers to the need to save the hundreds of episodes of TV series (and MOWs) from the 1980's and 90's that were shot on film, transferred to video, and vaulted.

Originally, TV shows were posted in film just like movies. But with the continuing improvement and advancement of video post production in the early 1980's, the producers of television programs saw an effective way to reduce post production costs. They began transferring these shows to video, and completing the post production only in video. This increased the speed required to finish episodes, which reduced post production costs, and allowed more production time per episode. By the mid 1980's, almost all TV shows were posted this way, with only a few companies continuing to conform the original negative for future archival purposes.

At the same time that video post came into vogue, a new type of camera (actually an older camera that was modified) was employed for shooting sitcoms and some dramatic series. This camera used a 3-perf gate. With the use of the 3-perf camera, the production company could save up to the cost of raw stock (negative), and the cost of laboratory fees in processing. Because this product was never intended for a film finish (only a video post), it was not a concern that the 3-perf film could not be projected. The final product ended up being a SDTV (525 lines of resolution) video master. The original negative footage was left uncut. Everyone lives happily ever after, right? WRONG!.

It's now the year 2000, and HDTV is a reality. How do you make sure that your TV product is ready for this or the next technological advance to rear its head? You already know a 525 line video master isn't going to cut it, and line doubling still looks like old TV in the wrong format. There is only one proven way: go back to the highest quality, most perfect form in which your show exists--the original negative.

With our cutting-edge technology combined with traditional know-how, we can conform any television show--3-perf included. We have the capability of creating a relationship of Timecode to Keykode, giving you a frame accurate negative cut.

We are currently working with AKA Cartoon in Vancouver British Columbia on the second season archival negative cut of Ed, Edd, & Eddy, an animated series for Turner. They are having us 'Future Proof" the negative for their vaults.

Last year we conformed The Crow, Stairway to Heaven series for Polygram Productions, which was then sold to MGM, with the expectation of broadcasting in HDTV.