8 mm film
8 mm film is a motion picture film format in which the film strip is eight millimeters wide. It exists in two main versions — the original standard 8 mm film known as regular 8 mm, Super 8. Although both standard 8 mm and Super 8 are 8 mm wide, Super 8 has a larger image area because of its smaller and more spaced perforations. There are two other varieties of Super 8—Single 8 mm and Straight-8 that require different cameras, but produce a final film with the same dimensions; the standard 8 mm film format was developed by the Eastman Kodak company during the Great Depression and released to the market in 1932 to create a home movie format, less expensive than 16 mm. See the first diagram for a comparison among three film sizes: 8mm, Super 8, Double 8, 16mm wide. Double 8 spools contain a 16 mm film with twice as many perforations along each edge as normal 16 mm film; when the first pass is complete, the operator opens the camera and flips and swaps the spools and the same film is subsequently exposed along its other edge, the edge left unexposed on the first pass.
After the film is developed, the processor splits it down the middle, resulting in two lengths of 8 mm film, each with a single row of perforations along one edge. Each frame is half the width and half the height of a 16 mm frame, so there are four times the number of frames in a given film area, what makes it cost less; because of the two passes of the film, the format was sometimes called Double 8. The frame size of regular 8 mm is 4.8 mm × 3.5 mm and 1 meter of film contains 264 pictures. Double 8 is filmed at 16 or 18 frames per second. Common length film spools allowed filming of about 3 to 4 1⁄2 minutes at 12, 15, 16 and 18 frames per second. Kodak ceased sales of standard 8 mm film under its own brand in the early 1990s, but continued to manufacture the film, sold via independent film stores. Black-and-white 8 mm film is still manufactured in the Czech Republic, several companies buy bulk quantities of 16 mm film to make regular 8 mm by re-perforating the stock, cutting it into 25 foot lengths, collecting it into special standard 8 mm spools, which they sell.
Re-perforation requires special equipment. Some specialists produce Super 8 mm film from existing 16 mm, or 35 mm film stock; when Eastman Kodak first conceived the 8 mm format, no provision was made for the addition of a sound track. In the 1960s, projectors appeared on the market that were capable of recording and replaying sound from a magnetic stripe applied to the film after it had been processed; the only part of the film wide enough to accept such a magnetic stripe was the area between the edge and the perforations. A much narrower stripe was sometimes added to the opposite edge so that the film piled up evenly on the spool, but was never used for sound; the sound to picture separation was the same dimensionally as 16 mm film and as that format is 28 frames, that meant that the Double-8 system was 56 frames. The proximity of the sound stripe to the perforations caused some problems in keeping the film in close contact with the sound head. There was never an optical system. A few sound prints appeared for the use in double 8 projectors.
In 1965, Super-8 film was released and was adopted by the amateur film-maker. It featured a better quality image, was easier to use due to a cartridge-loading system that did not require reloading and rethreading halfway through. Super 8 was erroneously criticized, since the film gates in some cheaper Super 8 cameras were plastic, as was the pressure plate built into the cartridge. In reality, this was not the case; the plastic pressure plate could be moulded to far tighter tolerances than their metal counterparts could be machined. To differentiate Super 8 film from Standard 8, projector spools for the former had larger spindle holes. Therefore, it was not possible to mount a Super 8 spool on a Standard 8 projector, vice versa; the Super 8 format was designed from the start to accommodate a sound track. This track would occupy the area between the edge of the image area; as in the double 8 system, a second stripe was sometimes added between the edge and the perforations. The image to sound distance was much shorter for the Super 8 system at just 18 frames.
