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Film or Not to Film, that is the Question?

Film 35mm 16mm Cinematography

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#1 Jeffrey G Baca

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 02:31 AM

Simple Questions, to begin with,

 

Do you shoot in FILM or VIDEO?

 

IF FILM or VIDEO, why?

 

Do you believe that FILM costs more to use that VIDEO?

 

Do you seek out Motion Pictures, (i.e., The Hateful Eight) shot on film?

 

And if so, Do you seek out film-recorded Motion Pictures, such at The Hateful Eight, to see the PROJECTED on film?

 

I am beginning a new production company and would like industry feedback. I will also post, throughout this discussion, facts such as...

 

According to MPAA, in 2014, there were 14,526 ANALOG or Film projected screens in the World, 62,784 Digital NON 3D screens and 64.905 Digital 3D screens in the World. In the US alone,  it 1,747 Analog, 25.372 Digital NON 3D and 16,146 Digital 3D screens. (http://www.mpaa.org/...istics-2014.pdf)

 

I am of the opinion, contrary that it may be that film is NOT dead, certainly not as a medium for Recording Motion Pictures. But I must agree that its most likely no longer a widely used medium for Projecting Motion Pictures.

 

FYI, I shoot on 35MM and 120 FILM photography, as well as AD on 16MM & 35MM, and I would like to continue to use Film as my recording Medium. I don't believe its dead, just as OIL paints didn't 'die' when ACRYLIC paints arrived. Different mediums for different artists.

 

I look forward to hearing for you.

 

jGb


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#2 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 04:11 AM

Welcome to the forum!

This "discussion/debate" has been going on here for YEARS and comes around on a monthly basis.

You will get a lot of varying opinions from people, some of which have a great deal of experience.

What you won't get is an unbiased opinion because everyone has their preference. So here is mine! :)

Technically the best digital, doesn't hold a candle to the best film (resolution/color space). What's unfortunate is that the best film (IMAX 15/70), is very difficult format to work with and extremely costly compared to any other film or digital formats. In fact, to this very day, only one narrative feature film has been entirely shot in 15/70 due to the cost and technical issues. Yet, the Alexa 65 which is a 6k camera, combined with a 4k finish and distribution using laser projectors on IMAX screens, looks pretty darn good for quite a bit less money then IMAX 15/70. Yet, there are only 6 screens in the entire world with these vey special dual laser IMAX projectors and rumors are only 2 more being setup in 2016. The reason is cost, as 1.5M per projector and 2 required for 3D, it's an expensive endeavor especially since each projector is only 4k.

In the long run, film DOES NOT COST MORE then digital, when shooting a reasonable budget narrative feature. Rental houses practically give away 35mm cameras and Kodak has excellent deals on stocks. Labs are also slowly starting to cooperate with lower-budget features, helping them get through the post production process without having to sell a kidney. The only real detractor's with film is not knowing what you have before you process and sensitivity. Digital cinema cameras give you instant results AND are far more sensitive then pushing film to it's limits. To a LOT of filmmakers, these two things are FAR more important then shooting with old technology for some posterity reason. Line producers, directors and cinematographers make a lot of the decisions and a lot of the problems with film vs digital happen in pre-production. In most cases, it's not even considered as an option because the line producer has already budgeted for digital and even if the director and cinematographer want film, convincing the powers at be to get that, can be challenging. So a lot of movies don't get the ability to shoot on film. Then you have the long-distance processing and lab closure issues. This is what prevented "The Revenant" and "Beasts of No Nation" from shooting on film. Both movies tested on film and both switched LAST MINUTE to digital due to "unforeseen issues" in the workflow. This happens more then one could ever imagine and it's really sad to think of how many great films WOULD have been shot on motion picture film, had there just been someone else in film's corner during pre-production to solve those problems.

So why does film cost the same (or less than) digital? Simple...

