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Author Topic: UNSEEN FOOTAGE from a rare and mysterious Italian IB TECH 35MM print  (Read 8773 times)
stanton
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« Reply #45 on: June 13, 2016, 04:39:55 AM »

Ok, but then the Cineteca Nazionale copy and the print which Jordan owns, are definitely not the theatrical release versions, but copies made before Leone made further cuts, which was shortly before the film was released?

Which then would also mean that the Italian discs still represent the version Leone in the end wanted as release version?

And is there anywhere a mentioning of a private copy of GBU, which Leone had taken back for himself, and which represents his perfect version? And which probably included both the Grotto and the Socorro scene?

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« Reply #46 on: June 13, 2016, 08:39:38 AM »

Ok, but then the Cineteca Nazionale copy and the print which Jordan owns, are definitely not the theatrical release versions, but copies made before Leone made further cuts, which was shortly before the film was released?

Which then would also mean that the Italian discs still represent the version Leone in the end wanted as release version?

And is there anywhere a mentioning of a private copy of GBU, which Leone had taken back for himself, and which represents his perfect version? And which probably included both the Grotto and the Socorro scene?

Ok, let me try to clear up a few things. I don't own the print. I work as an editor so I have the capabilities to work with the scans which is partially why I'm involved.

This is just my opinion - but I think the Cineteca Nazionale copy IS a copy of the release print. I think the Cineteca Nazionale copy represents THE 1966 cut, as that was the one chosen to be archived in 1966. There IS a mention of Leone's personal print/cut in an italian book published in the 70's (which I also have the translation for thanks to Leonardo), it contains neither the grotto scene or the soccoro. Snippets of the full beating scene were found on an 8mm copy from the 70's, so that is at least 3 instances of prints that contained the full beating scene.

We don't know what this print is, without a second one like it in circulation, it makes me think it was a "test screening" print.  

*EDIT* Lil Brutto actually convinced me I'm slightly off in my theory here. I've removed the portions where I now believe I erred. I'll let him elaborate Smiley

« Last Edit: June 13, 2016, 08:49:31 PM by Jordan Krug » Logged
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« Reply #47 on: June 13, 2016, 10:01:23 AM »

Here's the translation from the book I mentioned, it doesn't mention the beating scene, it looks to me like the author only knew of the post 1969 version which was cut down, all of these scenes are ones we know and were part of the film in 1966:

L’ANTIWESTERN E IL CASO LEONE – FRANCO FERRINI – PAGE 43-44

Also Leone’s personal copy of GBU is longer than the Italian commercial version of the film. The

cuts involve following scenes:

1. The Bad (Lee Van Cleef) goes to a semi-abandoned and semi-destroyed fort. In the ruins

some confederate soldiers retreating before the advancing union soldiers found a

temporary shelter. Almost all of them are wounded. Some soldiers boil the only thing left to

eat: empty corn cobs.

The Bad asks a soldier about the fate of a comrade in arms, Bill Carson. The soldier

answers that unless he was killed in a battle, he must have been captured and sent to the

Betterville prison camp.

2. A scene where during the desert crossing, Blondie shows his face scorched by the salt and

the sun. Beside him, a bucket. Blondie painfully tries to drink from it. The camera moves

and shows that it is not drinking water, but a bucket used by Tuco to wash his feet. Tuco

kicks and knocks over the bucket with a sneer.

3. The Ugly (Eli Wallach), pretending to be Bill Carson (he changed his appearance

accordingly, even by wearing a black eye patch) arrives at a confederate camp. He asks

where the infirmary is. An old soldier explains that there is no infirmary. But if he wants to,

he can try at the San Antonio mission, where the friars will take care of his buddy Blondie,

who barely survived the desert crossing which Tuco himself forced him to.

4. Afterwards, a map is being checked; around them, just dead bodies and desolation.

5. Blondie is sleeping at a camp fire with the Bad. He wakes up. Some birds sing their dreary

nightly song in the bushes. But he did not wake up because of the birds. In fact, six buddies

of the Bad are about to join them. The Good states that “Six is the perfect number”. The

Bad replies saying that he always thought that three was the perfect number. The Good just

says “Yes, but I have six bullets in my pistol”.

