The Moving Picture World (1908)

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508 THE MOVING PICTURE WORLD Lesion* for Operators. Opinions on the Rental Schedule Contlnaad 1 . By F. H. Richardson, Operator, Chicago. CHAPTER XII.—Continued. Rewinding. This is a subject of more importance than perhaps any other one thing in all these articles, since there is more actual damage done to films in rewinding than from all other causes put together. It is a matter of surprise how few managers, film men and operators understand that nine-tenths of the "rain marks" in films are caused in rewinding; but it is the fact, nevertheless. There is al- ways more or less dust in the air, and some of it naturally adheres to the film, especially if oily, the adherence being probably aided by the static electricity generated by the friction of the celluloid as it passes through the machine. Now, when you partially rewind loosely and then "pull down," t. e., revolve the reel while holding the film stationary to tighten the roll, these grains of dust act as so many miniature plows on the emulsion, re- sulting in the familiar rain marks, which are really fine scratches in the emulsion. Common sense ought to tell you that this is true, and common sense also will tell you that you are committing an outrage on a film every time you "pull down" the roll. Usually this pulling down is nec- essary simply because you are too lazy to do your re- winding right, though this, of course, does not apply where one is not given time to do it properly, as is too frequently the case. Rewinding should be done as follows: Grasp the edges of the film between the thumb and finger with pressure enough to cup it slightly so that the film will be rolled tightly without pulling down, also that you may by sense of touch detect any loose patches or breaks in the track, and rewind slowly. The film should always be held by its edges in rewinding—never flatwise, since by holding it flat between the thumb and fingers you may injure the emulsion with perspiration and will be certain to injure it by scratching. The pressure of the fingers holding the film flatwise in time produces a multitude of very fine scratches in the emulsion, thus rendering the film dull. Never, never, never rewind at high speed out of a film box, as a snarl may come at any instant, and more than likely there will be a torn film, necessitating the loss of from one to a dozen pictures, thus injuring the film permanently. This means, if it be a rented film, that every operator and manager who runs it afterwards, and they may number hundreds, must suffer for your ignorance, laziness or carelessness. It takes longer to do your rewinding right, true, but it also takes longer to wash your clothing than it would to burn them; but you would raise thunder with your better half if she burned a few of your shirts to save labor. When you have finished reading the above, read it over again, and if you have in the past been guilty, just let it soak in, my boy, and sin no more. Pulling down is where the rain marks come from—that and holding the film flat- wise between the fingers when rewinding. Paste that fact in your hat and remember it. Do your work right, and don't be a "would-be." Severaljcommunications are unavoidably held over un- til next week, and also an announcement that will be of the greatest interest to the entire trade. What vre refer to w'll give an impetus to the business and remove many existing drawbacks, and also upset some well-established ideas as to what is and what is not possible. Gentlemen: We are in receipt of your letter of May 25, and in reply to your inquiry beg to sav that the article on this question that appears in the Moving Picture World of May 23 prac- tically expresses our opinion. At the present time we have only competition from inde- pendent exchanges (in the matter of rental prices), and wc make a bid for business on the strength of service. We have some competition, of course, from exchange members, and our bid for business in that case also is always based on service. This we consider honest competition and are will- ing to take our chances against it. If the schedule is abol- ished, we would have not alone to compete with independent concerns on prices, but with our own members, and then we can see nothing but chaos, and the general demoraliza- tion of the business. For the present, therefore, until we find that it is absolutely necessary to abolish the schedule, we are in favor of upholding it. - Yours truly, A. A. Gentlemen: In answer to yours of 26th inst. regarding rental schedule, we, from what we can learn, are not in the same zone as the people advocating cheaper rental rates. Here the houses are mostly 10 cents admission, good substantial places, and run almost without thought of the rental rate. We personally very seldom touch the minimum rate, and would not under any circumstances, if there was no schedule, rent for less than we are now doing, and could not imagine any firm ex- pecting to make anything out of the business doing- so. Such stuff as the independents are shipping into our city is very poor in quality, and no house will touch it at any price. Yours very truly, B. B. Dear Sirs: We have your favor of the 26th ult, and in reply to same will say we have always believed in making our own prices, and some time ago we wrote the secretary of the Film Service Association when they sent out bulletins asking the opinion from different renters on this same question, and we told them that we favored the abolishing of the schedule, and make our own prices. Before the schedule price was made we got better prices for new films than we do now, and the schedule knocked us out of renting old films on account of the prices. Yours very truly, ' C. C WOLF! WOLF! WOLF! There was once a boy who liked to frighten the other chil- dren in the neighborhood, and when they were playing in the forest he would suddenly cry out: "Wolf! wolf!" and cause them to shriek with fear, only to be laughed at. So often did the men from the fields rush to the rescue of the children when this bad boy cried "wolf," that they got tired, and when one. day the wolf did actually come, they left this boy to his fate, believing that he was fooling them as usual. The Moving Picture World was not crying wolf when a few weeks ago it chronicled the fact that the Hitland Slide Company (Helf & Hager) were filling in their old broken sets of slides and selling them to the detriment of the trade for. $3.00 per set. There was nothing wrong or out of the way in Helf & Hager doing this. They were strictly with- in their legal rights to sell their slides for whatever price they wished, and we were strictly within our legal rights to criticise the ruinous cut in the price of slides. But the worst effect of the whole proceeding was the action of the film renters, who bought their slides, representing to other slide makers that leading manufacturers of slides had cut the prices of slides to $3.00 per set, and that unless they did the same thing they would withdraw their patronage. Their attempt to make it appear that the cut was a perma- nent one was unscrupulous to a degree. While they did not say so in so many words, they inferred that they could Buy brand new slides from the best manufacturers for $3.00 per set, get free music with them, and that this arrangement -was to be continued. Then, when their bluff was called, they denied that they had patronized the cheap slide market, or that they had tried to use bargain-counter prices to depress the price of new slides from other makers. Now, Helf & Hager come out with an advertisement in a contemporary which confirms the articles which we pub- lished, and refutes the assertions of those film renters who