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After your film is shot


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#1 jasarsenault

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Posted 11 May 2005 - 09:00 AM

I am looking to start a new doc project. This will be shot over a few months. I was wondering if I shoot my film, can it remain unprocessed until I finish shooting. So, can the film I shoot at the first remain unprocessed until I finish shooting a few months later? How should I store it if I can do this?
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#2 Nate Downes

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Posted 11 May 2005 - 09:30 AM

Yes you can, just keep it in the refrigerator in a ziploc bag.
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#3 jasarsenault

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Posted 11 May 2005 - 12:35 PM

Thanks!
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#4 Mike Williamson

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Posted 11 May 2005 - 01:05 PM

The idea of film being shot and then left unprocessed makes me nervous and certainly isn't the recommended practice. Unlike consumer still film, professional motion picture film isn't designed to sit on the shelf until you get around to processing it. Maybe John Pytlak or Dominic Case can comment on some of the specific dangers of leaving exposed film unprocessed?

I'd recommend sending the film to the lab as you go and having them process it, but holding off on transferring to video (or printing) until you've completed the project. Remember that most labs charge for processing by the foot, so there's no cost savings for holding onto it (one order of 1,000 feet costs the same as two orders of 500 feet).

If you're comfortable doing it, there may be a cost savings in waiting until everything is shot before doing your video transfer. Because telecine time is typically charged by the hour, you can probably save money by running all of it in one big chunk, thereby avoiding the "partial" hour charges and saving time set-up time. I used this strategy on a super-low budget feature I shot and, amazingly, it worked out OK, somehow we didn't have to reshoot anything.

Talk to your lab and see if you can get them to "vault" your negative until the end of the project, as that could also save you money on postage if you have to ship to a lab out of town.
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#5 Rolfe Klement

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Posted 11 May 2005 - 01:18 PM

Unless there is a valid reason for being unable to get access to a lab then I would recommend processing as soon as it is shot

check out this link

Kodak info about film stock

thanks

Rolfe
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#6 jasarsenault

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Posted 11 May 2005 - 02:32 PM

That makes sense. Process the film, but hold off on printing or telecine. What is a reasonable amount of time to hold off on processing film?
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#7 Nate Downes

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Posted 11 May 2005 - 04:31 PM

A month, maybe 2 is my recommendation. Still store in a fridge to assure freshness.
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#8 Dominic Case

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Posted 11 May 2005 - 06:23 PM

Processing as you go is wiser, for two reasons (at least)

1 - if there is any problem with your camera, you will find out about it before it's too late.

2 - emulsions do age, and suffer latent image fade. If you refrigerate the exposed stock this is minimised, and shouldn't be a problem - but why just minimise a problem when you can avoid it completely by processing promptly.

3 - (slight variation on 2) - there is always the risk with unprocessed stock that accidents can happen: your fridge fails; someone moves the stock; someone opens the cans to see what's inside; etc.

So far as cost is oncerned, most labs have a minimum charge, so make sure that you don't come up against that if you send work in day by day.
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