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Are "cigarette burns" in films shown in theaters a myth?

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Are "cigarette burns" in films shown in theaters a myth?

Old 12-18-05, 03:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Jay G.

I was about to say, Jackskeleton and Poggle must get really upset about the piracy dots, since they don't serve as nearly a utilitarian purpose as the cigarette burns.

I see those dots just about every single time. Am I bugged by it? Eh, not really. it's annoying but no point in getting pissed over something you can't change.

I get back into the film a few seconds after I see them.
Old 12-18-05, 06:27 AM
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not only do i see those, but i see the little piracy dots they put on there that help them identify where the movie was cammed at.
Old 12-18-05, 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted by PopcornTreeCt
A myth? I see 'em all the time. And those damn anti-piracy red dots right in the center of the screen.
Man, I've see those freakin' "crap code" red dots in every movie I've seen in the last 2 or 3 years. What's odd is, my friend who goes with me says he's never seen them even once. I try to point them out to him (because they usually happen several times in a particular reel), but he just can't see them. Must have something to do with each individual's perception.

And yes, I've been seeing the reel change circles for 2o or 30 years now.
Old 12-18-05, 08:37 AM
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Originally Posted by redskull
Man, I've see those freakin' "crap code" red dots in every movie I've seen in the last 2 or 3 years. What's odd is, my friend who goes with me says he's never seen them even once. I try to point them out to him (because they usually happen several times in a particular reel), but he just can't see them. Must have something to do with each individual's perception.

And yes, I've been seeing the reel change circles for 2o or 30 years now.
Wow... I've never seen the red dots, but I really only go to the theater like 3-4 times per year. Any examples of what I'm looking for?

Noticed the "burns" all through Harry Potter yesterday. Didn't notice anything during Chicken Little.
Old 12-18-05, 10:18 AM
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so now there is anti-piracy red dots? where the hell are all these things and wouldn't modern technology and with today's advances clean all this up and come up with some better way?

with a lot of the movie going public used to such clean prints on the DVD medium, why would they accept all this clutter, albeit minute?
Old 12-19-05, 09:22 AM
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I have noticed Cigarette burns for years (the fact that up until 5 months ago I was a projectionist for 2 years certainly doesn't help make them 'less' noticeable) and they are present in each and every film (never seen them on DVD though...the guy who posted that, what titles?)

Cap Code bugs the shit out of my, although lately I have noticed it less and less...have they changed positioning or the way this is done? I remember a few years back (master & commander comes to mind) where there was a shot with cap code literally across the star's face... but in films of late like Kong and Harry Potter, haven't noticed it at all...

MATT
Old 12-19-05, 09:34 AM
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wow whats the story with the red dots? I go to the movies all the time and ive never seen them. How does it work/what do they do? of course now ill probably see them all the time.

as for the cigarette burns yeah I think ever since Fight Club ive noticed them
Old 12-19-05, 09:45 AM
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Wow. If you've seen more than 5 movies in your life, you should have noticed the cigarette burns by now. They are not made to be hidden, they are made to be SEEN (by the projectionist). I really can't fathom how you missed them. I even saw them on a film I watched on DVD the other night (The Shining from the original white Kubrick box set).
Old 12-19-05, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Hospitaller
wow whats the story with the red dots? I go to the movies all the time and ive never seen them. How does it work/what do they do? of course now ill probably see them all the time.
As far as I know (I'm sure someone here will know better), they are a code that identifies that particular print. So if a bootleg appears on the Net or street, you could watch it and read the code and tell what theater it was originally shown in. If it happened a lot, you'd have a good idea that something crooked was going on at that location and take the appropriate action.
Old 12-19-05, 09:49 AM
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Next topic: sound. Has anybody ever heard sound in a movie? I keep hearing about these "talkies" but I've never heard sound in a movie. Myth?
Old 12-19-05, 11:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Y2K Falcon

Noticed the "burns" all through Harry Potter yesterday. Didn't notice anything during Chicken Little.
with the IMAX features, notieably when I saw Harry Potter it's all on one reel and no cig burns. As for Chicken Little (3D) or any DLP movies - again it's not on a reel and it's a digital source - so no reel changes cig burns or red dots(theatre ID).
Old 12-19-05, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Jay G.
Ditto here, although before Fight Club I think I would occasionally notice them, along with the more noticable splices.

Fight Club has it right by the way, they're used to indicate reel changes. Films are sent to theaters in reels of approx 10 minutes in length.


These cigarette burns sometimes even show up on home video, although this is very rare now. Most video masters nowadays are made from an interpositive or other print that lacks the cigarette burns. However, occasionally a print with the burns is used. An example I have in my collection is the R1 DVD of Castle of Cagliostro.
Ok, all the reels i worked with always had 20 minutes of film on each reel. Unless i just misunderstood the post. If each reel only had 10 minutes of film then your average film would be around 10-12 reels, which would make thursday nights a bitch.

Last edited by paradicelost; 12-19-05 at 12:29 PM.
Old 12-21-05, 12:07 AM
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Originally Posted by paradicelost
Ok, all the reels i worked with always had 20 minutes of film on each reel.
My bad, I was thinking of the length of the reels that fit in a movie camera, not the projector.
Old 12-21-05, 12:42 AM
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Stupid question: when this started, were they actual cigarette burns?
Old 12-21-05, 01:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Drexl
Stupid question: when this started, were they actual cigarette burns?
I wouldn't think so, since original movie film was very flammable.

Some informative links:
http://www.film-center.com/gb2.html

Interestingly, this one states that the reason the twin-projector system was started was not because of reel length, but because of lamp life. Now that modern projector lamps don't burn out in around 20 minutes, you can splice an entire film together.


And from this very website, DVDSavant gives his 2 cents:
http://www.dvdtalk.com/dvdsavant/s22changecue.html
Old 12-21-05, 05:59 AM
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I used to work at a television station in Puerto Rico with the Navy, and we would get some movies on 16mm to show. And we had to use the "cigarette burns" as our cue to turn on the alternating projectors.

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