Ranjikant's much hyped Sivaji: The Boss, which opens Friday, is the first Indian film to incorporate the latest 4K resolution technology that is used only on big-budget Hollywood films.
In India, 2K resolution for digital intermediate (DI) is the set standard. Around 400 of the 2,900 prints of Sivaji have been made in digital format by Prasad EFX, one of the largest digital post-production studios in India. The studio has colour graded and post-produced the film.
Till recently, digital grading in India was done on a small monitor or by a low-end projector and screen.
Major Hollywood studios, however, allow cinematographers to see images being graded in high resolution on the big screen. Detailed attention is thus paid to selectively colour grade smaller areas in a frame or shot.
Considering the superior imagery that has been cinematographed by KV Anand for Sivaji, the processor for the film, Prasad group, felt that 4K would do justice to the film by enhancing its digital image quality and flexibility in colour grading.
AVM, the producers of Sivaji, have also gone ahead with the process considering the advantage it would have despite an increase in the cost of production.
"By routing the entire film through the 4K pipeline for the DI process, we can be certain that none of the details available in the celluloid film are lost," Madhu of Prasad EFX said.
<b1>"Another advantage is that when we can scale up the images during the post and graphics processes, the image will not go soft or lead to any artefacts. As a 4K image has larger resolution, we can also have unlimited freedom in manipulating the colours during grading," he added.
"Our meticulously colour calibrated environment ensures that what the cinematographers see in our facility is what is actually seen by people in the theatres."
The entire 4K DI process was done in Prasad EFX's Chennai facility, using high-end scanners, film recorders and colour grading suites.
Prasad simultaneously worked on around 85 percent of the VFX, or graphics, in Sivaji, also in 4K resolutions.
In the recent past, Prasad EFX has worked on the DI and colour grading of mega budget Bollywood movies like Krrish and Rang De Basanti.
The group has also upgraded their DI facility in Mumbai by including a digital theatrical projection system and a high-end Barco Projector D-Cine Premiere DP100 to their existing facilities.
The 26 ft x 40 ft theatre is located in the Prasad EFX facility at Andheri West, Mumbai, and is equipped with 5.1 surround sound.
Prasad EFX won several prestigious awards -- Filmfare, Screen, Zee Technical, Broadcast India, and at the recently held International Indian Film Academy at Yorkshire -- for Krrish.
The company has been a pioneer in bringing in new technologies and sophisticated equipment to India.
Prasad EFX is an arm of the 50-year-old Prasad Group, which has facilities and offices across India, Singapore, Dubai and Hollywood and is one of Asia's largest post-production groups.