BRINGING COLOUR TO THE MEMORIES OF THE FALLEN WITH PETER JACKSON’S ‘THEY SHALL NOT GROW OLD’

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14-18 NOW and Imperial War Museums (IWM) in association with the BBC, commissioned Peter Jackson to create They Shall Not Grow Old, a film using original footage from the museum’s extensive archive, alongside BBC and IWM interviews with servicemen who fought in the First Wold War. Jackson and his team worked tirelessly over four years to recolour it and convert it to 3D, and transform the footage with modern production techniques to present never before seen detail.

Bad Madam was commissioned by 14-18 NOW to create a documentary telling the story of the project’s final stages as it neared completion and release. The team captured the journey, and the painstaking work involved for twelve months, and the story of the enormous undertaking was told by Peter himself, as well as through interviews with numerous IWM archivists and footage from the original tapes on the Steenbeck at the museum.

They Shall Not Grow Old was given its Royal World Premiere at the BFI London Film Festival on 16 October, attended by Peter Jackson and the Duke of Cambridge, and following its first screening, it was nominated for a BAFTA. With the documentary of the film’s story still to be released, it seemed fitting to include this wonderful accolade. So we hurriedly re-cut the end, to pay tribute to the nomination, and included new recoloured footage, seen for the first time at the premiere, to honour the project which had through its long journey, grown into such an important cultural icon for bringing colour to the stories of the soldiers’ of a hundred years ago.