IMAX Corporation has begun development on a new fleet of next generation IMAX film cameras — building on its more than fifty-year legacy of innovation to meet growing demand for its technology among a broader and more diverse group of filmmakers and artists.
In cooperation with Kodak, Panavision, and FotoKem, IMAX will develop and deploy at least four new, state-of-the-art film cameras over the next two years — growing its existing fleet of film cameras by 50% — with the first new camera being put into use by late 2023.
The Company is working with the world’s most accomplished filmmakers and cinematographers, including Jordan Peele and Christopher Nolan, to identify new specs and features for the prototype development phase already underway. The next release filmed with the current generation of IMAX film cameras and KODAK 65mm film will be Jordan Peele’s “Nope”, hitting screens on July 22, 2022, while Christopher Nolan’s “Oppenheimer” is currently shooting with IMAX Film Cameras.
“As IMAX grows as a global platform for entertainment and events, we want to offer more filmmakers, storytellers and artists the opportunity to create with our unrivalled end-to-end technology,” said Megan Colligan, President of IMAX Entertainment. “From our connected global network to IMAX Enhanced for the home, the IMAX Experience provides a more expansive creative canvas than ever, and these new film cameras will enable a new generation of creators along with those who already love working with the cameras a better way to unlock the power of IMAX.”
“IMAX film brings images to life,” said Chris Nolan. “From resolution and colour to sharpness and overall quality, there is nothing compared to using IMAX film cameras today. Filmmakers and movie fans worldwide should be thrilled at the prospect of new and improved IMAX film cameras – I know I am.”
“IMAX is movie magic pushed to its limit,” said Jordan Peele. “When you see a film in an IMAX theater, it feels like you are there. It’s complete immersion, and there’s nothing quite like it. Shooting with the IMAX Film Cameras gave us a look and feel you can’t get anywhere else. And we are only at the beginning, there’s still so much to be explored in this format.”
New and improved features being explored for the new IMAX film cameras include a quieter design and a number of useability enhancements. IMAX’s existing fleet of cameras and lenses are also undergoing major upgrades as part of the program. Several industry partners are also joining IMAX in the initiative to strengthen the global and future support of its film cameras.
Kodak will offer enhanced technical support and manufacturing of the 65mm film stock.
Panavision will continue to provide a global network of service and maintenance for IMAX camera productions worldwide along with new tools and technical support for the cameras.
FotoKem will work alongside the IMAX camera and post-production departments to improve production workflows and coordinate lab and post services.
IMAX film cameras feature a proprietary 15 perf horizontal 65mm frame size. They are ideally suited for productions destined for IMAX theatres capable of presenting film in the 1.43 aspect ratio. The use of IMAX film cameras and 1.43 aspect ratio is a creative choice made wholly by filmmakers, who today are further aided by IMAX’s “Filmed for IMAX” program. The program enables filmmakers to maximize the full potential of The IMAX Experience throughout testing, production, and post-production – so they may maximize the unique immersive nature of IMAX cinemas.
Used in documentary filmmaking since 1971’s “North of Superior”, IMAX film cameras have been to the deepest depths of the oceans, the top of Mount Everest, and launched into space more than any human being. In 2008, “The Dark Knight” became the first Hollywood title to use IMAX film cameras — the first of fourteen Hollywood blockbusters to do so, ranging from 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” to last year’s “No Time to Die”.