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Petition against Production Stop of Kodachrome 40


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#1 filmfreund

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Posted 19 May 2005 - 04:34 AM

Hi,
I am the editor of the German magazine schmalfilm. We will also publish an English version within some weeks. More details: www.smallformat.de

We started a great petition against the production stop of Kodachrome 40. Not only Super 8 will fade out, also DS8 and 16mm - as I was told by some Kodak insiders. We should stay together and should just count the amount of K 40 cartridges we are willing to buy per year. Kodak doesn't know how to deal with having a consumer division of Super-8mm and regular 8mm and a potential "professional" super-8 division as well.

Rather then figure out a way to combine consumer and professional forces so that the overall Super-8mm and regular 8mm film section remains profitable, it's becoming divide, subtract, and lets not deal with it. While I understand Kodak must please it's stockholders first and foremost, Kodak has a very strong and loyal film base that they are not reaching out to BEFORE they make decisions.

Please mail us your full address and the amount of K40 cartridges you would like to use next year. We will put you on our petition list and will keep you informed. redaktion@schmalfilm.biz

Here are our arguments:

Eastman Kodak Company
Cinema Operations
Entertainment Imaging
President for Image Capture Products
Mr. Eric G. Rodli
3455 S. LaCienega Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90016
USA

Kodak Limited
Kodak House
Entertainment Imaging
Vice President for Image Capture Products
Mr. Bob Mayson
Station Road
Hemel Hempstead
Herts HP1 1JU
United Kingdom

Announced Production Stop of Kodachrome 40

Dear Mr. Rodli,
Dear Mr. Mayson,

Being an active cinematographic filmmaker and a reader of the German ?schmalfilm? (small format) magazine I must protest to your Announced Production Stop of Kodachrome 40.

As other movie makers, I appreciate the continued commitment of KODAK to providing Super 8 reversal film in your announcement. However, it is ironic that K40's end is announced now when it celebrates its 40th anniversary.

For some good reasons I would like to ask you and KODAK not to stop the production of K40 and the processing in Lausanne (Switzerland):

1. The new color reversal film Ektachrome 64T cannot be used in more than 75% of all Super 8 cameras because those cameras are not able to meter correctly. Many cameras will not specifically meter for 64 ASA.

2. Kodachrome 40 is sold process paid. The price of K40 cartridges has increased considerably within the last years. The new Ektachrome 64T will even be more expensive, due to finding specialised labs and paying separately for film stock and its processing. This will become far too expensive for both amateur and professional moviemakers. One of the big benefits of Super8 K40 has always been its low budget character. This fact attracts an increasing number of young filmmakers, who want to work with the cine medium without making big investments. And for the remaining 50 % of all European users ? who are above 60 years ? all this gets far too complicated as well.

3. Active filmmakers like myself have stocked considerable amounts of K40 in their freezers. Always buying this filmstock process paid for some development moment in the future we have transfered future processing fees to KODAK accounts. This is OK as long as we have a guaranteed processing, KODAK may get the interest out of this accumulated capital. But, this also implies that KODAK has the obligation to fullfill its processing duty and enable all filmmakers to get their films processed up to the last cartridge ever sold process paid.

4. The quality of Kodachrome 40, the colors and the fine grain are outstanding. The thickness of other film stock inside the Super 8 cartridge has always been a problem (for example the slight softness of Ektachrome 7240). I would like to keep on screening the sharp, brilliant and colourfull high contrast K40 images with my filmprojector without having to worry about smoothness of operation.

5. The new Ektachrome 64T looks like a product for semiprofessional use. I understand that it will be marketed by the Entertainment Imaging department of KODAK. In e.g. Germany, Austria, Switzerland and the Netherlands we can buy our Kodachrome 40 films in more than 400 photoshops, department stores and drug stores. I expect some important changes in your distribution and sales policy leading to Ektachrome 64T to be sold only by some rare specialty shops. Most users won?t know where to buy it anymore and new users will have difficulties to find their K40 filmstock.

