All these anecdotes befuddle the data. The hard financials for Kodak (and what I've been reading for Fuji) point to multi-year losses for film as the race to deflate the overhead was easily outrun by the loss of consumer and lately motion picture revenues. The pension and medical liabilities are still hangovers from the film era for Kodak and mean that the preponderance of red ink stems from over a 90% drop in photo film sales. Kodak is bankrupt because people stopped buying film en masse. Every other factor is trivial.
Yes cinema film subsidized photo markets. So what? Same for Fuji.
Last year the motion picture camera makers stopped making new cameras. The rental houses are only using new old stock. This turns the entire film-based cinema market from an industrial operation to a salvage operation. They may have less than 10 years of depreciation left on those cameras as spare parts are also going to become scarce and uneconomical.
Every analyst who has looked at Kodak financials sees film as a non-performing asset with a rapidly declining user base and the abandonment if supporting industry third parties--the makers of cameras and the evisceration of local stores that sell and process film.
All I am saying is the need to reinvent film consumption cannot occur when people cling to old perceptions. Film for the average consumer lost the quality and convenience battle. A few artisanal shooters with access to $200 scans may breach the all-digital pre-press barrier but realistically film is no longer a medium of economic utility. It's a hobby. Is there enough demand there to keep the coating lines rolling? Big question that the ugliness about Kodak is soon to pry open.
Last edited by Aristophanes; 01-06-2012 at 06:22 PM. Click to view previous post history.