The need for a practical film format for 3D and widescreen, to replace
The 70mm Newsletter
by: Allan Silliphant
17 November 2005
I have loved 70mm film format though ALL of my adult life.
At one time I was lucky enough to have a 70mm screening room in my studio and 9 or 10 65mm production cameras.
Nobody ever loved 70mm more than me as a big screen
obsessive, young film maker.
I even had built from scratch 65mm reflex cameras and hand-held 65mm for shooting 3D polarized stereo.
I think that the time has come to re-invigorate the core ideal of 70mm by bringing it back in a more practical and cost effective form. The form I suggest is actually printed
on, or photographed on 35mm stock, with a conventional sprocket pattern. Plain 35mm film, upon which, a TALLER 6 perf. FRAME is displayed. If you use the area normally devoted to optical sound, you can have 1.60 as much usable area to work with.
Any image that is 1.60 times as clear, bright, less grainy, or more color saturated, is moving far down the road to the now almost defunct 70mm conventional widescreen format.
in 70mm reading:
Cine 160 3D/ Anachrome 3D Group
Simi Valley CA 93094-1112
Anybody interested in more information may reach me by e-mail
This new format can be run on very old conventional projectors will a moderate amount of
refitting. For more money a brand new machine with modern features could be built for less than 1/10 of the cost of a digital projection system that would surpass the present look of the best digital theater installations.
I have named my new format, "CINE 160", referring to the area increase
ratio. I would propose 3 applications of the basis format:
A 3D stereo mode where two 1.85 to 1 widescreen images are placed on the frame to make a left/right stereo pair for polarized projection. The lack of light in a 4 perf.
frame, split into left/right dictates the increased size.
An anamorphic squeezed format to get 1.85 to 1 out of the full frame for release of true blockbuster, class A films that would have had extensive 70mm release in the seventies and eighties in the largest
theatres. Films like "Star Wars", "King Kong",
"Lord of the Rings", "Titanic" would all look better with the "big format"
The IMAX big square format could be scaled down to this size for showing in small communities or in the poorer regions of the world. This could be a real boon to the stalwart community of LF (large format) documentary
producers. And in this form could be shown as a double bill 90 minute presentation. At least 1000 new venues could be established around the world, probably many more.
We all know that digital presentation will likely be the rule in 5 to 10 years, but a transitional format like this will greatly facilitate the transition. and just prop aircraft continue to be used after 55 years since the introduction of the first jets, this format may turn out to be superior for special presentations.
ACS, 16.07.2010 (shortened)
I directed , wrote and line produced “The Stewardesses” in 1969, and
revised it into an R rated film in 1971. A year later I blew the film up to
side by side 70mm, and showed that version in theaters with up to 4000
seats. A couple of years later, Chris & I made a deal with Warner Bros. to
convert “House of Wax” to 70mm, and opened it in theaters like
Hollywood’s Grauman’s Chinese Theater, and the 4300 seat, Boston Music Hall.
Chris and I bought most all of the available 65mm cameras in the USA, hoping
that Hollywood would give 3D a serious “reboot”, but it never really came to
be on a big scale.
We put 3D into one roll of film, one projector, one camera with images that
were easy on the eyes. Showed the advantage of 70mm 3D, as well!
December 2005 - Added comment by Allan Silliphant
In November of
2005, Disney opened their animation film "Chicken Little" on 84
screens digital 3D. The results were very encouraging, with about 3 times
the business per screen going to the 3D equipped screens. Another Disney
film, "Meet the Robinsons" will result in installation of hundreds
more of the 2K digital machines in 2006.
There are at least 6 other 3D films scheduled for release in 2006, either in
digital or IMAX 3D. Most are animation.
2K digital is only 1/4 as big of a file as 4K. To properly replace and
improve on film cinema, the 4K format must be the new standard. Present 2K
digital is not as good as film, and cannot be shown on large screens. 35
feet is the practical limit.
CINE 160 is far better than 2K and basically conforms to 4K brightness and
clarity standards. Until 4K can be installed at a reasonable price, it makes
sense to install at least 2000 Cine 160 machines around the world to allow
3d production and the showing of "semi-70mm- 2D", SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS.
Bigger, brighter screens result, and makes this larger format & 3D available
to less affluent countries.
I believe that $10,000 projector kit and screen packages in CINE 160 can be
provided to keep big screen film cinema alive and promote more 3D
We have a Cinerama projector, (actually later WONDERAMA - Century) and have
a modified Mitchell NC camera for 6 perf. There is no DVD for CINE 160. I'm
Going to Rome tomorrow to work on a dual HD camera rig with an Italian
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