- It lasts for hundreds of years sitting on a shelf. Digital costs tens of thousands to maintain over its life.
- Film is resolution agnostic. Digital has a fixed resolution, film does not.
- Good digital cameras have extreme value, so they're expensive to rent and own. Film cameras are low-cost alternatives today.
- A photochemical workflow doesn't require any expensive scanning to digital or color correction for tens of thousands of dollars.
- No monitors, video village, DIT or any "video" support on set REQUIRED for film. It's almost a pre-requisite for digital
- When the film camera runs, people pay attention, so generally productions are faster.
- Since film is less crisp, less detail is required on sets, makeup and effects, lowering the cost substantially over 4k digital.
- We are making clean restoration negatives off 100+ year old films today, yet we've already lost countless movies shot digitally.

Now, if you're just shooting small productions for low-money, which will be presented on the internet, VOD, BluRay/DVD and broadcast, digital is great. Those distribution formats are so compressed, you won't see a lot of the issues digital has. Plus, we still live in a 1080p world, so resolution really doesn't mean anything. A 10 bit 4:2:2 signal in 1080p resolution, is a much smaller file and likewise easier to deal with at home on cheaper systems then a RAW RGB 12 - 16bit 4:4:4 file in 4k - 6k. So there are a lot of benefits to shooting 1080p or 2k on digital productions where you can't afford the long-term storage space, but can afford the camera. This is where digital sings and it works great for those particular types of distribution methods.

I do mostly documentary work, so digital has been a life saver. I don't regret making the move from film to digital, I'm very happy with the simplistic workflow and instant results for my low/no budget productions. Yet, I love film and whenever I can be involved in shooting, projecting or even watching film, I will be there. I've shot Super 8, Super 16, Super 35 and edited/projected all of those formats in my 20+ years working in the industry. So one could say, I'm pretty passionate about it, to the point of starting my own film school specially designed to teach youth about making movies on celluloid. In my eyes, what keeps film from growing is the ever new technology and filmmakers desire to play with it. Plus I feel lot of filmmakers are just tired of having to work in the confines of celluloid and I don't blame them. Yet, there are a bunch of filmmakers who have the financial whereabouts to shoot on film and are keeping the tradition alive. If you HAVE the resources to shoot on film, you SHOULD do it. In my low/no-budget world, it doesn't cost much to shoot on S16, but it does 'cost' something. Where digital (if you own equipment) is nearly cost-less in contrast. So the decision to grab the film camera or digital camera when walking out the door is pretty plain and simple, it's digital most of the time. Shooting on film require pre-planning and financial backing to make it reality. For some, this isn't a problem, but for struggling filmmakers, digital has opened up doors to a new dimension of filmmaking that we could never dream of until today.

Does my use of digital prevent me from loving film? Nope... I LOVE film and have since I was a very small child. In my eyes, digital is just a tool for creating content for low/no money. I have zero love for digital technology, but since we live in a digital world today, I'm forced to partake in it, like everyone else.

Ohh and film is far, far, far, far from being dead.
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#3 Hrishikesh Jha

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 04:37 AM


 In fact, to this very day, only one narrative feature film has been entirely shot in 15/70 due to the cost and technical issues. 

 

 

Which one is it?


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#4 Hrishikesh Jha

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 04:38 AM


 In fact, to this very day, only one narrative feature film has been entirely shot in 15/70 due to the cost and technical issues. 

 

 

Which one is it?


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#5 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 12:24 PM

Which one is it?


https://en.wikipedia...ings_of_Courage
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#6 John E Clark

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 01:30 PM

So why does film cost the same (or less than) digital? Simple...

- It lasts for hundreds of years sitting on a shelf. Digital costs tens of thousands to maintain over its life.

 

 

 

Well... not really... I was watching a BTS segment on the restoration of "My Fair Lady"(1964)... The negatives had to be salvaged, and in some cases only internegs/positives were available. In some cases, even though there were B&W separation negs made... the 3 stocks 'shrunk' differently, leading to registration issues when combining them.

 

And this was for a Oscar winning classic... supposedly held in the studio vaults... some of the BTS shots in the 'vault' looked like my closet filled with negative film boxes... fallen over... in a jumble...

