Kodak Digi Arm Adds New Exec To Roster

Months after it shuttered its digital EFX operations, Kodak’s Los Angeles branch of subsidiary Cinesite continues to re-invent itself.

Focusing attention on its core business of digital film scanning, the company has promoted EFX vet Daphne Dentz as VP of business development. Dentz joined Cinesite in August 2000 as a visual effects producer. In her new role, she is focusing on the evolution of digital intermediate technology as a creative tool for cinematographers. She will report to Dan Lombardo, president and general manager or Cinesite Hollywood.

A digital solution that cuts out a step of the process from film negative to final print, Cinesite pioneered the evolution of digital intermediate technology when it provided scanning and recording services for Pleasantville in 1998.

The digital intermediate eliminates the need for an extra optical step for Super 35 movies. With an all-film approach, the images are “squeezed” into widescreen format on an optical printer. With the digital intermediate process, images are “squeezed” into widescreen format within the computer and recorded onto film.

“You automatically eliminate a generation of film from the post-production process, which noticeably enhances the quality of images projected on screens,” says Dentz. Cinesite recently handled digital intermediate projects for Columbia Pictures’ S.W.A.T. and Buena Vista’s Open Range.

“Each film you make deserves an individual look that is right for that story,” says Gabriel Beristain, ASC, BSC, who photographed S.W.A.T. “The beauty of this process is that we can dig into the individual layers of the negative and manipulate them. You can shoot on an overcast day knowing that you can paint the sky blue in the digital suite.”

Established in 1992, Cinesite is part of the Kodak’s Entertainment Imaging division. Cinesite Hollywood provides a wide range of digital imaging services including digital intermediate/mastering, digital restoration, and scanning and recording. Cinesite London provides visual effects services including both digital and physical effects, model construction and photography, and scanning and recording. Cinesite recently purchased indie Los Angeles EFX house Laser-Pacific Media Corp. for a reported $30.5 million. Laser Pacific is a premium Hollywood post-house and gives Kodak an instant EFX presence on the West Coast.