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Visit biografmuseet.dk about Danish cinemas


Widescreen Weekend 2005
My Story - A Diary (sort of)

The 70mm Newsletter
Written and photographed by: Thomas Hauerslev 20. February 2006
The NMPFT in the center of the image.

Since 1994 the National Museum of Photography, Film & Television in Bradford (West Yorkshire, England) has hosted a film festival dedicated to the wonders of wide films, large films, tall films, big curved screens and multichannel sound.


Founded in 1983, the National Museum of Photography, Film & Television is THE most visited national museum outside London, attracting approximately 750,000 visitors each year. 
More in 70mm reading:

Widescreen Weekend 2005

Gallery: 2005
Gallery film: 2005
Gallery: Rayton
WSW Home
Through the Years
The Best of WSW

Academy of the WSW

Creating the WSW
Planning the WSW
Projecting the WSW
Projecting CINERAMA

Internet link:

*) text borrowed from official web site and slightly edited.

OSCAR is also on display at the NMPFT

The museum, NMPFT for short, is a part of the National Museum of Science and Industry in Great Britain, its cousins includes the Railway Museum in nearby York and the Imperial War Museum in London.

The Museum's collection includes more than three million items of historical, social and cultural value. These include three key 'firsts': the world's first negative, the earliest television footage and what is regarded as the world's first example of moving pictures – Louis Le Prince's 1888 film of Leeds Bridge. The Museum has set new standards in display and interactivity. Visitors can obtain a hands-on experience of the media, learning how television cameras work or trying their hand at animation among other activities. The NMPFT is located in the the centre of Bradford very close to public transportation and hotels. *)

Pictureville Cinema

The only Cinerama screen outside USA

The Pictureville cinema has hosted all the Widescreen Weekends since 1993. The cinema has two screens. A flat screen is used to show regular contemporary programming. Once in a while the flat screen is  rolled up to reveal a huge deeply curved and louvered "Cinerama" screen.

The curved screen is used for large format film presentations such as 70mm and Cinerama. The curved screen is always a crowd-pleaser and the majority of the Widescreen Weekend audience prefers to see films on THAT screen (despite the fact that some films are not filmed for a deeply curved screen). 

From small beginnings more than 10 years ago, the audience is still growing. With a nice mixture of a great cinema with optimum viewing conditions, and a relaxed and helpful staff, it has become a tradition for many people to go to Bradford in March. The Widescreen Weekend, has become a "must see" among the fans of the curved screen. And many guests return year after year to see the classics and meet friends.

Not only have fans from the Manchester,  Leeds and Bradford area taken the festival to their hearts, but also many foreigners are regular guests.

Many countries have been represented over the years; Norway, Sweden, Denmark, German, Belgium, Holland, France, Switzerland, Austria, Spain, Norway, Portugal, Australia and United States among others. The audience are ready for 70mm and 4 days of authenticity, reality and excitement. 2005 was no exception, and again, a large audience of film fans travelled to Bradford in West Yorkshire to enjoy 70mm films as they were meant to be seen.

Widescreen Weekend Details

The weekend-long festival usually starts on a Friday, (2005 started on the Thursday) and continues throughout the weekend, and ends with a final performance on Monday morning.

Tickets are sold for individual shows and as a weekend package. The package includes free access to all films at the museum, lectures, the VIP reception and IMAX films.

Tickets can be booked and bought in advance by contacting the Pictureville Cinema.

Bradford hotels usually have special weekend rates  - once the programming is published, please remember to ask for the special weekend price when you book your hotel.

The theme for the 2005 edition of the Widescreen Weekend was a celebration of the 50th anniversary of Todd-AO, the large format motion picture process which debuted in October 1955 with Rodgers & Hammerstein´s "Oklahoma!".

The Program and Guests

Bill Lawrence, Head of Film

I proposed an outline for the weekend program in September 2004 to Bill Lawrence, the museum's Head of Film.

My idea was simply to show as many Todd-AO films as possible, using in-house 70mm prints ("STAR!", "Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines” and “South Pacific”) and with special focus on the new Fox prints, including: "Hello, Dolly!", "Doctor Dolittle”, “The Sound of Music” and “The Agony and The Ecstasy”.

To go full circle I also needed the first feature "Oklahoma!" and the most recent (and probably last) Todd-AO film "Baraka" for the weekend. "Oklahoma!" is still in distribution from Samuel Goldwyn Films and their distribution associates. I would also make sure we could show the Todd-AO  short films "The Miracle of Todd-AO" and "The March of Todd-AO".