At first, the magnetic stripe had to applied after the film was processed and recorded on a suitable projector. In the 1970s, cameras appeared; this film was loaded into oversize cartridges that provided access for the camera's sound recording head. The camera would accept non sound cartridges, but silent cameras could not accept sound cartridges. One major advantage of the Super 8 system was that as the camera pressure plate was a part of the cartridge, it could be moulded to the profile of the stripes on the film. Projectors appeared on the market which took advantage of the balance stripe next to the perforations by recording and replaying stereo sound. Projectors appeared in the late 1970s that featured the ability to play films with an optical soundtrack; the image-sound separation for the optical format was 22 frames. These were never popular in the English speaking world and are very rare in those countries, but they did enjoy some popularity in the Far East and Europe
IMAX is a system of high-resolution cameras, film formats, film projectors and theaters known for having large screens with a tall aspect ratio and steep stadium seating. Graeme Ferguson, Roman Kroitor, Robert Kerr, William C. Shaw were the co-founders of what would be named the IMAX Corporation, they developed the first IMAX cinema projection standards in the late 1960s and early 1970s in Canada. Unlike conventional projectors, the film runs horizontally so that the image width is greater than the width of the film; when IMAX was introduced, it was a radical change in the movie-going experience. Viewers were treated to the scene of a curved giant screen more than seven stories tall and steep stadium seating that made for a visually immersive experience, along with a sound system, far superior to the audio at typical theaters in the years prior to the advent of THX; some IMAX theaters have a dome screen geometry which can give the viewer an more immersive feel. Over the decades since its introduction, IMAX evolved to include "3D" stereoscopic films, introduced in January 1998, began to proliferate with a transition away from analog film into the digital era.
Beginning in May of 1991, a visceral dimension of the movie experience was added by having the audience's seats mounted on a full-motion platform as an amusement park ride in IMAX ride film theaters. Switching to digital projection, introduced in July 2008, came at a steep cost in image quality, with 2K projectors having an order of magnitude less resolution. Maintaining the same 7-story giant screen size would only make this loss more noticeable, so many new theaters were being built with smaller screen sizes, yet being marketed with the same brand name of "IMAX"; these newer theaters with the much lower resolution and much smaller screens were soon being referred to by the derogatory name "LieMAX" because the company did not make this major distinction clear to the public, going so far as to build the smallest "IMAX" screen having 10 times less area than the largest while persisting with the exact same brand name. Since 2002, some feature films have been converted into IMAX format for displaying in IMAX theatres, some have been shot in IMAX.
By late 2017, 1,302 IMAX theatre systems were installed in 1,203 commercial multiplexes, 13 commercial destinations, 86 institutional settings in 75 countries, with less than a quarter of these having the capability to show 70mm film at the resolution of the large format as conceived. The IMAX film standard uses 70 mm film run through the projector horizontally; this technique produces an area, nine times larger than the 35 mm format, three times larger than 70 mm film, run conventionally through the projector in a vertical orientation. The desire to increase the visual impact of film has a long history. In 1929, Fox introduced Fox Grandeur, the first 70 mm film format, but it fell from use. In the 1950s, the potential of 35 mm film to provide wider projected images was explored in the processes of CinemaScope and VistaVision, following multi-projector systems such as Cinerama. While impressive, Cinerama was difficult to install. During Expo 67 in Montreal, the National Film Board of Canada's In the Labyrinth and Ferguson's Man and the Polar Regions both used multi-projector, multi-screen systems.
Each encountered technical difficulties that led them to found a company called "Multiscreen", with a goal of developing a simpler approach. The single-projector/single-camera system they settled upon was designed and built by Shaw based upon a novel "Rolling Loop" film-transport technology purchased from Peter Ronald Wright Jones, a machine shop worker from Brisbane, Australia. Film projectors do not continuously flow the film in front of the bulb, but instead "stutter" the film travel so that each frame can be illuminated in a momentarily paused flicker; this requires a mechanical apparatus to stagger the travel of the film strip. The older technology of running 70 mm film vertically through the projector used only five sprocket perforations on the sides of each frame, however the IMAX method used fifteen perforations per frame; the previous mechanism was inadequate to handle this mechanical staggering, three time larger, so Jones's invention was necessary for the novel IMAX projector method with its horizontal film feed.
