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Visit biografmuseet.dk about Danish cinemas


7OMM Returns to Stockholm

The 70mm Newsletter
Written by: Bengt Fredén, photographer, Stockholm, Sweden Date: 17.01.2016
Photography by Bengt Fredén, Stockholm

Here is a short account of our visit at the projection booth at the Rigoletto movie theater in Stockholm, and of course also from the screening of the three-hour Ultra Panavision 70 movie "The Hateful 8" in the evening of January 10th, 2016.

Thanks to Thomas Hauerslev in Copenhagen, and to chief projectionist Mats Kullander at SF Bio in Stockholm, we were invited for a short visit inside the projection booth. A very friendly projectionist, who prepared the first two 70mm reels for the 4.15 pm screening, showed us where the reels are re-spooled and how they are loaded onto the Philips/TODD-AO DP70 projectors. YES! In this movie theater, one of very few, "The Hateful 8" is shown in it's original, ten-reel form, using two DP70 projectors! So, reel #1 was loaded onto the upper spool of the left projector and reel #2 to the right one.

It is much more common to show these long 70mm movies from large horizontal platters, in a so called 'non-rewind' configuration, where the film is loaded from the center (where the core normally would be) and not from the outside, which is normal when you show all the ten reels in consecutive order. The film is, in this non-rewind configuration, then led via spools and spindles under the ceiling through the room over to (and back from) only one DP70 projector.
More in 70mm reading:

The Adventures of Hateful 8 at Rigoletto!

7OMM Vender tilbage til Stockholm

Internet link:

Photography by Bengt Fredén, Stockholm

We got to hold one of the 70mm reels, reel #1, and it was VERY heavy, weighing in at about 8 Kilos. That means that the complete film (3 h and 8 min) weighs in excess of 80 Kilos! Beside the steep stairs up to the booth there was a very smart motorized rail lift, for the purpose of bringing up very heavy film reels and other massive projector equipment.

When the projectionist placed the first reel on top of the projector, I got to look at the 70mm film path in front of the powerful Xenon lamp housing, and I noticed that the film is carried through a slightly arc-fomed path, with thin metal guides on either side, instead of a flat pressure plate, thus reducing wear and scratches on the film to an absolute minimum. In a DP70 projector, it is possible to show one film print or copy several hundred times without de-grading the print quality at all.

In front of the lamp house and film path, there is a special, very solid and long, cast metal holder for the projection lens. I could see that in front of the usual lens, there was a special "H88 ANAMORPHIC 0.8x" lens, which was delivered along with the film print from distribution company. An anamorphic lens is a special kind of lens, with oval lens elements, which during projection 'spreads out' the image, so that it is slightly wider than in the 65mm camera negative, where the image is in turn compressed, using a similar anamorphic ULTRA PANAVISION 70 camera lens, which is, however, turned 90° in the other direction. I took a few photos of the film path and the 'H88' lens:

After having thoroughly seen the DP70 projectors and the digital DTS sound equipment, as well as the BARCO digital projector, from where the Swedish subtitles are projected onto the lower section of the theater screen, we briefly also met the female chief projectionist for the evening's screening, who arrived in time to operate, and continuously monitor, the two DP70 projectors for the next three hours. We left the projection booth in high spirits.
Photography by Bengt Fredén, Stockholm

We sat a while in the VIP lounge and bar, had a few drinks and discussed what we had just seen. Then, at about 15 minutes before the actual screening, the big doors opened and we took our drinks and sat down in our very comfortable VIP seats, with a small drink table beside each seat.

After the commercials, we enjoyed the digital presentation of the making of the film. Then, when the OVERTURE started, I was very much impressed by the mysterious score of Ennio Morricone, with ominously growling bassoons. The sound was massive and impressive overall, and the dialogue was very clear and easy to hear.

And, the superwide ULTRA PANAVISION 70 format lends itself extremely well to the grand vistas of Wyoming (Telluride), as the old stage coach comes rolling along after six sweaty horses in the snowy landscape. We thoroughly enjoyed the whole film, with it's drama and intrigue, discussing it during the INTERMISSION - a true Tarantino story!

What a glorious film evening!

More Hateful pictures by Bengt Fredén

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Updated 04-05-22