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Restoring Genesis to their full 1973 glory in 4K

Heading down to Willow Farm. Pic: The Genesis Museum
1 minute read
Heading down to Willow Farm. Pic: The Genesis Museum

Given that Peter Gabriel’s finally released his new i/o album after a gestation period more closely associated with geology, we thought it was a good time to highlight the 50th anniversary remaster of one of his seminal performances with his old band Genesis.

The full story about how it was done is at The Genesis Museum and is a fascinating insight into the way that film restoration has progressed over the years. 

Recorded live October 30th-November 1, 1973 at Shepperton Studios in the UK and shot on 16mm, the footage was originally bought in 2003 at auction. The first SD transfer was paid for by a small group of fans at the Meeksgenesis forum (and incidentally used by the band for various anniversary boxed sets). In 2013, it was transferred to HD, and now it gets one final (final?) bump up to 4K.

The footage and audio was all rescanned and reingested, thousands of frames were cleaned by hand and color corrected shot by shot. The Museum had its work cut out for it too.

genesis remaster

“Every time the film is transferred, a little more damage occurs, and the color fades a little more,” it writes. “The film is now even more red than it was before (further fading of the blue and green) and there is less that can be improved. The 16mm film was not well produced, but was used as more of a promo film, not intended to last 50 years, so there is less detail than a 16mm film may normally have. It is doubtful that there is even 4K worth of resolution available on this film, especially in the darker scenes. And there are imperfections on the print that cannot be removed.”

In other words, they really had their work cut out for them. “There was also a problem where the film was made with a horizontal color imbalance, meaning the right side of the film was a slightly different color to the left side of the film. This was of course not correctable with a simple color adjustment, so I made graded color filters to reduce this effect, though it could not be completely eliminated.”

You can read the full techie details of how they did it here and you can watch the concert below. Given the lack of footage of the band in their pomp, it’s a fabulous piece of music history. And yes, of course it concludes with Supper's Ready.

The Genesis Museum in association with TM Productions and Thomas Manchon, proudly present: The Shepperton 50th Anniversary Remaster...


Tags: Post & VFX