[ continued from: Cross-Processing ]


An even more exotic lab technique, which is nonetheless noteworthy, is one in which the anti-halation backing is stripped off an original camera negative prior to photography. This method has only been used once in recent history on a major motion picture, for a small flashback sequence in the film Virtuosity, which was photographed by Gale Tattersall (see AC Oct. '95). Tattersall had Vancouver-based Gastown Labs remove the anti-halation backing by running the his raw stock through their processor's first bath, bypassing the rest of the developing steps, and going directly into a completely blacked-out drying box. The unexposed negative was then recanned and shipped back to the production for photography.

The removal of the anti-halation backing allows light passing through the negative during photography to bounce off the rear pressure plate — which Tattersall replaced in his camera with a custom mirror-surfaced plate — and cause halation on the film around the highlights. Tattersall likened the effect to the look of old turn-of-the-century photographs. Interestingly, David Watkin, BSC wanted to use this process on the period film Yentl, but it was deemed too risky.

[ continued: Dye Transfer ]