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Oldest color film footage dates back to 1899

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As we debate the obvious visual difference between 1080p and 4K video, we can't help but notice that it wasn't that long ago in the scope of time that color motion film wasn't even a thing.

In 1899, British photographer and inventor Edward Raymond Turner patented the first color moving picture process, but it was so complicated that it was never replicated. Following Turner's blueprints and instructions for the process, researchers at the National Media Museum digitally copied three frames of film taken from two rolls that were discovered in 2009. The three frames were reconstructed in Photoshop with red, green, and blue filters, similar to how they would have been using Turner's original equipment through the use of colored gels.

As explained in the National Media Museum's video, each frame of the original film had to be re-photographed three times with each colored filter (RGB) and compiled into the final product, which took about three years, thanks to federal and private funding. The footage was then unveiled to the media for the first time in 110 years — possibly for the first time ever.

[Image credit: Original footage still via National Media Museum]
[via Engadget]

This article was written by Shawn Schuster and originally appeared on Tecca

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