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'Colorizing' Black-and-White Movies

November 29, 1986

I completely agree with your editorial, "Color Them Angry," that "colorizing" black-and-white movie classics is a travesty. I do think, however, that there is a middle ground that would serve both the interests of movie buffs and the profit motives of Ted Turner, Hal Roach Studios, et al.

I believe I read somewhere that many of the original print copies of early color movies (through the mid-'50s) have severely faded because Kodak didn't know that the dyes used back then had a limited shelf life.

A process such as the "colorizing" one would be ideal to restore these films back to their original condition because the computer could be programmed to merely intensify the colors that were originally there, as intended by the director, thus producing a good master for video production or TV broadcasting.

I think there are many films that fall into this category. If my assumptions are correct then this might be a way for everyone to benefit.

ROBERT LIEF

Laguna Beach

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