Preface: Racquet Film is a film development (or film processing or film developing) and processing lab in Brisbane, Australia. They develop and sell 35mm film, 120, 220 and more. Racquet Film offer high quality photo prints, have a gallery and are Australia’s largest dedicated analogue space.
The Belgian-German multinational corporation Agfa-Gevaert N.V (known by most of us as AGFA) has today announced what many of us already knew to be true. The company, popular for its very affordable, rather bold C41 35mm films (available in both 200 and 400 speeds) has earned a cult following for producing a good consumer-grade product at a (very) cheap price point. It was well publicised that the AGFA emulsion was produced by the dwindling film powerhouse that is FUJI, so when the green juggernaut began killing off its own lines of film, people instantly started wondering about the fate of the humble VISTA. The death of the film stock, which runs against the grain of a global resurgence in film, reminds us that even with the ability to fight (and live), there will be some casualties.
JCH today wrote that “A quick pop into the local Yodobashi Camera today here revealed a grand total of 3 rolls of Vista 200 and none left of the 400.” While some might argue that’s a single camera store in a single region, if Yodobashi aren’t carrying a wealth of a the modest, playful colour film, it’s unlikely there’s more of it stashed elsewhere. Late last year, UK seller Poundland announced the discontinuation of their roll in distributing the stock, which came as a massive shock to the community. It’s these drops of information that point toward the demise of VISTA, rather than an official statement by any singular authoritative figure.
Like most stocks that find themselves discontinued, packs and fresh rolls will still be found circulating for some time to come, so if you’re a big VISTA fan, now might be the time to go out and grab a roll or two and keep it (well stored) for whatever the right occasion might be.