Two more films are said to have bitten the dust: AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 and 400 colour negative films. It’s an open secret that these films are manufactured by Fujifilm in Japan, however these emulsions have been a cheap and reliable product for many film photographers, selling for as little as $5 a roll in Australia.
This has allowed a lot of first-time 35mm photographers to get into film without breaking the bank — the equivalent Kodak film is hard to come by and more expensive — while still providing quality results.
When I was a member of the working poor, it was my go-to colour negative film and I ended up shooting about 40 rolls from 2013 to now.
Unfortunately, this discontinuation shouldn’t come as a shock to the analogue photographic community. While Kodak has been busy re-engineering and re-releasing some of their classic emulsions, Fujifilm has been killing off film product after film product after film product, leaving only the barest of product lines. It would not be surprising if the “film” part of the Fujifilm brand is gone within the next two years.
While Kodak has made good on their deal with Hollywood to keep the coating factories open, Fujifilm seems unable or unwilling to reduce the scale of their manufacturing plants to match 21st century demand. Not even the best-selling Instax seems to be able to save Fujifilm’s real film.
So, stock up while you can. Local suppliers like Ikigai still have stock for now (as of 10 March 2018), but it won’t last long.
Below are some of my favourite shots from these marvellous films.
RIP Vista :(