Kodak rang in the New Year with some promising news. Thanks to movies like Star Wars: The Force Awakens and The Hateful Eight, film, and I mean real 70mm film, has begun to make its comeback.
For those of you unaware, big name directors banded together back in 2013 to re-amp the dying medium, promising to buy Kodak film; and thankfully it looks like it’s working as the CEO of Kodak, the only remaining motion picture film manufacturer, says the company will actually turn a profit in this new year. After going from losing $100 million a year in the film division, to breaking even the last 3 quarters of 2015, things are really starting to look up for Kodak.
Now, love him or hate him, Quentin Tarantino was loud and proud about using film in his latest movie The Hateful Eight. He even made an in-depth video that screened at Comic-con, explaining how important the film itself is. Check it out here.
Of course the argument is that Tarantino makes very niche movies and has a designated fan base who will gobble up anything he does (me), so it being in 70mm wouldn’t be Kodak’s saving grace… yada yada, BUT you cannot deny the success of a film like Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and it’s director, JJ Abrams. Not to mention back in 2014 when Christopher Nolan dropped a little movie called Interstellar on us.
Why was it important that these movies be in film? Well I have no real answer for that other than my personal opinion.
You see, all these big name directors are going back to a medium that has a tangible quality to it. Of course it is endlessly tedious and much more difficult to work with, but the quality and the experience is worth it in the end. I speak whole-heartedly from experience. I am a photographer, it’s what I do, and who I am first and foremost, and I will tell you, there is nothing more rewarding, nor is there anything that can compare to the quality that goes into a film image.
So the possibility is that the directors are finding much more reward and joy out of their work by using such a medium. There is also the possibility that the actual visual quality is something that viewers actually like. Or it’s both. In any case, I am ecstatic about it. Film should never die. There are some things that cannot be replaced digitally and this is one of them.
Images: Kodak, LucasFilms,
The Weinstein Company, Warner Bros.