As it became clear that a single, large-screen image had more impact than multiple smaller ones and was a more viable product direction, Multiscreen changed its name to IMAX. Cofounder Graeme Ferguson explained how the name IMAX originated: "... the incorporation date September, 1967.... Came a year or two later. We first called the company Multiscreen Corporation because that, in fact, was what people knew us as.... After about a year, our attorney informed us that we could never trademark Multivision, it was too generic. It was a descriptive word; the words that you can copyright are words like Xerox or Coca-Cola. If the name is descriptive, you can't trademark it. So we were sitting at lunch one day in a Hungarian restaurant in Montreal and we worked out a name on a place mat on which we wrote all the possible names we could think of. We kept working with the idea of maximum image. We turned it around and came up with IMAX." The name change happened more than two years because a key patent filed on January 16, 1970, was assigned under the original name Multiscreen Corporation, Limited.
IMAX Chief Administration O
Pan and scan
Pan and scan is a method of adjusting widescreen film images so that they can be shown in fullscreen proportions of a standard definition 4:3 aspect ratio television screen cropping off the sides of the original widescreen image to focus on the composition's most important aspects. Some film directors and enthusiasts disapprove of pan and scan cropping, because it can remove up to 45% of the original image on 2.35:1 films or up to 53% on earlier 2.55:1 presentations, changing the director or cinematographer's original vision and intentions. The most extreme examples remove up to 75% of the original picture on such aspect ratios as 2.76:1 in epics such as Ben-Hur and It's a Mad, Mad, Mad World. Lawrence of Arabia is an exception to the 75% rule, because its aspect ratio is 2.20:1. The vertical equivalent is known as "tilt and scan" or "reverse pan and scan"; the method was most common in the days of VHS, before widescreen home media such as Laserdisc, DVD and Blu-ray. Center cut is similar with the difference as the name suggests that it is a direct cut of the material from the center of the image with no horizontal panning or vertical tilting involved.
This method doesn't require the permission or availability of the film maker or director to identify the most important part of each frame. Most video displays have three options for 16:9 widescreen frame formatting, which are either center cut, letterbox or full frame; the first two options are reliant on the video stream's aspect ratio flag being set correctly. For the first several decades of television broadcasting, sets displayed images with a 4:3 aspect ratio in which the width is 1.33 times the height—similar to most theatrical films prior to 1960. This was fine for pre-1953 films such as The Wizard of Casablanca. Meanwhile, in order to compete with television and lure audiences away from their sets, producers of theatrical motion pictures began to use "widescreen" formats such as CinemaScope and Todd-AO in the early to mid-1950s, which enable more panoramic vistas and present other compositional opportunities. Films with these formats might be twice as wide as a TV screen. To present a widescreen movie on such a television requires one of two techniques to accommodate this difference: One is "letterboxing", which preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio, but is not as tall as a standard television screen, leaving black bars at the top and bottom of the screen.
Pan and scan cuts out as much as half of the image. In the 1990s, when so-called "Sixteen-By-Nine" or "Widescreen" televisions offered a wider 16:9 aspect ratio, they allowed films made at 1.66:1 and 1.85:1 to fill most or all of the screen, with only small letterboxing or cropping required. DVD packaging began to use the expression, "16:9 – Enhanced for Widescreen TVs." However, films shot at aspect ratios of 2.20:1, 2.35:1, 2.39:1, 2.55:1, 2.76:1 might still be problematic when displayed on televisions of any type. But when the DVD is "anamorphically enhanced for widescreen", or the film is telecast on a high-definition channel seen on a widescreen TV, the black spaces are smaller, the effect is still much like watching a film on a theatrical wide screen. Though 16:9 remain standard as of 2018, wider-screen consumer TVs in 21:9 have been released to the market by multiple brands. During the "pan and scan" process, an editor selects the parts of the original filmed composition that seem to be the focus of the shot and makes sure that these are copied.
When the important action shifts to a new position in the frame, the operator moves the scanner to follow it, creating the effect of a "pan" shot. In a scene in which the focus does not shift from one horizontal position to another—such as actors at each extreme engaging in rapid conversation with each other—the editor may choose to "cut" from one to the other rather than panning back and forth. If the actors are closer together on the screen, the editor may pan alternately cropping one or the other partially; this method allows the maximum resolution of the image, since it uses all the available vertical video scan lines—which is important for NTSC televisions, having a rather low number of lines available. It gives a full-screen image on a traditional television set. However, it has several drawbacks; some visual information is cropped out. It can change a shot in which the camera was stationary to one in which it is panning, or change a single continuous shot into one with frequent cuts. In a shot, panned to show something new, or one in which something enters the shot from off-camera, it changes the timing of these appearances to the audience.
