The Digital Scholarship Lab recently collaborated with Modern Languages and Cultures Professor Joanne Bernardi, The George Eastman Museum, and the Toy Film Museum (Kyoto, Japan) to create a Digital Cinema Package (DCP) of a partially lost 1929 film by Japanese legend Yasujiro Ozu titled Tokkan Kozo (A Straightforward Boy). DCP has become the standard for film distribution since the industry has moved away from 35mm film projection.

Recovering Cinematic History

The DSL worked to create subtitles for the film’s Japanese intertitles (translated by Bernardi), improve image stability and sharpness, and author / format the Digital Cinema Package (DCP). The DCP was created from a standard definition scan by Imagica West of a 9.5mm print held by the Toy Film Museum. Initially, the DSL used a deep-learning application to double the resolution of each individual frame of the standard definition transfer to increase resolution for the high definition (2K) DCP.
Then, the DSL’s Clara Auclair proceeded to use DaVinci Resolve to create the subtitles from Bernardi’s translation, stabilize each frame, and carefully adjust sections of the film’s playback speed.

Future Screenings

The DCP will have its premiere at Le Giornate del Cinema Muto in Pordenone, Italy in October and will also screen at the George Eastman Museum in November.