THE LINK AND THE CHAIN/LE MAILLON ET LA CHAINE continues with its little surprises. I had a chance to look at the entry sheet when the film was submitted for Academy Award consideration back in 1963. As you may recall from an earlier post, the rules for qualification were considerably different then than they are today. Films did not have to screen in commercial houses in New York and Los Angeles. As I mentioned before, the rules stated, somewhat vaguely that a film only had to be shown, "for the audience for which it was intended." I assumed that in this film's case, that meant movie audiences in France. Well, on the entry form, in the area for "qualifying screening," the producer wrote, "On the S.S. France, somewhere between Le Havre and New York." That's amazing! Not only did the producers believe that this was a "normal" venue to qualify for Awards consideration, but the Academy thought so, too. Of course, this kind of thing could never happen in subsequent years, but it's fun to see that in those days, things were a lot looser.
Today I finished up processing all the material that Brigitte Berg sent from Paris - original picture negative, 35mm optical track negative, 16mm optical track negative, some title elements, and an interpositive of the trailer. In the final can were 10 rolls of timing tapes (for the uninitiated, these are machine-readable paper tapes which relay to a printer the proper color values for each shot). Many times, these tapes are thin and fragile, about the size of 16mm film. These tapes, however, were "heavy stock" paper, and 35mm in size. And they contain their own metal "filters." Though some of my colleagues had seen these before, they were a first for me.