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November 2014
Issue: June 1, 2012

Web Exclusive: Data recovery saves Oscar-winner 'The Shore'

By: John Christopher, DriveSavers Data Recovery
Producers of Oscar-winning film The Shore accepted an Academy Award without knowing if the original director’s cut would ever be viewed again. The father/daughter team, Terry and Oorlagh George, experienced a data loss only days before attending the 84th Academy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles. No one in the audience or the nearly 40 million television viewers could tell how worried the pair was about their film when they accepted their first Oscar.


 
The Shore is a 30-minute film about an expatriate Irishman returning home for the first time in 25 years. It won the Oscar for “Best Live-Action Short Film.” Shot completely digital, the producers stored all the various versions of the film on an Apple MacBook Pro laptop c that was configured for automatic backups. At some point the MacBook refused to boot up for an unknown reason. When the files were finally restored, it was discovered that the director's cut of the film was missing.
 
The director’s cut is the preferred version that was used to create several other versions of the film using Apple's Final Cut Pro. Producer Oorlagh George explains, “We edited the film to an airplane friendly version, another for television with cuts for commercials, a shorter film version for film festivals, and then there was our prized director’s cut.”
 
"We went to the Oscars and we won!" Oorlagh recalls. "Since the drive was in transit to DriveSavers, we weren’t sure we would get the version of the film back that we really wanted people see. But after, only two days, DriveSavers rescued the irreplaceable director's cut, along with family photos and notes for future projects.”


 
Based in Novato, CA, DriveSavers (www.drivesaversdatarecovery.com) is a professional data recovery service provider that has been recovery data for film and audio studios, musicians, game developers, photographers, Web/graphic designers and other creative professionals for 20 years. Its customers include companies such as Dreamworks, LucasFilm, MTV, NBC, Universal Studios, Sony Entertainment and many others.