Orange County post
specialist in telecine transfers

FOREST, California— Electric
recently provided telecine and film restoration services for PENTON:The John Penton Story, a
feature-length documentary about the American icon and motorcycling pioneer who
revolutionized the motorcycle industry in the 1960s and ‘70s. The company
transferred and restored dozens of hours of Super 8mm and 16mm film including
rare racing and test footage, interviews and home movies, dating back more than
50 years.
Pipeline Digital Media (producers of The Motocross Files and The Carlsbad USGP:1980) and
directed by Todd Huffman, PENTON: The
John Penton Story
is the story of the son of an Ohio farmer who grew up to
become a champion rider and manufacturer of a revered line of motorcycles.  Narrated by Grammy-winner Lyle Lovett, the
film mixes archival material and interviews with Penton’s family members and
many of the world’s top motorcycle racers. The film was funded through a highly
successful Kickstarter campaign and is currently in national theatrical release
via “theater-on-demand” distributor Gathr.

At Electric
Pictures, Super 8mm and 16mm film elements, both black & white and color,
were transferred to video using the company’s DFT Shadow telecine systems.
Additional archival material from
video sources (primarily Betacam) was up-converted using Blackmagic Design
Teranex standards conversion technology. Video transfers were delivered in the
form of high resolution (1920X1080), high bit rate Apple ProRes files suitable
for editorial purposes and of sufficient resolution to be used in DCP masters
shown in theaters.

The work continued over a six-month period as Pipeline
Digital Media continued to accumulate film and video assets. Ultimately,
Electric Pictures transferred more than 5,000 feet of film to HD video. “To do
this story, we had to search through old films, pictures and home movies from
people, practically, around the world,” says Huffman. “It’s something that we
have been working on for about six years.”
Electric Pictures employed a variety of processes to
improve the image quality of the aging film and video source material. Its
telecines are equipped with wetgate devices which proved useful in scratch and
dust removal. The Teranex system also includes tools for cleaning and noise
reduction. “The technology we used helped a lot,” says Electric Pictures
president Grace McKay. “We were able to enhance the look and feel of the film
material to a remarkable extent, especially compared with what could be
achieved with more conventional technology. We produced images that looked very
good even when the film itself had problems.”
Pictures is one of few companies nationwide that continues to offer telecine
services and virtually alone in catering to independent producers,
documentarians, film libraries and other parties with large volumes of aging
film assets. “Most other sources for these services are huge companies with
high overhead costs,” observes McKay. “We’re a small company with low overhead.
We’re a value-based provider. We can deliver the same quality as large L.A.
post houses, but at a significant price advantage.”
independent producers like Pipeline Digital Media that price advantage can be
crucial to keeping their projects on budget. “We came to trust Grace and her
team so much,” says Huffman. “They under-promise and over-deliver. We gave them
our stuff, they gave it back and we put it in the movie. We knew it was going
to be done right.”
For more
information about Electric Pictures, contact Grace McKay at (949) 838-0001 or
Alan Davis at (310) 441-3880, or visit
For more
information about PENTON: The John Penton
contact Todd Huffman at (714) 626.0885 or visit

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