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The Making of the Film

The survey and mapping of the underwater city of Apollonia in 1958-59 by a team of divers from Cambridge University, led by Nic Flemming, was the first time that a complete submerged city was mapped using modern scientific methods. During the survey and recovery of artefacts, pottery, and a marble statue, Nic shot a 16mm movie film in colour underwater. The underwater camera case was made at the University Engineering Laboratory. Many of the buildings in the underwater city have not been photographed in still pictures, so this movie is the only record.

Technical notes


The film was shot on Kodachrome reversal film with an emulsion speed of 10 ASA.  The original exposed film stock has been stored in metal cans for 62 years, and the film was only shown through a projector a dozen or so times.  Test strips of the film were examined and digitised by CineLab London in 2020, and the quality was such that Nic decided to digitise the whole film, and maximise the resolution and image steadiness. The film was then scanned at 2Mb per frame, with the results shown on this site.

(Image Ref: Apollonia Slips)

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