Brian R Pritchard Motion Picture and Film Archive Consultant











Kodak/Eastman Kodak have put date codes on their motion picture films since 1916. The date codes are available on various websites. For 8mm products different codes were used. Kodak 8mm Date Codes


The UK also identified the quarter and in the USA the half, in which the film was finished. This was by the distance of the year symbol from the ‘KODAK’ edge print.  The distance increased by 1/16 of an inch (about 1.7mm) per quarter (1/8 inch for the second half of the year in the USA).  See the samples below. Click thumbnail to enlarge.



KODAK 4 figure stock numbers: 

The first figure identifies the base type:

1-4 Nitrate 5-9 Safety Base ( Note that current stocks use 2 for 35mm Polyester and 3 for 16mm Polyester)

5 is used for 35mm Cine and 7 for 16mm Cine

The second figure further identifies the base type:

0  NC Base

1 Portrait Base

2 Cine Neg Base

3 Cine Pos Base - Cine Pos emulsion

4 Cine Pos Base - Cine Pos emulsion

5 Yellow Dyed Emulsion

Figures 3 and 4 identify the particular stock

Examples:  5302 - Fine Grain Release Positive  5= 35mm Safety Base, 3 = Cine Pos Base Cine Pos Emulsion

                 1503 - Duplicating Negative 1 =Nitrate Base 5 = yellow dyed emulsion

During the late 60's 35mm Plus-X negative was identified as 4231, I do not know why this stock had this number it was eventually changed to 5231.

Some dates of Introduction of Kodak Stocks:

Orthochromatic Negative Sept 1889
Regular Positive 1908
Duplitized Positive Jun 1909
Safety positive Jun 1909
Panchromatic Negative Aug 1913
Tinted Base Positive May 1921
Super Speed Ortho Feb 1922
1503 Duplicating Negative Dec 1926
Type 1 Pan Mar 1928
Type 2 Pan Apr 1928
Clear Track May 1929
Sonochrome Positive May 1929
Reprotone Jan 1929
1355 Duplicating Positive Mar 1929
Supersensitive Pan Feb 1931
1505 Duplicating Negative Jun 1931
Sonospeed Jun 1931
Background Pan Feb 1933
1362 Duplicating Positive Jun 1934
Super-X Pan Mar 1935
1203 Duplicating Negative May 1936
Zelcras Duplicating Negative May 1936
1365 Duplicating Positive May 1936

IMPORTANT NOTE: Some of these dates do not correspond to the dates on the Kodak website:  I copied this information in 1969 from hand written notes and I do not have any corroboration of these dates. Also these would be the dates of introduction in the UK.

'KODAK' edge printing 1917 to 1986.  Some samples illustrating how the word 'KODAK' was printed on Motion Picture Film

Kodak AG Edge Printing for Cine Positive: 5 figures as follows:

1st Figure: Last figure of year of manufacture

2nd Figure: Factory of base manufacture 1 = Rochester; 2 = Harrow, 3 = Copenick, 4 = Vincennes

3rd Figure: Factory of Coating 1 = Rochester; 2 = Harrow, 3 = Copenick, 4 = Vincennes

4th and 5th Figure: Week of year of coating

Information of 16mm date codes for Kodak AG Copenick and Kodak Pathe Vincennes 1934-1939



Fuji identify the date by putting  a two figure year code and a two letter quarter code. JM- Jan-Mar; AJ April-June; JS July-Sep; OD Oct-Dec. See the samples below. Click thumbnail to enlarge.


1980 Oct-Dec      1983 Jan -Mar



Agfa did not put date codes on their film. From the early 20's until 1924 the edge print 'Agfa' was printed in 'BOLD' typeface with the top of the A flattened. From 1924 on the type face was thinner and the A had a sharp top. See the samples below. Click thumbnail to enlarge.


       1922                    1924


Film was identified thus between approximately1928 to 1933. See the sample below. Click thumbnail to enlarge.



Date of Introduction

Edge Number Code


Cinematograph Film




Selo 16mm Negative




Selo 16mm Positive




Selo 16mm reversal








Pan F


J or K


FG Pan Pos




Hyper Pan






16mm A, B or C 35mm L or M








 16mm L or M 35mm A,B or C






Mark V


S or T





16mm Blue sensitive telerecording Film







A, B or C






Fine Grain Safety Positive


‘Ilford Safety Film’ also letter S between Perfs




F or G


Newsreel Positive Film



Available only in 35mm

Panchromatic Positive Type 1




FP4 Plus

 1995 approx

A, B or C


HP5 Plus

 1995 approx

F,G or H



 1995 approx

D or E