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ORWO NP20 film (Pic: Peter Shaman/Wikimedia Commons)
ORWO films were very popular on both sides of the Iron Curtain during the latter half of the 20th Century (Pic: Peter Shaman/Wikimedia Commons)

German film manufacturer ORWO has confirmed it is producing a new colour cinema film which is expected to be released in the middle of 2022.

The news was confirmed by an ORWO representative in the Photrio photo forum last week and was reported in the latest Nico’s Photo News episode released Tuesday (24 August).

The post follows mounting speculation that the film producer, which was once the dominant colour manufacturer in the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War, is returning to colour film production.

ORWO continues to make black-and-white cinema film which has been widely converted for 35mm stills use, including as part of the LOMOgraphy Kino range of films

The post on Photrio reads: “Yes the rumours are true. After tons of requests, we have decided to release a completely new color [sic] cine film line. The world needs choice!

“It’s a bit daunting to be setting up as the only alternative to the giant behemoth that is Kodak; but we are convinced that this is what is necessary to make film thrive, not just survive. Creative people need a range of canvases. They need options!

“We have been deep in R&D throughout the last 2 years and are planning to launch pre-selling as soon as possible, with the first films being ready for shipping in the second quarter of 2022.

“More details will be coming very soon…”

ORWO’s representative later confirmed that the film will be ECN-2 (cinema film) process, meaning that it cannot be processed in normal C-41 minilab chemistry.

Previously, Kosmo Foto has reported on ORWO’s plans after it merged with InovisCoat, a German film producer created from the break-up of Agfa which currently produces specialist films for LOMOgraphy such as Metropolis.

In an Instagram post in March, ORWO said it planned a return to “high quality analogue films”. The post read: “The vision is big – bring back high-quality analogue films – for photographic and for cinema. For use in cameras, on film sets and in cinemas. For use in archiving – of data, paper and audio visual. ORWO now demonstrably has the best film stock in the world for archiving, for black and white and for sound reproduction. It is now passionately investing in R+D to bring further innovations into this important cultural space.”

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Stephen Dowling
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2 years ago

It would be nice to see. Hopefully at a price point that is of Kodak or less. Maybe 35 and 120 and definitely 4×5

2 years ago
Reply to  Reuben

If it’s ECN2 film, it’s hard to image it will be available in formats wider than 35mm.

1 year ago
Reply to  Piotr

They could do 70mm so there is hope for 120.