I also wanted to show "How the West Was Won" in Cinerama, as many had requested this title again. Many members of the audience had contributed to pay for the new soundtrack, so it's only fair to run that classic Cinerama film. It is always a near sell-out.

Who was there? (Seats in brackets)
Delegate Information Sheet (PDF) - please note, the PDF is from 2004
If you do not wish to be mentioned her, please let the Editor know.

Mr R Lamarca E15
Miss A Shah E16
Mr M Lipniacki A10
Mr Eugene Shefer A11
M Weedon-Wright A9
Mr Jeremy Buck J11
Mr Brian Peters J10
Mr John J Wallace H8
Mr D Jones E13
Mr Ralph Miller K14
Ms Xandra Miller K15
Mr David Olstein F9
Mr John Hayes B13
Mr Dick Knapman M20
Mr Albert Knapp G13
Mr K Swadkins G11
Mrs B Swadkins G12
Mr Mike Taylor B15
Mr Peter Andren E9
Mr Richard Letterborn A12
Mr Ansetter Larsolof A13
Mr Sten Johanssen D9
Mr Laila Johanssen D10
Mr Michael Bottomley H18
Mr R Lambert J5
Mr Barry Pick D11
Mr Donald Tether H17
Mr Roc Villas G16
Mariona Bruzzo G17
Mr Michael Williams F20
Denise Wright C9
Mr Peter Wright C10
Mr Mark Baldock C11
Mr Francois Carrin C12
Mr Wolfram Hannemann H13
Mrs Tracey Schneider H14
Mr Paul Robinson M12
Mrs Dorothy Robinson M13
Mr Martin Johnson M14
Mr J Surtees H15 Mrs J Surtees H16
Mr Paul Smithers F16
Mr Thomas Hauerslev G21
Miss Maria Hauerslev G20
Mr Walter Siegmund G19
Mrs Louis Siegmund G18
Mr David Watson D12
Mrs Carole Watson D13
Mrs Queenie Greenfield D14
Mr Jim McWilliams D15
Mr Kieran Hogan H9
Mrs Rosemary Hughes H10
Mr Saviour Pirotta A7
Mr Gordon Urquhart A8
Mr Michael Nydegger D17
Mr Ian Garvock B12
Mr Eric White F12
Mr Wayne Brown F13
Mr Michael Zlobinski E11
Mr Juergen Poerschke E12
Mr Clemens Scherer C13
Mr Svenja Alsmann C14
Mr Arnd Hof C15
Nicola Trautmann C16
Jochen Lutz C17
Mr James S Kennan E10
Mr Edwin Chen D16
Mr Allan Young B14
Mr George Sinclair B16
Mr Adrain Raistrick J12
Mr Keith Briggs G10
Mr Alun Hill J13
Mrs Janet Wilson J14
Mr George Roberts F17
Mr Ben Wales L5
Mr Hiroshi Murakami E17
Mr Robert Furmanek F10
Mr Jack Theakston F11
Mr Anders Olsson G15
Mrs Solveig Olsson G14
Mr Malcolm Clarke F14
Mr Andrew King F15
Mr Rene Wolf G18
Mr K Lumley J17
Mr S Hussain L18
J. Cartwright L16
N. Robbins L17
Mr S T Hall H10
Mr D Hanson L20
Mr M Morrison H20
Mr T Sloman B7
Mr A O’Brien D8
Mr Sloman B8
Mr A Turner H19
Mr B Welford L21
Mr Clive Robottom F7
Mr A Grossmith J16
Mrs Linda Jones E14

2005 Festival Hotel Rates:

Midland Hotel
Single: £52
Double/Twin: £62
both include full English breakfast

Tel: + 44 1274 735735

Victoria Hotel
Single: £50
Double/Twin: £60
both include full English breakfast

Tel: + 44 1274 728706

Hilton Hotel
Single (Fri-Sun): £50
Single (Mon-Thurs): £72
Double (Fri-Sun): £60
Double (Mon-Thurs): £82
All include full English breakfast

Tel: +44 1274 734734

Express by Holiday Inn
Room rate (Fri/Sat/Sun): £45 incl continental breakfast
Room rate (Mon-Thurs incl): £59 incl continental breakfast

+44 870 787 2064
The Siegmunds, Louis and Walter

For years I'd been working on inviting Richard "Dick" Vetter, Walt Siegmund and Brian O´Brien Jr. to Bradford and 2005 would be the perfect opportunity, since all have been associated with Todd-AO.