As an example, in the film Oliver!, made in Panavision, the criminal Bill Sikes commits a murder. The murder takes place offscreen, behind a staircase wall, Oliver is a witness to it; as Sikes steps back from behind the wall, we see Oliver from the back watching him in terror. In the pan-and-scan version of the film, we see Oliver's reaction as the murder is being committed, but not when Sikes steps backward from the wall having done it. In a pan and scan telecast, a character will seem to be speaking offscreen, when what has happened is that the pan and scan technique has cut his image out of the screen; as television screenings of feature films became more common and more financially important, cinematographers began to work
Open matte is a filming technique that involves matting out the top and bottom of the film frame in the movie projector for the widescreen theatrical release and scanning the film without a matte for a full screen home video release. Non-anamorphic 4-perf films are filmed directly on the entire full frame silent aperture gate; when a married print is created, this frame is re-cropped by the frame line and optical soundtrack down to Academy ratio. The movie projector uses an aperture mask to soft matte the Academy frame to the intended aspect ratio; when the 4:3 full-screen video master is created, many filmmakers may prefer to use the full Academy frame instead of creating a pan and scan version from within the 1.85 framing. Because the framing is increased vertically in the open matte process, the decision to use it needs to be made prior to shooting, so that the camera operator can frame for 1.85:1 and "protect" for 4:3. Additionally, the un-matted 4:3 version will throw off an otherwise tightly-framed shot and add an inordinate amount of headroom above actors.
Open-matte doesn't happen as with most films that are presented in 2.20:1 or 2.39:1. Instead those employ reframing using the well-protected areas. Many films over the years have used this technique, the most prominent of which include Back to the Future, Schindler's List and Top Gun as well as many films that have been specially formatted for the IMAX expanded aspect ratio of 1.90:1. Stanley Kubrick used this technique for his last three films The Shining, Full Metal Jacket and Eyes Wide Shut.) James Cameron's Terminator 2: Judgment Day is an example of open-matte. The rise new film exhibition technologies in 1950s like Cinerama, anamorphic lenses, shooting wide aspect ratios for theatrical films; this coincided with the rise of television and home media with a much different, narrow aspect ratio of 4:3. To avoid letterboxing for broadcast releases, films were therefore reframed and cropped shot by shot to fit appropriately, full screen with the 4:3 aspect, with a process called Pan and Scan.
Hence, only a cropped small portion of the theatrical frame was broadcast. Pan and Scan deals with only the 2.39:1 master of a film. For HDTV, the sides are cropped to fit the 16:9 frame. If footage with taller ratios were shot, for example IMAX scenes for various films the screen real-estate is cropped in accordance to the deliverable ratio; this helps in preserving composition for the film beyond the theatrical release. Shoot and protect Aspect ratio
Metropolis (1927 film)
Metropolis is a 1927 German expressionist science-fiction drama film directed by Fritz Lang. Written by Thea von Harbou in collaboration with Lang, it stars Gustav Fröhlich, Alfred Abel, Rudolf Klein-Rogge and Brigitte Helm. Erich Pommer produced it in the Babelsberg Studios for Universum Film A. G.. The silent film is regarded as a pioneering science-fiction movie, being among the first feature-length movies of that genre. Filming took place over 17 months in 1925–26 at a cost of more than five million Reichsmarks. Made in Germany during the Weimar period, Metropolis is set in a futuristic urban dystopia and follows the attempts of Freder, the wealthy son of the city master, Maria, a saintly figure to the workers, to overcome the vast gulf separating the classes in their city and bring the workers together with Joh Fredersen, the city master; the film's message is encompassed in the final inter-title: "The Mediator Between the Head and the Hands Must Be the Heart". Metropolis met a mixed reception upon release.
