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The Afterlife Is Expensive for Digital Movies 289

A new study shows that storing the digital master record of a film costs much more than storing archival prints. "To store a digital master record of a movie costs about $12,514 a year, versus the $1,059 it costs to keep a conventional film master. Much worse, to keep the enormous swarm of data produced when a picture is 'born digital' -- that is, produced using all-electronic processes, rather than relying wholly or partially on film -- pushes the cost of preservation to $208,569 a year, vastly higher than the $486 it costs to toss the equivalent camera negatives, audio recordings, on-set photographs and annotated scripts of an all-film production into the cold-storage vault."

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