Petition to support 35mm movie projection

Discussion in 'Product Availability' started by David A. Goldfarb, Jan 13, 2012.

  1. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member

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    Ok, we all know the drill. Who knows how much good these things do, but showing strong support for 35mm release prints in movie theaters can't be a bad thing--

    http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/fight-for-35mm/

    I'm #8257

    Even better, go see a movie in a theater, ideally where they are projecting from 35mm or heck, even 70mm.
     
  2. tomalophicon

    tomalophicon Member

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    I've signed.
    The only cinema in my town is digital :sad:
     
  3. MDR

    MDR Member

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    David thanks for the info just signed the petition.

    Dominik
     
  4. Ross Chambers

    Ross Chambers Member

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    I would call the petition "The King Canute Memorial Cinema Hopefuls (or Romantics)"

    C'mon folks, just a few points from a Canadian newspaper:

    ===============================================

    Digital movies are typically delivered on a hard drive that can be held in the hand. Or in some cases, the signal can be beamed in by satellite. That means no heavy 35-mm film canisters or movie projectionists to thread spools.

    The economics are even more compelling for studios to encourage exhibitors to switch over. One 35-mm print could cost $1,000 versus $200 for a digital hard drive. Multiply that by 10,000 screens for a wide release film and the difference in distribution costs are staggering.

    “If you want to continue playing relatively contemporary movies, then you need digital. That’s the way the market is going,” says Demois. The theatre usually shows movies four to five weeks after the first run. Currently it’s showing My Week With Marilyn and Margin Call.

    “We’re coming to the tipping point where prints won’t be available,” says Rui Pereira, general manager of the Kingsway Theatre in the city’s west end.

    BUT ALSO:

    While celluloid used trained projectionists, who are now something of an endangered species, digital equipment was supposed to be easier. But not always.

    The hard drives are always encrypted, and many times — Peel estimates at least 10 per cent of the time — the encryption doesn’t work, or the drive may be damaged.

    “You end up with delays, you have to call the distributor, try and get a new code. They’re still working out the bugs.”

    Peel says he has both 35-mm and digital capability. But he doesn’t have a preference for either.

    “The world has spoken. The world is going digital,” says Peel. “We are dealing with a huge transition.”

    With the push to digital, Peel says there has been equal pushback from some fans who are used to 35-mm film.

    “Film has its own look and it’s been around for more than 100 years,” says Peel. “But there’s no reason we can’t celebrate both.”

    Theatre manager Demois agrees. “Film certainly looks different. It has nicks and scratches, and it erodes over time. But there is a romance to it,” says Demois. “Digital actually looks too clear for some people. It’s the same reason some people like the sound of old vacuum tube stereos as opposed to digital equipment. But they both have their advantages and disadvantages.”

    =============================================

    I believe that the real concern is that Kodak and Fuji will stop making the various motion picture stocks that have probably been supporting our photographic supplies.
     
  5. Lionel1972

    Lionel1972 Member

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    I'm #8276!
     
  6. munz6869

    munz6869 Subscriber

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    I have a two year old Kinoton FP38E (dual format 16/35mm) in my workplace - of course I'm signing this :smile:

    Marc!
     
  7. brianmquinn

    brianmquinn Member

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    Another signature added. Sadly I don't feel it will make much difference. At least my local IMAX is still film. I should make a it new year resolution to see all of the shows there to support movie film sales.
     
  8. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    I have already posted this, nut here it is again:

    [video=youtube;BON9Ksn1PqI]http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=BON9Ksn1PqI[/video]



    Steve.
     
  9. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member

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    Having to deal with DCP projection occasionally for work, these hard drive errors seem quite prevalent, and when they happen during a screening, they typically can't be resolved, and all the theater can do is refund tickets and hand out free popcorn.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 14, 2012
  10. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    Not quite as easy as splicing a broken film back together then.


    Steve.
     
  11. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member

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    That's about the size of it. And there often seems to be some chaos involving the codes, though that can usually be sorted out before the screening.

    The difference in shipping costs is huge, but if you've got a screening in, say, a major museum that can afford a DCP system, and the subtitles disappear for half the movie, then the shipping costs hardly matter.
     
  12. canuhead

    canuhead Member

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    I'd rather wait a few minutes for a splice than get a refund and figure out what to do with the wasted time I set aside for the movie.
     
  13. Ross Chambers

    Ross Chambers Member

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    I found myself employed to check out the cinema which was engaged to screen the Sydney premiere of Jane Campion's Academy Award winning "The Piano" on the afternoon before the VIP invite screening. Everything was going fine until the lead actor suddenly leaped across the screen about 15 feet in the space of 2 frames.

    Of course I flew up to the projection box to ask why there was a splice and the projectionist (who was running 3 other shows at the same time, as they do) said something like "Oh yeah, we had a bit of a crunch there, but don't worry it's a good splice" I fear that Ms Campion would have spliced his gonads (and mine) if that had happened at the premiere.

