MOVIES

Restoring 'Dracula' To its Fangtastic Glory

by David Weiner 12:06 PM PDT, October 02, 2012
Photo: Universal Studios

Collecting classic cinema's most fantastic monsters was a no-brainer for Universal Studios to release in time for Halloween, with eight monster classics sharing cage space in Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection, out today. But it turns out the print for 1931's Dracula needed a major transfusion to return it to its original, "fangtastic" glory. Watch the video to see how modern movie magic helped Bela Lugosi look and sound his best on Blu-ray in the never-before-seen special featurette Dracula: The Restoration

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"What you're trying to do is maintain the contrast to make it look mysterious and spooky, but still see the detail," says Universal digital colorist George Cvjetnicanin, who had to contend with helping to restore a very washed-out print. "The whole point of this process is to not let the viewer know that we were here."

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In addition to 1931's Dracula, Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection also includes the chilling, digitally restored classics Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein, The Wolf Man, The Mummy, The Invisible Man, Phantom of the Opera and Creature from the Black Lagoon (available for the first time ever in its original 3D version). The set also includes a collectible 48-page book featuring behind-the-scenes photographs, original posters, correspondence and much more, in addition to each film's commentaries, storyboards, photo galleries and trailers.

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