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12 February 2019

Electric Theatre Collective's commitment to film.

by Jason Stone


One of the most interesting film-making trends of the last few years has been the resurgence of film itself. Until recently, digital cameras appeared to have their foot on the neck of cellulose and there was little prospect of film ever breaking free from the manifest advantages offered by the latest technology.

But there's a relationship with light provided by film which never quite be matched by digital and lots of film-makers have been returning to it.

Electric Theatre Collective colourist Luke Morrison is a huge fan of film and he's absolutely delighted to have access to a new piece of technology which enables him to scan film in real time: "It's back to the future!" he exclaimed with glee when we sat down in his grading suite at ETC's Margaret Street HQ to discuss the kit and its possibilities.

Scanning film was an aspect of his job when he started his career and as someone who still prefers to take photographs using film, he's absolutely delighted for it to be making such a comeback in his working life.

It's back to the future!

Luke Morrison   


The output is Ultra HD and the kit is so advanced that it only requires minor adjustments from an operator before scanning the next job. And because it operates in real-time, it's then immediately ready for Morrison's digital wizardry, making it absolutely the best of both worlds.

Morrison feels the resurgence in film is likely to continue but it will always be horses for courses: "It depends what you're going for. Film is right for certain purposes and certain looks, it has an inherent quality that we're all used to seeing.

"A lot of us have grown up with that medium and when digital capture came in everyone was always trying to emulate film. And people are now realising you can just shoot on film and costs will actually come down."

This point is a good reminder that digital capture still uses the language of film - a lot of the settings on a digital camera are based on the relationship between cellulose and light. This demonstrates that the idea of film still dominates film-making, even when film itself is absent.

The advent of companies like Cinelab who bravely offered a niche service developing film on a bespoke basis just as the format appeared to have reached its low point, have played a vital part in film's revival.

And that is clearly set to continue with ETC's new offer, and because of Luke Morrison's own love of film, he's really excited about all the possibilities ahead.

David Reviews is hand-crafted by Lovely Lenzie Ltd, 7 Seven Sisters, Lenzie, Glasgow, G66 3AW. Editor: Jason Stone. Phone: 0141 776 7766. E-mail: jason@davidreviews.com.