Film lost during processing


TPF Noob!
Jul 6, 2006
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I rented a lens for my Hasselblad and shot 4 rolls of color reverse film (Velvia 50, my favorite) over the weekend. I dropped them off for processing on Monday and went in today to pick them up and... they weren't there.

After some sleuthing the shop said they had another person who had the same last name as me pick up my film along with his. The shop said they'd call him and get the film back, but obviously I'm wondering what happens if they don't get it back?

I'm mostly irritated because the lens cost me $35 to rent for the weekend, the tripod $30 for the weekend, and I spent time on Friday evening, Saturday, and Sunday shooting landscapes along the central California coast that weren't easy to access.

The question I have is... do I have any recourse to do anything if they can't recover my film? I'm sick to my stomach, I worked very hard for those shots.
No, unlikely.

Professional labs (read-expensive)

Have comprehensive insurance.

Box store photo labs, only cover incidental, not cosequential damages.. (I think those are the terms, but I'm not sure, so don't quote me)

Basically, that means that they will replace the film and processing.

But not the cost of the shoot.

A pro lab, if they screw up, can cover the actual cost of a shoot, because they have heavy insurance coverage.

However, they have very steep fees to go with it. Very steep, if rumor is true, you generally get an account with those guys, and then they evaluate what sort of coverage you want, and from then on, it's pretty much like the photomat, except they add a zero onto all the prices of the photomat.

It might sound crazy to spend 50 or 100 bucks or whatever to get a roll of medium format chromes developed, but it's also crazy if the machine eats a roll or three, and the lab has to pony up for a helicopter rental at a thousand dollars an hour while you snap photo's of girls in bikini's on an oil rig or something ridiculous like that.
From what little I know (of the usual "drop-your-roll-at-your-local-drugstore" developing and printing processes, i.e. big, central photo labs), you cannot expect anything from them other than a free roll of film to compensate your loss. Anything else you lost by them losing your film is beyond their range of compensation.

I know too little about the things Bobby seems to know about (and have never rented a helicopter before for a shoot, though THAT sounds INTERESTING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!), but I have gone through the feelings of sickness to the stomach about the loss of films that was only compensated by a new roll of the same, and that was it.
Hmm. Maybe I should ask for a free carbon fiber tripod to compensate me for my troubles. I'd be willing to forgive the incident in that case.

Actually this is a really outstanding local photo shop, perhaps the best in California. For sure the best I've ever personally solicited. I've always wondered if this would happen, and of course it decided to happen when I had three or four rolls that I was really excited about. I think I'll go barf now.

Is there an extra spot on that helicopter?? ;)
I feel your pain. My local photo hut can't process E6 so it has to be sent to Eugene, Oregon, where there's a lab thats been in the business for 75 years. Anyways, a few weeks ago, I dropped off a roll of C41 to be cross-processed as E6. The girl at the local store took the film, wrote "slides" on the envelope, and sent it off. Well, the pro lab thought it was a mistake and processed it normally.

When I stopped in to get my cross processed slides, I was horrified to find negatives and very expensive (although beautiful) prints instead. I told them I didn't want the prints, that I really wanted cross processed slides, and that they should at least just give me my negatives. Long story short, I didn't have to buy the prints (they threw them away rather than give them to me) and had to pay $5 to get film processed the way I didn't want it done in the first place.

I ordered an E6 kit from Freestyle the next day.
Once I dropped off 3 rolls of film at a wal-mart (I f*****g hate wal-mart...), when I came back to pick it up they told me that they developed it but couldn't print any of them because their machine was broken (again).

They didn't charge me anything, but...
I had to take the film somewhere else to get printed, and I needed doubles (which normally would have been free). Since the film was already developed I had to pay for 70 something reprints, ended up costing around $90.

...Yeah, I was pissed.
i hope they find your film. Given that you did drop these off at a lab rather than your local walmart you might have better luck. I have only lost film once and that was when I dropped off film of my first born at the local store. I spent days trying to track down the film and even spent several hours on the phone while a rep went through their "unclaimed" film. In the end all i was offered was a replacement roll of film and was told i can go through the "lost and found" myself.

Pretty much enough said right there. Just walking into their store for ANYTHING is enough to make me break out into hives.

You'd think they would have made your prints for free for your trouble, but then again, figuring out how to print from negatives was probably more than their two IQ points could have handled. :)

Sorry, usually I don't resort to poking fun at mentally handicapped people but in the case of Wal-Mart employees I kind of feel its fair game. :)
Do you by chance know who the lab is?

I got the same sphiel on thursday and friday from Quallex (I think that was the name, but I am definately not sure about the spelling)

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