Re-introduction of 70mm as a Commercial Cinema Exhibition Format
65mm Film Workshop @ the Pictureville
The 70mm Newsletter
Lamarca Marques with assistance of
7 March 2006
Guckian and Ramon Lamarca Marques. Image by Thomas Hauerslev
Thomas has asked me to write some notes about a very interesting debate on
website, which could be debated over the weekend. I have got a very
short space of time and I have asked Mr. Brian Guckian, who has also
participated in the debate and who will be there on Sunday in Bradford,
to help me with it.
This is just a "starter" to encourage you to read the 30 plus pages on
website (and it is growing!!!).
Basically the debate discusses the issue of the arrival of 2K digital
projection as a standard for cinema exhibition, and compares it to 70mm
As you will all probably know, 70mm is extremely better than 2k digital
projection. There is no secret about it, but you can find the technical
explanations on the Film-Tech
website. In particular
we have found what Mr. John Pytlak from Kodak has to say about the
technical aspects of film, especially regarding the three times
information that 65mm has got when compared to the 35mm negative, very
We suggest you read the first post by Mr. Larry Shaw, which centres the
debate. It has occurred to many of us that digital screening is the
first cinema technology that brings nothing to audiences, actually for
many of us it removes something very important, film! So, obviously the
reason for the implementation of digital is economical, nothing else.
But then, a question arises. If you can see a film digitally on a small
screen, on a badly decorated multiplex, with 5.1 digital sound, and a
lot of people crunching and munching, and mobile phones galore, for £8
per person, or if you can see it digitally at home, with your own home
cinema projector, without ads, without mobiles, without munching, and
for £3 for all your family, which one would you choose? The answer is
clear, and many people have already decided: at home.
Cinemas have been left with no unique product to sell, to this we have
to add the very short window period between cinema release and video
release, which may disappear completely in the future. So the future of
cinema exhibition looks pretty doomed.
The question is then: Is there an audience for premier cinema?
65mm-originated film printed on 70mm has got a perfection that digital
will probably take a long, long time to reach. Then, why not bring back
65/70? Answers to this can be found on the debate.
in 70mm reading:
White paper -
Re-introduction of 70mm
To find the thread, go to
Film-Tech Forums » Film Handler's Forum » 70 vs. DC
5 pm / 17:00 Pictureville Sunday 12th March,
please gather in the foyer
Guckian chairing the workshop. Image by Thomas Hauerslev
As much as I personally like square Academy ratio films in black and
white, these are no longer viable, because people stopped paying to see
them at the pictures when they got them on television. What I mean is
that the film language has had to adapt to the market. As much as Fritz
Lang thought that CinemaScope served only to film snakes, MGM made him
shoot "Moonfleet" in CinemaScope. So, to survive, cinema exhibition has
had to mutate, to distance itself from television product. With digital
it is the first time that cinema exhibition not only does not distance
itself from telly, but does in fact get closer.
I believe that studios and distributors think that cinema exhibition is
something that will disappear at some point in the near future and are
trying to minimise expenses whilst cinemas still operate.
"How The West Was Won" in Cinerama will never look good on a home cinema
environment. This is what is needed, films that from the phase of
pre-production are conceived to make the most of the big canvas of the
We now intend to explore all possibilities in relation to reviving the
70mm format commercially and intend to begin with a Workshop at the
in Bradford this year. The details of this will be made known shortly.
Workshop will cover three areas: Technical,
Financial and Marketing and is open to all. Everyone's contributions
will be recorded, and the Workshop can then be continued, for wider
in70mm.com, which Mr. Thomas Hauerslev
has very kindly agreed to. A great many positive and exciting
possibilities have already been proposed, from 65mm origination, to dye
transfer, to 9 channel uncompressed sound, and we wish to mobilize the
tremendous expertise, creativity and passion for quality that we know is
out there. So don't miss this opportunity to take part in what promises
to be a special event!
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