How Hollywood and the Oscars are Keeping Kodak Film Alive

How Hollywood and the Oscars are Keeping Kodak Film Alive

Kodak may have filed for bankruptcy in 2012, but Hollywood movie directors and their fervor for shooting on 35mm and 65mm film is giving the company a new lease of life.

As reported by Bloomberg (free articles then paywall,) five of this year's Oscar-nominated movies were shot on Kodak film and the Eastman Kodak Company is now taking on staff as a result. Sales to Hollywood have increased consistently in recent years, helped by the likes of Quentin Tarantino and Oscar-winning cinematographer Robert Richardson ASC.

Richardson worked with Tarantino on “Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood,” a film that obviously lends itself to a Kodak aesthetic. “There was no ‘film vs digital’ debate. Digital is not in Quentin’s dictionary,” Richardson explains in this article. “I love film for many reasons, the first amongst those being the way it captures skin. There is a softness that is difficult to achieve in digital.”

Directors such as Christopher Nolan, Noah Baumbach, and Greta Gerwig all seem to agree. Film has a depth and feel that many think is lacking from digital, and there’s no doubt a different mindset given the increased cost, technical expertise, and slower process.

Kodak fans will no doubt be delighted to see the company making film rather than launching cryptocurrencies or lending its name to Kodakit, “the Uber of photography,” which is now winding down following an announcement late last year.

Should more movies be shot on film? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

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3 Comments

Mark Wyatt's picture

Having the foundation of film for cinema is very helpful to keeping a viable supply of film and chemistry for still photographers, so I say go for it!

Film has the best skintone, and it has more than 10 stops of dynamic range, only the kodak 760 sensor comparable to film, nowadays evern with the best digital camera just dry to overexpose or underexpose 5 stops you lost all the dynamic range even with raw format, but with film it is easy to recovery back all those details, this is why film has the best skin, digital is like bitmap, film is like vector as film scanner quality improve, your film qauilty will improve too

It’s true, I myself don’t remember the last time I heard about Kodak