a positive image on motion-picture film obtained by printing from a negative film, a duplicate negative (seeDUPLICATING), or a reversed positive; it may also be produced by transferring to motion-picture film the image and sound information recorded on magnetic tape. Prints are intended for exhibition in motion-picture theaters and film clubs, on television, and elsewhere. They are made on films with widths of 70, 35, 16, and 8 mm. When a film is intended for an audience that speaks a language different from that of the original film, a sound track may be dubbed on the film or subtitles in the appropriate language may be superimposed on the frames.
A print usually comprises several reels, or sections, of film, which begin and end with leaders and trailers that have special marks or metal tabs; the tabs close and open electrical circuits during projection, making it possible to start and stop the motion-picture projectors in order to present an uninterrupted showing of the complete film. A print often comprises large reels containing several sections or even the entire film. Prints are protected by a coating that increases their resistance to wear. The quality of a print is standardized with respect to sharpness, image density, color, and other characteristics perceived when the film is viewed.
Prints are produced at film-printing factories in editions that often exceed 1,000 copies (seeMOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY). During its circulation a film print is periodically monitored on a film inspection table and, when necessary, is reconditioned.
Special varieties of film prints are produced on magnetic tape (video cassettes) and on plastic disks (video disks). (See alsoCASSETTE MOTION PICTURES.)