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70mm Film in China
Todd-AO in China?

This article first appeared in
..in 70mm
The 70mm Newsletter

 

Written by: Mr. Li Shuping, China Research Institute of Film Science & Technology Issue 49 - June 1997
Dome Theater of China Science & Technology Museum, equipped with the Astrovision 70mm/10 perf projection system made in Japan.

Has there ever been a Todd-AO installation in China? The 1960 brochure of the DP70 (Norelco AAII) certainly implies that. By August 1960, a pair of 70mm projectors were installed at the Opera in Beijing. Whatever became of them? Did they ever run Todd-AO films at the Opera? Are there any people left to be asked in Beijing? Do pictures exist of this installation? For a variety of reasons, including many political changes over the years in China, the DP70 could never be used and apparently they were discharged 10 years ago as useless. A sad ending for an OSCAR winner.

70mm film making in China started in 1984 and significant progress has been made in the last few years. There are a few cinemas showing IMAX films in 8-perf versions there. The 70mm Association Newsletter has asked Mr. Li Shuping of the China Research Institute of Film Science & Technology to give the readers an update on the state-of-the-art of 70mm in China.
 

Further in 70mm reading:

70mm in China

Internet link:

 

 

China Research Institute of Film Science & Technology or CRIFST for short, is the only state-level research institute in film science & technology and the most autohoritive organization in developing of 70mm films in China.
 
 

70mm Theaters

 
Super-Screen Theater located inside the building of China Research Institute of Film Science & Technology (CRIFST) in Beijing. A 70mm/8 perf projection system made in China with 7 track digital sound system.

Presently there are 36 70mm/5 perf theaters and 4 70mm/8 perf theaters and 1 70mm/10 perf theater in China. Two of them are located in Beijing. One is the Dome Theater of China Science & Technology Museum which is equipped with the Astrovision 70mm/10 perf projection system made in Japan.

The theater was showing the IMAX film "Grand Canyon" before October 1996, and now it is showing another IMAX film "To Fly". The second 70mm theater in Beijing is the Super-Screen Theater located inside the building of China Research Institute of Film Science & Technology (CRIFST), which uses a 70mm/8 perf projection system made in China with a 7 track digital sound system. The film shown is "Grand Canyon". The theater is also capable of showing 70mm/5 perf and 35mm films with six track Dolby Digital and SONY SDDS sound reproduction system. Three theaters in China have the SDDS digital sound system. Two are in Beijing, and the third is in Shanghai.
 
 

70mm Projectors

 
The 70mm/8 perf FG 70 projector installed in CRIFST's theater.

70mm/5 perf and 70mm/8 perf projectors are made at two different [70mm] projector manufacturers in China. Guandong Film Equipment Corporation manufactures the FG 70 70mm projector and Harbin Machinery Factory manufactures the 5507 projector.
 
 

65mm Cameras

 
The CC-65 65mm camera.

CRIFST has successfully developed the first 65mm camera in China. The camera uses HASSEBLAD still photograph lenses and is capable of shooting 65mm/5 perf, 8 perf and 10 perf films by changing the claw mechanism. The camera is now being used to shoot an experimental 65mm/8 perf film and it will be further refined and improved.

The 65mm camera known as the CC-65 will certainly promote the development of 70mm films in China.
 
 

70mm Films

 
Dome Theater of China Science & Technology Museum, equipped with the Astrovision 70mm/10 perf projection system made in Japan.

12 films of 70mm/5 perf (blown up from 35mm anamorphic) and 4 films of 70mm/8 perf (blown up from VistaVision) films have been made in China. These films were all shot with 35mm cameras and enlarged onto 70mm prints.

CRIFST will shoot the first 70mm/8 perf film "Yangtze Gorges" in May 1997 using 65mm negatives and the newly developed CC-65 [65mm] camera. "Yangtze Gorges" is scheduled to open in China in June 1998.

The synopsis is "..the sight, local conditions and customs in Yangtze Gorges". The running time will be about 15 - 20 minutes.
 
 

70mm Laboratory

 
Dome Theater of China Science & Technology Museum, equipped with the Astrovision 70mm/10 perf projection system made in Japan.

CRIFST has modified an existing 35mm developing machine into a 65mm/70mm developing machine. A 70mm printer will be completed in 1997.

 
 

 
   
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Updated 21-01-24