    Fortunately we did find another print, well worn but intact. It just required cleaning to get rid of the dust that release prints acquire.

    Now that isn't going to happen with a digital projector.
     
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  15. wildbill

    wildbill Member

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    Movies aren't getting cheaper. I paid $12 last week here in california and they didn't warn me that it wasn't a print. I think that should be made public, up front. That's the first movie I've seen that way and it didn't look that great. Prices going up, quality going down. Awesome.
     
  16. spacer

    spacer Member

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    Not exactly the same thing, but this reminded me of something I saw today: a retro-cabinet LP player at Target. I think it also plays CDs and MP3s, but the main feature was the big platter sittin' right on top. We have an old cabinet hi-fi that my wife and I are thinking about dusting off... maybe see how well it still works. If it does pretty well, we'll start looking for some old vinyl to spin on 'er.

    As for the topic at hand, I'm still thinking movie film can survive the same way stills can... even a small, yet active group of people can keep an industry alive, even with far smaller numbers than during the heyday. Aviation is an example of sorts. In fact, a lot of pilots I know are also still using film cameras. The guy I bought my Canonet and Kowas from flies an Aeronca, among other things.
     
  17. mrred

    mrred Subscriber

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    I saw my first digital projection yesterday, "Contraband". Blacks were excellent, image was sharp, contrast was low (colours washed a bit) and wide movements flickered. After spotting that it was a digital projection, I forgot about it and got into the move.

    I don't look at the "Mona Lisa" to notice what canvas it is on or what paint was used. If I wanted to do that, I expect I would never get to see the art.

    Yes things change and if it saves the theater life, we are the better. Where else would I buy my popcorn? I shoot film. Big deal. It hasn't exactly made me a better person; I just buy film.
     
  18. Ross Chambers

    Ross Chambers Member

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    I suppose that if you wanted to set up a real--or possibly "retro"--home cinema this could be the time. All those old 35mm projectors may possibly be very cheaply bought soon, and they were all built like brick outhouses. I wonder how much of the sound system remains in use after digital conversion. If you wanted to avoid running into the projection box every 20 minutes to perform the changeover of reels you'd need the platter system too, and a rather large house.
     
  19. Sal Santamaura

    Sal Santamaura Member

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    We don't often see motion pictures in theaters. In fact, we hardly watch them at home. However, being a harsh critic of what's available is another topic. :smile:

    Today I checked the listings for "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close," one feature we do intend to view early next week. There were two theater chains to choose from. The first has a 6-screen facility very near our home. I phoned and asked whether they projected film or digitally. The answer was "all digital." I expressed my disappointment and intent to go elsewhere, whereupon the manager stated that they still had two film projectors in reserve and could accommodate me. No matter how hard I tried, it was impossible to make him understand that I was a potential patron, not a distributor trying to place a film. :blink:

    My second call was to an 8-screen theater, slightly further away, that's part of a different chain. Its manager responded that projection was 100% film. I thanked her, then asked that she let the owners know this answer was a good one and the reason I'd be going to their establishment rather than the competition's. She sounded pleased and committed to pass my input along.
     
  20. clayne

    clayne Member

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    Prints are in danger. Masters or in-camera stock is still widely 35mm though.

    However in my opinion cinema has been on the decline in general, film or not. There may or may not be a connection.
     
  21. fotch

    fotch Member

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    I can see digital at home, I would only go out to see a live play or a film movie. I added to the petition.
     
  22. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    I'd sign it but they don't need my information. I do support the idea tho.
     
  23. Sal Santamaura

    Sal Santamaura Member

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    We just returned home from the theater. Ads and other "stuff" shown to early arrivers were digital. The feature (and a few feature previews before it) were film. To reinforce the message, moments ago I sent that theater chain's management a "contact us" message, via its Web site, saying the only reason we went there was their film projection. I added that one might as well stay home and watch a disc when theaters project features digitally. My conclusion was: "As long as you project film, we will keep coming to your theater. Switch to digital and we're done."
     
  24. ajuk

    ajuk Member

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    Why are cinemas struggling to get prints already? Tt's still not unusual to be projecting film yet.
     
  25. mrred

    mrred Subscriber

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    You are assuming they havn't started to choke the pipeline already. It should only effect new releases at first.
     
  26. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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    The pay off for converting to digital projection only benefits the movie producers, not for theater owners. There are theaters that have projectors that are decades old and are perfectly good. I have a feeling that with digital projection, theaters will have to bear the cost of short hardware upgrade cycles and constant upgrades in software. This trend can endanger small art movie houses. The little guy that cares about movies shot on film will get the shaft like independent book sellers that can't sell Ebooks.

    Take a look at this:
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/02/21/BU5U1N8SPB.DTL&tsp=1