I’m sorry to have missed last weekend’s Los Angeles showing of a freshly restored 4K version of North by Northwest, which will be the basis of a forthcoming 4K UHD Bluray that will street late this year. Alfred Hitchcock‘s 1959 classic screened Saturday afternoon (4.20) under the auspices of the TCM Classic Film Festival.

I presumed the TCM NXNW screening was a premiere. (Distributors routinely debut new restorations at TCM Classic Film Festival.) Which is why I was thrown when I discovered yesterday that a “4K restoration” of North by Northwest played at the Film Forum roughly five months ago (late October-early November).

This morning I called the Film Forum and was told by a seemingly knowledgable employee that the restored 4K version of NXNW that played at the West Houston Street theatre last fall was the same version that played last Saturday at the Chinese on Hollywood Blvd.

The employee mentioned that FF senior programmer Bruce Goldstein, who’s also involved with the TCM Classic Film Festival, had finessed the booking, etc.

And yet this didn’t seem right. Why would Warner Bros. Discovery, which oversaw the NXNW restoration and will release the 4K UHD disc…why would they present a freshly minted NXNW 4K restoration at the Film Forum five months before the big TCM Classic Film Festival debut?

Then again, the FF page plainly states “4K restoration.”

Just before last weekend’s TCM showing I reached out to George Feltenstein, WBD’s in-house archivist and restoration hotshot (his technical job title is WBD Library Historian). I wanted to learn about the technical details of the restoration and when the disc might be released, etc.

I didn’t hear back until this afternoon. I was informed as follows by email:

Sentence #1: “The version of North by Northwest that was shown at the TCM Film Festival last weekend is a brand-new scan from the original camera negative, using a new scanner adapted for VistaVision.”

Sentence #2: “To confirm, this is not the same version of the film that played at Film Forum last year.”