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"70mm Film Weekend" Centrum Panorama Varnsdorf 2022

The 70mm Newsletter
Written & Photographed by: Hans Hänßler, Stuttgart, Germany Date: 11.06.2022
Centrum Panorama, Varnsdorf, Czech Republic

The third weekend of May [20-22. May, 2022] I paid a visit to Varnsdorf (CZ) and the Centrum Panorama 70mm weekend. This is a real Todd-AO movie house with a 22 m wide screen, curved in the middle some 2 m and stadium seating for more than 500 people.

In the projection room there are 2x Meopta UM70 projectors, 2x Meopta 35mm projectors, 1 Meopta 16mm projector and a 4k projector.

The owner of the cinema is Pavel Nejtek. Pavel bought the cinema building and hotel for 25 Czech Kronur or less, and he had to invest quite a lot of money to restore the place. Pavel does not speak any English so I had to ask Michal to translate. But somehow, he was not too talkative.
More in 70mm reading:

7Omm Weekend in Varnsdorf – more than a fistful of classic film jewels!

Varnsdorf Reloaded

Centrum Panorama Varnsdorf, Czech Republic

70mm Film Weekend in Centrum Panorama Varnsdorf, Czech Republic

70mm Retro - Festivals and Screenings

Home of "7OMM Seminar" at Kino Mir 70, Krnov, Czech Republic

The owner of Centrum Panorama Mr. Pavel Nejtek (left), and 70mm delegate and author of this mission report Mr Hans Hänßler from Germany (right)

There were three cinemas in the same style. Kino Panorex in Nová Dubnica (Slovak Republic) and two in Czech Republic. Only Nová Dubnica and Varnsdorf are still open. The Centrum Panorama opened in 1971 with "Tschaikovsky" and was very successful in the beginning. I have to research the history, because I do not know who was running the house before the closure.

Ivan Skoluda and Michal Mraz along with Lukáš Košik and Martin Leskovsky, all also part of the Krnov 70mm festival, came to the showings. Ivan was helping the son of Pavel Nejtek running the projectors with manual change overs.
Ivan Skoluda next to 70mm projector at the Centrum Panorama, Varnsdorf

The program showed mostly German dubbed prints from a private collector: "The Great Wall" filmed in Technirama and shown in Super Technirama 70 with very good picture quality. Only some fading but strong contrast and full stereophonic sound with German dialog mixing in the front channels.

“The Untouchables” the well-known 35mm blow-up with an engaging score by Ennio Morricone.

"Porgy and Bess" filmed in Todd-AO in the original Version with German subtitles. Also still some color left and great soundtrack. "Death on the Nile" the same 70mm print we saw in Krnov and "Play Time" by Jaques Tati filmed in 65mm 1,85:1 format only, but sharp picture and overdone sound effects, but very funny.
70mm stadium seating at the Centrum Panorama, Varnsdorf

Last 70mm was a blow up of “Aliens” in 1,85:1 widescreen only with flat contrast, but with a great soundtrack. In between some Cinema 180 reels, the prologue about  Michelangelo [From "The Agony and the Ecstasy"] and one left-over reel of "Oklahoma!" in full Todd-AO and 30 fps.

Also three SENSURROUND titles in 35mm: "Midway", "Rollercoaster" and "Earthquake" all in German dialogue.
70mm pizza restaurant at the Centrum Panorama, Varnsdorf

The subtitles were advanced from the projection booth by two young girls. So no automation like in Krnov.

There is enough place in the foyer for Pavel's collection of film projectors and television equipment exhibition. Centrum Panorama also has room for a Pizza Restaurant in the same building.

All in all, a great event in a Todd-AO custom built cinema.
70mm Centrum Panorama program poster.

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Updated 21-01-24