View Full Version : Transfer to 35mm Film

12-20-2007, 02:15 AM
Fellow LightWavers,

I have a question for those who have worked with transferring your CG to film. I am planning a micro budget feature film and have avoided any CG effects due to costs. I realized after I shot down several ideas that I don't even know the process or how much it would cost. Do you simply take your green screen shot on film and telecine it into digital, composite all the effects and then transfer that digital shot back out to film? Therefore, minus the CG labour it would only be the cost of transferring to 35mm film (which I realize is expensive)?

I understand film and digital but never the twain have met in my experience. If someone could walk me through the process with the film negative, I would really appreciate it.

12-20-2007, 12:31 PM
Your understanding of the process is about right. Personally I would shoot HD 1920 X 1080, 24FPS to keep costs down. Then transfer the final cut film.

These are the guys i've used in the past


I was contemplating a two minute animated short at one point. The price point is below;


We would like a 1920 X 1080 uncompressed tiff or quicktime sequence, we then
shoot out to 35mm color negative along with a separate 35mm optical sound
track, with both these elements we generate a 35mm composite print for the
theater. The price based on two minutes would be $1800.00, this includes
35mm picture negative, 35mm sound track along with one print, additional
print pricing would be based on the amount of prints ordered. Let me know if
I can be of any other assistance.

Vincent Hogan

Hope this helps,


12-20-2007, 03:10 PM
Thanks mrpapabeis,

I've debated shooting HD and transferring to film but that is a pretty expensive process for a feature. With all the costs being measured in "weeks" shooting in HD doesn't seem to save me much money in the end but may allow me some FX latitude and multiple camera set-ups instead of one film camera.
So if I understand the process properly I think I can take it all back to the drawing board and rethink story potential.

Thanks again.

12-20-2007, 06:48 PM
You can always use 16mm film. Its a lot cheaper then 35mm, easy to blow-up to 35 if the need arises and a lot of smaler cinema's can project 16 mm.

Also, with some searching, a lot of enthousiast have 16 mm camera's so maybe you still can have multiple angle shots with film... :)

12-21-2007, 04:19 PM
That is true. Choices, choices, choices! Sometimes I hate choices! I should actually sit down and crunch the numbers for all three scenarios and see what the cost differences are and weigh that against the possibilities of multiple cameras, CG FX and processing.

12-21-2007, 10:41 PM
Well, that's what I would have to do for sure. I've got a bunch of thoughts running around in my head that always seem to come to get buried underneath other problems in life.