I fully understand that Super 8 and K40 filmstock is a business like any other ? and KODAK has to earn money with it. For this reason I would like to promise you, that I will use at least ______ Kodachrome 40 Super8 cartridges per year.

Please, do not stop this wonderful film stock and do not close the lab in Lausanne.

Date/Signature
Mail to: redaktion@schmalfilm.biz
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#2 filmfreund

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Posted 23 May 2005 - 03:54 AM

Up to now, the signers represent the amount of 3570 Kodachrome 40 cartridges per year! Please sign in: www.schmalfilm.de
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#3 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 23 May 2005 - 08:06 PM

Up to now, the signers represent the amount of 3570 Kodachrome 40 cartridges per year! Please sign in: www.schmalfilm.de

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Remember, ONE 12,000 foot long "wide roll" yields over 35,000 50-foot cartridges of Super-8. At this rate, it would take ten years to sell all that film, so a large portion would have to be discarded when it got too old. :rolleyes:
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#4 filmfreund

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Posted 23 May 2005 - 09:36 PM

Remember, ONE 12,000 foot long "wide roll" yields over 35,000 50-foot cartridges of Super-8.  At this rate, it would take ten years to sell all that film, so a large portion would have to be discarded when it got too old.  :rolleyes:

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Well, instead of making jokes we would have appreciated if the people of KODAK would deal with the ARGUMENTS in our petition. But there was no written statement of Mrs. DuMont, Mr. Mayson or yourself so far. There was just one phone call of Mr. Mayson yesterday and it really helped to understand some circumstances.

I think it would really be use- and helpful for the signers of our petition and for the readers of our magazines schmalfilm and small format if you would take the arguments seriously and answer to that. Otherwise it looks like ignoring it and laughing about...

We are just one small voice with our 3900 cartridges so far - but we just started collecting signatures and there are other petitions with 2,000 sign ins, too.

Juergen Lossau
www.schmalfilm.de
www.smallformat.de
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#5 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 01:38 PM

I am not making fun of your petition, only pointing out the dilemma of maintaining a product that would coat a few wide rolls a year at most. At least for the Kodak VISION2 Color Negative Films, you only need to slit PART of a wide roll, one of many other rolls of 7218 or 7217 being made for 16mm and 35mm.

Your petition is being taken very seriously, and additional comments and suggestions are welcome and read when sent to this e-mail address:

WW-EI-Super8@Kodak.com
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#6 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 02:01 PM

Is there any chance that Kodak could research where all of their own Kodachrome processing machines ended up? Kodak made the best Kodachrome processing machines. Did they all end up in the scrap heap?

An accounting of where all the Kodak kodachrome processing machines ended up would at least be a tangible concept people could understand. I'm still not sure why the processor in Switzerland cannot be moved, or sold to someone who would keep it as is, apparently it's a complicated situation.

IF, and it's a BIG "IF", the Ektachrome 64 is close enough to Kodachrome 40 in look (with a trade off of more latitude with slightly more grain), then the Ektachrome 64 introduction will be a brilliant move by Kodak because suddenly labs all over the world could offer same day processing and this would actually lead to a resurgence of professional shooting with Super-8 color reversal film, new locations for Super-8 film sales, and perhaps more income for Super-8 labs already in existence.

If that happened, than perhaps the Vision 100T or the 50 could also come out.
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#7 Matt Pacini

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 03:25 PM

You keep going on and on about the processing machines, as if that has anything to do with this.
I'm sure Kodak doesn't care a bit about the processing.
They are making their money selling raw stock, not on processing.

Just give it up. No amount of complaining is going to change this.
MP
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#8 Robert Hughes

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 04:14 PM

It's reminiscent of the story of King Canut commanding the sea to stop... it didn't.
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#9 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 06:53 PM

You keep going on and on about the processing machines, as if that has anything to do with this.
I'm sure Kodak doesn't care a bit about the processing.
They are making their money selling raw stock, not on processing.

