“… as many as eight thousand of America’s forty thousand screens may close. Their owners will not be able to afford the conversion to digital. Creative destruction, some will call it, playing down the intangible assets that community cinemas offer.”
(For full text: http://www.davidbordwell.net/blog/2012/02/28/pandoras-digital-box-from-films-to-files/)
“Film, “reel” film, the stuff made of organic emulsion that unspools through a projector at 24-frames-a-second, is going the way of the dodo bird.”
(My words, from a piece I wrote for TCM, full text which can be found here: http://moviemorlocks.com/2011/12/04/the-end/)
I’ve been programming the IFS for over 15 years. Having grown up in Boulder I can even boast to attending IFS screenings since I was in grade school. I’ve seen it go through many changes, and I’ve seen it survive many challenges. This newest and latest challenge is not insurmountable, but it is probably the most daunting one yet. I won’t bury the lead: the IFS is a scrappy little program that has always done very much with very little. It runs on fumes and is worked by a skeleton crew. Most of our operating budget comes from ticket sales, and we usually manage to make it to the end of every fiscal year with anywhere from $97 to $7,000 in the till. Those numbers are not typos and a far cry from the multi-million dollar budgets afforded other film programs across the nation. Now, after over 100 years of operating with analog equipment, the “film” business is dumping celluloid and now in the business of projecting digital files. These require a Digital Cinema Package (D.C.P.) system, which costs $80,000.
The CineMark theater here in Boulder is all digital. The Boedecker is all digital. The BIFF is almost all digital. And so it goes. Here at the IFS we plan on keeping our 35mm projectors so that we can continue to show rare prints, archive films, and titles from private collections. But that will only go so far, and if we are to continue serving the Boulder community we will need to come up with the funds for the D.C.P. system, as well as installation, and its upkeep.
Any donation will help, is tax deductible, and can be made by clicking on the button below. The IFS has been around for over 71 years and has always been there to provide a low-cost, high-quality, non-profit film program that balances newer titles with classics and rarities – and has also brought in a long list of special guests too numerous to mention here, but easily accessible via the timeline on the home-page. The IFS has nurtured many minds and souls over its long years, and now needs a bit of nurture itself. I hope anyone who reads this will agree, and join me in making a contribution to keep it alive. There are still so many wonderful and great films and filmmakers that we’d like to bring!