Brian O´Brien Jr. had to decline our invitation and Dick Vetter had recently been hospitalized and was unable to go for medical reasons. I was pleased to learn that Walt Siegmund and his wife Lois were eager to come and join the Widescreen Weekend. My job was to act as liaison between the museum and the Siegmunds. I also invited Susan M. Todd (Mike Todd Jr.´s widow) and their son Daniel Todd for the weekend, but they also declined. They did send their best wishes for the weekend.

I bought my airfare in September 2004 and many a month passed until the weekend finally came alive in March 2005. And here you have my story - show by show.

Thursday 10 March, 2005

Jennifer Bayer working with 70mm. D-150 lens is seen on DP70 projector

10 March 2005 - my birthday (as always). I had invited my daughter Maria with me again - now age 10. Her first trip to Bradford was in 2003 - this was her second trip and she was so eager to go. Our flight was around 14:00 in the afternoon and I had scheduled our arrival in Bradford to be around 18:00 in the evening. We obviously didn't see “STAR!” at 14:00 presented on the Cinerama curve in Todd-AO with 6-track magnetic stereo. The hugely successful “Out of Africa” was scheduled for 19:45. We didn't see it. It ran 9 months in Copenhagen in 1985. Running time: 2:40, filmed in 35mm Technovision 1,85:1. Presented in 70mm with 6-track magnetic Dolby A Stereo on the flat screen. After checking in at the Midland hotel we went to the Pictureville to say hello to the projectionists and then returned for dinner. It had been a long day for Maria and she needed some sleep.

Friday, March 11, 2005

The first full day. This was my 10th consecutive visit to Bradford attending Widescreen Weekend. Maria and I had breakfast and then went out for some shopping in central Bradford. We did the usual DVD shopping at W.H.Smith, HMV and Virgin. This year I brought home "The Producers", "The Party" and "Coffee and Cigarettes". Maria and I didn´t see the 10 o´clock performance of “Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines” on the Cinerama curve in Todd-AO with 6-track magnetic stereo. I had seen it in 2000 with Ken Annakin in person and also during my first visit in 1996. 20th Century Fox had struck a new 70mm print of "Magnificent Men", but I decided not to import it. When I later saw it in Karlsruhe in October 2005, I realized we should bring it to Bradford. The new 70mm print is simply gorgeous and the film keeps getting funnier upon every viewing. For 2007, I will suggest we get the new print.

Maria and I saw “Doctor Dolittle” at 13:00 on the curved Cinerama screen. It was a brand new Todd-AO print with 6-track digital DTS sound.

20th Century Fox, under the direction of Schawn Belston in Hollywood, had had new 70mm prints struck and made them available for exhibition. Instead of the obsolete 6-track magnetic soundtracks, Fox is using the DTS special venue format to preserve the original 6-track mixes.
Maria having fun with an optical illusion

Tony Sloman introduced the film - that didn't make the film any better, but my daughter Maria (age 10) loved it. The print was absolutely stunning in color and clarity.

I had produced a special "Todd-AO" edition of "The 70mm Newsletter" for the widescreen weekend, with my Walter Siegmund interview. The magazine was distributed freely among the audience. Two other articles about working for Todd-AO and Mike Todd were also included. Only 150 copies were made - a real collectors item today.

16.00 Michael Borrows lecture on Gene Kelly. We didn't listen to his lecture and instead we went with Willem Bouwmeester to have a bite to eat in the museum cafeteria. Maria wanted to see more of the museum. I believed at was good idea since it had been some years since my last walk around in the museum's exhibition.
Dick Knapman and Walt Siegmund

17:00 Widescreen Welcome - Reception - drinks for the weekend delegates in the Kodak Galley in the main part of the museum. Introduced Mr. Dick Knapman (Todd-AO England) to the Siegmunds. Had a glass of white wine and took pictures.

18:00 “Baraka” presented in Todd-AO with 6-track magnetic Dolby Stereo A on the flat screen. This is a magnificent film. It was shown on the flat screen on the Victoria 8, which unfortunately has too much flutter, so the 70mm image is constantly out of focus on some parts of the screen. The flutter is very distracting. "Baraka" is great film. The images are so stunning in sharpness and detail that it is almost 3-dimensional. All prints are struck from the 65mm camera negative.

