Martin Scorsese to abandon film to shoot movies digitally
A long-term Scorsese collaborator conceded the collapse of film was “impossible to fight”.
Nick Clark is the arts correspondent of The Independent. He joined the newspaper in June 2007, initially reporting on the stock markets. He has covered beats including the City, and technology, media and telecoms and made the switch to arts in December 2011. He has also contributed articles to the sports section.
Thursday 28 June 2012
Martin Scorsese is to abandon shooting movies on film and turn to digital, after a long-term collaborator conceded the collapse of the format was “impossible to fight”.
The celebrated Hollywood director, who has long campaigned for the use of film and restoration of old prints, has “lost the battle” and is to shoot his next project, The Wolf of Wall Street with Leonardo DiCaprio, digitally.
It is his first 2D movie to use the format. Last year’s Hugo, which won an Oscar for cinematography, had to be shot digitally because it was in 3D.
Thelma Schoonmaker, an editor who has worked with Scorsese for 40 years, said: “It’s just impossible to fight it anymore, the collapse of film,” before adding: “Marty and I are very depressed about it. It would appear that we have lost the battle.”
Schoonmaker said in the director there was “no bigger champion of film” but that he saw no way back. He has played an active role in contributing to preserving film from the 1980s, and set up the Film Foundation in 1990.
The strength of Hugo, she said was “it doesn’t look digital. But that’s because we had a great director who’s very careful about how he uses it”.
The shift to digital has been “very quick” the editor said. The move was partly driven by 3D as cinemas spent huge amounts on converting their equipment to digital projectors.
The smaller theatres that have yet to convert are struggling to get hold of prints, she added. “It’s become devastating for those places.”
She said: “The real problem is going to be preservation. Because If you don’t preserve these things every five years digitally, they’re going to vanish. And who’s going to have the money to do that?”
Scorsese has a collection of prints that he plays in his own theatre “where he can celebrate and watch films, and he does it constantly. As much as he can.”
“It’s even affecting our own films now,” Schoonmaker added, following news that they were no longer making prints of 1993 film The Age of Innocence. “That’s a movie that’s not even 20 years old. It’s just shocking.”
Production on The Wolf of Wall Street starts in August. It will be adapted from the book covering banking fraud in the late 1990s. Schoonmaker said: “It’s going to be pretty wild. Very, very wild. Very quick with a strong narration.”
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Ray Davies' Sunny Afternoon scoops the most awardsTheatre
Grace DentChannel 4 show proves there's no app for happiness
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Alan Rickman admits editing 'terrible' script with friends in Pizza Hut behind backs of writers on Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
- 2 Rarest Beanie Baby of them all could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 3 Professional big game hunter Ian Gibson crushed to death by elephant during hunt
- 4 Farmer told to tear down mock-Tudor castle after hiding construction behind hay bales
- 5 Rebecca Francis accuses Ricky Gervais of using 'influence' to target female hunters after receiving barrage of death threats
Better Call Saul creator Peter Gould on the creative concerns of a prequel, season 2 and the mind-numbing realities of the small courts
Game of Thrones season 5: Emilia Clarke praises characters who 'accept their femininity'
Britain's Got Talent 2015: RSPCA investigating Marc Metral's miming dog after cruelty complaints
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
Glastonbury 2015 tickets: How to make sure you’re successful in Sunday's re-sale
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate