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Re: 2K work with Spirit

I agree with the possibly (large) advantages of "normal" feature colour
grading using the superior digital colourgrade tools now under development
- qualified with the counterstatement that the Spirit itself has not been
demonstrated with true 2K capabilities to my knowledge. So let's not get
too excited.

The necessary nuts and bolts for this will exist one day, and modifying the
normal task flow may allow us to use this stuff efficiently. I am (quite
conveniently) ignoring the storage and data throughput issues for now.

It is perfectly possible (and done) to create a controlled viewing
environment for critically judging high resolution digital imagery prior to
film output. "Critical judgement" with both available and mid-term
foreseeable technology (Arthur C. Clarke just said "Whoa!"), means
achieving a negative that is within a lab point or two of final colour
timing and perhaps 1/3 or 1/2 stop of lab density, (given proper colour bit
depth and physical resolution - again, an issue I will ignore conveniently
for this thought experiment...). 

That gives a robust, consistent negative with an acceptable range of
time-ability generated from "Online" digital colour correction methods.
This is how visual effects work can be delivered from high resolution
facilities - often with very few trial outputs if the "look" of the
pipeline is tightly defined by the visual effects supervisor and/or CGI
supervisor. The digital negative is the source, not the result of the
traditional answer print timing iterations. The optical sections behave
well in the context of normal print timing.

Just imagining, but it might make sense - to use digital colourgrading
tools unavailable in traditional lab timing to create the desired look for
an entire film with enhanced flexibility and real-time interaction, output
to a new negative and then finalize the look of the film with a much
reduced cycle of traditional answer printing. Something along the lines of
check printing a distribution internegative which already has expected
colour and density characteristics - and above all, consistency. If the
digital output facility and the receiving lab are coordinated (better yet,
integrated) this might actually make time and money sense.

I think that, as some other digital advances into traditional film
processes (editorial, opticals) have demonstrated in recent years, these
new approaches may not compete penny-for-penny against the established
methods for a long time. However the perceived quality, flexibility and
creative control may be seen as worthwhile by the creative community of
directors, DP's, colourists and traditional lab timers. Especially if it
can be demonstrated to potentially deliver films quicker to the studios. 

At any rate, it certainly offers the opportunity for existing lab
facilities to embark on a new set of services in a market which has been
"capped" for a long time.

> 	The concept of "offline" vs. "online" in color correction is
> intriguing, but I really don't think it's all that practical. What you
> see on a CRT is not really what you get on a projection print. No matter
> what accommodations are made for gamma and color corrected monitoring,
> the impact of a picture on a large screen is considerably different from
> that of a small screen. If you were projecting electronically, this
> would be more of a direct correlation. But consider the differences in
> color between what you see on a Hazeltine vs. your answer prints.
> Multiple answer print passes would still need to be made. And if the
> voluminous amounts of data had to be re-output to film each time, well,
> you might as well be timing on film, except for those scenes that might
> require some special treatment. I really think that for the foreseeable
> future, the concept of electronic color correction for film should
> remain in the area of effects material, although the definition of what
> is an effect shot could be extended to those that require unique color
> treatment.

Thanks to SMA Video for supporting the TIG in 1998..
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