The main attraction Friday night was the new Todd-AO print of “Hello, Dolly!” on the curved Cinerama screen. Everyone who I spoke to was truly amazed with the print. The colours were so astonishing - almost like during the "good old days" when blue was BLUE and red was RED. The new print carried 6-track digital DTS sound.

We didn't see it, but instead Maria and I went to the hotel with the Siegmunds to have dinner. Paul Rayton joined us. It was a short dinner as Maria was very tired. Fortunately I saw the film 6 month later in Karlsruhe in Germany, but that is another story.

Saturday 12 March, 2005

This 70mm print is titled "Holiday in Spain"

Maria and I had breakfast at 8:15. We formed a large table in the dining room and soon a group of "widescreeners", including Paul Rayton, the Siegmunds and Brenda and Keith Swadkins (The Cinerama Society) joined for a morning séance.

Our first film this Saturday morning at the Pictureville was “Scent of Mystery” at 10:00 presented on the Cinerama curve in Todd-70 with 6-track magnetic stereo.

The cinematographer Mr. Jack Cardiff introduced the film and reminisced about Peter Lorre who was so ill during production that he was replaced by a stand-in in almost every shot. And Elizabeth Taylor, who was in one shot of the film, took part in only one day of filming. There was an intermission but no end titles. The audience applauded enthusiastically after the film.
One of the rare Todd-AO films, long thought to be lost, is Mike Todd Jr.´s classic "Scent of Mystery". This was the first and only film in glorious Smell-O-Vision. The film only received limited run when it was originally released in January 1960. A few years later it was cut and re-titled "Holiday in Spain" when it was re-released without the smells.

I learned there was 70mm print of "Scent" available, if only we could get permission to show it. The print came from the Pacific Cinerama vaults in Hollywood and was loaned to us thanks to Mr. John Sitting of Pacific Theatres. John took the time to screen it at the Cinerama Dome to give us an idea of the print condition. Given the rare nature of this print, I'd screen it no matter the condition. But luckily the 70mm print turned out to be in good shape, although completely faded. Unfortunately I've been unable to locate a print of the short film "Tale of Old Wiff" (a cartoon released with "Scent of Mystery") - hopefully it will surface one day.

A half dozen splices in reel one, the other reels seem fine, there are a couple of base and emulsion scratches, for short sequences, in reels 4 or 5. It does have an intermission strip but no call back or walk out music. The color is mostly gone, pink with occasional yellow, and a little green. Picture starts off with Cinerama logo and titles, no overture. There is an intermission strip at the end of reel 4 but no call back music on the head of reel 5. The picture ends with a fade out, no "The End", no titles. Physical condition is good, mag tracks sounded good. Very little warping and focus held good throughout the show. Someone who was there at the screening commented that it was much shorter that "Scent Of Mystery". I did not time it but I'm guessing it was no more than 100 to 105 minutes

John Sittig, Pacific Theatres

"Scent of Mystery" Variety review
Ever had your name on a cinema ticket?

13:00 “The Early days of Todd-AO” - almost like a real lecture - by the Editor.

In 2004 I proposed to Bill Lawrence that I present a lecture about Todd-AO on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the process - to which he agreed. It was my first lecture of this sort and my goal was that it should be of interest to everyone in the audience. No matter if they know a lot about the history, or didn't know anything at all about the subject. I would tell them about the "first person experience", the early days of Todd-AO and the distortion-correcting printing process.

Very early on I thought about making only headlines, or key words for myself, and use that for what I had to say. I could probably do that in Danish, my mother tongue, but since this was to be in English, I decided to go ahead with a written manuscript. I was happy to have the script as support, although I nearly had memorized the entire lecture.
Well, me, doing a lecture. Picture by Jim Moran.

The lecture took nearly an hour and 10 minutes, which was a bit too long. I feel I started off by reading it a bit too fast and I eventually paced it down. The lecture was video filmed by in-house cinematographer Jim Moran so I could learn from it, if I ever did it again.

I was quite nervous to begin with, but as soon as I got going, I relaxed and felt at home with the audience. I enjoyed doing the lecture. It was a nice opportunity to share my interest with an audience and show some Todd-AO clips including 65mm tests, and distortion-corrected clips. And do it all in context. The audience seemed to like it, and it was later "certified" by Walter Siegmund over lunch.
14:30 “How the West Was Won” in three strip Cinerama and 7-track magnetic stereo on the curved screen. Always a crowd-pleaser it was a near sell-out.

