Hollywood is in the midst of a titanic technological shift as it moves from shooting and distributing its movies on film, long the raw material of the movie business, to digital formats. While some are prospering as cinema goes digital, others are casualties of the change. There are small armies of people who once worked in Hollywood’s enormous film processing labs. These were the places, owned and operated by companies like Deluxe and Technicolor, that produced thousands of film prints to send out to movie theaters across the country and around the world. However, with the embrace of digital technology, these “film factories” are closing, and people are losing their jobs.

Since the birth of the movie industry, film, single framed images placed sequentially on celluloid-based stock, has been the raw material of Hollywood. As Hollywood moves to digital formats, film is vanishing and taking jobs with it, especially in the once enormous film processing labs operated by companies like Technicolor and Deluxe. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

Since the birth of the movie industry single framed images placed sequentially on celluloid-based stock has been the raw material of Hollywood. As Hollywood moves to both shooting and distributing its movies on digital formats, film is vanishing and taking jobs with it. That’s especially the case in the once ubiquitous film processing labs once operated by companies like Technicolor and Deluxe. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

The Vineland Drive-In Movie Theater is on of the last surviving drive-ins in Southern California. It has a retro, well-worn feel to it, but the Vineland's converted to projecting its movies digitally instead of on film. "We were forced to transition to the digital system because they are going to stop making 35 millimeter print, so either you change, or you won't get any movies eventually, say Juan Gonzalez, the Vineland's general manager. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

The Vineland Drive-In is one of the last surviving drive-in movie theaters in Southern California. It has a retro, well-worn feel to it, but the Vineland’s converted to projecting its movies digitally instead of on film. “We were forced to transition to the digital system because they are going to stop making 35 millimeter print, so either you change, or you won’t get any movies,  says Juan Gonzalez, the Vineland’s general manager. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

Instead of receiving big heavy film reels with thousands of feet of spooled film, increasingly theaters now get their movies on small computer hard drives. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

Instead of receiving big heavy film reels with thousands of feet of spooled film, increasingly theaters now get their movies on small computer hard drives. The studios like the change because it massively reduces their reproduction and distribution costs for movies its shipping out.  (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

Sandy Munro worked at Deluxe's Hollywood film processing lab for more than a decade until he was let go. In it's heyday, he says the lab would bustle with activity as workers made thousands of film prints to ship out to theaters across the country. Munro says the labs allowed small armies of blue collars workers to make a good middle-class living in Hollywood. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

Until he was let go, Sandy Munro worked at Deluxe’s Hollywood film processing lab for more than a decade. In its heyday, he says the lab would bustle with activity as workers produced thousands of film prints to ship out to theaters across the country. Like factory jobs during the golden age of American industry, Munro says the film labs allowed small armies of skilled, blue collars workers to make a solid middle-class living in Hollywood. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

Joanne Webb is with the Actors Fund, a non-profit organization that provides social services and job training to people in the entertainment industry. With the layoffs of Hollywood's film processors, the Fund, in cooperation with organized labor and Deluxe, has started programs to help the workers find other employment. "These were people who were going in and felt very purposeful, but all of a sudden it's not important anymore because we are moving on to digital," says Webb.

Joanne Webb is with The Actors Fund, a non-profit organization that provides social services and job training to people in the entertainment industry. With the layoffs of Hollywood’s film processors, the Fund, in cooperation with organized labor and Deluxe, has started programs to help the workers find other employment. “These were people who were going in and felt very purposeful, but all of a sudden it’s not important anymore because we are moving on to digital,” says Webb. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

Jan-Christopher Horack runs the UCLA Film and Television Archive, the second largest moving image archive in the United States after the Library of Congress. The staff works to painstakingly restore and preserve films so that the images of the past will be safeguarded.  Horack worries that as it transitions to shooting and distributing it's movies digitally, Hollywood may be using technologies that don't match film's durability when it comes to preserving them for future generations. "The old fashioned film reel, if I put it in a cold and dry vault, will last many many decades longer than the digital file," says Horack.

Jan-Christopher Horack runs the UCLA Film and Television Archive, the second largest moving image archive in the United States after the Library of Congress. The staff works to painstakingly restore and preserve films so that the moving images of the past will be safeguarded. Horack worries that as it transitions to shooting and distributing its movies digitally, Hollywood may be using technologies that don’t match film’s durability when it comes to preserving them for future generations. “The old fashioned film reel, if I put it in a cold and dry vault, will last many many decades longer than the digital file,” says Horack. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

The Vineland Drive-In has kept one of its old film projectors.....as a kind of museum piece near the concessions' stand. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

Below the projection room, the Vineland Drive-In has kept one of its old film projectors…as a kind of museum piece near the concessions’ stand. (Photo: Saul Gonzalez)

 

KCRW Radio App TuneIn Stitcher SoundCloud iTunes
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
  • Juan Jose Namnun

    Its a sad new world we re entering…

  • erinjgz

    DIgital has made huge improvements in recent years. I can honestly say it it surpassing the performance of 35mm in almost every aspect.

  • sammy

    Nothing wrong with digital except that you can't archive it. Your nuts to make make a million dollar film and store it on a hard drive.

  • http://www.rem9rocx.com/web-container-vs-web-server/ john wayne airport

    You’re so cool! I don’t think I’ve truly read anything like that before.
    So great to find someone with some original thoughts on this subject matter.
    Really.. many thanks for starting this up. This web site is one thing that is needed on the web, someone
    with a little originality!

  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B7ykjnDm79M Temporary Employment Agencies Orange County Ca

    Because the admin of this web page is working, no question very
    shortly it will be renowned, due to its feature contents.

    My homepage: Temporary Employment Agencies Orange County Ca

  • http://www.download-free-whatsapp.com Download Whatsapp

    The technology is very good and greatly improved our lives, but against unemployment is generated in some sectors, in this case in the cinema

  • http://www.techieoasis.org/2013/11/top-technology-and-hacking-based-holly-wood-movies.html Technology Movies

    I had find your article quite amazing. The information provided by you is really great. This will surely help most of people. I had subscribed your blog and keep coming to read such interesting articles thank you sir good night

  • Pingback: black diamond rings

  • http://twitter.com/giddypregn221 @giddypregn221

    Consider how people get the office. It isn't uncommon for the office to journey to work in their cars, with just one person in each. But relaxed breaths . set up a car-share scheme. Employees can group together, and take it in turns to build. This initiative will save both carbon emissions and cash on petrol. offical site

BROUGHT TO YOU BY