Critics found it pictorially beautiful and visually powerful—the film's art direction by Otto Hunte, Erich Kettelhut and Kurt Vollbrecht draws influence from Bauhaus and Futurist design, along with touches of the Gothic in the scenes in the catacombs, the cathedral and Rotwang's house—and lauded its complex special effects, but accused its story of naivete. H. G. Wells described the film as "silly", The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction calls the film's story "trite" and its politics "ludicrously simplistic"; the film's alleged Communist message was criticized. The film's extensive running time came in for criticism, Metropolis was cut after its German premiere, with a large portion of Lang's original footage removed. Many attempts have been made since the 1970s to restore the film. In 1984, Italian music producer Giorgio Moroder released a truncated version with a soundtrack by rock artists including Freddie Mercury and Adam Ant. In 2001 a new reconstruction of Metropolis was shown at the Berlin Film Festival.
In 2008 a damaged print of Lang's original cut of the film was found in a museum in Argentina. After a long restoration process that required additional materials provided by a print from New Zealand, the film was 95% restored and shown on large screens in Berlin and Frankfurt on 12 February 2010. In 2001, the film was inscribed on UNESCO's Memory of the World Register, the first film thus distinguished. In the future, in the city of Metropolis, wealthy industrialists and business magnates and their top employees reign from high-rise towers, while underground-dwelling workers toil to operate the great machines that power the city. Joh Fredersen is the city's master, his son Freder idles away his time at sports and in a pleasure garden, but is interrupted by the arrival of a young woman named Maria, who has brought a group of workers' children to witness the lifestyle of their rich "brothers". Maria and the children are ushered away, but Freder, goes to the lower levels to find her. On the machine levels he witnesses the explosion of a huge machine that kills and injures numerous workers.
Freder has a hallucination that the machine is Moloch and the workers are being fed to it. When the hallucination ends and he sees the dead workers being carried away on stretchers, he hurries to tell his father about the accident. Grot, foreman of the Heart Machine, brings Fredersen secret maps found on the dead workers. Fredersen again asks Josaphat why he did not learn of the maps from him, fires him. After seeing his father's cold indifference towards the harsh conditions they face, Freder secretly rebels against him by deciding to help the workers, he enlists Josaphat's assistance and returns to the machine halls, where he trades places with a worker. Fredersen takes the maps to the inventor Rotwang to learn their meaning. Rotwang had been in love with a woman named Hel, who left him to marry Fredersen and died giving birth to Freder. Rotwang shows Fredersen a robot he has built to "resurrect" Hel; the maps show a network of catacombs beneath Metropolis, the two men go to investigate. They eavesdrop on a gathering including Freder.
Maria addresses them, prophesying the arrival of a mediator who can bring the working and ruling classes together. Freder declares his love for Maria. Fredersen orders Rotwang to give Maria's likeness to the robot so that it can ruin her reputation among the workers to prevent any rebellion. Fredersen is unaware that Rotwang plans to use the robot to take over Metropolis. Rotwang kidnaps transfers her likeness to the robot and sends her to Fredersen. Freder finds the two embracing and, falls into a prolonged delirium. Intercut with his hallucinations, the false Maria unleashes chaos throughout Metropolis, driving men to murder and stirring dissent among the workers. Freder returns to the catacombs. Finding the false Maria urging the workers to rise up and destroy the machines, Freder accuses her of not being the real Maria; the workers follow the false Maria from their city to the machine rooms, leaving their children behind. They destroy the Heart Machine; the real Maria, having escaped from Rotwang's house, rescues the children with Freder's and Josaphat's help.
Grot berates the celebrating workers for abandoning their children in the flooded city. Believing their children to be dead, the hysterical workers capture the false Maria and burn her at the stake. A horrified Freder watches, not understanding the deception until the fire reveals her to be a robot. Rotwang is delusional, seeing the real Mar
70 mm film
70 mm film is a wide high-resolution film gauge for motion picture photography, with negative area nearly 3.5 times larger than the standard 35 mm motion picture film format. As used in cameras, the film is 65 mm wide. For projection, the original 65 mm film is printed on 70 mm film; the additional 5 mm are for four magnetic strips holding six tracks of stereophonic sound. Although 70 mm prints use digital sound encoding, the vast majority of existing and surviving 70 mm prints predate this technology; each frame is five perforations tall, with an aspect ratio of 2.2:1. With regards to exhibition, 70 mm film was always considered a specialty format reserved for epics and spectacle films shot on 65mm and blockbuster films that were released both in 35 mm and as 70 mm blow-ups. While few venues were equipped to screen this special format, at the height of its popularity most major markets and cites had a theater that could screen it; some venues continue to screen 70 mm to this day or have had 70 mm projectors permanently or temporarily installed for more recent 70 mm releases.