 

It is true that digital recordings need to be 'refreshed'... but having a film negative is no guarantee of preservation.


Edited by John E Clark, 01 March 2016 - 01:31 PM.

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#7 Jeffrey G Baca

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 06:27 PM

 

 In fact, to this very day, only one narrative feature film has been entirely shot in 15/70 due to the cost and technical issues. 

 

 

Which one is it?

 

Mr. Jha,

Thanks for the information, but I would prefer to keep this discussion "on topic" as is were, so please, when replying, reply to the topic. I'd prefer this not digress into "Trivial Pursuit - Cinematography Edition"

 

As for this being the "only" Narrative Feature Film shot entirely on 15/70, THAT'S great for the format, but the question remains, "FILM or not to FILM?" :)


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#8 Jeffrey G Baca

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 07:38 PM

 

 

Well... not really... I was watching a BTS segment on the restoration of "My Fair Lady"(1964)... The negatives had to be salvaged, and in some cases only internegs/positives were available. In some cases, even though there were B&W separation negs made... the 3 stocks 'shrunk' differently, leading to registration issues when combining them.

 

And this was for a Oscar winning classic... supposedly held in the studio vaults... some of the BTS shots in the 'vault' looked like my closet filled with negative film boxes... fallen over... in a jumble...

 

It is true that digital recordings need to be 'refreshed'... but having a film negative is no guarantee of preservation.

 

Mr. Clark

Thanks for the information. It seems that while film preservation IS the most reliable way to improve long term preservation of the Motion Picture, the 'studio's' do not make a good place to archive anything.

 

My background with some of them is to have seen film left in vault's as described above, that looked like a closet in my backyard. But I digress.

The Current mode of preservation is and should always be film. The reasons are simple. and mostly because...

1. the digital world Changes weekly, monthly and mostly and importantly for this conversation, Yearly.

2. Film can, should and has been shown to last for years, when properly stored.

This recent study by AMPAS details it further. The Reel Problem with Digital: The Challenges of Preserving Motion Pictures in Digital Formats
by Nicholas Sy Mentor: Professor Robert Simmons

http://digitalcommon...5/section-01/1/

This article is wonderful and my favorite argument against digital motion picture preservation, where in a just a nine year span, Pixar had to Update software for Finding Nemo, from 2003 when it was made to 2012.

 

So far, I am of the opinion that Celluloid is the past way to preserve motion pictures and My Fair Lady  is an example, i believe in film preserving posterity in art. I grew up seeing ALL films recorded, post-produced and displayed on film. I love recording on film.

 

thanks

jGb


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#9 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 07:52 PM

Well... not really... I was watching a BTS segment on the restoration of "My Fair Lady"(1964)... The negatives had to be salvaged, and in some cases only internegs/positives were available. In some cases, even though there were B&W separation negs made... the 3 stocks 'shrunk' differently, leading to registration issues when combining them.


Right, but that's a film which wasn't stored properly and shrank because nobody bothered doing any maintenance.

It is true that digital recordings need to be 'refreshed'... but having a film negative is no guarantee of preservation.


Constantly and guess what, copying digital data over and over again (like film) isn't lossless. Also... who is storing the entire camera negative for a feature film shot on 4k in RAW? The average cost to store a feature digitally is 10x more then film.
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#10 Macks Fiiod

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 09:08 PM

 

Hey what's up?

 

I shoot digital video but would like to try to get deeper into film.

 

Because while film can have its visual advantages, digital shooting is much easier when you get to post production. That's only a fraction of the debate, and I don't care to debate it because both are nice in their own way.

 

Over time I can see film costing more, you can't re-record over it like a hard drive or SD card.

 

I couldn't care less as to what's shot on film vs digital when taking in a movie. To give a motion picture less merit because the director wanted an easier time transitioning their vision from the head to the screen is silly. With that said, if a movie intrigues me specifically for the camera it was shot on (happens every now and then) then I may find myself seeking a film specifically for what it was shot on.

