In 2010, Paramount Pictures embarked on a long-range plan to fortify and sustain its vast network of film and digital assets for the future. The studio consolidated some 630,000 items from 24 locations around the world, instituted standards based on economic and cultural priorities of the elements, built a new vault, produced a large amount of new digital scans of materials, and automated a digital preservation process that could be shared with the greater archival community.
Andrea Kalas, Paramount's SVP of Asset Management, breaks down the process and the considerable amount of effort that went into it. She details liabilities discovered along the way, such as acetate film deterioration and inconsistent, non-ideal storage approaches that left more than 500 titles at risk. She also explains the overall road map that the journey helped draw for others, and how a lot of up-front planning has gone a long way toward controlling costs and improving the industry's preservation capabilities going forward.