Christopher Reyna is a technical expert who has extensive experience with the full spectrum of production, post-production, restoration and exhibition of high quality moving images since 1971. As an appropriate technologist, he has specialized in the development and implementation of new film and digital tools for 70mm, Giant Screen and specialty Widescreen presentations. He has helped pioneer the transition from photochemical to digital tool sets with an emphasis on maximizing quality and preserving filmic qualities. Reyna currently restores legacy films and masters images for all forms of digital display from High Definition, 4K Digital Cinema, High Dynamic Range, Ultra High Definition and Laser Dolby Cinema.
As a child of 6 years old, he attended the inaugural screening of This Is Cinerama (1952) in Boston, MA. From that point forward, he sought and saw as many emerging Widescreen formats as possible thru the early 1970s. He started his professional film career at the Pacific Film Archive at the University of California, Berkeley in 1971 as their first projectionist and junior archivist. In 1973, Reyna was the chief projectionist for the projection of Kevin Brownlow’s first restored version of Abel Gance’s Napoleon (1927) with the Polyvision 3 screen Triptych. He recreated Napoleon with the Triptych at the 1979 Tribute to Abel Gance at the Telluride Film Festival. Starting in 1981, He and Chapin Cutler co-technical directed the US and Worldwide Roadshow Tour of Zoetrope’s Napoleon with the Carmine Coppola score.
For the next three decades, Reyna focused on 70mm specialty productions for IMAX theatres, world’s fairs, theme park attractions, as well as film festival presentations of silent movies with musical accompaniment. In the early 1990s, as the founding President of IMAGICA USA, he created a state-of-the art boutique optical/digital effects & restoration facility in Los Angeles. IMAGICA USA supported all film and digital formats, which not only helped foster the emerging growth of the IMAX/Giant Screen industries, but also the rebirth of 70mm photography in mainstream theatrical VFX productions.
In the past decade, Reyna, as an associate member of American Society Of Cinematographers has been involved in helping to create standards and workflows for Digital Cinema production, mastering, and exhibition. Reyna remained active in 70mm film production as the imaging producer for Samsara (2012), the Ron Fricke and Mark Magidson nonverbal documentary shot in 25 countries around the world over five years. Reyna designed and managed the workflow for the 70mm film shoot, as well as the 4K Digital Cinema mastering and worldwide release. Reyna convinced Panavision to bring two of the original 65mm cameras built for Lawrence Of Arabia (1962) out of mothballs and update them for the rigors of location shooting. These cameras are now being used by a new generation of directors like Christopher Nolan and Quentin Tarantino for the continuing tradition of shooting on film.
Recently, Reyna has been restoring legacy content, and mastering in the latest emerging technologies of High Dynamic Range (HDR), Ultra High Definition (UHD), Dolby Cinema Laser Projection and Atmos immersive sound playback. He says that these technologies not only pave the way for the future of moving images, but also help to preserve the rich history of the movies.
Reyna is an active member of the Society of Motion Picture Television & Engineers (SMPTE), the Visual Effects Society (VES), the American Society Of Cinematographers (ASC) and the Giant Screen Cinema Association (GSCA). In 1998, he received Telluride Film Festival’s Silver Medallion for his pioneering work in modern applications of 70mm film. In 2002, he shared in IMAGICA Corporation’s the Academy’s Science & Technology Plaque Award honoring their multi-format optical printer.