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Santikos Theatres To Show Tarantino's Latest In Rare 70mm Format

The Weinstein Company
Kurt Russell and Samuel L. Jackson

San Antonio, your chance—maybe your once-in-a-lifetime chance—to see a new film in a classic format is coming exclusively to the Santikos Palladium on Christmas Day. For months, filmmaker Quentin Tarantino has been extolling the virtues of shooting his new Western, The Hateful Eight, in Ultra Panavision. The ultra-wide high resolution film format hasn’t been used in five decades, not since Basil Dearden’s Khartoum in 1966.

Tarantino has long been a champion of shooting on film, calling digital projection the “death of cinema” during an interview at the Cannes Film Festival in 2014. The Ultra Panavision process, most famously used for Ben-Hur and It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, uses 65mm film for shooting, and 70mm film for projection. That’s twice the size of the 35mm prints that remained a theater standard for decades until the early 2010s, generally seen as the tipping point for digital projection. Nearly 95% of all movie theaters now use digital projectors.

Only 100 theaters nationwide will be showing The Hateful Eight in its “roadshow” format, using a genuine 70mm projector. Santikos Theatres Marketing Manager Daniel Rodriguez says the company is “excited” to get The Hateful Eight in 70mm. They have trained projectionists on staff who are ready to operate the projector, which is being specially installed at the Palladium theater for the two-week engagement. The film will be shown on the Palladium’s ultra-large AVX screen.

“There’s no way we would have been able to do it justice on a smaller screen,” Rodriguez says enthusiastically, adding that this special engagement is all about the “experience” of seeing Tarantino’s latest in a classic format.

What will audiences see when they watch The Hateful Eight in Ultra Panavision? Tarantino’s cinematographer, Robert Richardson, says the colors “scream” in the high resolution format. The print also comes complete with an overture, intermission, and extra footage that won’t be seen in the general release. And though Tarantino hopes the movie will spark a revival of the format, this might be one of your last—or perhaps only—chances to see a genuine 70mm film in your lifetime, at least in South Texas.

Tickets for The Hateful Eight in Ultra Panavision will be available through the Santikos website and through the film's official site.

Nathan has been with TPR since 1995, when he began working on classical music station KPAC 88.3 FM, as host of “Tuesday Night at the Opera.” He soon learned the ropes on KSTX 89.1 FM, and volunteered to work practically any shift that came his way, on either station. He worked in nearly every capacity on the radio before moving into Community Engagement, Marketing, and Digital Media. His reporting and criticism has been honored by the Houston Press Club and Texas Associated Press.