Film News: FujiFilm, the end is nigh
I can hear the haunting wails of Freddie Mercury going “another one bites the dust” as I read the latest news from our friends over at Fujifilm. That is if you can even call them Fuji”film” anymore as more film stock and formats are being systematically eradicated in a blatant act of filmocide. Imagine General Motors not manufacturing cars anymore.
Here is a screen shot from their Japanese site detailing the next round of cuts like people working in finance circa 2008.
The first round begins in March 2018 and includes several 3 and 5 packs of film being sent to the gulags.
- Fujicolor Superia X-Tra 400, 24 exposure, 3 packs
- Fujicolor Superia X-Tra 400, 36 exposure, 3 packs
- Fujichrome Velvia 50, Professional, 36 exposure, 5 packs
- Fujichrome Velvia 100, Professional, 36 exposure, 5 packs
- Fujichrome Provia 100F, Professional, 36 exposure, 5 packs
As well all know from history, killing off packs is a telltale sign that the film is no longer being produced and they will just milk the remaining stock as singles. You nature photographers had better stock up on Velvia while you can.
May of 2018 is where we start to see the actual killing off of certain stocks:
- Fujicolor Natura 1600, 36 exposures, individual rolls
- Fujicolor 1600 Single Use Cameras (39 and 27 exposures)
- Neopan 100 Acros 4×5 (20 pieces)
- Neopan 100 Acros 8×10 (20 pieces)
As foreshadowed by the elimination of Natura 1600 packs last year, it’s gone for good now in 7 months. Such a shame since it’s gathered quite the cult following. Large format photographers will also be getting a kick in the nads with the demise of Neopan 100 Acros. At this rate, they will supply no more film outside of Instax to the industry within 2 years.
Sad news indeed as the silver halide cleansing continues. Hell, I’m still mourning the grisly murder of Neopan 1600 seven years ago. It’s a bit like a broken record every year as we see options dwindle but the realization that the end is indeed nigh is heartbreaking to say the least. If Fujifilm is dead set on abandoning it’s DNA and the loyal customers that made it a household name, it should choose an identity that reflects that.
This murder of film is one of the main reasons I looked away from Fujifilm digital cameras when I went shopping for mirrorless systems. I see no reason to give them a big chunk of my digital money when they won’t even support my analog tastes. I really liked the Acros film but haven’t mourned it too much, because Ilford produces just as good, if not better, BW films and they seem to be in it for the long haul. As long as Ilford remains, and Kodak is producing Tri-X, I’m a happy camper. Plus, with all the “micro-film producers” that are cropping up all over the place, I just don’t think I’m going to miss Fuji at all.
I guess FujiFilm should drop the Film from their name.
What is really funny is, Shopper’s Drug Mart in Canada started carrying the Superia X-Tra 400 36 exposure 3 packs and single rolls, maybe a few months ago, and now Fuji kills it.
Sad indeed. I will start prioritizing Kodak and Ilford in my film fridge, plus JCH 400 of course. Curiously, these 3 and 5 packs they mention in the press release I’ve never seen. It tends to be 4-packs of Fujifilm in stores where I live.
As more emulsions bite the dust here, the small companies and Kodak will get more of my film $$$. Infact when Fuji started killing of films faster than the Dino’s were wiped out, i stopped buying fuji products.. I wont look at their digital products because they seem determined to erase their analogue user base and history.
Well i always did prefer agfa so rolei agfa it is
I’m still upset over Fuji’s killing off their pack films-especially the 3000B. The only Fuji I use is their Instax Wide (for which they still have to make a Black & White stock); and wonder how long that would last.
Fuji has gone too far-tilt in digital. As others said, they are opening the door for long time competitors like Kodak, Ilford, and other film manufacturers to take their analog customer base away. Very poor business move on Fuji’s part.
They have been producing film because they want to keep film alive. Well, at least that’s what they explained in a documentary on YouTube. I respect them for that. I believe they said they will always make film, but never committing to a certain amount or type, but at least something. I think I heard that it makes up for less than 1% of their profits or something ridiculous.
It’s actually the reason that sealed the deal for me to go to their mirrorless system, the love of film they still have (well, since the documentary). A company that wants to keep tradition alive in some way, at least that’s how they present themselves.
