Photographers desperate to get their hands on the last rolls of Kodachrome film are stockpiling the discontinued emulsion before it disappears from stores.
Mailshots, a mail-order firm based in Staffordshire, has reported sales ‘at least five times higher’ than normal in the week since Kodak announced that the iconic film is to be scrapped.
‘We are selling boatloads all over Europe,’ said Mailshots’ managing director Neil Finan who told us the firm has sold 4,000-5,000 rolls of Kodachrome 64 film since last Monday.
Mailshots sells the process-paid film at £9 for a 35mm roll.
Finan told Amateur Photographer that orders have come from as far a field as Australia. He said photographers are keen to shoot the film before Kodak terminates processing operations at the end of next year.
Kodachrome, launched 74 years ago, found favour with many high-profile photographers including Steve McCurry who used the film for his famous 1984 photo called Afghan Girl. The image was used on the cover of National Geographic Magazine the following year.
Meanwhile, Kodak Europe has confirmed that it will continue to accept film-processing mail orders until 30 November 2010.
Kodak Europe will continue to forward the film to US-based Dwayne’s Photo, the only lab in the world to process the film since Kodak closed its European photofinishing lab in 2006. Dwayne’s will end processing on 31 December 2010.
Based on past demand, Kodak’s head office in the US expects the film to be available in shops until ‘the early fall 2009’.