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#1 Will Montgomery

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Posted 14 October 2005 - 10:41 PM

Just got out of "Good Night, And Good Luck."

Have to say that I was stunned at how beautiful the film looked. The sharpness and detail was amazing, and the shadows were handled great too. I know many cinematographers who dream of shooting a feature in B&W so Robert Elswit must have had a wonderful time shooting it.

As far as I know, there are only 2 b&w negative stocks available from Kodak... is there any way to tell what might have been used? Or is there a possibility that a color stock was used and printed in b&w?

Kodak also has a 3200 speed "Max-T" stock for still cameras... I wonder what that would look like in a movie film? Probably no compelling financial case could be made for its production, but it would be fun to experiment with.
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#2 Nate Downes

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Posted 16 October 2005 - 10:12 PM

Kodak has 4:

Plus-X reversal
Plus-X negative
Tri-X reversal
Double-X negative

Fuji has one:

Neopan

and there's stock from other companies too. I'm a big fan of Fomapan, for instance.
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#3 Will Montgomery

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Posted 16 October 2005 - 11:38 PM

I'm familiar with Kodak's B&W stocks, I'd love to run some tests with Neopan or Fomapan. I'm sure I can get Neopan from Fuji, but are there any US distributors for Fomapan?
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#4 Nate Downes

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Posted 16 October 2005 - 11:56 PM

I'm familiar with Kodak's B&W stocks, I'd love to run some tests with Neopan or Fomapan. I'm sure I can get Neopan from Fuji, but are there any US distributors for Fomapan?


J and C photo carries it in 16mm.
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#5 Sam Wells

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Posted 17 October 2005 - 10:39 AM

Fuji has one:

Neopan


But Neopan isn't available in motion picture lengths and perfs is it ?

News to me if it was.

-Sam
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#6 L K Keerthi Basu

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Posted 17 October 2005 - 10:51 AM

Hi,

There are possiblities to do like exposing with a color negative and print in color positive and develop the color positive in a B/W contrast developer for the required product gamma.
As I have done this test and got it , try it. Look what others tell.

L.K.Keerthi basu
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#7 Will Montgomery

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Posted 17 October 2005 - 05:13 PM

J and C photo carries it in 16mm.


Checked with J and C photo, they were out of stock, but expect more in within 3 or 4 weeks. Guess its a good sign that they still make it.

The price is $22 a piece while Kodak's Tri-X and Plus-X is $18.56... But the extra silver content interests me enough to give it a try. Just want to make sure I get it processed properly.
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#8 Robert Hughes

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Posted 17 October 2005 - 08:13 PM

Also look for Ilford stocks such as FP4 and SPX 200. I don't know if Ilford is still making them, but there's still quite a bit of NOS floating about. Example -

http://cgi.ebay.com/...1QQcmdZViewItem

Edited by Robert Hughes, 17 October 2005 - 08:18 PM.

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#9 Will Montgomery

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Posted 18 October 2005 - 12:00 AM

Ilford stoped making movie film a while back, I had a rep contact me. But I'm sure there's some floating around somewhere.
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#10 Adam Frisch FSF

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Posted 18 October 2005 - 06:29 AM

From the trailer of "Good Night, And Good Luck" it looks to my eye like it was shot on color film stock. It's just something about the texture.

I think ORWO still makes a negative B/W stock.
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#11 Nate Downes

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Posted 18 October 2005 - 08:23 AM

I think Ilford might be persuaded to bring back their movie film if enough people ask.
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#12 Max Jacoby

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Posted 18 October 2005 - 11:03 AM

I think ORWO still makes a negative B/W stock.


They do, bit I wouldn't recommend it to anyone though. For my last film we compared it to Kodak's Double X and found them to be indentical looking (down to the ASA which is really 200, not 400 like they claim). So we picked the ORWO, wanting to support the East-German economy a bit. However after 2 days, we switched back to Kodak, because the ORWO was just not manufactured to very high standards: the thickness and with of the stock varies a lot, it is noisy as hell and we had hairs in the gate all the time. There was one scene in particular where the gate was dirty on litterally every single take. I have never seen such sloppy manufacturing.
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#13 Christian Appelt

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Posted 19 October 2005 - 12:47 PM

I have shot about 28.000 meters of 35mm Filmotec/Orwo black&white stock and never had any of these problems. The problems you described were typical of old Orwo stock, which used to be madeon machines from the 1940s (before WW2, the Orwo plant used to be Agfa's main factory). They had big problems in keeping thickness of base and cutting dimensions under control, and with old NP55 and NP7 neg stock, you sometimes had dust and even nicks in the base that produced pressure exposure lines once or twice in a 400ft. roll.

Since the new Filmotec/Orwo b&w stocks were launched - they are manufactured on state-of-the-art machinery - I have a lot of 35mm Filmotec/Orwo negative and never had this problem. It was used with Arri 2C, Arri 3, Arri BL4 and Konvas 2M cameras, and there was no more emulsion shedding than with standard Fuji or Eastman color stocks.

Personally, I prefer Filmotec/Orwo's emulsions to Eastman Plus-X and Double-X because they give more of a vintage "1960s" black&white look. In telecines from camera negs, steadiness was perfect, so the tolerances in perforating and slitting must have been OK.

Adam, did you contact the manufacturer's service dept. about the problems you had? Maybe it was a compatibility problem with a specific camera, I recall problems with certain panavision models and others black&white stocks.

All in all, I consider Filmotec/Orwo b&w a good alternative both in terms of quality and budget, and if somebody is unsure about it, just get a roll of the stock you need and test it. I tried some variations in devellopment time with my particular lab and prefer the results to anything I did with Plus-X or Double-X before.

Data Sheet Filmotec N 74

Data Sheet Filmotec UN 54

Just my $0.02 from the low budget b&w world... :)

Edited by Christian Appelt, 19 October 2005 - 12:50 PM.

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#14 Max Jacoby

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Posted 19 October 2005 - 01:03 PM

Just before the shoot I did call the head technician at ARRI Munich to enquire about the ORWO stock and he strongly recommend not to use it because of the aforementioned problems. By then we had the stock already delivered to use, so we decided to give it a go anyway. After two shooting days we switched to Kodak and my line producer called up ORWO to talk to them about the problems we've been having. They did not sound very convincing in their claim that they had never encountered these problems before, but they took the stock back.

We used both an Arri 535A and a 435 on the shoot. Both cameras ran fine with the Kodak stock.
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#15 Charles MacDonald

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Posted 19 October 2005 - 08:31 PM

I think Ilford might be persuaded to bring back their movie film if enough people ask.


My understanding is that the Ilford Unit in the Uk was placed under receivership a while ago. :o The swiss operation that makes Ink Jet Paper was not affected. :angry:

If the Uk operation carries on, they would need a strong order to justify making a batch of MP film. Mind you, the Ilford MP film was suposed to be identical to their still film, except for the Perforations and lenght.
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