I have never quite understood precisely what it was about nitrate film that made the industry apparently so reluctant to give it up. Was it just price?
Or did physical characteristics such as flexibility come in? If there is any confusion between the possible quality of images and different film bases,
I suspect it arises from the amazing clarity of early films, which could show through even in their narrow-gauge reproductions.
This sharpness and depth of field went away (much earlier than nitrate did) and, again, I am not really clear why. How much of it was due to changes in cinematographic
practices? - this is something members would know about I guess. No doubt there are other factors, only hinted at in Simon Wyss' post.
The fear of nitrate does seem odd. After all, it was used for decades with relatively few fatalities - it would be interesting to have some
exact facts and figures and not have to fall back on an early French disaster for illustration. But going to the movies was not normally seen as a life-threatening practice,