Step 6 - Transparency of processes for future generations

An absolute rule in archival work is to leave the original object, the artefact, as close to its original state as possible. This isn't a paradox for film archivists because, unlike art or book restorers for example, our aim is to duplicate the original rather than represent it. The original copies of A Film Johnnie have been repaired so that they travel safely through the printers but they would not be recut to our assumption of the correct order of the original films. Only the new negatives were edited in this way.

As the restoration report shows, we have created a format for recording the relative content of each source and its relationship to the other sources. The report has numbered each shot according to its position in the restored version. If new, better condition or longer material surfaces in the future, it will be easy for substitutions to be made. The intertitles and their sources and variations are similarly recorded.

Each new negative also has attached at its head an introductory title that explains the sources used for the picture and wording of the intertitles.