They probably want to pump out more instant film now.
Here is the video I mentioned. http://video.toggle.sg/en/series/inside-the-storm-s2/ep2/475145
(Don’t think they are too concerned about film in their business model, and definitely not aiming to erase history)
In the US, the acros cut film barely sells. The 8×10 is not even imported into here and the 4×5 is not a very big seller. Worldwide there is not enough business to keep producing. Don’t blame fuji. It’s the lack of users. Fuji is and will be continuing to produce film stock for the multi-player items that are being discontinued. No need to produce multi-packs and single rolls.
I’m going to start stalking up on the slide film and Acros for sure. Acros is my all time favorite B&W film.
I own a Fuji X-E1 which is my first digital camera. I was a magazine photographer in Vancouver from 1976 until recently when magazines died. One had to shoot transparency. I used the 35mm and 6×7 format. There is no reason now to use transparency. And i own a 6×7 slide projector.
I have a fondness for Fuji 800 colour neg film pushed to 1600. When used with mixed lighting and when scanned the results look like badly restored (beautiful) Technicolor. I do regret the discontinuance (a choice Kodak word) of the 100 and 3200 instant films for my Mamiya RB. I am all excited in getting soon (a black body) on order at Leo’s Camera of the X-E3. I want that improved focusing in low light for ballet and dance.
Next step is to change name to Fujital.
What is very awkward, in Japan at least, is that every one-hour lab will accept to develop C41 Fuji films and C41 Fuji films only. Never really understood why by the way, maybe something to do with their post-dev scan presets. Anyway, to have a C41 Kodak or whatever non-Fuji color roll developed here, you have to rely on big electronic stores or professional mail-order labs, with much longer turnaround time.
I believe that the end of Fuji films is the end of a bazillion local shops and their ubiquitous green signboard. These shops’ share in the print market has already been destroyed several years ago by the advent of the self-service photo printing machines.
Time for a new photo project: shoot and archive all these shops and their owners before they disappear. They’ve been part of the Japanese retail scenery for so long, this is almost as if every liquor or rice shops were swept away from the streets. What would be cool is to shoot them with Fuji film, have them develop the film they were shot with and send the collective result to Fujifilm as a sign of protest.
A real shame – I don’t use Fuji film (Kodak Portra 400 only) but I did try a roll of Natura 1600 when I was last in Tokyo and it was fantastic for night photography. Colour was spot on and the grain was surprisingly ok.
Damien – I have never had an issue getting my Kodak film done at any lab in Tokyo. I wonder whether that is in smaller towns? I can’t imagine any little lab turning away a paying customer.
It is always terrible news but thankfully there are plenty of choices still left – at least for now. I can’t believe Fuji would get rid of Superia 400 altogether though – that seems crazy.
Film is dead
You must be fun at parties.
Stop bitching like little kids. Fuji is a bussines and a big one. Film is small niche market and not profitable for them anymore. Maybe later fuji will sell formulas and brands to other small manufacturer. For them there is no point to keep it alive. Remember that kodak aldaris is not original company anymore. The same with polaroid.
TBH I have not used any of those films in years. I’m not surprised. Velvia is the last one i used and it is amazing but not super practical. Ilford has all my business for B&W and Kodak for portra 160.
Yeah this and Kodak raising the price of all the film of 12% at the beginning of september…
TriX is not an option anymore. at least i still have a 50+ stock of Neopan400…
FujiFilm goes FujiTal…
This is a cogent argument that Fujifilm films will soon no longer be available. Basic, inexpensive Fujicolor 200 has been my go-to film for more than a decade now. I’ll feel a little lost when it, too, is eventually gone.
Thanks for the intel, Bellamy. Very disappointed with Fujifilm. I thought they were committed to film with their strong Instax sales and intro of B&W Instax Mini. Doesn’t make good business sense. Kodak is reviving Ektachrome and Polaroid Onestep2 sales are booming. So Fujifilm is abandoning film just as it is experiencing a huge comeback? Did they hire Ted McGinley recently?
