Fujifilm announced that they are no longer accepting orders for a variety of film stocks in Japan. The announcement includes color negative 35mm film and reversal film in both 35mm and 120 formats. The reason given is due to a short supply of raw materials needed for manufacturing.
In total, nine different types of film are affected, and it’s likely that stocks in Japan will begin to get low as production ceases. However, the films should still be available from overseas supplies, at least while stocks last.
Fujifilm states that they will try to “take measures to ensure the stable supply of products,” although haven’t said which raw materials are in short supply, nor have they given a date when production might resume.
This could well indicate the end of the line for Fujifilm actually producing film. According to Japan Camera Hunter (JCH), the film brand hasn’t actually made any film for a long time. They have merely been clearing out massive film stocks. Additionally, JCH surmises that it could just be as simple as the fact that Fujifilm can sell its products overseas more easily and at a better price than it can in Japan.
The films affected are Fujicolor 100, Superia Premium 400, and Superia X-TRA 400 in the color-negative 35mm film types. The reversal films (slide film or transparency film) affected are Velvia 50, Velvia 100, and Provia 100F in both 35mm and 120 formats. So pretty much all of Fujifilm’s color range.
Some of these films have already been discontinued in the United States. Fujicolor Superia X-Tra 400 and Fujicolor 100 are no longer available, and Fujicolor Superia 400 is currently on backorder. Fujifilm Velvia 50, Velvia 100, and Provia 100F are still available and currently in stock, however.
In the greater scheme of things, I don’t think film shooters should get too worried yet. Kodak is still making film, including film for Fuji. And Ilford aren’t going anywhere either, including for Fuji. It’s a pity about the Fujifilm reversal film as those were fairly iconic. However, it looks as though there will still be plenty of film available in the future from other brands.