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Quentin Tarantino has been making a really big deal out of the fact that he shot his new movie, The Hateful Eight in 70MM. But what does that mean, really? Why should your average movie fan take the time to go find one of the few theaters that will be able to show the movie in this format? It’s time to go to film school kids. Let Samuel L. Jackson explain to you the glory that is 70MM Ultra Panavision and why it’s worth it.
70MM projection gives you an image twice the size of standard 35MM film. This gives everything on the screen a much more epic scale. 70MM was used previously for classic epics like Ben-Hur and Lawrence of Arabia. In those movies, the setting was a major part of the film, and thus it was important that it really be seen. The same is true with the Old West look of The Hateful Eight. In order to create the proper setting, the audience needs to be able to see it. Kurt Russell said it was actually difficult to get used to what the camera was capable of seeing. Everybody involved seems to be truly impressed with how visually stunning this film will be. Tim Roth probably sums it all up best:
I think, for the actors, it’s like ‘Oh, we’re in a movie. We’re not in a hard drive, we’re in a movie!’
You have to be a serious film nerd to become physically excited by the concept of 70MM, but Quentin Tarantino is one and his joy is palpable. The idea of shooting the film in Ultra Panavision, the widest available format, is an idea that you can tell everybody involved is truly thrilled about. The amount of work that went into making this version of the film possible is truly epic. The fact that everybody involved was willing to spend the time and money required to make this work, for what will ultimately be a tiny fraction of the film’s total screens, is a feat unto itself. Much of that is likely thanks to Panavision itself. The format hasn’t been used since 1966 so Hateful Eight is itself a promotion of the company's tech. It may have already met with some success. Star Wars anthology film Rogue One will also be using the lenses to do some filming.
The Road Show concept is also promising not just a great movie experience, but a great movie GOING experience. Formal attire will be optional, but Quentin Tarantino is looking to pull out all the stops when it comes to not just seeing the film, but attending it. Will you be making Christmas plans to see The Hateful Eight in 70MM? Are you as excited as Quentin Tarantino?