 

If a movie is trying to sell you with the fact it was shot on film, and I go to the theater and watch it projected digitally, I'd feel ripped off.


Edited by Macks Fiiod, 01 March 2016 - 09:09 PM.

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#11 Jeffrey G Baca

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 09:10 PM

Welcome to the forum!

This "discussion/debate" has been going on here for YEARS and comes around on a monthly basis.

You will get a lot of varying opinions from people, some of which have a great deal of experience.

What you won't get is an unbiased opinion because everyone has their preference. So here is mine! :)

Technically the best digital, doesn't hold a candle to the best film (resolution/color space). What's unfortunate is that the best film (IMAX 15/70), is very difficult format to work with and extremely costly compared to any other film or digital formats. In fact, to this very day, only one narrative feature film has been entirely shot in 15/70 due to the cost and technical issues. Yet, the Alexa 65 which is a 6k camera, combined with a 4k finish and distribution using laser projectors on IMAX screens, looks pretty darn good for quite a bit less money then IMAX 15/70. Yet, there are only 6 screens in the entire world with these vey special dual laser IMAX projectors and rumors are only 2 more being setup in 2016. The reason is cost, as 1.5M per projector and 2 required for 3D, it's an expensive endeavor especially since each projector is only 4k.

In the long run, film DOES NOT COST MORE then digital, when shooting a reasonable budget narrative feature. Rental houses practically give away 35mm cameras and Kodak has excellent deals on stocks. Labs are also slowly starting to cooperate with lower-budget features, helping them get through the post production process without having to sell a kidney. The only real detractor's with film is not knowing what you have before you process and sensitivity. Digital cinema cameras give you instant results AND are far more sensitive then pushing film to it's limits. To a LOT of filmmakers, these two things are FAR more important then shooting with old technology for some posterity reason. Line producers, directors and cinematographers make a lot of the decisions and a lot of the problems with film vs digital happen in pre-production. In most cases, it's not even considered as an option because the line producer has already budgeted for digital and even if the director and cinematographer want film, convincing the powers at be to get that, can be challenging. So a lot of movies don't get the ability to shoot on film. Then you have the long-distance processing and lab closure issues. This is what prevented "The Revenant" and "Beasts of No Nation" from shooting on film. Both movies tested on film and both switched LAST MINUTE to digital due to "unforeseen issues" in the workflow. This happens more then one could ever imagine and it's really sad to think of how many great films WOULD have been shot on motion picture film, had there just been someone else in film's corner during pre-production to solve those problems.

So why does film cost the same (or less than) digital? Simple...

- It lasts for hundreds of years sitting on a shelf. Digital costs tens of thousands to maintain over its life.
- Film is resolution agnostic. Digital has a fixed resolution, film does not.
- Good digital cameras have extreme value, so they're expensive to rent and own. Film cameras are low-cost alternatives today.
- A photochemical workflow doesn't require any expensive scanning to digital or color correction for tens of thousands of dollars.
- No monitors, video village, DIT or any "video" support on set REQUIRED for film. It's almost a pre-requisite for digital
- When the film camera runs, people pay attention, so generally productions are faster.
- Since film is less crisp, less detail is required on sets, makeup and effects, lowering the cost substantially over 4k digital.
- We are making clean restoration negatives off 100+ year old films today, yet we've already lost countless movies shot digitally.

Now, if you're just shooting small productions for low-money, which will be presented on the internet, VOD, BluRay/DVD and broadcast, digital is great. Those distribution formats are so compressed, you won't see a lot of the issues digital has. Plus, we still live in a 1080p world, so resolution really doesn't mean anything. A 10 bit 4:2:2 signal in 1080p resolution, is a much smaller file and likewise easier to deal with at home on cheaper systems then a RAW RGB 12 - 16bit 4:4:4 file in 4k - 6k. So there are a lot of benefits to shooting 1080p or 2k on digital productions where you can't afford the long-term storage space, but can afford the camera. This is where digital sings and it works great for those particular types of distribution methods.