Fuck you Fujifil for not releasing a X-Pro Camera with the capabilities of a Fujifilm Sp 3000 Scanner (yeah its pixelshift dual pixel sensor) but i could life with 3 exposures for cmos RGB
you have the calibration of film and the scanner and your fuji digital cameras
i would buy 400h & reala 100 in 35mm & 120 & 220 … tons of it …
this camera scanner
and maybe your paper
I couldn’t care less. Just put the nails in your Film coffin already, Fuji. I am a Kodak guy so hopefully this keeps Kodak committed to film. Even if I used Fuji film, I would have turned on them and boycotted them for killing Polaroid style packfilm. They were the the only maker of it. They had total control of that market. They could have raised the price and kept it alive rather than kill it. I won’t believe for one second they couldn’t make it profitable, they had a monopoly it just wasn’t gigantic profits so they didn’t care to save it. I remember them boldly claiming that they would be the last film manufacturer, what a joke. Stop buying Fuji and support companies that support us.
Hello Bellamy and others,
– it is indeed sad that they discontinue their films – that will be missed by many – & still call themselves Fuji Film
– I believe Fuji Film keeps calling themselves Fuji Film because in Japanese ” Fuji ” only wouldn’t make any sense, as it would only refer to the Fuji Mont !!!!!!!! and they don’t like that so that’s why they keep the full name …..
– for those who sometimes also use digital , their X- series is great ( XT2,
XPRO2 XE2, XE3, GFX etc. )
TOO BAD FOR THE FILMS THO……………………. : /
Rollbahn: Of course any small Japanese lab ’round the corner will accept any film, even b/w, but they won’t process it in-house in one hour with their own equipment. Turn-around time will be much longer, several days at best. If you want your C41 film to be processed quickly, it has to be Fuji. At least, that’s my experience in Tokyo and Osaka.
It’s a shame that these film stocks are getting killed off. Superia has been my go to walk around film for quite some time. Affordable (something that is really important when local developing prices have climbed fairly high) and I really enjoy the colors, so I was tempted to pick up an instax to keep shooting Fuji.
I moved away from my Fuji digital system and it looks like I will have to move away from Fuji film as well. Looks like kodak, ilford and the folks at Polaroid will be getting my film money instead. No use crying over it, but I will have to find a new color film
Actually i might be wrong about what i said in my previous comment:
a lot of analog cameras ( medium format, compacts…..) had a ” Fuji “- only- logo…..
what about Agfa Vista plus? cause Agfa Vista plus is same fuji film superia. just in different pakage
I like shooting transparencies. That’s reason enough.
I’m surprised that you’re writing about FujiNotFilm, we all know where this is going.
It would be better that you’ve written something about new film company Silberra, that would like to commit to film in future, with some interesting films PAN 50, 100, 160 and completely new orthochromatic films ORTA 50 and 80. And in need of founding from film community: http://igg.me/at/silberra
I am aware of them, they are doing great things and will be writing about them.
There is already a Fuji Heavy Industries, so Fujifilm would have to be something like Fuji-Digital.
Everybody knew this was coming. My main grievance is that a lot of people are stashing perfectly good film cameras or selling them for small fortunes, knowing full well they are about to become useless except for decoration. That keeps people from trying and buying film.
I am curious, which cameras are about to become useless?
Can we get definite confirmation on this? Other than the site screenshot.
Well it is on the Fuji website if you can read Japanese.
Wow, just started shooting fuji Superia 400 as it’s cheap. I get it in 4 packs online. Velvia is already pretty expensive, I can only imagine what stocking up on this film will do to the price. Ive been shooting film more this year, hopefully it will be around for a long time. I don’t really understand the desire to make all photography digital. Variety is the spice of life.
Come on dude, you honestly think they want to keep film alive if they’re discontinuing more and more? lol
I just wonder what’s been going on internally at FujiFilm. They tried to encourage the use and growth of film with their Choose Film website, yet had already started to discontinue films. Then came the announcement they were abandoning film to go into cosmetics, so sold off/closed the Choose Film website. Yet they manufacture the new Agfa Vista and CT Precisa films. Inspite of the upturn in film use, they’re determined to abandon it and go headlong into cosmetics. Are they going to continue to manufacture Agfa’s film and just discontinue their own? Or will Agfa have to find a new manufacturer? In which case it means having to experiment with the new film, if it’s any good (the current Vista is Superia and CT Precisa is an older formulation of Provia) or it could be awful, depending on who it’ll be made by. I really hope Ferrania can get things moving soon.