3-strip Cinerama at Pictureville - what is it?

18:30 Walter Siegmund Q/A about Todd-AO. Half an hour on stage with Walt talking about Todd-AO. It was a challenge to find questions not already asked in the interview.

Walt re-told the famous story about seeing Cinerama for the first time at the Broadway Theatre in 1952. He used the simple word "WOW" to express his feelings when he called Dr. Brian O'Brien to explain the impact of Cinerama. Walt also admitted that they were amateurs trying to deal with motion picture production and he is amazed they succeeded. He consider the DP70 projector the most successful part of the Todd-AO package.
Walter Siegmund on stage in conversation about Todd-AO with the editor. Picture by Jim Moran.

Walt had brought a very rare 35mm film clip, lasting less than 30 seconds, which we showed. It was so shrunk that it nearly didn't go through the projector. It had been sitting on a film core for 50 years. This was the perfect opportunity to show it.

It was a clip from a 35mm test film photographed at the "Atom Smasher" rollercoaster (same one as in "TIC"). The sequence was photographed with a scaled down version of the 128 degree Todd-AO lens, which was nicknamed the "Baby Bug Eye". The baby bug eye was manufactured for 35mm full frame academy film format and photographed with a Bell & Howell EYEMO camera. According to Walt it was an idea of Dr. Brian O'Brien's to have a ski jumper make a jump with this lens and camera attached to his chest. The ski jumper never made the jump as he was afraid to have this contraption attached to him. It would probably have broken his back.
19:30 “Oklahoma!” + “The Miracle of Todd-AO” presented on the Cinerama curve in Todd-AO with 6-track magnetic stereo.

The 70mm print dated back to the re-release in the early 1980s and was probably the same print we ran in 1998. It had the same yellow hue to it - throughout the film, except in one scene, which I have forgotten. It's the only available print. It was close to sold out for the performance and the audience gave it big applause when it finished. There was one stop during the "Kansas City" sequence, but the projectionists fixed the problem and the show continued.

It was a pleasure to see "Oklahoma!" again, and a true high point of the Todd-AO weekend. It's a fun film, the music is great and the 6-track sound is fantastic. The 30 frames per second projection is a delicious taste of would-be cinema. The images are so smooth that it is almost unreal.  “The Miracle of Todd-AO” was shown as a preview to "Oklahoma!". "Miracle" was added to "Oklahoma!" in May 1956.

A very long day had come to an end. Maria and I were tired. She held through all day watching 70mm films with her dad. Can you get more happy than that when your child shares the same interest as you?

Sunday 13 March, 2005:
Cineramacana and the Audience on Stage

John Harvey's scroll

Maria and I had breakfast at 8:45 which gave us plenty of time to get to the cinema and make the last preparations before the Sunday morning show. Together with Duncan, the projectionist, we had put together a two hour show with 17 items "on the menu". An exhaustive number of film clips and introductions. I am of course talking about "Cineramacana".

Cineramacana was born in 1998 and grew out of the fact that many members of the audience brought odd pieces of film during the first years of Widescreen Weekends, which were shown between programmed films to the delight of the audience. In 1998 Cineramacana was created to provide a framework for these kinds of odd clips, bits and pieces. 

Our show was planned to be 2 hours and 15 minutes, but it grew into the usual three hours, which IS too long. Anyway, in the end it was enjoyable to present many rare and unique clips.

Cineramacana events started with John Wolthuis (Holland), who presented a 5-minute introduction to a petition about 70mm films. The guests were all invited to sign - and many did. Johan has been a supporter of 70mm films for many years and it was he who started the 70mm Association and The 70mm Association Newsletter in 1988.

Next, was a 9 minute short film by Adrian Raistrick - "About the installation of Cinerama in Pictureville".

One of the key people behind the installation was John Harvey (USA). John suffered a heart attack in 2004 and has since been hospitalized. Hospital bills forced him to sell his collection of Cinerama films, equipment and memorabilia. The NMPFT felt it was in place to pay tribute to John with a special award - a scroll - , thanking him for his contribution to revitalize Cinerama. Thanks to John's enthusiasm, Cinerama has again been made available to the public. The tribute was read to the audience by Keith Swadkins (The International Cinerama Society).