I do mostly documentary work, so digital has been a life saver. I don't regret making the move from film to digital, I'm very happy with the simplistic workflow and instant results for my low/no budget productions. Yet, I love film and whenever I can be involved in shooting, projecting or even watching film, I will be there. I've shot Super 8, Super 16, Super 35 and edited/projected all of those formats in my 20+ years working in the industry. So one could say, I'm pretty passionate about it, to the point of starting my own film school specially designed to teach youth about making movies on celluloid. In my eyes, what keeps film from growing is the ever new technology and filmmakers desire to play with it. Plus I feel lot of filmmakers are just tired of having to work in the confines of celluloid and I don't blame them. Yet, there are a bunch of filmmakers who have the financial whereabouts to shoot on film and are keeping the tradition alive. If you HAVE the resources to shoot on film, you SHOULD do it. In my low/no-budget world, it doesn't cost much to shoot on S16, but it does 'cost' something. Where digital (if you own equipment) is nearly cost-less in contrast. So the decision to grab the film camera or digital camera when walking out the door is pretty plain and simple, it's digital most of the time. Shooting on film require pre-planning and financial backing to make it reality. For some, this isn't a problem, but for struggling filmmakers, digital has opened up doors to a new dimension of filmmaking that we could never dream of until today.

Does my use of digital prevent me from loving film? Nope... I LOVE film and have since I was a very small child. In my eyes, digital is just a tool for creating content for low/no money. I have zero love for digital technology, but since we live in a digital world today, I'm forced to partake in it, like everyone else.

Ohh and film is far, far, far, far from being dead.

 

Mr. Purcell, :) 1st and foremost, thanks for the welcome! I appreciate it greatly.

 

I am glad to see this discussion has been on 'everyone's' minds lately, I would be sad, were it not.

 

i LOVED the long reply, so bear with me.

 

a. i could NOT agree with you MORE, Sir, i LOVE LOVE LOVE film's resolution's and ability to remain, plastic, as it were to the light images we try so hard to attempt to impress upon them. I truly love and adore how we can push and pull the images we impress upon film. I was the true geek in Jr High, imagine long pants and a 120 double reflex camera around my neck taking b&w images i would later bring to life in a darkroom! Most cool, But i digress.

 

b. i also agree that film, In most Cases, does not cost more than digital. My promblemo's have been the recent film imaging i've done ( for a self pitch, my instagram is jbaca59 :) ). They've been TWO fold.

 

1. the gosh darn labs suck terribly from what i remember only 10 to 15 years ago! gezz, do they Not know to put their fingers on the images. Seriously, i've scanned my 35MM 4x6 reprints into digi world to share with digi world.  An Epson Scanner for those that care mostly 2400 dpi for a 160+ Megapixel image. AND i find images that have either finger prints OR dust images on those prints. Dust and BIG grains of ??, i can't understand it, like they are processing film in a windy desert with the windows open, after brushing down the camels, THEN they process my film!  I have 100's! of pictures, since 1960's childhood and such that have super IMAGE quality. So LAB work is one issue.

 

2. the places when, where and how to get GOOD film product is variable and fluid at best. So FILM itself is another issue.

 

I thank you for all your information. You have obviously a love for your craft and i enjoy your feedback.

 

c. I wish that more storytellers, like you and myself consider stay with or using partially Film as their recording mediums. As someone who is in front of, as well as behind the camera, i have an understanding of how Motion Pictures are made. I used the term "Motion Picture" because it describes the craft of storytelling using video, film, still photos and digital mediums to provide a picture that, hopefully, if we do our jobs right, we and others enjoy. and I LOVE capturing moments of action on film.

 

Because we, those both behind and in front of the camera, have to take into account shooting ratio's of 3:1 or even 2:1, where as videography is nearly cost-less, even with shooting ratio's or 8:1 or 12:1! Makes for good gag reels but not good cinema. I am of the school of 'say less, show more'. With both shooting ratio and the 'Cinema pur' thought process, rehearsal and pre-prod are VERY important. i pre-vis E V E R Y T H I N G!.... :), so, Film as a recording medium costs are equal to videography, i believe, when done with passion and love.

