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French National Cinema Centre to Restore Priceless Film Classics in 4K with DaVinci Resolve

Manchester, UK – WEBWIRE

Blackmagic Design today announced that the Centre National du Cinéma et de l’image animée (CNC), France’s national government body for the film and broadcast industries, has restored and replicated the original tints of the 1924 silent production of Les Misérables, directed by cinema pioneer Henri Fescourt, in 4K with DaVinci Resolve.

CNC’s film archive laboratory will use a DaVinci Resolve Linux 4GPU system, which was installed and designed by French integrator Magic Hour to handle conforming and grading for an extensive archive of French cinema. The post production workflow features Blackmagic Design DeckLink 4K and UltraStudio 4K devices for capture and playback, as well as an Easy DCP plug in to enable the lab to produce fully finished digital cinema productions.

For the Les Misérables project, a five person team at the CNC laboratory produced a 4K digital scan from the 17 rolls of original nitrate negatives, edited to the film’s original length and used DaVinci Resolve to conform the restored digital version. Within its archive, the CNC also had access to a shorter version of the film with tinted prints, which enabled the team to produce two grades of the original film in parallel; one in black and white and one which simulated the original tinted colors, which will be screened in Toulouse in December.

Nicolas Ricordel is in charge of the digital department and explains the project. “The black and white grade was very much a way of preserving the original, so we kept it as close to the black and white nitrate negatives as possible, only reworking contrast and making slight lift, gamma or gain level adjustments. Once this was completed, we could create nodes, and using the tinted scenes from the short version as our reference, to produce a color DCP conformed to the original prints. The system’s ability to handle greyscale DPX files has also been important, particularly given the length of the film and the storage required.”

"DaVinci Resolve will allow the CNC to maximize its vast archives of French cinema, which as we can see from its first project, date right back to the beginnings of the industry,” explains Jeff Ferriol, Magic Hour. “We developed a system that is powerful enough to handle major archive restoration projects, but also provide the professional color grading features that are used on many of today’s major Hollywood feature films.”

“The CNC’s mission is to promote French film and television to as wide an audience as possible, so in the digital age, it is important for us to have a comprehensive digital archive that brings new life to France’s cinematographic history,” said Daniel Borenstein, laboratory head, CNC.

Press Photography

Product photos of DaVinci Resolve are available at

About Blackmagic Design

Blackmagic Design creates the world’s highest quality video editing products, digital film cameras, color correctors, video converters, video monitoring, routers, live production switchers, disk recorders, waveform monitors and real time film scanners for the feature film, post production and television broadcast industries. Blackmagic Design’s DeckLink capture cards launched a revolution in quality and affordability in post production, while the company’s EmmyTM award winning DaVinci color correction products have dominated the television and film industry since 1984. Blackmagic Design continues ground breaking innovations including 6G-SDI and 12G-SDI products and stereoscopic 3D and Ultra HD workflows. Founded by world leading post production editors and engineers, Blackmagic Design has offices in the USA, UK, Japan, Singapore and Australia. For more information, please go to


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