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In the Digital Age, Projectionists Still Need to Learn How to Show 35mm Film Prints

Photo of Paula Bernstein By Paula Bernstein | Indiewire August 11, 2014 at 4:49PM

While digital may now be the primary exhibition format, there is still a need for projectionists who know how to handle film prints.
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Martin Scorsese
Martin Scorsese

Quentin Tarantino, Christopher Nolan, J.J. Abrams and Judd Apatow recently lobbied Hollywood studios to support Kodak to keep film stock in use -- and their efforts seemed to have worked, with Kodak announcing it will continue to produce film stock. Martin Scorsese also rallied around the effort to keep film stock alive, but in addition to producing film stock, we need to continue to educate projectionists about how to handle and properly screen film stock.

Therefore, the Association of Moving Image Archivists (AMIA) is partnering with the Alamo Drafthouse to offer training to projectionists and others in how to properly present 35 mm film in theaters.

READ MORE: Martin Scorsese Rallies to Keep Film Stock Alive

The Projectionist
The Projectionist

"A number of films are simply not available in digital and showing them in their original 35mm format allows new audiences to appreciate rare prints, archive films and titles from private collections," said AMIA board member Elena Rossi-Snook. "But it also requires special skills to work with rare and archival prints."

"The day we stop [protecting 35mm film] is the day cinema as we know it is dead." - Tim League

Taking place at the Alamo South Lamar location in Austin, Texas on October 28, the workshop, which is limited to 20 participants, will provide a hands-on tutorial for projectionists and theater staff working with 35 mm film prints. Participants will receive industry-wide recognition for completion of the workshop, indicated by a certificate from AMIA.

"I love digital projection for new release films, but only a tiny sliver of our vast film history will ever make it to the DCP format," said Alamo Drafthouse CEO Tim League. "As an industry, we must continue to preserve, protect and carefully screen 35mm films and maintain our 35mm projection equipment. The day we stop is the day cinema as we know it is dead."

Participants may find more information and register at www.projectionworkshop.org.

This article is related to: News, Filmmaker Toolkit: Exhibition, 35mm, Alamo Drafthouse, Alamo Drafthouse





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