It took Kodak nearly 2 years to come from announcing Ektachrome’s return – in January 2017 – to releasing it to the public – on September 25th, 2018. After such a wait, we’re happy to see that new formats like 120 will be following swiftly after, according to Kodak’s social media. Just 8 months after initial release, Kodak are about to begin a “wide coating trial” in 120 or Medium Format, which hopefully means a release soon after.
The post description states:
We know you’re anxiously awaiting the arrival of larger format Ektachrome E100 Films. We are diligently working on bringing them to market, with a wide coating trial of the 120 format film planned for late July!
Although it’s not explicitly stated, I feel re-assured that they are also hinting at large format – referring to “larger format Ektachrome” initially, and then talking more specifically about a trial coating of 120 format. This tells me that although they aren’t coating it just yet, they have not forgotten about larger formats.
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We know you’re anxiously awaiting the arrival of larger format Ektachrome E100 Films. We are diligently working on bringing them to market, with a wide coating trial of the 120 format film planned for late July! Photo of Pei Ketron @pketron Photo by @jonblack___ #ektachrome #e100 #kodakprofessional #believeinfilm
We initially heard confirmation of work on larger formats on the Sunny16 podcast in a discussion with Andy Church of Kodak Alaris UK, which was quickly followed by an official statement via Kodak’s social media pages. In the initial podcast, released on January 24th, it was mentioned that pilot coatings had already begun, indicating an eight month gap between pilot and wider coating tests.
When we make 120 film and sheet film – we’re looking at both of those on Ektachrome currently – they are sensitised onto a different film base and that means you have to make slight adjustments to the formula. So we’ve started having some pilot coatings, and then as things progress from there we’re going to a more production scale coating.
If all goes well – fingers crossed – I would say probably 3 months, something like that, is a fair sort of estimate of time. Could be a little bit longer. So might not be too long – might not be too far away.
Kodak then confirmed the project was underway on Facebook but without any optomistic time frame estimations:
Clearly it’s already taken longer than that optomistic initial 3 month time frame, but hopefully we don’t have much longer to wait now.