Definitely not something good to hear. I am really concerned by the fact they stop more and more positive films. I know velvia 35mmm 50 iso was already on the fence, it is a wonderful film, but the price was also a big turn off (in germany the single roll is about 15€ / 17USD). High prices combined with E6 labs offer shrinking, i wouldn’t be so surprised that the sales volume were quite low (by the way do any of you happen to have sales volume per type of film somewhere?).
I am a huge provia 100F in medium format and i start to flip out a bit (and i am stil crying over the loss of Reala).
Should i blame Fuji for that? i’m not so sure. This is unfortunately not the red cross here, Fuji is focused on the digital market where the big dough is (and it seems they are doing quite well). At least i guess i was right to already support Ilford for my B&W film…
Sad news. I see some people don’t care because they shoot kodak, but no matter what is your favorite, it’s undeniable that each manufacturer makes stunning film with both amazing and differentiating quality’s. If you like Kodak, that’s fine, but it doesn’t mean Fuji has nothing to offer, and the same goes for the other way around.
Sorry, just to clarify, this is only for (mostly) 35mm and 4×5 is this right? 120 will still be in production I take from your article?
I can read Japanese. Where’s the link, mate?
Seems like they’re more interested in selling cosmetics.
This is awful; killing off Neopan 1600 was bad enough but this… Guess E6 is literally dead by 2020 then, we’ll have to cross process the leftovers.
For BW I guess Ferrania is our last hope— there’s a hell of a lot of silver in their film, thank God
Food for thought:
None of the majors have developed a NEW, modern 35mm film camera in a number of years. I’ve found myself wondering a lot lately if this was a major contributor to why film sales have slowly but surely died. Obviously there’s other factors (mainly costs), but film photography has been relegated to almost exclusively a hobbiest endeavour, and not-professional. Extremely niche, leaving virtually no economical motivation for companies to continue making film. People are left shooting film on cameras older than most of our cars.
Imagine if the major camera companies had spent the last 15years advancing FILM cameras forward with technology. Imagine a pro-level 35mm film SLR with 60AF points and a 10frame/sec burst. Imagine a modern day mirrorless cameras complete with 0-latency EVFs for framing AND previewing but that recorded each shot to film too?!
My question to everyone is: if one of the majors took a leap and developed a modern-technology film camera, how many people would realistically buy it? Would developing new film cameras in 2017 cause enough disruption to kickstart the sales of film again? I believe, like a lot of different industries, that photography definitely has a top-to-bottom trickle down sort of effect, where the professional-end users influence what your average-consumer needs. Think cars/F1 racing. Chefs/home kitchens. If we can give the photography industry a reason to use film again, we Might just be able to save film as a whole.
While this is sad news, it’s not surprising. Before digital, I used to be a big fan of Fuji, and Velvia was my go-to film. When returning to film the last few years, I’ve found other emulsions more attractive, and I see that while Fuji hasn’t developed much new, others have. Portra, which was only taking its first steps when digital started to take over the market, has developed into a fantastic film, and Fuji doesn’t really have anything that matches it. For b&w, the options are so many that I struggle to get a complete overview. Acros is fine, and I have lots of it in the fridge, but I don’t die if it disappears.
What makes Fuji unique still are the slide films, but I don’t find them economical to use anymore. Natura 1600 looks like an exciting film too, but the price… the price…
Hmmm, not sure if this is true (at least in US):
“they will just milk the remaining stock as singles.”
The 5-pack is exactly the same price as singles x 5…
Is it only the 5-pack version getting killed off?
Instax is the number one selling film worldwide and apparently outsells all other films combined. Two years ago Fujifilm’s own marketing report indicated that sales were approaching $400M. Instax has recently launched two new films.
