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Canalside Chronicles

The Student News Site of Canalside Chronicles

Canalside Chronicles

The Student News Site of Canalside Chronicles

Canalside Chronicles

A second chance
May 7, 2024

Snapshot: The Future of Kodak

Snapshot%3A+The+Future+of+Kodak

By Jezelle Sergenton

One click of a camera captures a moment in time and each roll of film carries a memory. Film will constantly intertwine with the past, but Kodak in Rochester may be looking toward the industry’s future. Since opening its doors in 1888, Kodak has been a prominent part of the city’s economy and continues to offer employment to citizens. Kodak’s connection with the past and history makes it hard to see how the company will keep up with advancements in film. 

Old Kodak cameras and film canisters show where the company started.

Rochester N.Y.  Sunday, Sep. 24, 2023. Photo Credit: Jezelle Sergenton

The film industry has been gaining more traction with younger viewers with social media trends like #Barbieheimer and Artificial Intelligence (AI) filters. A new generation is gaining interest in film production and Kodak is looking for new faces to meet the growing demand. 

Kodak provided black and white film for the summer blockbuster Oppenheimer.

Rochester N.Y.  Sunday, Sep. 24, 2023. Photo Credit: Jezelle Sergenton

Alexandra Godfrey has been working at Kodak for a year and is familiar with the experience of being a new hire. 

“I started a year ago when I was 20 years old. I used to be a dental assistant but came to Kodak for better pay and benefits. I didn’t like it at first. I was the youngest and the only woman in my crew, but I see more people like me applying. I see room for growth, but it depends on who you are,” Godfrey said.

The new energy of the incoming staff leaves the question of whether Kodak still has the facilities to continue growth. Many of the machines used in production are outdated causing greater issues for the company as technology progresses.

Rodrick Rankin has worked for Kodak for three years. Rankin began as a temp and is now a full-time trainer with knowledge of the history of the machines. 

“The machines we work on were made in the 1960s and re-inspected in the 90’s. When the company was at its low point, the machines were sent to Mexico, but were returned here 15 years ago,” Rankin said. 

The outdated machines pose new issues for Kodak as the company tries to keep up with technological innovations. Kodak has tried to meet the new demand with new technology, but the machines of the past have made the transition difficult. 

“Old and new technology just don’t mix. They tried to update the computer system causing difficulty with the machines. Old and new technology just don’t work together,” Rankin said.

The outdated machines used in film production at Kodak. Rochester N.Y.  Sunday, Sep. 24, 2023. Photo Credit: Jezelle Sergenton

The clash between old and new technology continues as the film industry trends shift. Advancement in the field can lead to Kodak’s new golden era or leave the company stuck in time. The outdated machines used in film production at Kodak. Rochester N.Y.  Sunday, Sep. 24, 2023. Photo Credit: Jezelle Sergenton

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