 

Finally, I will say, mr. Purcell, that you obviously have a passion for film. I think that film school should include the 'film' part. maybe we can contribute to this discussion and toward that ends.

 

thanks

 

jGb


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#12 Jeffrey G Baca

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 09:29 PM

Hey what's up?

 

I shoot digital video but would like to try to get deeper into film.

 

Because while film can have its visual advantages, digital shooting is much easier when you get to post production. That's only a fraction of the debate, and I don't care to debate it because both are nice in their own way.

 

Over time I can see film costing more, you can't re-record over it like a hard drive or SD card.

 

I couldn't care less as to what's shot on film vs digital when taking in a movie. To give a motion picture less merit because the director wanted an easier time transitioning their vision from the head to the screen is silly. With that said, if a movie intrigues me specifically for the camera it was shot on (happens every now and then) then I may find myself seeking a film specifically for what it was shot on.

 

If a movie is trying to sell you with the fact it was shot on film, and I go to the theater and watch it projected digitally, I'd feel ripped off.

 

 

mr. Fiiod,

 

you're up, bruv! thanks for the reply.

 

a. i agree with you fully, when it comes to digital post production or DI.  I have done analog post production, cutting and putting film together with tape and it's not fun.... :P

 

and there are still part of the world where films are made on film, produced on film and projected on film.  my first post on this discussion thread listed nearly 1,800 in the U.S. alone (almost 370 drive ins, my fave in Monte Vista CO http://bestwesternco...ern-movie-manor , a drive MOTEL and theater!)

 

As for merit, i don't give a film merit based on it's recording medium, film, video or marble tablet! Merit should be always on how it was shot and for someone, like myself, who grew up on movies shot and projected on Film, i love the medium.

 

As for your last point, i agree with too. I would feel ripped off IF the intent of the filmmaker was to record and then project on film, as was the case for The Hateful Eight this past year (http://motion.kodak....ght/default.htm) , i have YET To see it in a digital theater.  The nearest FILM projection on "glorious 70MM" as mr. Tarentino intended is not available in my town, but 70 miles away. SO i will go when i can. :)

 

jGb


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#13 Macks Fiiod

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 09:37 PM

 

 

and there are still part of the world where films are made on film, produced on film and projected on film.  my first post on this discussion thread listed nearly 1,800 in the U.S. alone (almost 370 drive ins, my fave in Monte Vista CO http://bestwesternco...ern-movie-manor , a drive MOTEL and theater!)

 

 

I ask because it seems you've read into it a lot, what are (or were) the specific reasons drive-in theaters are being phased out?


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#14 Jeffrey G Baca

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 09:43 PM

Right, but that's a film which wasn't stored properly and shrank because nobody bothered doing any maintenance.


Constantly and guess what, copying digital data over and over again (like film) isn't lossless. Also... who is storing the entire camera negative for a feature film shot on 4k in RAW? The average cost to store a feature digitally is 10x more then film.

 

mr. Purcell,

 

a. Agreed, some studio's i've worked at used to store their Wine better than their Classic Movie Negatives.

 

b. mr. Clark, i must agree with mr. Purcell, digital medium is far from perfect and far from error free. In the article i outlined above, the digital medium storing in what are called, "digital cinema packages" or DCP use a type of storage called "Linear tape open" or LTO. (http://digitalcommon...5/section-01/1/)

 

in such, the generations of LTO change YEARLY!, and are backward compatible only TWO generations. We are now on LTO7, which means digital storage tapes from three years ago are no longer compatible and this is not about 'refreshing' digital medium.

 

but MOST troubling with LTO digital storage is the problems with Digital Medium in General...it can break! Drop an LTO over 3 feet, all data is lost and this would be hazardous in a locale (like So. California), prone to earthquakes.... page 3 (http://digitalcommon...5/section-01/1/)

 

jGb


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#15 Jeffrey G Baca

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 09:46 PM

I ask because it seems you've read into it a lot, what are (or were) the specific reasons drive-in theaters are being phased out?