6. A scene where the Union captain who is fighting against the Confederates to gain control

over the Langstone bridge explains to the Good and the Ugly the miraculous virtues of

alcohol, “the most powerful weapon in the army”. He adds that the only thing that the

Yankees and the Confederates have in common is the stench of alcohol.

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« Reply #48 on: June 13, 2016, 06:17:44 PM »

Thanks for your valuable work here, guys! Afro

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Lil Brutto
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« Reply #49 on: June 13, 2016, 08:43:42 PM »

*EDIT* Lil Brutto actually convinced me I'm slightly off in my theory here. I've removed the portions where I now believe I erred. I'll let him elaborate Smiley

Putting me to work, eh??  Grin I will post my theory based on available information once I have it all organized in my lil' pea brain.

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« Reply #50 on: June 14, 2016, 03:00:56 AM »

Sorry Lil Brutto, I did not want to belittle your great work.

But these IB prints, what they are exactly? As I do understand it these were some kind of special copies on better material, not the usual copies for theatres, which quickly perish in the daily use.

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« Reply #51 on: June 14, 2016, 05:25:26 AM »

Sorry Lil Brutto, I did not want to belittle your great work.

But these IB prints, what they are exactly? As I do understand it these were some kind of special copies on better material, not the usual copies for theatres, which quickly perish in the daily use.

Back in 66/67 certain prestige movies were theatrically released on IB tech stock, IB techs are harder to make, they use a 3 stage dye process (each primary color spectrum is separated) that produces superior colors. In the mid 70's for cost reasons everyone switched to Eastman prints, which they found out 15-20 years later were extremely prone to fading red. (Some directors would still have a few IBtech prints made into the late 70's/early 80's, for example there were a few IB's made of Star Wars). The IBtechs don't fade, however you do run into the odd reel where one of the colors is off registration (since the colors were printed separately)  so you end up with a red or green halo around everything.

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« Reply #52 on: June 14, 2016, 07:36:38 AM »

Back in 66/67 certain prestige movies were theatrically released on IB tech stock, IB techs are harder to make, they use a 3 stage dye process (each primary color spectrum is separated) that produces superior colors. In the mid 70's for cost reasons everyone switched to Eastman prints, which they found out 15-20 years later were extremely prone to fading red. (Some directors would still have a few IBtech prints made into the late 70's/early 80's, for example there were a few IB's made of Star Wars). The IBtechs don't fade, however you do run into the odd reel where one of the colors is off registration (since the colors were printed separately)  so you end up with a red or green halo around everything.

Were all the Technicolor movies made in IB tech prints?

I heard that the last movie to use Technicolor was The Godfather Part 2.

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« Reply #53 on: June 14, 2016, 08:42:01 AM »

Adding to Jordan's post above, here's a video that should answer any questions about Technicolor IB dye-transfer prints: https://youtu.be/g9S76vtk4Ro

As you all probably know, the director makes a decision about how the film should "look" (i.e. color timing) with respect to exposure and color balance, as well as scene-to-scene continuity. This also gave the director a creative/artistic opportunity to set a certain mood for a scene/film and establish a stylized look. A run of theatrical prints would be produced that reflected the director's vision. IB TECH prints are essentially time capsules because of their well-known characteristic of being fade resistant and, therefore, all these years later shed light on the "look" of the film when it was presented theatrically. This is vital for a preservation project such ours because, nearly 50 years later, we can see for ourselves the "look" Sergio Leone was going for.

The controversy surrounding the 2014 4K BD stems from the fact that a restoration using the original negative (which does NOT contain any information about the color timing or "look") can be problematic if the restoration team does not have a reference to recreate the "look". L'immagine ritrovata DID refer to IB TECH prints but somehow botched their interpretation of the "look". Although this is only speculation, we suspect this is because they didn't compensate for the projector bulb temperature. In the 60s they were still using a carbon arc light source, which has its characteristic color temperature, and the prints were timed accordingly. The same print projected through a projector with a modern light source (at a different color temperature) would shift the colors on the spectrum. In GBU's case this led to a misinterpretation of what they were seeing (a greenish-yellow image) as the originally intended look. Or was it revisionism?

