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06-22-2009, 06:45 AM   #1
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Bye-Bye Kodachrome

ROCHESTER, N.Y., June 22 -- Eastman Kodak Company announced today that it will retire KODACHROME Color Film this year, concluding its 74-year run as a photography icon.
Sales of KODACHROME Film, which became the world’s first commercially successful color film in 1935, have declined dramatically in recent years as photographers turned to newer KODAK Films or to the digital imaging technologies that Kodak pioneered. Today, KODACHROME Film represents just a fraction of one percent of Kodak’s total sales of still-picture films.
“KODACHROME Film is an iconic product and a testament to Kodak’s long and continuing leadership in imaging technology,” said Mary Jane Hellyar, President of Kodak’s Film, Photofinishing and Entertainment Group. "It was certainly a difficult decision to retire it, given its rich history. However, the majority of today's photographers have voiced their preference to capture images with newer technology – both film and digital. Kodak remains committed to providing the highest-performing products – both film and digital – to meet those needs."
While Kodak now derives about 70% of its revenues from commercial and consumer digital businesses, it is the global leader in the film business. Kodak has continued to bring innovative new film products to market, including seven new professional still films and several new VISION2 and VISION3 motion picture films in the past three years.These new still film products are among those that have become the dominant choice for those professional and advanced amateur photographers who use KODAK Films.
Among the well-known professional photographers who used KODACHROME Film is Steve McCurry, whose picture of a young Afghan girl captured the hearts of millions of people around the world as she peered hauntingly from the cover of National Geographic Magazine in 1985.
As part of a tribute to KODACHROME Film, Kodak will donate the last rolls of the film to George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film in Rochester, which houses the world’s largest collection of cameras and related artifacts. McCurry will shoot one of those last rolls and the images will be donated to Eastman House.
“The early part of my career was dominated by KODACHROME Film, and I reached for that film to shoot some of my most memorable images,” said McCurry. “While KODACHROME Film was very good to me, I have since moved on to other films and digital to create my images. In fact, when I returned to shoot the ‘Afghan Girl’ 17 years later, I used KODAK PROFESSIONAL EKTACHROME Film E100VS to create that image, rather than KODACHROME Film as with the original.”
For all of its magic, KODACHROME is a complex film to manufacture and an even more complex film to process. There is only one remaining photofinishing lab in the world – Dwayne’s Photo in Parsons, Kansas – that processes KODACHROME Film, precisely because of the difficulty of processing. This lack of widespread processing availability, as well as the features of newer films introduced by Kodak over the years, has accelerated the decline of demand for KODACHROME Film.
During its run, KODACHROME Film filled a special niche in the annals of the imaging world. It was used to capture some of the best-known photographs in history, while also being the film of choice for family slide shows of the Baby Boom generation.
To celebrate the film’s storied history, Kodak has created a gallery of iconic images, including the Afghan girl and other McCurry photos, as well as others from professional photographers Eric Meola and Peter Guttman on its website: www.kodak.com/go/kodachrometribute. Special podcasts featuring McCurry and Guttman will also be featured on the website.
Kodak estimates that current supplies of KODACHROME Film will last until early this fall at the current sales pace. Dwayne’s Photo has indicated it will continue to offer processing for the film through 2010. Current KODACHROME Film users are encouraged to try other KODAK Films, such as KODAK PROFESSIONAL EKTACHROME E100G and EKTAR 100 Film. These films both feature extremely fine grain. For more information, please visit www.kodak.com/go/professional.


News Release

06-22-2009, 06:51 AM   #2
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What a shame. Shot a few rolls of ektachrome this weekend. It'll be missed. Another one bites the dust.
06-22-2009, 07:06 AM   #3
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I'd like to see a "niche" company pickup some of the classic emulsions that are getting dropped.
06-22-2009, 07:16 AM   #4
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Jake Ekta is still available. It's Kodachrome that's going. It was one of my most used slide films over the years. Loved the ISO 25 slide film and also shot 64 as well. 25 was the best film I've used for fine detail. Fussy to shoot with but rewarding.

