The library will also preserve the first "Kodachrome Color Motion Picture Tests" from 1922. The two-color film features leading actresses posing and miming for the camera to demonstrate the new color film. Before then, to show film in color, black and white images either had to be hand-painted or colored with a stenciling process. Inventors, including scientists at Kodak, began experimenting with ways to create true color film.
The Kodachrome test shown at Paragon Studios in New Jersey was the first publicly demonstrated color film that would attract interest from the American film industry. Later Technicolor would become the industry standard.
"Most every major Hollywood film from 1922 through the end of the silent era would have either a Kodachrome color sequence in it or Technicolor color sequence as a way of attracting audience interest," said Pat Loughney, chief of the library's audio visual preservation campus. "It's a technical, historical achievement, but it's important to the progress of inventive work that made motion pictures successful."
National Film Preservation Board: http://www.loc.gov/film