« Last Edit: June 14, 2016, 09:15:56 AM by Lil Brutto » Logged

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« Reply #54 on: June 14, 2016, 05:09:36 PM »

Or was it revisionism?
That gets my vote. I'd favor your theory if GBU were an isolated case, but there are several "restorations" going around now where the colors do not represent what was originally projected. All the "restorers" are failing to compensate for projector bulb temperature? I don't think so.

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« Reply #55 on: June 14, 2016, 05:59:30 PM »

In the case of GBU, wasn't the piss "restoration" done on the basis of a comment by an assistant camera operator (Sarti?) that Leone wanted a yellow/brown look? If that's the case, it would seem that the shitty look is not all based merely on failure to compensate for bulbs or whatever; this was an (erroneous) DECISION to make the BRD look that way.


Anyway, according to what you are saying, whenever a restoration proudly advertises that it is made from THE ORIGINAL CAMERA NEGATIVE, that can actually be a big drawback cuz that does not necessarily look like the theatrical print (which is filmmaker-approved)? And even using a theatrical IB Technicolor print still doesn't ensure correct color if they don't properly compensate for the bulbs ...



« Last Edit: June 14, 2016, 06:01:37 PM by drinkanddestroy » Logged

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« Reply #56 on: June 14, 2016, 09:20:56 PM »

Although this is only speculation, we suspect this is because they didn't compensate for the projector bulb temperature. In the 60s they were still using a carbon arc light source, which has its characteristic color temperature, and the prints were timed accordingly. The same print projected through a projector with a modern light source (at a different color temperature) would shift the colors on the spectrum. In GBU's case this led to a misinterpretation of what they were seeing (a greenish-yellow image) as the originally intended look. Or was it revisionism?

Are you sure that a modern bulb would bead to a greenish-yellow projected image as opposed to a different color? If such a color shift is a well-known phenomenon, then it would support your hypothesis. However, it would concomitantly give rise to the question as to why they weren't aware of such a well-known thing.

That gets my vote. I'd favor your theory if GBU were an isolated case, but there are several "restorations" going around now where the colors do not represent what was originally projected. All the "restorers" are failing to compensate for projector bulb temperature? I don't think so.

You mean the now ubiquitous "teal and orange", although in this case being more of a "green and yellow" to keep a sort of old fashioned sepia tinge?

« Last Edit: June 14, 2016, 09:28:55 PM by Novecento » Logged
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« Reply #57 on: June 14, 2016, 09:53:05 PM »

You've all brought up valid points. Again, failing to correct for the projector light source is only one of probably several factors that contributed to the image of the 4K BD. When the print was scanned with a "pure white" xenon light source the scanned image was consistently more on the greenish yellow side and that had to be corrected afterwards. I'm not suggesting that the light source is the only factor. In fact, there is evidence of revisionism. Have a look at the screencaps found on L'immagine ritrovata's website:

http://distribuzione.ilcinemaritrovato.it/il-buono-il-brutto-il-cattivo

These images are clearly different than what we see on the BD. Perhaps this is what Giancarlo Santi approved and afterwards the image was further altered digitally? By boosting the contrast and saturation of the screencap of LVC in Photoshop I was able to get an image that looks more like that on the BD. Even the sky turned a bit more teal by only adjusting contrast and saturation.

« Last Edit: June 14, 2016, 09:57:11 PM by Lil Brutto » Logged

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« Reply #58 on: June 14, 2016, 09:58:15 PM »

The 3rd image, which has less contrast and saturation as compared to the 4K BD image, was sourced from L'immagine ritrovata's website. In the 2nd image, besides the green sky, even LVC's hat is greenish black.


« Last Edit: June 15, 2016, 12:04:04 AM by Lil Brutto » Logged

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« Reply #59 on: June 14, 2016, 10:32:41 PM »

so if I understand correctly, you're saying that your IB tech print, though it has lots of dirt and damage, would have the correct colors as Leone wanted them, assuming you were projecting it with the proper bulb etc.?

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