dft’s scanity used during restoration of ‘memory of justice’

A frame from the movie
June 22, 2016

‘The Memory of Justice’, created in 1976 by Marcel Ophüls, examines three of the defining tragedies of the Western World in the second half of the 20th century, from the Nuremberg trials through the French-Algerian war to Vietnam, building from a vast range of interviews, from Telford Taylor (Counsel for the Prosecution at Nuremberg, later a harsh critic of US’s escalating involvement in Vietnam) to Nazi architect Albert Speer to Daniel Ellsberg and Joan Baez.

Vincent Canby, from The New York Times said in 1976, that this film “expands the possibilities of the documentary motion picture in such a way that all future films of this sort will be compared to it.”

This culturally and historically significant film has been out of circulation for nearly 40 years and has been painstakingly restored over a 10-year period by the Academy of Film Archive in conjunction with Prasad Corporation, Sony Colorworks, Paramount Pictures and The Film Foundation.

At the start of the project, the 35mm colour reversal intermediate (CRI) representing the 1976 Paramount release was thought to be the best surviving material on the film. When the restoration project began, however, the 16mm original camera negative (OCN) rolls were discovered and ultimately used for the restoration.

DFT’s Scanity was used to produce a 2K scan of the 16mm original negative. Scanity’s unique features ensured gentle handling of the most fragile original elements, at varying speeds, to provide stable and best quality scanned images. Frame by frame clean-up of dirt and scratches was completed by Prasad Corporation, and colour-correction at Colorworks.

The original film included an English-language voice over track, but during the course of the restoration, the original recordings of Ophüls’ interviews with French and German speaking participants were discovered. On consultation with Marcel Ophüls, it was agreed to include the original voices of the participants, to replace the English-language voiceover track, with new subtitles in English, French, and German – as had been intended by Marcel Ophüls when he created the film.

‘The Memory of Justice’ had its world restoration premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival in February 2015, and has since been screened at multiple film festivals world-wide. On the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the Nuremberg Trials there were screenings at the Memorial de la Shoah in Paris and the Deutsches Historisches Museum in Berlin.

‘The Memory of Justice’ recently won the prestigious award for ‘Best Archive and Preservation Project’ at the FOCAL International Awards 2016.

Notes to Editors

DFT (Digital Film Technology) has been at the forefront of film scanning technology for over 75 years, supplying the film post production market with a range of high quality, leading edge products and services. With a reputation for quality, DFT is head quartered in Germany and has a network of sales, service and support centres worldwide. DFT is a subsidiary of the Prasad Corporation Ltd, India.


Further information:

Simon Carter, Director, DFT
email: simonc@prasadgroup.org
Tel: +44 (0) 1223 870853
Mob: +44 (0) 7776 297371