06-22-2009, 07:41 AM   #5
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I'm not going to miss it. I used a roll or two but was never impressed. The 25 was decent, but I hated the 64. There was a reason McCurry used another slide film instead of Kodachrome for that second Afghan Girl shoot -- there were much better emulsions that came out over the years.
06-22-2009, 07:58 AM   #6
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Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by K-9 Quote
I'm not going to miss it. I used a roll or two but was never impressed. The 25 was decent, but I hated the 64. There was a reason McCurry used another slide film instead of Kodachrome for that second Afghan Girl shoot -- there were much better emulsions that came out over the years.
Kodachrome is still the only archival colour film.
06-22-2009, 08:03 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
Kodachrome is still the only archival colour film.
That's a good point. I would think Fuji has/had one as well.
06-22-2009, 08:27 AM   #8
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What is equiavalent or closest to this(kodachrome) in Fuji or other film worlds?

06-22-2009, 08:46 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sudhakar Quote
What is equiavalent or closest to this(kodachrome) in Fuji or other film worlds?
Nothing...sorry to say.

Its main characteristics:
  • Virtually grainless
  • High contrast
  • High color saturation
  • Archival images (will not fade)
  • Required proprietary development

Steve

Last edited by stevebrot; 06-22-2009 at 09:50 AM.
06-22-2009, 09:19 AM   #10
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*hats off.*

We'll miss you, Kodachrome.

Had some good times, we did.

I wonder if Dwayne's'll keep the soup on long enough for a last go-round.
06-22-2009, 10:43 AM   #11
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When Fuji discontinued Velvia public outcry led them to introduce a reformulated version.
If consumers demand Kodachrome will Kodak follows suit? I hope so, but I'm not holding my breath.

I have several rolls of Kodachrome 64 and Kodak prepaid mailers for each,
enough to last until Dwayne's stop accepting Kodak mailers at the end of 2009.

Chris

Last edited by ChrisPlatt; 06-22-2009 at 02:36 PM.
06-22-2009, 11:31 AM   #12
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Have never used it, learned to play the song on the guitar a few years ago though.

"Mama don't take my Kodachrome away"

Of course If I played it now I would have to change the Nikon line to Pentax...
06-22-2009, 11:37 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rustyoldbug Quote
Have never used it, learned to play the song on the guitar a few years ago though.

"Mama don't take my Kodachrome away"

Of course If I played it now I would have to change the Nikon line to Pentax...
Heh, when I saw the announcement, I thought of this line right away.

QuoteQuote:
When I think back on all the crap Ive learned in highschool
Its a wonder I can think at all
Though my lack of education hasnt hurt me much
I can read the writings on the walls

Chorus:
Kodachrome, they give us those nice bright colours
They give us the greens of summers
Makes you think all the worlds a sunny day, oh yeah
I got a nikon camera, I love to take a photograph
So mama dont take my kodachrome away

If you took all the girls I knew when I was single
Brought em all together for one night
I know theyd never match my sweet imagination
Everything looks better in black and white

Chorus

Mama dont take my kodachrome away, mama dont take my kodachrome away
Mama dont take my kodachrome away

Mama dont take my kodachrome, mama dont take my kodachrome
Mama dont take my kodachrome away
Mama dont take my kodachrome and leave your boy so far from home
Mama dont take my kodachrome away
Mama dont take my kodachrome, whew whew, mama dont take my kodachrome away
06-22-2009, 01:34 PM   #14
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it's a weird coincidence that I was listening to Simon&Garfunkel today! and of course the song Kodachrome..! sad news to bring .. I would like to take a few kodachrome films .. maybe I should try the ektar.. oh well..
06-22-2009, 01:42 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by flippedgazelle Quote
Heh, when I saw the announcement, I thought of this line right away.
"Everything looks better in black and white"

is not how the lyrics went, it was:

"And everything looks worse in black and white"
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