The Immersive Quality of 70mm Film
"The glory of 70mm is the sharpness of the images it offers."
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"For "Flying Machines"
I leaned to the Todd-AO system because the camera system was light, very
easy to operate and fast to load. You must remember that I was brought up
with 3-strip Technicolor where it took 11 minutes to load a camera".
Ken Annakin about Todd-AO's cameras. Picture by Thomas Hauerslev (2000)
"Those Magnificent men in their Flying Machines" /
"But as far as choosing Todd-AO for "Flying Machines" it was
really the obvious choice. It was the biggest screen system at that time,
biggest, and I knew I wanted to fill the screen with a great number of
people and planes. What really is impressive now is seeing these tiny
airplanes in a great big empty sky, and you only get that in 70mm."
"Lawrence of Arabia" /
Freddie A. Young
"70mm film like anything has its advantages and disadvantages. It is
particularly appropriate for those films that are set in locations of
outstanding natural beauty. For example, it was certainly the right film for
shooting "Lawrence of Arabia", where capturing the magnificence of
the desert was so important..."
"Tenet" / Christopher Nolan
“I’ve been working with the IMAX format for years now. It has this
extraordinary power in terms of how deeply it can take the audience into the
story. With a story as entertaining and fun as this one tries to be, we
really felt that we wanted to wrap the movie around the audience and take
them on a ride.”
"Hamlet" / Sir
"Pictures I've seen in that format are uniquely involving. They make you
feel as though you can walk right into the landscape. I wanted the audience
to smell and feel the atmosphere of the court, dripping with power, opulence
and corruption. The increased sharpness of 65mm picks up everything; not
just facial expressions, but any meaning in the actor's eyes is caught that
much more clearly. It probes more deeply into the inner life of the
character. It makes a significant impact on the power of the film, and
therefore on its potential to reach a large audience. It gives a big picture
feel to it, very much removed from watching films on small multiplex cinema
screens or on video."
"The glory of 70mm is the sharpness of the images it offers. With 70mm, we
get a chance to go from what is essentially a personal, domestic story about
a family and its' problems to the epic dimension that reflects the effects
of those problems on the nation. We can go from the very intimate events in
the court to the plains of northern Europe and see Fortinbras for the
opportunistic leader he was, ready to invade with thousands of soldiers.
70mm is able to give that tremendous sweep so you feel the impact of the
story, but it also has an incredible delicate touch, too."
"I like to go to the movies. I like a large cinema with a packed house and a
big picture. That to me is a very distinctive form of entertainment. And I
wanted to be involved with that."
"Dunkirk" / Christopher
“The reason we were shooting on IMAX film, is that the immersive quality
of the image is second to none. When you sit in the movie theatre, the
screen disappears and you really get a very tactile sense of the imagery.
That lends itself to incredible panoramas and large-scale action. But we’ve
also found over the years that if you use it for more intimate situations,
it creates an immediacy that’s very engaging. So our feeling was, if we
could find a way to do it physically, the payoff would be well worth it.”
|More in 70mm reading:|
list of major 70mm films
"Death on the Nile" to be released in the UK
in October, 2020
"Tenet" in the splendour of 7OMM
"In our digital age, it's increasingly rare for films to be shot on
celluloid, and mostly when they are, it's 35mm. We are shooting on 65mm."
Kenneth Branagh about "Murder on the Orient Express". Picture by
Thomas Hauerslev (2007)
"Murder on the Orient Express" /
Sir Kenneth Branagh
"In our digital age, it's increasingly rare for films to be shot on
celluloid, and mostly when they are, it's 35mm. We
are shooting on 65mm. So, in crude terms, it's twice the size of the 35mm
negative. It allows for a level of definition in the color and the range of
tones and contrasts in the movie that, if you like film, some would argue,
echoes more the experience of the human eye when viewing things. It
essentially means, in layman's terms, that it looks sharper, richer, more
colorful, and it feels like you're inside it. That's what 65mm does for me,
and I wanted to take the audience onto the train. That's why we chose that
"The Master" /
Paul Thomas Anderson
“We started shooting with a 65mm Studio Camera and everything we were
seeing started to feel very right. It gives you a wonderful, strong image,
but more than the resolution or anything like that, it simply seemed to suit
this story and these characters. Things could feel antique without feeling
precious or a re-enactment of a particular style. It’s hard for me to
describe it other than to say, it felt right.”
"The Hateful 8" / Quentin
“The thing about the roadshows that they used to do was that it made
movies special. It wasn’t just a movie playing at your local theater. Some
of them were musicals, some were big historical epics. They would do these
big productions before the normal release of the film. You would get a big
colorful program. It was a big presentation. They would play a Broadway show
overture version of the soundtrack. If you’re going to shoot your movie and
release it in 70mm, it’s really the way to go. Twenty-four frames a second
flickering through a projector, creating the illusion of movement.”
“Capturing this bleak Western landscape, capturing the snow, capturing
the beauty of these locations would be perfect for 70mm. I believe that
these big formats offer more intimacy. You can be closer to the characters.
It could bring you closer and invade the intimacy of the characters in its
bigness. I don’t think that it is a format that is only meant for
"Chronos" / Ron Fricke
"I remember when I was a little kid I always looked at the theater as a
temple. Looking at films in Cinerama, these big widescreen films, I hadn’t a
clue what they were about, but visually I was immensely moved by them. They
gave me the sense that as viewers sit in the dark with their senses alert
and defenses down, it’s a perfect opportunity to bypass their personalities
and address their inner being."
"I saw "To Fly" [In IMAX] and it was like a close encounter. I just
couldn't believe the clarity, the concept of the film, a format that big,
and that someone had actually done it. I never, ever got that out of my head
once I saw the size of the image, the fidelity, and the fact that it was
really a visual presentation."
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