Digital intermediate (typically abbreviated to DI) is a motion picture finishing process which classically involves digitizing a motion picture and manipulating the color and other image characteristics.
It often replaces or augments the photochemical timing process and is usually the final creative adjustment to a movie before distribution in theaters. It is distinguished from the telecine process in which film is scanned and color is manipulated early in the process to facilitate editing.
However the lines between telecine and DI are continually blurred and are often executed on the same hardware by colorists of the same background. These two steps are typically part of the overall color management process in a motion picture at different points in time. A digital intermediate is also customarily done at higher resolution and with greater color fidelity than telecine transfers.
Telecine is the process of transferring motion picture film into video and is performed in a color suite. The term is also used to refer to the equipment used in the post-production process.
Telecine enables a motion picture, captured originally on film stock, to be viewed with standard video equipment, such as television sets, video cassette recorders (VCR) or computers.
This allows film producers, television producers and film distributors working in the film industry to release their products on video and allows producers to use video production equipment to complete their filmmaking projects. Within the film industry, it is also referred to as a TK, as TC is already used to designate time code.