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Scott Pickering

65mm B&W Motion Picture Film

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I have a proposal to do a film shot in both 5 perf 65mm (on Panavision System 65) and select shots and or scenes in IMAX 65mm. Basically using most scenes in 5 perf, and scenes with impact in IMAX. The majority of the film to use standard B&W film, with very select scenes in color for a hyper real effect (real life vs dream sequences, etc).

 

My question is- would Kodak accept a special run of 5222 Double X to be cut into 65mm? And what lab doing a special processing run (obviously changing their tanks to B&W chemistry), would accept doing 65mm B&W film? Im sure an agreement could be setup to handle the chemistry, as long as they can still process 65mm film in general. Would CFI be able to do this?

 

As for making a positive print from the B&W negatives, would using color stock POS film work, or would it still be suggested to stick with B&W again? I'm sure using proper filters would work printing to POS film if color is used. I'd like to retain the look of film (like Nolan does with his features) instead of digitally scanning the neg for editing purposes. How would B&W neg looked printed onto color positive film?

 

Any issues with using B&W neg in IMAX or Super Panavsion 70 cameras?

 

Film is around the 2 hour mark according to the script. Time period of 1990s with a short sequence in the 70s. Want to give the film a different look using B&W film, and frankly- who wouldn't love to see a 70mm B&W film on the big screen in IMAX at least once? 5 perf reduction prints could also be made (again another Nolan idea) from the IMAX scenes, so roadshow theaters could present it in 70mm 5 perf.

 

Love to get this project off the ground before using film is completely taken away from cinematographers.

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Wow. I don't really have anything very helpful to say, but that sounds like quite an audacious project! If I were you, my first calls would be to Fotokem and Kodak directly. Good luck!!!!

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Wow. I don't really have anything very helpful to say, but that sounds like quite an audacious project! If I were you, my first calls would be to Fotokem and Kodak directly. Good luck!!!!

What Josh said. You're lucky to have this opportunity! Congrats & good luck!

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Catch the Kodakers, this could be their 2015 prestige project!

 

They have the facilities to cut and perforate. Since you speak of 120 minutes 5-perf., a 4-to-1 ratio demands a square kilometer. Absolutely negotiable

 

Same with positive stock (70 mm)

 

George Eastman took personally care that Oscar B. DePue was furnished with 60mm stock in 1897. DePue toured the globe with a Démény-Gaumont camera.

 

https://books.google.ch/books?id=cI06elnxvG4C&pg=PA60&lpg=PA60&dq=oscar+b.+depue+george+eastman&source=bl&ots=9JW23EN16F&sig=1NJvvzeT3Lw-T4mlWyjGnXpBM2I&hl=de&sa=X&ei=cC-2VLzJIcmrygPnuoKABw&ved=0CCQQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=oscar%20b.%20depue%20george%20eastman&f=false

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Printing B&W negative onto color positive is not a good choice. Real B&W is much better. Good luck finding a lab that can handle this. The last 70mm lab in Europe closed a couple months ago.

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Orwo would be able to cut a masterroll of UN54 or UN74 to 65mm but you still need someone that perforates

the stock.

 

Arri in Munich, Germany is still capable of processing 65 / 70mm.

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The problem holding this all up is funding. I need to find funding for all this. Film would be shot in around Vancouver BC and an nearby city. I certainly see the excitement here for such a project, so maybe getting someone on board to help fund this project would be exciting. Its been 16 years in the making.

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I was considering Kickstarter, but being millions of dollars would need to be involved with very little info on what the story they are giving it for, I'm not sure how successful that would be. It's still an option though.

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I decided to post up a Kickstarter thing to get this going. Its currently being reviewed before being posted. If all goes well, it should be live in the next while. I asked for 15 million which is a lofty goal, but we'll see how well this does. I originally put 7 million, but I really don't think it would be feasible at that price with using IMAX and 2 hours long. If anyone wants to pledge me, I'd love that. I gave myself till the end of the year to do this. I really didn't like entering in a personal bank account, as I currently don't have a business account. My question is if the funds came to be 100% and it gets sent to one of my accounts, how would Canada Revenue look at that? I wonder if I could switch it to a business account before the thing ends, if I knew it was going to happen? But at 15 million, its a long shot, but I'm hopeful.

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With Kickstarter you should take into account that you need to give them a percentage of your raised funds. I recommend finding a producer and approaching financial backers for a project of this scope and budget. Also look into grants, and tax incentives.

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I think Kickstarter might not be the way I want to go on this. The income I'd receive would go into a personal account and not a business account, which means I'd have to pay taxes on that. And with that amount of cash, I'd get taxed so high that there wouldn't be much of the funds left for the project. So really a production company supporting this sounds like the better option.

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Did you talk to FotoKem about processing B&W? There are not too many film processors with 65mm/70mm rollers in the world I would start by finding out about how the lab would approach it.

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I suspect it's an oversight but Fuji's MP FAQ states that they make MP black and white camera film.

It's an intermediate film for making separations. The effective ISO is very low, probably single figures. Some people are using 16mm intermediate film in cameras, though.

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I contacted Fotokem and asked them if they could do it. Also Kickstarter wants for more information to post my project, so I decided not to follow through with them at this time.

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I got a short email back from Andrew at Fotokem. He states they do have in their possession a decommissioned B&W 65mm processor that was used at IMAGICA up until 2004. Fotokem has never made it operational and said it would take some effort to do so. He said he'll get back to me on Monday to see if it is viable, with the amount of film my movie would use.

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It's an intermediate film for making separations. The effective ISO is very low, probably single figures. Some people are using 16mm intermediate film in cameras, though.

 

I thought about that. Whatever they're referring to, they chose odd language.

 

I got a short email back from Andrew at Fotokem. He states they do have in their possession a decommissioned B&W 65mm processor that was used at IMAGICA up until 2004. Fotokem has never made it operational and said it would take some effort to do so. He said he'll get back to me on Monday to see if it is viable, with the amount of film my movie would use.

 

What's the difference between this equipment and 65mm color equipment?

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That's a good question I'd also like to know. I would have thought chemical tanks could be filled with what ever chemicals you pipe into it, whether color or B&W. Maybe they don't want to cross contaminate their color tanks, and by using a B&W specific tank, this may be achieved? Maybe its a temperature thing too or the way it handles certain base emulsions. Or it could be a time thing- maybe B&W tanks are designed for better processing due to time the film is in the tank per bath? Not sure.

Edited by Scott Pickering

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The processing line for ECN2 color negative is very different than for b&w negative, which has much fewer steps, starting with the fact that there is no rem jet to remove.

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I would think if they were to fill color tanks with B&W chemicals, they could simply bypass the tanks not needed for the process. That said even though 5222 uses D96 to develop, the positive print 2302 Estar base uses D97. This means a second set of tanks would be needed for the positive print, and as such, introduces yet another problem. Even if they could develop the neg print, getting a projection positive print in B&W may prove to be difficult. Unless their POS machine for B&W has adjustable rollers, which I highly doubt. The end projection print may still have to be on color stock.

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