Zeiss on the outlook for film
Pessimists, tear this to bits.
Issue No. 23
How about the Future of Film?
Since Carl Zeiss introduced the Zeiss Ikon rangefinder camera system - a 35 mm film camera - we keep receiving questions about our belief in the future of film.
In an era of digital hype, many people interested in high quality photo equipment question an investment in film-based gear. Even those who very well understand and appreciate the aspects in which film is clearly superior to digital imagery keep asking us: "Will film be available for me to operate my Zeiss Ikon camera in the future?"
We know that a variety of documentation applications of extreme importance rely heavily on silver halide film - if not for image origination, then at least for image archiving. Military aerial reconnaissance (often with Carl Zeiss aerial cameras and lenses) today relies on digital technology for immediate availability, but continues to use film for reliable long-term storage.
And so does "Hollywood". Carl Zeiss, as a leading supplier of lenses for the motion picture industry, can see day-in day-out, that the vast majority of feature films is still originated on silver halide film. Film is the medium of choice for long-term archiving, and is expected to remain so for the foreseeable future. This is why we are so confident about the future of film
And how about Fujifilm and Kodak?
During a recent industry association meeting, we had the opportunity to speak about the future of film with Helmut Rupsch, Business General Manager, Fujifilm-Düsseldorf and Rainer Dick, Business General Manager, Kodak Digital & Film Imaging Systems. Though both companies have been experiencing declining film sales over the last two years, as the amateur and professional photography markets transition from analog to digital, both gentlemen report still very healthy business with film. These two industry representatives, who are in a position to know the facts, confirm that neither company is considering stopping film manufacture. Both gentlemen are confident that their companies will continue to supply film – usable in the ZI camera and others – for decades to come.
"One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid,
and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision"