Ektachrome returns, for Super 8 and stills

Kodak announced at CES 2017 that it plans to bring back one of its most iconic film stocks: Ektachrome.

In December 2012 Kodak stopped production of its last colour reversal stock for Super 8, Ektachrome 100D. Now Kodak brings Ektachrome back, to feed its new Super 8 film camera. And photographers can rejoice too!

Over the next 12 months, Kodak will be working to reformulate and manufacture Kodak Ektatchrome film for both motion picture and still photography applications, revealed Kodak at CES 2017, in Las Vegas, recently. Initial availability is expected in the fourth quarter of 2017.

The reintroduction of the iconic Kodak Ektatchrome film for professional and enthusiast photographers signals the continued resurgence of analog media. Kodak Professional Ektachrome, for still photography, will be available from Kodak Alaris and Kodak Ektachrome Super 8 motion picture film format from Kodak.

According to Kodak, sales of professional photographic films have been steadily rising over the last few years, with professionals and enthusiasts rediscovering the artistic control offered by manual processes and the creative satisfaction of a physical end product. Kodak Professional Ektachrome film, a color positive film, generates a positive image that can be viewed or projected once it is exposed and processed, making it ideal for high-resolution projection or presentations.

This is interesting news, as it represents a shift in the market. In fact, it was only last year we wrote here that “In 2005 Kodak discontinued the most popular stock Kodachrome due to the decline of facilities equipped for the K-14 process, in December 2012 they stopped production of their last colour reversal stock for Super 8, Ektachrome 100D.” Now, apparently, the Analogue Renaissance, as Kodak calls, it, is a reality.

Kodak Ektachrome film has a distinctive look that was the choice for generations of cinematographers before it was discontinued in 2012. The film is known for its extremely fine grain, clean colors, great tones and contrasts.

“It is such a privilege to reintroduce Kodak Ektrachrome film to the cinematography community,” said Steven Overman, Kodak’s chief marketing officer and president of the Consumer and Film Division. “We are seeing a broad resurgence of excitement about capturing images on film. Kodak is committed to continuing to manufacture film as an irreplaceable medium for image creators to capture their artistic vision. We are proud to help bring back this classic.”

Kodak will produce Ektrachrome at its film factory in Rochester, N.Y., and will market and distribute the Super 8 motion picture film version of Ektrachrome  film directly.

Kodak Alaris, an independent company since 2013, also plans to offer a still format Kodak Professional Ektachrome film for photographers in 135-36x format.  Kodak Professional Ektachrome film is a color positive film, also known as “reversal,” “slide,” or “transparency” film. Unlike all of the other Kodak Professional films available today, which are color negative films, Ektachrome generates a positive image that can be viewed or projected once it is exposed and processed. This makes it ideal for high-resolution projection or presentations. It is also well suited for scanning and printing onto a range of professional-grade photographic media.  Availability is expected in the fourth quarter of 2017.

“Film is our heritage and we remain committed to meeting the evolving needs of today’s film shooters,” said Dennis Olbrich, President – Kodak Alaris Imaging Paper, Photo Chemicals and Film. “We’ve been listening to the needs and desires of photographers over the past several years and wanted to bring back a color reversal film. In assessing the opportunity, Ektachrome was the clear choice.”

Ektachrome film is developed using the E6 process, available in many professional labs today. Coincident with the Q4 launch, the Kodak Professional Film App will be updated to include Professional Labs where E6 processing is available in addition to labs where color negative and B&W film processing are currently featured.

 


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Jose Antunes

Jose Antunes

I am a writer and photographer living on the West Coast of Portugal, a place I tend to call the Atlantic Realm. An area of rugged cliffs and sandy beaches overlooking the sea, a coastal area sitting between the Atlantic Ocean waves and hills and forests with some of the most magical palaces, castles and prehistorical sites for you to visit and photograph. Little hamlets, vast fields, inviting you to a contemplative state of mind. That’s where I live, and the landscape surely makes you what you are.