Well this is disappointing, but it’s not like we couldn’t see the writing on the wall years ago. Considering that a single roll of Velvia 100 will cost $4.00 per roll more than buying a 5-pack, I suppose it’s time to stock up now, and Superia too! Fuji makes the best color film and I’ll use it as long as I can, but I won’t support them beyond that. Hello Kodak Gold 200, and I hope Ektachrome comes out ASAP!
Cameras are not a problem, I have a Barnack Leica, a Canon Elan 7n, a Yashica T3 and a Yashica T4.
The problem is the cost of processing. 35mm color negative is $30.00 a roll to purchase, develop and scan. 35mm chromes are $37.00 a roll. If I shot one roll of negative a week and one roll of positive a week I’m looking at $$3,500.00 a year. Way to much money for a pensioner’s meager budget.
Fro here on out, I’ll spluge on maybe 10 rolls of film a year and do the rest of my photography with a digicam.—Daido Moriyama does nice work with an inexpensivce Ricoh, no reason I can’t too.
” 35mm color negative is $30.00 a roll to purchase, develop and scan.” ?? Say what? Learn to do it yourself. It costs € 2 on chemistry per roll if you use the chemistry just once. (I use the 2.5 L Tetenal kit) Scanning is free, just buy a second hand scanner. And film? Well If you have a company you can buy it whole sale. I pay between 5 en 6 for everything Kodak. But use mostly Kodak Vision 3 which costs about € 2 for a roll if you hand roll it yourself. So i spend € 4,- for the film plus development, not $ 30. Be a little creative..
Thanks for this news. The last Fujifilm.
The end of great Velvia 50 I ve used so much (I still have 10 in frige). I know how to buy some, but very expensive. A marvelous film with great lenses which can give 25 mgpxl photos with perfect bright rendering if exposed well.
Fuji is a nice brand, but like all brands play finances and marketing, so they cut because they have no interest.
I ve used Fuji digital camera with my film camera and I ve sold them for 3 reasons :
– dont like their little sensor, I prefer FX, despite they sale well made cameras,
– dont like what they do with films,
– dont like a brand which ends 3 marvelous brands : Velvia, Acros, Neopan.
So I increase my collection of film Leica and lenses with some Nikon, and add a Sony A7 r2.
Now I use other films and just have fun.
Leica M3, Leica M6, Contax T, Minolta 7sii, Ricoh 35 Gr 2, Nikon 28 Ti, Voigtlander Lm 15/4’5 mk2, Nikkor Ais 21/2’8, Nikkor Ais 28/2’8, Summicron 40, Voigtlander Nokton 40, Canon Ltm 50/1’4, Nikkor 58 Ais/2’8, Leica tele-elmarit 90/2’8, Nikkor Ais 105/2’8, …
Films from all brands. I use less and less the Sony. Why ? No pleasure !
The Leica M3 black 1965 : whouuu whouuu a marvelous tool, and each shot is a true joy.
Film is real pleasure.
https://www.japancamerahunter.com the web site photo I visit the most ;-)
Fuji ! Yesss just dont buy any product of them if you like film. I ve bought the Sony because I can use my Lm lenses or old Nikkor with the Sony A7 r2 with Fx format what i cannot do with Fuji. I will have make the great effort to keep my digital Fuji if Fuji has respected me as one of their Film user : so buy buy Fuji.
Modern brands are not to satisfy customers they are there to suck them for stockholders profits !
Looks like Fuji’s web site only mentions the 35mm formats; should we assume this applies to 120 as well?
It is with a very heavy heart that I have come to the realisation. There’s just no point in continuing with film. It’s over.
Yeah, so that is complete nonsense on so many levels.
I’ve been waiting for this DIY reaction, surprised it took this long. I learned wet-darkroom work in the 1960’s—absolutely hated it then. No interest in doing it now.
With the money I save by NOT buying film-loading, developing and scanning equipment and NOT shooting film, I’ll be able to buy a Medium Format Digital camera soon enough.
For me, photography is all about getting good results, not about arcane rituals. YMMV.
BTW I’ll still get laser prints on Fuji Chrystal Archive, no matter if I use my Leica IIIa/5cm f/2.0 Summar lens or a new-to-me Pentax 645Z/SMC D FA 645 55mm f/2.8 AL [IF] SDM AW lens. BTW I know could waste money on a printer and Do It Myself (did I mention that I absolutely hate darkroom work, either wet or dry?).
