Gone with the Wind – 75th Anniversary

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This year marks the 75th Anniversary of the iconic film Gone with the Wind. Dealing with the classic love story of Scarlett O’Hara and Rhett Butler set during the Civil War era and based on the 1936 book by Margaret Mitchell. I’ve read the book which even surpasses the film. I was lucky enough to see it on the big screen a few years ago.

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This past Saturday I got to see the restored Blue-Ray edition at a movie theatre as well. Wow, amazing quality! Crisp, clear picture and beautiful color. The detail is incredible. You can see the lace details on the front of Scarlett’s white ruffle dress. The green velvet curtain dress looks super velvety. Vivian Leigh’s eyes are gorgeous. You can see the skin texture and details in the hairdo like never before. The darker scenes of sunsets, silhouettes and Melanie giving birth are much easier to see. It also had restored audio tracks.

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Technicolor film was an interesting stage in movie making. Most people are familiar with either black and white film or color film. Technicolor is actually three strips of black and white film shot simultaneously, each one picks up only one color (ie blue, green or magenta). This process was used on other popular films that have been also been recently restored such as the Wizard of Oz. Since these indivdiual strips still exist, the restorers were able to re-align the image for crystal clear picture and detail. As well as digital grading to remove scratches, dust and create a uniform color during a scene.

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If you missed it you can see it Weds Oct 1st in select movie theatres or buy the DVD now. My only complaint was the intermission was too short and they didn’t announce how long it was going to be. This is a 4 hr movie, the Intermission was 6 mins! How can an entire theatre get out, go to the restroom and be back in their seats?

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My gosh, the costumes in the film are breath-taking. Corsets, bonnets and bustles, oh my! Scarlett’s eye-catching dresses at Twelve Oaks, Tara and in Atlanta. Huge hoop skirts from before the war all the in to the 1870s with the narrow skirts with bustles. The more subdued dresses of Melanie are a little more realistic to the period though.

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Still want more Gone with the Wind goodness. Check out the University of Texas at Austin which is showing a special exhibition of “The Making of Gone with the Wind” at the Henry Ransom Center. It features three Scarlett O’Hara dresses and other costumes, amoung them the green velvet curtain dress and the red feather sequin dress. Also tons of never before seen photographs, storyboards, drawings, screen tests, make-up test shots and more. They are also selling a companion book.scarlett-drawing-curtain-dress  scarlett-drawing-green-white-dress

“The Making of ‘Gone With The Wind'” can be seen starting Sept. 9, 2014 thru the beginning of January at the Ransom Center Galleries. Mon – Fri : 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday extended hours until 7 p.m. Weekends the galleries are open from noon to 5 p.m.

Public tours are offered every day at noon, as well as Thursdays at 6 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. “Gone With The Wind” screentests will be shown in the Ransom Center’s first-floor theater at 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. on weekends.

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The Henry Ransom Center houses a huge collection of Gone with the Wind memorabilia and archives in their David O. Selznick Collection. Now thru Jan 2015 is your chance to get a glimpse of some of these treasure’s.

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