Modern Widelux prototype camera

NEWS: Susan and Jeff Bridges Revive the Widelux Camera with SilvergrainClassics

Susan and Jeff Bridges have joined forces with the team at SilvergrainClassics magazine to embark on a new venture: the creation of a new swing lens panoramic film camera. Aiming to revive a classic camera, the project is focused on producing a modern version of the Widelux camera.

Last produced in 2000, the Widelux stands out for its distinct feature—a panning lens that rolls across a strip of film instead of using a traditional shutter. This mechanism captures more time in a single image, offering photographers certain creative possibilities that are difficult to replicate with other cameras. Each panoramic frame is 2x the typical length from a 35mm frame.

Susan and Jeff Bridges had the idea for a long time of recreating the Widelux, but it wasn’t until they teamed up with Marwan El Mozayen and Charys Schuler from SilvergrainClassics that it became more realistic. With the SilvergrainClassics team’s industry connections and proximity to manufacturing centers in Germany alongside the team’s collaborative efforts, the project has already produced a prototype.

Modern Widelux prototype camera
Image courtesy of Silvergrain Classics

Jeff Bridges used the Widelux camera often to capture life on movie sets and in his Tragedy/Comedy series. Having gathered an interest in the camera from multiple interactions with it over time, Susan, his wife, gave him one as a belated wedding present. Read more about Jeff’s history with the camera here.

“The Widelux [panoramic ratio] is like how your eye sees, with peripheral vision. And the swing lens! Between the time when the slit starts moving and when it’s done, the world has changed.” – Jeff Bridges

Susan Bridges is a photographer herself and recently garnered acclaim for her first solo exhibition which reveals epic images taken during the filming of the western film, Heaven’s Gate.

“[The Widelux] is a fabulous format. I think it’s one of the most artistic ways to use a camera. And I like film because, to me, it’s the soul of photography.” Susan Bridges

cover of Issue 19 of Silvergrain classics
Image courtesy of Silvergrain Classics

More details on the project can be found on the SilvergrainClassics website. The team is also publishing an in-depth article on the entire project, including a portfolio of the Bridges’ photography in Issue 19 of SilvergrainClassics magazine. Stay tuned for further updates!

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11 thoughts on “NEWS: Susan and Jeff Bridges Revive the Widelux Camera with SilvergrainClassics”

  1. Charys Schuler

    Thanks for the write-up, Molly! We are really excited about this adventure with Jeff and Susan. They are good people, and really passionate about this project.

    1. Thanks Charys! The project looks already off to such a great start, looking forward to following the updates! I am so impressed with both their photography work but seeing a glimpse of Susan’s exhibition blew me away. Really talented creative couple and a great powerhouse team with yourselves for this project 🙂 good luck and have fun!

  2. Craig Richardson

    This will be fascinating to see how this project takes shape. Looking forward to seeing the new Silvergrain Classics edition too.

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