“The Big Blue”: The 70mm Presentations
“Remember when the ocean was
beautiful? We do.”
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following is a reference / historical listing of the 70-millimeter
presentations of “The Big Blue” in North America. These were the cinemas
worth seeking out to experience this motion picture.
“The Big Blue” (also known as “Le Grand Bleu”) was among twelve confirmed
first-run films released in 1988 with 70mm prints for selected engagements.
The Weintraub/Columbia release — directed by Luc Besson and starring Rosanna
Arquette, Jean-Marc Barr and Jean Reno — opened August 19th.
For the release of “The Big Blue,” Weintraub/Columbia employed the services
of Lucasfilm’s TAP (Theatre Alignment Program) to evaluate and approve the
cinemas selected to book a 70mm print.
The 70mm prints of “The Big Blue” featured Six-Track Dolby Stereo (“A”
encoded “baby boom” format) and full-frame imagery blown up from anamorphic
Weintraub/Columbia circulated 70mm Six-Track Dolby coming-attraction
trailers for “Fresh Horses,” “Punchline” and “Rocket Gibraltar” during the
release of “The Big Blue.” As well, other studios circulated 70mm trailers
during this period. Ultimately, any 70mm trailers screened during 70mm
presentations of “The Big Blue” varied by venue and screening.
The duration of the engagements (measured in weeks) has been included in
parenthesis following the cinema name.
Vancouver — Cineplex Odeon’s Granville 7-plex (2) [THX]
Los Angeles — Mann’s Chinese Triplex (1) [THX]
Los Angeles — Mann’s Plaza (2)
New York — Cineplex Odeon’s 23rd Street West Triplex (3)
New York — Loews’ 84th Street 6-plex (3)
Toronto — Cineplex Odeon’s Varsity Twin (3)
Montreal — Cineplex Odeon’s Le Faubourg 4-plex (2) [THX]
The information included in this article was principally referenced from
film industry trade publications, regional newspaper promotion, print
enclosures, TAP records, and Dolby records. Special thanks to Bill Kallay
and Bill Kretzel.
International 70mm engagements of this title have not been accounted for in
If you believe this article contains any errors or omissions, please
consider emailing the
author or editor.
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