Just give it up. No amount of complaining is going to change this.
MP

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


It's not as cut and dried as you state, Matt. The lack of Kodachrome processing options has been brought up as an issue by Mr. Mayson and others.
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#10 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 07:07 PM

My question is why hasn't Yale Labs and Pro-8mm, the two major vendors for Super-8 professional processing in Los Angeles, ever set up Kodachrome processing? Were they restricted from doing so? Is it a space issue (having the room for another type of processor besides VNF, now E6, plus ENC2 and b&w reversal)? Or did it just not seem like a good business decision for them?
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#11 John Hyde

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 08:20 PM

I am not making fun of your petition, only pointing out the dilemma of maintaining a product that would coat a few wide rolls a year at most.  At least for the Kodak VISION2 Color Negative Films, you only need to slit PART of a wide roll, one of many other rolls of 7218 or 7217 being made for 16mm and 35mm.

Your petition is being taken very seriously, and additional comments and suggestions are welcome and read when sent to this e-mail address:

WW-EI-Super8@Kodak.com

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Hey John,

Why doesn?t Kodak build a similar set up to Pro8mm? Then you could convert any film to super 8 in any quantity you wish!
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#12 John Hyde

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 08:42 PM

The actual guy that led the design and building of the Pro8mm slitting and perforating operation has split off and formed his own company, Spectra Film and Video. Perhaps he might be willing to help.

You should get in touch with them: www.spectrafilmandvideo.com
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#13 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 09:54 PM

Hey John,

Why doesn?t Kodak build a similar set up to Pro8mm?  Then you could convert any film to super 8 in any quantity you wish!

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Slitting Super-8 out of a product that has already been slit and perfed to another format can be problematic.
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#14 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 10:24 PM

I noticed on their site that Spectra offers Kodachrome processing. Where do they send it to?
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#15 John Hyde

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 10:57 PM

I am not making fun of your petition, only pointing out the dilemma of maintaining a product that would coat a few wide rolls a year at most.  At least for the Kodak VISION2 Color Negative Films, you only need to slit PART of a wide roll, one of many other rolls of 7218 or 7217 being made for 16mm and 35mm.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


John,

Well then, if film conversion is not an option, and you have better flexibility with negative film, why not simply introduce the 50D (with the ektachrome) to complete the family of negative for super 8? That would help get Pro8mm out of your market and satisfy many of the K40 fanatics needs. Give the masses 2 stocks for the sacrifice of one (k-40).

It is my understanding you were thinking of introducing a low ASA super 8 negative anyway. Now might be the opportune moment.
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#16 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 24 May 2005 - 11:04 PM

That would help get Pro8mm out of your market

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Why does Kodak want to get Pro8mm out of the market?
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#17 John Hyde

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 12:27 PM

Why does Kodak want to get Pro8mm out of the market?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I have heard "unofficially" from some at Kodak that they are not entirely pleased with Pro8mm.

They are, in some respects, a competitor, infringing on Kodak super 8 film sales and making it more difficult to release new films and grow thier super 8 sales. Pro8mm also sells inferior product to young, potential filmmakers. That may also damage some overall film sales in the long run (especially since what they load in their cartridges is represented as new "Kodak" stock). Finally, Pro8mm business tactics and customer service leave much to be desired - also potentially damaging to the overall film market since Pro8 is often the first place to go for first time filmmakers.

Remember, if Pro8mm makes shooting film a bad expierience for the newbies, then they just move on to a less troublesome media.

However, even with all this in mind, I actually think that Kodak does not want Pro8mm entirely out of the super 8 market. They still play a role. It is really only the super 8 film that they have concerns with.

Edited by John Hyde, 25 May 2005 - 12:37 PM.

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#18 Bob Last

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 05:49 PM

I have heard "unofficially"  from some at Kodak that they are not entirely pleased with Pro8mm.

They are, in some respects, a competitor, infringing on Kodak super 8 film sales and making it more difficult to release new films and grow thier super 8 sales.  Pro8mm also sells inferior product to young, potential filmmakers.  That may also damage some overall film sales in the long run (especially since what they load in their cartridges is represented as new "Kodak" stock).  Finally, Pro8mm business tactics and customer service leave much to be desired - also potentially damaging to the overall film market since Pro8 is often the first place to go for first time filmmakers. 

