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AMERICAN/SOVIET EXPEDITION CAPTURES UNPRECEDENTED FOOTAGE OF LUXURY LINER IN AL GIDDINGS' 'TITANIC -- TREASURE OF THE DEEP,' MAY 15 ON CBS

AMERICAN/SOVIET EXPEDITION CAPTURES UNPRECEDENTED FOOTAGE OF LUXURY LINER IN AL GIDDINGS' 'TITANIC -- TREASURE OF THE DEEP,' MAY 15 ON CBS
 LOS ANGELES, April 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Award-winning director/cinematographer Al Giddings brings his unique vision and technical skill to an hour-long chronicle of an unusual partnership; a joint American, Canadian and Soviet expedition to the site of the Titanic, which took place only months prior to the dissolution of the Soviet Union.
 The special, produced by Al Giddings/Images Unlimited in association with Columbia Pictures Television, airs Friday, May 15, at 8 p.m. (ET) on the CBS Television Network.
 Hosted by multiple Emmy and Peabody Award-winning broadcast journalist Walter Cronkite, "TITANIC -- Treasure of the Deep" follows the voyage of the Russian research vessel Akademik Keldysh from Bermuda to the wreck site, culminating in unprecedented coverage -- enhanced by state-of-the-art underwater 1,200-watt HMI lighting and Sony videotape and camera technologies -- of the ship at its final resting place. There, images of personal effects of men and women lost 80 years ago are captured with stunning -- and haunting -- clarity.
 In addition to Giddings' production crew, the Keldysh also housed a film crew from IMAX Corp., the Canadian group who had the original concept for the expedition. Its team of filmmakers, led by producer/director Stephen Low, captured breathtaking images of the Titanic in 70 mm film frames 10 times the size of conventional motion picture frames -- the largest format in film history. Their film, "Titanica," is due for release this fall to venues in the IMAX network of 78 theaters in 15 countries. It will be shown on screens up to eight stories high.
 Also on board was the technical mind behind the 405-foot vessel and its two companion 23-foot-long submersibles, which are each capable of diving four miles. That scientist, Dr. Anatoly Sagalevitch, head of submersibles at the P.P. Shirshov Institute of Oceanology, U.S.S.R. Academy of Sciences, directed the Russian crew of more than 100 scientists and engineers.
 "TITANIC" looks at the relationship between these diverse cultural groups -- from their beginnings as guarded strangers to their parting as respectful, trusting colleagues and friends.
 The special also represents great advancements in the world of videotape and camera technology.
 Faced with the challenge of capturing images 12,460 feet below the surface of the North Atlantic, Giddings knew that film would not easily adapt to the unusual rigors of this assignment. He began experimenting with videotape and found that the images produced with the latest three- chip CCD Sony Betacam SP cameras had improved color and sharpness in every instance.
 Video footage of the Titanic was shot both from the porthole of a submersible and from an externally mounted Sony BVP-7 camera, protected inside a special deepwater housing created to withstand an ocean floor pressure greater than 6,230 pounds per square inch. Within the housing, the camera with triax adaptor enabled Giddings to focus, zoom, pan and tilt.
 One-hundred thirty crew members shared close quarters during two weeks of preparatory work in Bermuda, three days en route, 21 days at the Titanic site and the final two-day voyage to the expedition's end in Newfoundland.
 In all, 17 dives were made to the great ship. Each dive consisted of a three-hour, untethered free-fall in the 23-foot-long Russian submarines, 12 to 14 hours of intense work at the ocean floor and a three-hour ascent. Giddings and cameramen T. Robin Hirsh, Jeff Cree and Sam Shore shot 155 hours of tape for the special.
 "TITANIC -- Treasure of the Deep" is narrated by Peter Scott.
 Director and executive producer is Al Giddings; producers are Terry Thompson, Sam Shore and Al Giddings; writers are Sam Shore and Al Giddings; and the special was edited by Terry Kane Chinn and Sam Shore. Final on-line editor was Jim Farney of P.V.R.
 Columbia Pictures Television is a Sony Pictures Entertainment company. Sony Pictures Entertainment's global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution, television programming and syndication, theatrical exhibition, home video, operation of studio facilities and distribution of filmed entertainment worldwide.
 -0- 4/15/92
 /CONTACT: Linda Kazynski of Columbia Pictures Television, 213-460-7565/ CO: Columbia Pictures Television ST: California IN: ENT SU:


EH-KJ -- LA008 -- 8481 04/15/92 08:02 EDT
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Date:Apr 15, 1992
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