Shot more than a century ago, a scene showing “Buffalo Bill” as he conducts an interview with an Oglala Lakota leader looks as if it were filmed yesterday.
This old film clip was recently remastered using artificial intelligence (AI), and the result lookslike high-definition video. The artist behind this transformation is giving Live Science readers a first look at the astonishing result.
Though still black and white, the remastered footage no longer appears jittery and sped-up, as silent films usually do. Motion in very old movies looks unnaturally fast because the hand-cranked film cameras of the day captured fewer frames per second (fps) than cameras do now.
Digital artist Matt Loughrey, who restores historic photographs at My Colorful Past, developed a process that brings film clips from the late 19th century and early 20th century into the present. Loughrey uses AI to recreate the missing visual information between the original frames in these films. By enabling motion to advance as smoothly as it does in contemporary film and video, Loughrey’s remastered footage looks eerily modern, even when it was shot more than 100 years ago.