Monday, July 31, 2017

"Dunkirk" in 70mm Brings People to the Cinema

Article: Warner Bros. Prepping 'Dunkirk' for One of the Largest 70mm Releases of Last 25 Years - Hollywood Reporter

Article: Christopher Nolan’s ‘Dunkirk’ Scores Widest 70MM Release in 25 Years - Variety

Cinemas have been working hard to keep moviegoers coming to theaters to see the latest releases. Shorter time frames between release to theater and Video on Demand have added to the incentive to give audiences a unique experience. One way to get people coming in is to provide more comfortable seating and even table service for food and drink.

But, another way is to give audiences a movie presentation that they just can't get at home, no matter how giant their TV is! IMAX has been doing that for a while now. Movies made for IMAX use large film, even larger than the large-format film that came before it, 70mm. Classics such as "Lawrence of Arabia" and "2001: A Space Odyssey" were shot and released in 70mm. IMAX is basically super-sized 70mm. The benefit of larger film is that you get a sharper, clearer image Great for the massive screens like IMAX!

Now, filmmakers with a love for 70mm, and who have the pull to do it, are getting to make films in 70mm once again. Quentin Tarantino got to with "The Hateful Eight." Christopher Nolan got to with "Interstellar" and now with "Dunkirk." Christoper Nolan pushed to make "Dunkirk" the largest 70mm release in 25 years. Now, people are getting to experience the film format for the first time, or like me, getting to re-experience it. Christopher Nolan's WWII movie "Dunkirk" has gotten people back into the theater by providing a unique experience.

"Interstellar" had made it to 50 screens in 70mm. That release used existing 70mm projectors at cinemas that used them to show classic films. "The Hateful Eight" made it to 100 screens in the format. That effort involved the investment in taking 70mm projectors not in use, refurbishing them and putting them back in order. The release of "Dunkirk" goes one better, using even more of the refurbished projectors. The last time a 70mm release went this wide was in 1992 with Ron Howard's "Far and Away." That in itself was a revitalization of 70mm, since the format was less in use at the time.

The future of 70mm will hopefully be bright! Tarantino and Nolan have shown a commitment to use it. And, on the revival front, "Lawrence of Arabia" has received a new 70mm film restoration. Lucky moviegoers will be seeing that soon!

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