Film Chest Builds End-To-End Restoration Pipeline with Digital Vision Tools

May 8, 2012 (Los Angeles, CA)         Digital Vision has announced that Film Chest has chosen the Golden Eye III film scanner and Phoenix, the industry’s premium film, video and digital restoration and mastering solution, to power their expanded pipeline for television and motion picture restoration and distribution. The Golden Eye III film scanner and Phoenix restoration software were installed earlier this year in Film Chest’s Bridgeport, Connecticut facility. Film Chest Media Group was founded by Philip E. Hopkins and Ralph E. Stevens, who helm the company.

Film Chest owns and distributes thousands of titles, boasting one of the largest libraries of classic movies and television series’ in the world. They provide high-quality content to pay cable, public and broadcast television, motion pictures, streaming, distribution, and a variety of other professional uses. Their collection is also notable for its archive of orphan films and family collections. Film Chest delivers to networks, studios and the growing array of outlets including Hulu, Netflix, Turner Classic Movies and American Movie Classics, Amazon, iTunes, Verizon FiOs, and Vudu as well as servicing other libraries.

Given the nature of the projects they work on, and the condition of the elements, it was crucial that they develop a high-quality solution to their restoration needs. Phil Hopkins, Founder and President of Film Chest, stated, “We were committed to building an in-house facility to create the highest quality elements possible, not just for our projects, but for the libraries that we manage on behalf of a number of content holders. In the midst of all of our extensive work, we realized that it was simply inefficient to send negatives away for scanning. After we investigated all of our options, we found that the Golden Eye III and Phoenix offered us an amazing solution, from scan to final with great Digital Vision support, and hardware and software integration.”

After quality, output became the top priority for the Film Chest team. Hopkins continued, “With 200 features to do each year, we had to have a high degree of accuracy and efficiency. Beginning the process with Golden Eye III and going thru the process of Phoenix is an extremely proficient model.  In the near future, when the integration of metadata is complete, we will be incredibly efficient in our service.”

Hopkins and Stevens were familiar with the Digital Vision product line from references in the industry and their extensive research. Stevens stated, “Working with Digital Vision’s products, we considered them to be the high-bar of quality, and Phoenix had become our reference point into the world of restoration. We knew that Digital Vision had nailed the algorithms for dust-busting and grain reduction. Some of the other platforms could accomplish similar goals, but in weeks, not in hours. Phoenix was the only one that could do it on the time scale we needed. Hands down, Phoenix has been the best solution for our needs.”

Hopkins offers an example of how efficient the pipeline is for Film Chest. “’The Strange Love of Martha Ivers’ is a perfect example of a problematic film. The print belongs to the Library of Congress, and we were working with them towards a Blu-ray release of the film. We asked The Library to make a transfer, but when we began to work on the restored master they sent, the film was shrunken and destabilized. I spoke with the head curator, and they agreed to send us the original film elements, which is an extremely rare occurrence. The Golden Eye III transfer was absolutely as good as it could be, and the restoration was much better than it would have been on its own.”

He concluded, “We must have a powerful ability to work with problem films, from S8, to 16, to old 35, we need to make the very best elements possible. We manage a complex and frequently problematic library. This pipeline has given us an arsenal of tools that help us create beautiful and lasting projects. We couldn’t be happier with the Golden Eye III and the Phoenix.”

Kelvin Bolah, President of Digital Vision, noted, “The Film Chest team have been very thorough in the evaluation of our technology and competitive solutions. They are a very impressive group of people, and based on their in-depth knowledge and due diligence they have chosen to work with what they consider to be the best tools in the market. Their stringent processes gives total validation to the efforts of our strong product management and R&D teams. We wish Film Chest undoubted success as they continue to grow and develop their business.”

Strange Love of Martha Ivers Coming to Blu-ray/DVD

Fate Drew Them Together … Only Murder Could Part Them

1946 Film Noir Classic Stars Barbara Stanwyck, Van Heflin, Lizabeth Scott &

Kirk Douglas (In His Film Debut), Wooing a DVD/Blu-ray Combo Pack on May 29th 

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — May 1, 2012 — For Immediate Release — A young girl yearns for freedom and love, but is trapped into an adulthood wrought with obligation and guilt in The Strange Love of Martha Ivers, available in a DVD/Blu-ray combo pack May 29 from Film Chest on the HD Cinema Classics label.

STARRING: Barbara Stanwyck (Double Indemnity, Dial M for Murder, TV’s The Big Valley), Kirk Douglas in his film debut (Spartacus, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea), Van Heflin (Shane, 3:10 to Yuma), Lizabeth Scott (Dead Reckoning, Too Late for Tears), Judith Anderson (Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, The Ten Commandments), Janis Wilson (Watch on the Rhine, The Creeper), Darryl Hickman, (Network, The Grapes of Wrath), Mickey Kuhn (A Streetcar Named Desire, Gone With the Wind) and Roman Bohnen (The Best Years of Our Lives).

Desperate to escape her wealthy, domineering aunt (Anderson), young Martha (Wilson) plans to run away with her boyfriend, Sam (Hickman). Accidentally killing her aunt, she lies, but her story is supported by Walter (Kuhn), who saw what happened. Martha’s tutor (Bohnen) suspects the truth and extorts the girl, taking control of her life. Years later, Sam (Heflin) returns to town and falls in love again … with ex-con Toni (Scott). When she is arrested, Sam seeks the help of Walter (Douglas), now a lawyer. But unbeknownst to Sam, Walter has married Martha (Stanwyck), blackmailing her into the union. Fearing what Sam knows, he sets out to silence his wife’s unrequited love … Manipulation, conspiracy, forgiveness, heartbreak and tragedy await as this all-star, 1946 film noir classic unfolds.

With the cooperation of the U.S. Library of Congress, the film was transferred by Film Chest from the original, damaged 35mm elements with their new Golden Eye III, a state-of-the-art film scanner, and digitally restored in high definition to attain the highest quality audio-visual experience possible.

The Strange Love of Martha Ivers is presented in full screen (aspect ratio: 4 x 3) and standard Dolby audio. Special features include a commentary track by author William Hare (Early Film Noir: Greed, Lust and Murder Hollywood Style, L.A. Noir: Nine Dark Visions of the City of Angels, Hitchcock and the Methods of Suspense); a before-and-after restoration demo; original theatrical trailer; Spanish subtitles; and an original movie art postcard.