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Much has been written about the production of Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming "The Hateful Eight," which the director and cinematographer Robert Richardson shot using the Ultra Panavision 70mm format. The anamorphic widescreen photography hadn’t been utilized since the late 1960s, and the resulting image is impressively massive and detailed, particularly when in close-up on an actor’s face. But while much of the reporting on "The Hateful Eight" has focused on producing and shooting in Ultra Panavision, an equally-as-daunting task has been exhibiting it.
That’s where Chapin Cutler comes in. As co-owner of Boston Light & Sound, one of the oldest companies in the country to install and maintain theater film projectors, Chapin has had the herculean task of finding, fixing, testing and setting up all of the 100 film projectors that will play "The Hateful Eight" roadshow starting on Christmas Day. David Bordwell has been documenting Chapin’s efforts over on his website in various posts, and they provide some great insight into the challenging undertaking of setting up and shipping out 100 70mm film prints across America.
According to Chapin, all of the prints and projectors will be delivered and set up in theaters by Wednesday, December 23, just two days before the roadshow presentation opens in theaters. His team of four has been setting up the prints at a "platter farm" in Valencia, California seven days a week leading up to the release. Each print was delivered to the farm as a 1,000 ft. load and assembled into 20 rolls per print. The prints and reel are then loaded into a shipping case (5 ft. x 5 ft. by 1 ft. thick) that weighs around 400 lbs. total. Out of the box, "The Hateful Eight" print and reel clock in at a hefty 250 lbs.
Head over to Bordwell’s website for more insights, and as you’re watching "The Hateful Eight," be sure to remember just how much effort it took to exhibit it.