Kodak Comeback, Quick Read
From another photo forum, quite interesting! Posted today....
I just attended (last night) a SMPTE meeting of the Hollywood Chapter. The subject was "The Technology and History of Film, presented by Beverly Pasterczyk of Eastman Kodak Co." Ms. Pasterczyk is a chemist with film R & D at Kodak, and she mentioned that Kodak Research is currently engaged in the continuing design and implementation of new emulsions, such as the new version of the Vision III product.
Regarding consumer films, she said that they are considering restructuring a new approach aimed at producing these at a reasonable cost in much smaller volumes than in the past. She said that new technology will permit them to continue to produce these in "boutique quantities" using single coating machines rather than the huge multiple coaters of the past. She said that basically, as long as they had sufficient orders for a minimum of a single master roll "54 inches (almost 1-1/2 meters) wide by whatever length - no minimum stated", they would consider examining production in terms of the economics involved. Future production would primarily be on an "on demand" basis.
This would include the infrastructure for processing, probably at a single lab, either in Rochester NY, or sub-contracted.
"On demand" could conceivably include any film that Kodak has ever manufactured. Someone in the audience asked the inevitable question: "Including Kodachrome?" Her answer: "Yes, including Kodachrome". She added that while small runs of Kodachrome were unlikely, it was not out of the question, since they have had numerous inquiries.
To the question "How could this be made possible?" her answer was intriguing. "Volume is the answer. Consumer groups of large numbers of individuals could petition for the return of a specific film. This would include not only large companies, but also individuals banded together such as camera clubs, especially those with a large enough base such that they could collectively join on a national or even international basis".
Lots to think about.