Image Processing Reference
is obviously a wise thing. Projectors that are badly adjusted will seriously damage a film.
Lacing a projector incorrectly and turning it on will rip the sprockets. Not allowing the
film to loop sufficiently on either side of the gate causes the claw mechanism to fight the
drive sprockets and do terrible damage to the film as it is projected. All it requires is a lit-
tle care and attention when projecting your film. Once your film is damaged like this, it is
very hard to repair. Thankfully, as long as the imaging area is intact, film restoration can
now take place in the computer.
Assembling a toolkit of software for this kind of restoration is likely to take some
time and will be quite expensive unless you write the programs yourself. Some tools may
be available as shareware or open source. Having Photoshop, After Effects, Final Cut,
Commotion, Shake, Ultimatte, and various other graphics tools on hand will speed up the
process. These tools range from a few hundred dollars to several thousand. Whether you
should purchase them is partly dependent on your ability to use them to generate revenue
from your film restoration work. You don't need to buy them all, but they can help you
solve problems. Chapter 30 discusses some alternatives to add to your shopping list when
planning your system. Appendix C describes a few more.
The RACINE-S project
The collaborative RACINE-S project is exploring how to restore historical footage with
large sections of missing frames or audio. The project's goal is to be able to replace the
missing material in real time. A variety of companies and academic institutions are
involved and are publishing useful material about the project.
Figure 4-25 Film structure and damage.