Country Focus: UK
Optimum restoration for British classics
by Naman Ramachandran
- Optimum Releasing and StudioCanal have joined hands with Pinewood Studios to restore and preserve StudioCanal’s 1400 strong British Library Archive. First up will be restorations of Michael Powell’s Peeping Tom, Robert Hamer’s Kind Hearts and Coronets and Lionel Jeffries’ The Railway Children, each of which will be subsequently re-released theatrically and made available in Bluray/DVD.
Optimum Releasing has now taken over management of the Archive, which has been housed in Pinewood for 20 years, including direct responsibility for clip sales and merchandising of the titles. Pinewood Post Production will provide temperature and humidity controlled storage for the titles, including the construction of two new state of the art cold storage facilities on the Pinewood lot, expected to be completed by early 2010. Pinewood will also provide most of the film and audio restoration services for the film archive, and complete the planned digitisation of the Canal+ Image UK Ltd stills archive.
John Rodden, General Manager of Optimum Home Entertainment, said, “At Optimum we have a passion for great cinema and it’s a privilege to be able to ensure the preservation of these films for future generations to enjoy. In so doing we draw huge inspiration for our own production plans as in the upcoming Brighton Rock which directly echoes this great cinematic heritage.”
Pinewood’s CEO Ivan Dunleavy said, “Pinewood is delighted to be supporting Optimum Releasing & StudioCanal in the preservation and restoration of some of the most iconic and historical film titles. The importance of these titles to the nation and worldwide heritage cannot be under estimated.”