Official souvenir program Cover. ”Man in the 5th Dimension” was produced in 1963 by Billy Graham Evangelistic Association in Todd-AO to be shown exclusively at the Billy Graham Pavilion 10 times a day in a purpose built 400 seat theatre with a curved screen. The film was very popular and seen by more than 1 million people.  Less than twenty 70mm prints were manufactured and most of them were used at the fair and worn out. It received extremely limited distribution afterwards, mostly in 16mm to churches across the United States. The film has since completely disappeared in it's original Todd-AO version. It appears that not a single print, 16, 35 or 70mm have survived. I've tried to contact the Billy Graham Corporation, but alas a print has yet been found.

Over the past 15 years I've spent some time looking for the 28 minute Todd-AO short film ”Man in the 5th Dimension”. In January 2005 I discovered an internet site about the Billy Graham Pavilion at the 1964-65 Worlds Fair in New York, USA. The story was intriguing for me because it was the first time I'd seen images from a film which I thought was lost forever. 

Most of "Man in the 5th Dimension" has been included in another Billy Graham production; "World's Fair Encounter", a documentary which chronicles two young peoples visit to the Worlds Fair. Thanks to Mr. Paddon we could show a 5 minute VHS excerpt of "World's Fair Encounter" on Picturevilles curved screen to give the audience an impression of how "Man in the 5th Dimension" looked in Todd-AO.

Cineramacana running order
The "menu" of clips

John Mitchell (Sidney) showing “Brothers Grimm” in Cinerama (4 min)

Chris O’Kane (Glasgow) with an update on his Vistamorph project (5 min)

Bob Furmanek (New York) introduced 35mm trailers for “South Seas Adventure”, “Seven Wonders of the World" from the New York Warner Theater, ”The March of Todd-AO” at the New York Rivoli and a dye-transfer Technicolor trailer for the Cinerama release of “It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” (7 min).

Mike Taylor (Manchester) introduced 35mm Scope mono trailers in Dyaliscope & "Oliver!" (4 min)

”Oklahoma!” 35mm Technicolor 4-track magnetic, full 2,55:1 width, musical excerpt ("The Farmer and the Cowmen should be Friends") provided by Jeff Joseph (Sabucat) (5 min) 

Dion "Mr Cineman" Hanson lectured about the purpose and work of the Projected Picture Trust (20 min)

"The Rising Sun" 70mm trailer supplied by John Wolthuis (Arnhem) (3 min)

Paul Rayton introduced the "Buzz and Bill Show" a 70mm DTS 24 fps demonstration film from circa 1993. (12 min)

Cinerama curve

"Brothers Grimm" Cinerama Prologue/Opening credits (3 min) synced up with a LaserDisc sound

70mm trailers from "Custer of the West", "El Cid" & "55 Days at Peking" introduved by René Wolf – Film Museum Amsterdam (7 min)
Mr. Paul Rayton - new Academy member.

Widescreen Academy Presentation presented by Mr. Keith Swadkins. This years award went to Paul Rayton for his services to the industry in general and to the Widescreen Weekend in particular.

The new group images was taken outside the cinema by Maria and myself.

Paul has also worked for The 70mm Newsletter in the capacity (although always uncredited) as official proof-reader - not an easy task with this editor, I tell you. But Paul is always very patient and can easily be "persuaded" with a bottle of good red wine. He's a compulsive traveller and often travels around the world for no other apparent reason than doing it. His travels have brought him to Copenhagen several times.
Paul has been a projectionist all his life. here's an early shot from 1973.

Paul has also worked as the Museum's Widescreen Weekend Hollywood contact, with regards to organizing loan of 70mm film from the major Hollywood studios. We all have a lot to thank Paul for.

The past winners are:

2005 - Paul H. Rayton
2004 - Anthony B. Sloman
2003 - Keith Swadkins
2002 - Willem Bouwmeester
2001 - Thomas Hauerslev (Chairman)
2000 - John Belton
1999 - Howard Rust
The projectionist staff. Left to right:
Duncan McGregor, Symon Culpan, Roger Brown, Tony Cutts. Not in picture: John Cahill and Jennifer Beyer

Projectionist appreciation + enthusiastic applause from the audience - Presenter, head of film, Bill Lawrence (10 min)

Since 1998, with one exception, a picture has been taken of the audience on stage in front of the huge Cinerama screen. As usual, Paul Rayton stage-managed the audience on stage the best he could, while yours truly took the picture.

