65mm - The Versatile Shooting Format
The 70mm Newsletter
25 June 2007
audiences become more demanding of technical quality and as
high-definition imagery penetrates the home environment, there
has never been a better time to originate feature film material
With cost differences
over the standard 35mm format far less than popularly perceived,
and with a range of film stock, lighting and camera packages
available, serious consideration of shooting full-length
material on 65mm is now possible, not least because of the
multi-platform release capability that 65mm offers (Fig 1,
above), whilst maintaining very high quality across the range of
in 70mm reading:
Showcase potential of 65mm - 65/70mm Workshop
2 (left) and the accompanying magnification chart clearly show how shooting
on 65mm permits release on theatrical 70mm plus the IMAX format
with low magnification factors (or none, in the case of 70mm). The greatest
contrast is with conventional Super-35mm, which when blown up to IMAX
requires a very high magnification factor of 7.8 and considerable digital
image processing to maintain an acceptable degree of quality (the IMAX DMR
process). But, if original material is acquired on 65mm, the magnification
factor for IMAX release is just 1.8, with no digital processing involved and
yielding far higher image quality.
The 65mm negative also yields far higher quality conventional 35mm prints as
the negative area is over 4 times greater than 35mm, and critically, also
offers an extremely high definition source for both 4K and 2K D-Cinema
platforms, plus later HD TV transmission and HD-DVD / Blu-Ray Disc release.
It is not surprising that major consumer and professional audio-visual
electronics manufacturers regularly showcase 65mm-originated material to
demonstrate the capability of their display technologies.
65mm format further reintroduces the 70mm Roadshow release option for key
theatres and markets.
Many cinemas retain or have installed dual-gauge
35/70mm capability, with full-range, multi-channel disc-based digital audio
available that removes the need for expensive magnetic soundtracks.
Across this wide spectrum of release options, with its ability to offer and
maintain very high image quality, plus its archivability and film-based
advantages, 65mm film offers an unbeatable option for visionary filmmakers.
The infrastructure and work practices exist, the economics are very
attractive and the potential returns are enormous.
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