Two new labs in London in New York match a growing demand for film development services.
Last year, we sat down with Kodak President Steve Bellamy, who told us all about Kodak's plans for the resurgence of film. While we've seen many big-budget productions pick up the mantle on this charge, many of our readers were quick to point out that the only real way to save film would be to have the same amount of labs, telecine facilities, and support services available as there were in the good old days.
Kodak is fully aware of the limitations associated with a lack of film development services and is looking to rebuild quality labs in major cities across the world.
Today, there are around 10 film labs left in the United States, but the risks and expenses associated with shipping film stock outweigh the benefits for many filmmakers. Kodak is fully aware of the limitations associated with a lack of development services and is looking to take matters into its own hands by rebuilding quality labs in major cities across the world. It's going to be a huge effort, but with an encouraging announcement earlier this month, it seems to be going full-steam ahead.
In a memo published earlier last week, Kodak announced a partnership with the largest production house in the UK, Pinewood Studios, home to the production of Star Wars among other major blockbusters.
"Kodak has signed a 5-year lease on part of the Ken Adam Building at Pinewood Studios in the UK to establish a new film negative processing lab," the announcement reads. "The parties will also work together on co-branding initiatives and promotions."
Darren Woolfson, Group Director of Technology for Pinewood, said, "This move signifies our support for the continued ability of filmmakers to choose to shoot their films on physical film in the UK. We’re proud to be collaborating with Kodak in this endeavour.”
Nigel Bennett, Director of Creative Services for Pinewood Group added, "We are keen to support the infrastructure for physical film for those directors and cinematographers who prefer this format."
Back in the states, Kodak recently acquired a film-processing lab in Atlanta, Georgia, where film is already being processed for The Walking Dead and other major film and television productions. The last film lab in New York City shuttered its doors nearly four years ago, but Kodak will reopen and operate a lab in Queens later this year, which will service 35mm, S16, and Super 8 film processing and scanning.