Advantages and disadvantages of 70mm
This article first appeared in
The 70mm Newsletter
by: Freddie A. Young
- June 1995
Thank you for your letter
dated 8th December, 1994. Thank you for the copy of The 70mm Newsletter.
You asked me if I could write a short article for this. I am happy to do
so, but I must state that since I am now 92 years of age and haven't
worked for about 5 years - and then only on commercials - I am not up to
date with all the developments in the Film Industry, However, I will now
write a few words about my thoughts on using 70mm film.
film like anything has its advantages and disadvantages. It is
particularly appropriate for those films that are set in locations of
outstanding natural beauty. For example, it was certainly the right film
for shooting "Lawrence Of Arabia", where capturing the
magnificence of the desert was so important - but had we been shooting
interiors in a back street in Clapham, then I'm not so sure that it would
have been worth it! Its main drawbacks are the added expense that it puts
onto a film's budget, and also the time and additional work that it adds
through its need for specialized equipment such as stronger dollies,
cranes, tripods and so on. Another problem is that not many cinemas have
the necessary facilities for showing 70mm. I do think that 35mm film has
proved itself to be an excellent alternative to 70mm, since although it
obviously can't match the latter's superior quality, it has none of its
disadvantages, and in my opinion, there are only a limited number of films
that would justify the extra cost and trouble of being shot in 70mm. After
all, 35mm has stood the test of time. Mind you, I still think that there's
room for 70mm for those special feature films that really do benefit from
being shown on 60 foot screens in a limited number of cinemas in big
cities all over the world.
Sincerely, Freddie A. Young
in 70mm reading:
There Were Giants in the Land
"Lawrence of Arabia"
Some Notes on
Shooting "Lawrence of Arabia"