An update in Deadline covered the announcement that Kodak will continue the production of film stock thanks to a push from famous filmmakers and studios that have fought to continue its legacy.
Kodak CEO Jeff Clarke mentioned that the filmmakers and studios who lobbied to keep Kodak alive have helped to set in foundation a plan that will allow them to continue making film in smaller quantities. “After extensive discussions with filmmakers, leading studios and others who recognize the unique artistic and archival qualities of film, we have in place a plan that will enable us to continue production” [of film stock], Clarke stated.
Though the production of film will continue, Kodak will only produce about 1/28 of what it used to put out with a mere 450M linear feet of film. “Kodak’s sales of motion picture film have declined by 96% over the last ten years, with an acceleration of the decline over the last two years due to the rapid completion of the conversion to digital display of movies worldwide,” Clarke said. “These ongoing, steep declines in motion picture volumes have challenged profitability in the traditional film business for Kodak, which now accounts for about 6% of the company’s revenues.”
Kodak’s last plant was about to shut down film production, much like Fujifilm, which recently left the business of manufacturing film. Although Kodak just got out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and is fighting an increasingly difficult market, the demand for Kodak to keep going from the mouths of Quentin Tarantino, Christopher Nolan, Judd Apatow, J.J. Abrams, as well as a number of studios guaranteeing they will buy a set amount of film, will keep the doors open.
Clarke believes that the new deal to produce a limited amount of film stock for eager filmmakers will “maintain production of film for the entertainment industry while we gear up for new markets such as touch sensors.” (Deadline)