 

mr. Fiiod,

I am researching a thesis i'm writing on Film. The specific reason in general for Drive-in's, back when i was younger was no one when any longer. You'd get a 'good' date ;) at a Drive In, but then Mall's came along and movies became multiplex's.


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#16 Hrishikesh Jha

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Posted 02 March 2016 - 10:57 AM

If a movie is trying to sell you with the fact it was shot on film, and I go to the theater and watch it projected digitally, I'd feel ripped off.

 

 

I have no problem with digital projection. I'd love to know why so many film enthusiasts hate digital projection. I mean even on my freaking laptop I can see the difference between film and digital. Hey OP.....I hope I am on topic here according to your set of rules :wacko:  :wacko:


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#17 Macks Fiiod

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Posted 02 March 2016 - 01:50 PM

 

 

If a movie is trying to sell you with the fact it was shot on film, and I go to the theater and watch it projected digitally, I'd feel ripped off.

 

 

I have no problem with digital projection. I'd love to know why so many film enthusiasts hate digital projection. I mean even on my freaking laptop I can see the difference between film and digital. Hey OP.....I hope I am on topic here according to your set of rules :wacko:  :wacko:

I don't have a problem with digital projection either, but this is a question of false advertising, not viewer preference.


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#18 Ari Michael Leeds

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Posted 02 March 2016 - 01:59 PM

Why do film enthusiasts hate digital projection?  :-o


Maybe it has to do with ripping out thousands of film screens, firing thousands of projectionists, almost bankrupting Kodak?  Putting FujiFilm out of production?

Other than that, no reason at all, mindless sentimentality and being elitist film snobs.


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#19 J. Winfield Heckert

J. Winfield Heckert
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Posted 02 March 2016 - 04:27 PM


 
 
I ask because it seems you've read into it a lot, what are (or were) the specific reasons drive-in theaters are being phased out?


Drive-ins have declined since the 50's for a varity of reasons.

Competition from television, the VCR and raising land prices being a few of them. There were 5000 of them at the hight of their popularity. They mostly played 2nd and 3rd run films. When the VCR came out video stores replaced the need for 3rd run films.

In 1987 many drive-ins were playing films that had already come out on video, some closed many turned to x rated films to survive until that industry stopped making film prints.

Up until the 70s theaters rented prints and kept the box office take or at least a larger portion. This changed to where theaters had to make thier profits off concessions, drive-ins allowed outside food and drinks making it tougher to make bank on the concession sales.

Urban sprawl, took over many locations. Drive ins were no longer on the dark outskirts of towns, suburbia engulfed many. The once cheap land the drive-in sat on was now a valuable Wal mart location.

This plus the "passion pit" label led to the demise of thousand of theaters.

In the early 90's there was a resurgence and new generation discovered them. drive-ins started showing 1st run films and adding second third screens. Banning outside food and adding great concessions allowed them to make a decent profit but most drive-ins rely on volunteer workers and and for many owners it's a part time gig for the summer. The leading reason today they are closing is the cost of switching to digital and the valuable land the theaters sit on.

I have a great 35mm drive-in nearby who has a whole summer of retro films planned, I'm looking forward to it.
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#20 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 02 March 2016 - 05:12 PM

Maybe it has to do with ripping out thousands of film screens, firing thousands of projectionists, almost bankrupting Kodak?  Putting FujiFilm out of production?


... doesn't look good either? I mean the vast majority of theaters are still projecting 2k with decade old equipment that has gone through minimal maintenance. Unlike film projectors which are usually cleaned between every run OR at worse every day, digital projectors are rarely cleaned. Dust/dirt builds up on the display devices, mirrors and lamp housings to the point where the image is heavily degraded. A lot of theaters hire outside assistance to clean projectors, but its a time consuming and expensive process, not just a simple wipe down of a gate and lens. So theaters in most cases, simply don't bother and it leads to degrading images.
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