Following Cineramacana we needed a good lunch and Walt, Louis, Bill Lawrence, Mark Lyndon and Tony Earnshaw all lunched together in the museum cafeteria. Mark gave Walt and Louis a bottle of Champagne for their contribution to the Widescreen Weekend.
13:00 “Amadeus – Directors Cut” in 35mm Panavision on the flat screen. Miroslav Ondricek, the cinematographer was supposed to visit, but he got sick and had to cancel. Despite a 70mm print being available, the films producer Saul Zaentz, insisted that a 35mm Directors Cut be shown.

“Amadeus" is a magnificent masterpiece. As a projectionist I was fortunate to show the film for more than 16 months during the original release in 1985 in Copenhagen. My British projectionist colleague, Mr. John Sharp in London, also ran “Amadeus" for more than a year - but he had the 70mm print. I think I know most of the dialogue of that film by heart. I saw it so many times, and always enjoyed it. I decided not to see it in Bradford and instead Maria and I went to see "Mystic India" in IMAX with Walt.

16:45 “The Agony and the Ecstasy” new Todd-AO print with 6-track digital DTS sound. 70mm print shown on the curved Cinerama screen.

Tony Sloman introduced the film. A new 70mm print with DTS sound by 20th Century Fox. The colors were fantastic. The film was a solid 1960s product, and without a doubt a bit dated by today's standards. I had never seen the film before. The film was preceded by an 18 minute short film called "The Artist Who Did not Want to Paint" beautifully scored by Jerry Goldsmith and also filmed in Todd-AO.
19:30 “The Sound of Music” new Todd-AO print with 6-track digital DTS sound. 70mm print shown on the curved Cinerama screen.

Pictureville cinema was nearly full for this performance. The curtains opened and “The Sound of Music” revealed itself in wonderful color. Todd-AO at it's very best. Probably the best of all Todd-AO films - at least the most successful according to trade magazine Variety. It's a classic, everything works in this film.

Directional dialogue - just wonderful.

Monday 14 March, 2005

The VIP car

10.00 – “South Pacific” + “The March of Todd-AO” presented in Todd-AO with 6-track magnetic stereo on the Cinerama curve. The print was extremely faded, almost to the point of black and white. It was the long uncut print. At least I was puzzled by scenes I didn't think I had seen before on the LaserDisc or DVD. The print had plenty of splices but all the same, it was fun to see it.

Tony Sloman introduced the film and thanked Bill Lawrence for a great weekend. He also thanked the projectionists who once again had done an excellent job. Finally he congratulated Mr. Francois Carrin on his 60th birthday. Mr. Walter Siegmund also thanked the museum for the invitation and the splendid weekend.

“South Pacific”
was scheduled to begin at 10:00 in the morning, but we had to wait 30 minutes to start to make sure everyone was ai attendance.

And it payed off - it was the largest turnout we have ever had for a Monday morning show.

Unfortunately due to the late start, it meant the Siegmunds, Maria and I had to leave Pictureville in the intermission because we had a plane to catch in Manchester.

After the Pictureville showing of the uncut "South Pacific" Todd-AO print, the print was shipped to 20th Century Fox in Hollywood. The missing pieces will not re-appear in the new print, but will appear on the following DVD reissue.

The End and Conclusion

Outside the Pictureville we all said goodbye to Bill Lawrence, Deb Singleton and Tony Sloman.

Then we drove to the airport with the museum VIP bus, which was quite nice compared to a two hour train ride.

Preparations had started in the summer of 2004. Including the Monday morning show, the weekend had now come to an end. “The Sound of Music” in a new Todd-AO print Sunday evening had been the high point of the weekend. It was a close-to sold out performance and Pictureville was buzzing with excitement. It was a terrific way to end a weekend of "The Greatest Show[s] in Todd-AO"

It was fun to be part of history and celebrate the prime large format process of the 1960s - as it was meant to be seen - on the big deeply curved screen in Pictureville. Only trouble is how to match the efforts for 2006?

My 2005 Films

"Doctor Dolittle"
"Scent of Mystery"
"The Miracle of Todd-AO"

"The Agony and the Ecstasy"
"The Sound of Music"
"South Pacific"
"The March of Todd-AO"

+ Cineramacana & "India" (IMAX)

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Updated 21-01-24