Films formatted with a width of 70 mm have existed since the early days of the motion picture industry. The first 70 mm format film was most footage of the Henley Regatta, projected in 1896 and 1897, but may have been filmed as early as 1894, it required a specially built projector built by Herman Casler in Canastota, New York and had a ratio similar to full frame, with an aperture of 2.75 inches by 2 inches. There were several film formats of various sizes from 50 to 68 mm which were developed from 1884 onwards, including Cinéorama, started in 1900 by Raoul Grimoin-Sanson. In 1914 the Italian Filoteo Alberini invented a panoramic film system utilising a 70 mm wide film called Panoramica. In 1928, William Fox of the Fox Film Corporation, in personal partnership with Theodore Case as the Fox-Case Corporation, began working on a wide film format using 70 mm film which they named Grandeur. Cameras were ordered by Fox-Case from Mitchell Camera Corp, with the first 70mm production cameras, designated as the Mitchell Model FC camera, delivered to Fox-Case in May 1929.
This was one of a number of wide-film processes developed by some of the major film studios at about that time. However, due to the financial strains of the Great Depression, along with strong resistance from movie theater owners, who were in the process of equipping their theaters for sound, none of these systems became commercially successful. Fox dropped Grandeur in 1930. Producer Mike Todd had been one of the founders of Cinerama, a wide-screen movie process, launched in 1952. Cinerama employed three 35 mm film projectors running in synchronism to project a wide image onto a curved screen. Although the results were impressive, the system was expensive and had some serious shortcomings due to the need to match up three separate projected images. Todd left the company to develop a system of his own which, he hoped, would be as impressive as Cinerama, yet be simpler and cheaper and avoid the problems associated with three-strip projection. In collaboration with the American Optical company, Todd developed a system, to be called "Todd-AO".
This uses a single 70 mm wide film and was introduced with the film Oklahoma! in October 1955. The 70 mm film is perforated at the same pitch as standard 35 mm film. With a five-perforation pull-down, the Todd-AO system provides a frame dimension of 1.912 inch by 0.816 inch giving an aspect ratio of 2.3:1. The original version of Todd-AO used a frame rate of 30 per second, 25% faster than the 24 frames per second, the standard; the Todd-AO format was intended to use a curved Cinerama-type screen but this failed to survive beyond the first few films. However, in the 1960s and 70s, such films as The Sound of Music and Patton were shown in some Cinerama cinemas, which allowed for curved screens. Todd-AO adopted a similar multi-channel magnetic sound system to the one developed for Cinemascope two years earlier, recorded on "stripes" of magnetic oxide deposited on the film; however Todd-AO has six channels instead of the four of Cinemascope and due to the wider stripes and faster film speed provides superior audio quality.
Five of these six channels are fed to five speakers spaced behind the screen, the sixth is fed to surround speakers around the walls of the auditorium. Panavision developed their own 65/70mm system, technically compatible and identical to Todd-AO. Monikered as Super Panavision 70, it used spherical lenses and the same 2.2:1 aspect ratio at 24 frames per second. Panavision had another 65mm system, which sprang from the MGM Camera 65 system they helped develop for MGM, used to film Raintree County and Ben-Hur. Both Ultra Panavision 70 and MGM Camera 65 employed an anamorphic lens with a 1.25x squeeze on a 65mm negative. When projected on a 70mm print, a 1.25x anamorphic projection lens was used to decompress the image to an aspect ratio of 2.76:1, one of the widest used in commercial cinema. Due to the high cost of 70 mm film and the expensive projection system and screen required to u
Widescreen images are images that are displayed within a set of aspect ratios used in film and computer screens. In film, a widescreen film is any film image with a width-to-height aspect ratio greater than the standard 1.37:1 Academy aspect ratio provided by 35mm film. For television, the original screen ratio for broadcasts was in fullscreen 4:3. Between the 1990s and early 2000s, at varying paces in different nations, 16:9 widescreen TV displays came into common use, they are used in conjunction with high-definition television receivers, or Standard-Definition DVD players and other digital television sources. With computer displays, aspect ratios wider than 4:3 are referred to as widescreen. Widescreen computer displays were of 16:10 aspect ratio, but now are 16:9. Widescreen was first used in the film of the Corbett-Fitzsimmons Fight in 1897; this was not only the longest film, released to date at 100 minutes, but the first widescreen film being shot on 63mm Eastman stock with five perforations per frame.
