End of Argument: Celluloid versus Digital Filmmaking!

In today’s digital age, filmmaking may have gone completely digital. Compared to celluloid, digital filmmaking has greatly opened up the industry to new filmmakers, who otherwise wouldn’t have so easily expressed themselves. However, debate as to which is better may so far have ended given our increasingly digitized life generally.

In 2018 91 percent of Hollywood films used digital format, while 14percent used celluloid. The 16mm filmstock about the most affordable option would eventually lose out to rising use of digital camera. Factors like storage (disk and/or servers), durability, re-usability and cost have given digital filmmaking strong advantage.

Celluloid, a transparent plastic material: 4 thousandths to 7 thousandths of an inch (0.025 mm) thick was used in earliest motion-picture production. Celluloid cameras are built to record a succession on sections of reels or films rolls exposed as they roll. Such exposures happen at the rate of 24 or 30 frames per second on films that are either 8, 16, 35, or 70 mm in width.


Many would argue that celluloid filmmaking is costlier, when telling an average film story. Film cannot guaranty ‘reality,’ which the filmmaker wants to project to an average audience. Celluloids are not reusable; demanding fresh daily supply for the shooting crew. Improperly used celluloid would be wasted; indeed, an additional cost every other day.

While cinematographers must develop film footages after shoots, digital filmmaking allows immediate edit. To that extent production companies complete entire projects within manageable budgets.


Digital filmmaking simplifies and achieves picture-perfect visual effects. Many apps have been developed to enable entire film sequences, fusing scenarios together during post production. More so are possibilities for audio/music application to interpret emotions; enable clarity for also for audience enjoyment. Digital films give up unbelievable screen realities, with CGI effects.


Digital filmmaking reduces production and production time. Multi-shoots of particular scenes can be achieved, a guaranty for multiple-perspectives or angles. In fact, rehearsals on camera are also possible, which can later be used during post-production. More intimate shots are achievable with significantly mobile cameras, like the steady cam; more so enriching perspective shots.


While the quality of content uploaded by many independent filmmakers may not meet studio standards, indies have really been empowered by digital production. Social publishing on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter among has enhanced indie movies distribution. Indies simply match major studios trailer releases all which comprise use of short of video contents for marketing purposes. Therefore, audiences encounter products and services advertisements insertions or clicks-and-view. digital links, while watching studio or indie contents. Online digital distribution or streaming has indeed become popular with Netflix and Apple among others competing for increasing digitally exposed audiences.


Celluloid unlike digital footages do not last forever; whereas the latter can be stored in digital banks or precisely cloud. This apart from economizing space also reduces cost of preservation. Therefore, inclined to be easily destroyed by heat film unlike digital content needs larger space, while backups and retrieval makes secures the producer’s hard-earned investment. To that extent master footages can be made from preserved footages, no matter how long the need arises; even for remakes.

Digital filmmaking indeed enabled video production, much later filmmaking in Nollywood; the more reason Nigeria’s film industry became third globally of films every year.

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