The manufacturers of anamorphic camera lenses now turn to films that can be
shown 35-, 65-, or 70-mm employing a 3-to-1 ratio.|
PANAVISION, INC., makers of anamorphic camera lenses, printing lenses for
various wide film processes, variable anamorphic projection lenses, the
Panavision-Simplex projector conversion for 70-mm, and various other
products in the industry, has announced the formation of Panavision Films, a
new independent production company.
In a press interview, Robert E. Gottschalk, president of Panavision, Inc..
and vice-president in charge of production for the new (inn. said that the
features will be roadshown on Panavision's 65-70-mm process. The first
production will be "The Magnificent Matriarch," based on the Kathleen Mellen
novel dealing with Hawaiian history. Producer will be David Lewis, who did
County" (which was shot in Panavision's 65-mm process, but released in
35-mm). The budget on the picture, which is set to roll next May, will be
Besides producing the picture, Panavision will offer a package deal to
exhibitors which will include projector, lamps, lenses, screens, etc., on a
rental or lease purchase basis, determined by revenue and seating capacity.
The equipment in the package will consist of Ashcraft Super Cinex lamps,
modified Simplex projectors, the Panavision slight-squeeze lens, and a
screen especially developed for the process by Radiant Manufacturing
Corp.—non-metallic, smooth, a newly-developed surfacing, modified gains of
2, 2½ and 3-to-1, and, most important, a 3-to-1 aspect ratio.
It was this 3-to-1 ratio that caused the most discussion in Gottschalk's New
York interview. He is adamant that 60 feet is the minimum width for the
screen. ''Otherwise, we won't install our process," he said.
Gottschalk is certain that the 3-to-1 ratio will not disconcert an audience,
but rather will enhance the picture— which will include location shots in
Hawaii, a volcano eruption, and authentic underwater scenes shot with a
special 20-pound hand camera.
Definitely Not Cinerama
"This is definitely not Cinerama," he said. "We're only going to use a very
slightly curved screen, and probably in some cases none at all." This,
Gottschalk believes, will get away from the 'bent' look that images tend to
on curved screens. "And contrary to popular belief, there are many theatres
capable of handling very large screens," he added. Those theatres already
equipped to handle 70-mm (like Todd-AO houses) will only have to install the
Panavision wide screen and projection lenses. As it stands, minus the Todd
circuit, there is a potential of some 20 theatres. In some cases, the screen
can be set up in front of the proscenium.
"The Magnificent Matriarch," which will be three hours long and in Eastman Color, will be roadshown for one year in 70-mm in key cities throughout the
world, and then will be put into general 35-mm release. The
Panavision-Simplex projector conversion is capable of showing 35-, 65-, or
70-mm film. With the package deal of screen, etc., they are expected to cost
around $6000. Gottschalk believes that many exhibitors will elect to keep
The production, of course, will be shot in the Panavision 65-mm process,
also known as MGM Camera 65. Panavision developed the process in cooperation
with the MGM Research and Development department. It now has 6 modified
Mitchell 65-mm cameras in production. MGM has 13. A three-strip release
print of the Cinerama type has also been developed.
The 70-mm release print of the initial picture will probably carry six sound
The Ultra Panator 35-mm variable anamorphic projection lens used in
conjunction with the Panavision-Simplex Conversion. Available also is the
Panatar 16, designed for 16-mm variable anamorphic projection.
Panavision-Simplex Conversion which allows projection in 35-, 65-, or 70-mm.
Included in this conversion of standard Simplex XL projectors are a 3-wing
shutter, double duty drive and intermittent sprockets, 65- and 70-mm film
gates, and a specially-designed magnetic sound reproducer by Magnasync of
Burbank, Calif., that will reproduce 6-channel magnetic sound on 70-mm
prints, and 4-channel or single-channel magnetic sound on 35-mm. Changing in
the projection room is laid to take from 3 to 5 minutes.
More in 70mm reading:
Importance of Panavision
Panavison Large Format Motion Picture Systems
Panavision 70 Lens
"The Motion Picture Projectionist"