Widescreen was first used in the late 1920s in some short films and newsreels, including Abel Gance's film Napoleon with a final widescreen sequence in what Gance called Polyvision. Claude Autant-Lara released a film Pour construire un feu in the early Henri Chretien widescreen process adapted by Twentieth Century-Fox for CinemaScope in 1952. In 1927, The American aka The Flag Maker was released; the film, directed by J. Stuart Blackton and starring Bessie Love and Charles Ray, was made in the experimental widescreen process Natural Vision, developed by George K. Spoor and P. John Berggren, but was never released theatrically. In 1926, Spoor and Berggren had released a Natural Vision film of Niagara Falls; the Natural Vision widescreen process had a 2:1 aspect ratio. On May 26, 1929, Fox Film Corporation released Fox Grandeur News and Fox Movietone Follies of 1929 in New York City in the Fox Grandeur process. Other films shot in widescreen were the musical Happy Days which premiered at the Roxy Theater, New York City, on February 13, 1930, starring Janet Gaynor and Charles Farrell and a 12-year-old Betty Grable as a chorus girl.
RKO Radio Pictures released Danger Lights with Jean Arthur, Louis Wolheim, Robert Armstrong on August 21, 1930 in a 65mm widescreen process known as NaturalVision, invented by film pioneer George K. Spoor. On November 13, 1930, United Artists released The Bat Whispers directed by Roland West in a 70mm widescreen process known as Magnafilm. Warner Brothers released Song of the Kismet in a widescreen process they called Vitascope. In 1930, after experimenting with the system called Fanthom Screen for The Trail of'98, MGM came out with a system called Realife. MGM filmed The Great Meadow in Realife—however, it's unclear if it was released in that widescreen process due to declining interest of the movie-going public. By 1932, the Great Depression had forced studios to cut back on needless expense and it was not until 1953 that wider aspect ratios were again used in an attempt to stop the fall in attendance due to the emergence of television in the U. S. However, a few producers and directors, among them Alfred Hitchcock, have been reluctant to use the anamorphic widescreen size featured in such formats as Cinemascope.
Hitchcock alternatively used VistaVision, a non-anamorphic widescreen process developed by Paramount Pictures and Technicolor which could be adjusted to present various flat aspect ratios. Masked widescreen was introduced in April 1953; the negative is shot exposing the Academy ratio using spherical lenses, but the top and bottom of the picture are hidden or masked off by a metal aperture plate, cut to specifications of the theater's screen, in the projector. Alternatively, a hard matte in the printing or shooting stages may be used to mask off those areas while filming for composition purposes, but an aperture plate is still used to block off the appropriate areas in the theater. A detriment is that the film grain size is thus increased because only part of the image is being expanded to full height. Films are designed to be shown in cinemas in masked widescreen format but the full unmasked frame is sometimes used for television. In such an instance, a photographer will compose for widescreen, but "protect" the full image from things such as microphones and other filming equipment.
Standardized "flat wide screen" ratios are 1.66:1, 1.75:1, 1.85:1, 2:1. 1.85:1 has become the predominant aspect ratio for the format. 35mm anamorphic – This type of widescreen is used for CinemaScope and several other equivalent processes. The film is shot "squeezed", so that the actors appear vertically elongated on the actual film. A special lens inside the projector unsqueezes the image. Films shot in CinemaScope or Panavision are projected at a 2.40:1 aspect ratio, though the historical aspect ratio can be 2.55:1 or 2.35:1. The negative is 2.66:1 or, in