Acetate film preservation

For acetate and polyester bases

FIlm expert inspecting quality of film
Inspecting safety film at LAC Group's facility (Photo by Michael J. Cahill).

The bulk of our preservation and archiving work is safety film, with clients that include Hollywood’s major production studios, as well as independents, historical archives and private collectors.

Why PRO-TEK Vaults for safety film preservation

We offer comprehensive, cradle-to-archive safety film preservation services and archival cold storage. (However, professional services are available even if you do not store your assets within our vaults.)

In addition, PRO-TEK was founded by Eastman Kodak, the world leader in film innovation and manufacturing, and the only remaining maker of motion picture film in the world today. We continue to build on that heritage while we continuously innovate and modernize.

PRO-TEK Vaults safety film preservation services

  • Quality inspection, assessment and reporting of physical condition for restoration and scanning.
  • ISO-standard clean-room environment using only archival-quality equipment and supplies.
  • Comprehensive recording and reporting of data such as film dates, emulsion types, total footage, aspect ratio and physical condition.
  • Metadata creation and cataloging.

Our safety film preservation processes are based on standards and recommendations set forth by leading film preservation organizations like the U.S. National Archives, the Society of American Archivists, and the Association of Moving Image Archivists.

Signs of safety film deterioration

  • Sharp, acidic odor. Safety film decay is referred to as “vinegar syndrome” because of the acetic acid smell as acetate decomposes. This chemical process is autocatalytic, which means it’s self-fueling and causes deterioration to accelerate.
  • Distortion, buckling, shrinkage, and brittleness.
  • For color safety film, fading and changes to red or purple tones as magenta dye (the most stable) becomes more prominent.

For professional film archiving, you want to minimize the additional costs and risks that come with handling by each additional vendor. That’s why motion picture industry leaders rely on PRO-TEK’s comprehensive capabilities.