The Red Shoes (1948) - Restoration

ITV / BFI / The Film Foundation / UCLA Film and Television Archive   |   UK/USA

Originally released in 1948, ‘The Red Shoes' was the tenth collaboration between Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, and is widely considered a cinematic masterpiece. Based on a Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale about a pair of enchanted crimson ballet slippers, it follows the beautiful Vicky Page, a young socialite who loves ballet, the rising composer Julian Craster whom she loves, and her dictatorial director, Boris Lermontov. Technical: Starting with the original 35mm nitrate three strip camera negatives (which had been adversely affected by mould and shrinkage), each yellow, cyan and magenta reel was scanned at 4K resolution. These scans were then subject to extensive digital restoration – re-registering the colours; addressing colour breathing and contrast issues; removing dirt and defects; and colour grading shot-to-shot – before being recorded back to 35mm colour film stock. Using an original Technicolor dye transfer print as a guide, this digital version was produced to combine the best quality of modern film with the most pleasing aspects of the vintage Technicolor ‘look'.