Remember, if Pro8mm makes shooting film a bad expierience for the newbies, then they just move on to a less troublesome media.

However, even with all this in mind, I actually think that Kodak does not want Pro8mm entirely out of the super 8 market.  They still play a role.  It is really only the super 8 film that they have concerns with.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Nah. Kodak is not attempting to grow their super 8 sales. 0 advertising dollars spent for the last couple of years. They are using the super 8 users as free publicity.

As for Pro8mm, I'm borrowing this from the other message board:

"Pro8mm has received 5 years running the Kodak's Quality Assurance Award for Exceptional Quality Control in the Processing of Motion Picture Film. "

http://www.super8sou...om/filmlab.html

Pro8mm is filling the gaps that Kodak has not filled in. They are a niche supplier with 2x or 3x the price of Kodak. Pro8mm K40 with processing - $35. Kodak with processing - $15.

Kodak just doesn't have interest in this market. It is too small for them with Super 8 at only 0.02% of their overall revenue. I doubt they will even show this in their books.
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#19 John Hyde

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 09:33 PM

Nah.  Kodak is not attempting to grow their super 8 sales.  0 advertising dollars spent for the last couple of years.  They are using the super 8 users as free publicity.

As for Pro8mm, I'm borrowing this from the other message board:

"Pro8mm has received 5 years running the Kodak's Quality Assurance Award for Exceptional Quality Control in the Processing of Motion Picture Film. "

http://www.super8sou...om/filmlab.html

Pro8mm is filling the gaps that Kodak has not filled in.  They are a niche supplier with 2x or 3x the price of Kodak.  Pro8mm K40 with processing - $35.  Kodak with processing - $15.

Kodak just doesn't have interest in this market.  It is too small for them with Super 8 at only 0.02% of their overall revenue.  I doubt they will even show this in their books.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Sorry to say that the "Quality Assurance" award is more of a promotional tool for Kodak than anything else. This is obvious since Pro8mm film and processing is some of the worst in the industry.

Pro8mm buys some of their processing chemistry from Kodak. The award is handed out as more of a promotional gimmick for dealers using some of Kodak?s chemistry products. Like saying, "Kodak chemistry used here". There may be a few minor tests that are needed, but, overall the award is practically a given and easy to get at just about any lab. Pro8mm just uses this little award to squeeze all the maximum hype and promotion they can get without having to make any additional effort or spend any money.

Any company that charges 3X for what you can buy it for elsewhere is just a rip-off - plain and simple. Especially when you combine it with poor customer service and shoddy products. 10 years ago when the film market and attitude of Kodak and Pro8 was different, I might agree with you. But, now with everything different, Pro8mm may end up doing more harm than good for film and Kodak. There is too much at stake to have a wildcard like Pro8mm in the mix in a digital oriented market. You can no longer piss off customers and shrug your shoulders when thier film project is ruined and expect them to come back! There are new alternatives now.

Kodak DOES have some interest in the super 8 market which is made clear with the release of some super 8 negative films. I believe they have a vague idea that they can draw in filmmakers through super 8 and keeping it going is in their best interest. The problem is, they need to put even more into super 8, it's promotion and the dealers if they want to keep the film cycle going over the long haul. I don't think they understand just how important it was for the big time filmmakers to shoot their first 10 - 20 rolls of super 8 to get them hooked on film. This may not represent many rolls of super 8 - but when they move to professional 35mm the numbers are huge for Kodak.

Even if it may seem to represent low profits or a loss to keep super 8 going, it is really in Kodak's best interest if they want to maintain a strong customer base in 16 and 35mm. Super 8 really represents their product sample for new customers that dont have the money or knowledge to shoot 16 or 35mm - yet!
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#20 filmfreund

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Posted 29 May 2005 - 02:48 PM

Up to now, the signers represent the amount of 8266 Kodachrome 40 cartridges per year! Please sign in: www.schmalfilm.de
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