I think it's possible that this is actually *good* for film. Film is a well-defined product with a brand name that a company can crank out and sell. Right away. No need to reinvest in research etc. A company like 3M or Fuji, with good systems engineers, could probably reduce the production line to bare bones and robots and take the profit from the brand names alone.... for some years to come. Companies like Philip Morris know very well how to take good profit in a troubled sector during a declining market.
I would guess that some digital imaging technologies and algorithms are at the core of EK's hopes for patent sales. Who knows, maybe they have some good stuff for digital xray or whatnot. That should be portioned off and made viable as a separate entity, and not tied to film at all. That would be beneficial to both sides... film and digital.