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The Machine Room restores AFT classics for DVD release

The Machine Room has restored the masters for the 14-feature collection of 1970s contemporary dramas developed by The American Film Theatre.
Distributed by 3DD Entertainment, the titles - including classics such as 'The Homecoming', 'Butley' and 'A Delicate Balance' - will be released on DVD throughout 2004 under 3DD's new home video label, inD.
3DD Entertainment saw the potential of restoring the titles to their former glory and after an extensive review commissioned The Machine Room for the project.
Creative director for the AFT project, George Scott, said: "It was a tall order to restore the masters and give these plays back the dignity they'd once enjoyed. I spent a huge amount of my time analysing the masters and got to know each of them very well. The physical quality of the footage needed a lot of attention and The Machine Room worked incredibly hard and spent an enormous amount of time to clean and restore all the masters. I am absolutely delighted with the results."
The masters were supplied from the USA on Digi-beta and each master was carefully quality checked at The Machine Room for film faults, tape damage and drop out. A long list of faults was generated so that each master could be meticulously repaired and restored.
Shortly after the project started, The Machine Room purchased its Teranex imageRestore, the latest video restoration and enhancement technology to remove scratches, grain and dirt. This enabled Richard Watson, restoration engineer at The Machine Room, to mix processing filters to address the specific faults that required fixing.
The remaining glitches that needed more intricate attention went into the company's smoke, where editor John McLaren made use of the system's toolset to paint out and reconstruct shots.
Scott added: "There is always a limit as to how far a budget can be stretched. I feel that we pushed it all the way at The Machine Room and got exceptional value for money."

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