I just listened to a discussion about the death of film on the latest /Filmcast episode. I think the discussion was well-reasoned, and I liked that the guys didn’t take the luddite approach that I feel Scott Tobias mostly advocates. There is a place for nostalgia, but it’s not like we make movies with hand-cranked cameras for that beautiful variable frame rate and flicker anymore. Technology improves and changes and artists change and adapt to keep up.
There is one area that I think they did sort of gloss over, and which I think wasn’t perfectly expressed in the otherwise great LA Weekly article that set off the discussion, and that’s that this whole conversion to digital is being forced by studios for reasons of cost savings, but also sheer laziness. Digital filming and projection is the kind of change that needs to happen, but it can’t be pushed so forcefully before it’s 100% ready. While this conversion is the biggest the industry has seen since the advent of colour, colour film didn’t need brand new projectors and screens and server systems to run. But why would the studios care? The end cost generally falls on exhibitors. The studios give up very little. Click to read more.