Damien – (Continuing a bit of off topic discussion, just in case anyone is wondering about availability of C41 processing in Japan) – I’ve never had any issue getting non-Fuji C41 35mm films developed in-house/same day in Tokyo, and this past summer I was able to find 1-hour processing for an eclectic collection (Ektar, Portra 400, some Lomography stuff, along with some Fuji film) in Kyoto too. I suspect that the number of places that do any in-house processing has decreased everywhere, but at least as of 2017 it was readily available in Tokyo and Kyoto. I have no idea what the small shops with their green Fuji Film signs offer, however.
Nonsense. The ‘end is nigh’ for FujiFilm because it’s ceasing production of some of it’s very low-selling films and multi-packs? This entire article is bad reporting, and the photograph and headline suggests it’s nothing but click-bait.
And the comments above: what a load of sanctimonious whining. How many of you complaining actually spent a significant amount of money on Fuji’s film, paper and chemicals last year? Anyone? But let me guess, most of you spent hundreds or thousands of dollars on digital gear, right? The fact is the average casual photographer these days spends hundreds of dollars a year on digital gear: smartphones. Higher up the chain hobbyists spend loads of money, but it’s almost all spent on digital equipment. And professionals: 99% of their spending is digital. You have a company still supplying film even though it only makes up 1% of their profits, and the whole community has nothing good to say about them. If I were a Fuji exec and read this post, I’d be sitting down at the next board meeting and saying, “screw it”.
You want film: buy it or stop whining.
@Daryl Orillaza, the Canon Elan 7n/7ne and the last film Rebel are among the most modern film cameras made. They use Canon’s ETTL II and can use the latest wireless Canon RT Speedlites. They have modern autofocus and metering, With all this going for them they sell at thrift-store prices. Why are they so un-loved? My guess is that they look modern, not retro.
Mario Testino and other top photographers still shoot film with their Pentax 6x7s. AFAIK Martin Schoeller still shoots film, but Platon has gone from Hasselblad V film to Hasselblad H digital. Fashion shooter Juergen Teller switched from his film Contax G2 to Canon 5Dx, several years ago.
Velvia 50…that film simply makes my heart leap with joy every time I look at the images it produces. I just read these stories about the discontinuation, and ordered 10 of the five-packs of Velvia 50 from Yodobashi…there will be a run on this film and I aim to stock up before this heats up any further. But even a large stock (~100 rolls) will still run out after just a few years, the end is indeed nigh…I will enjoy it while it lasts.
Sad that its over for Fuji, happy that Bellamy gets a chance more!?
It’s too soon to kill film off. Digital is not mature enough. The digital cameras are being made with planned obsolescence. You get 1 year warranty for a camera that you have to save up money for 3-4 years. Repair can be 3000 $ for a 4000 $ camera (even Leica CLA is not that expensive). The cameras are filled with tens and tens of buttons that you don’t even use. The sensor in digital camera only gets more pixels, but it’s all the same old tech with new firmware. The noise reduction is that strong all the images look plastic. They will delete stars from sky and remove any texture from skin. All my harddrives have died between 2.5 – 4 years, i still have my film. What makes the people obsess how good is the 5-8 MP selfie camera on smartphone with 0 lens character?
However, let’s not forget that Fujifilm is still the main manufacturer of instant film, Instax Mini, Instax Wide & Instax Square. We seem to be forgetting this aspect of film photography.
Incidentally the reason Fujifilm doesn’t sell a four pack of film in Japan is this.
In Japan, four (四) can be read as “yon” (よん) or “shi” (し). The kanji for death is “shi” (死) and so the number four is considered unlucky. While its origins are very different, it’s akin to the number 13 in the West. This is why when you give people presents in Japan, you would not give them four of something.
About the picture of that grave you have post together with your article, you shouldn’t have written R.I.P. but R.I.H. “Rest In Hell”… peacefully if they can.
On the other hand there are good news as well: “Kodak Alaris Is Bringing Back T-Max P3200”
aaaaargh what am i gonna shoot from now on?!
do u guys have any suggestions of similar looking, cheap, 400 asa film?