Founded in Germany in 1917, Arri is a Munich-based manufacturer of cameras, cine lenses and other equipment for motion picture film.
In the 20th century, they launched several “firsts” on the cinematic camera market, such as the world´s first production motion picture camera with a reflex mirror shutter (the Arriflex 35, in 1937) and the world´s first professional 16 mm camera with a reflex viewing system (Arriflex 16ST, in 1952).
The first major Hollywood movie filled using an Arriflex camera was the 1947 mystery thriller “Dark Passage”, starring Humprey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. Since then, Arri cameras have been used to film a wide range of movies.
One of Arri´s 21st century releases is the Arri Alexa 65. Launched in 2014, it has been used in the filming of big productions like Star Wars: Rogue One, Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation, The Revenant, Life of Pi, Hugo, Birdman, Gravity, and 1917. In 2015, four of the five nominees for the cinematography category of the Academy Awards had been filmed using the Arri Alexa.
Examples of products made by Arri:
- Motion picture cameras
- Cine lenses
- Lightning equipment
- Post-production equipment
- Digital surgical 3D microscopes
Foundation – 1950
Arnold & Richter Cine Tecknik was founded by August Arnold and Robert Richter in 1917, but they didn´t develop their first film camera until 1924: the small and portable Kinarri 35.
In 1937, they launched the Arriflex 35. Invented by the engineer Erich Kästner, this was the world´s very first camera with a reflex mirror shutter. The reflex mirror shutter was a game changer for motion picture and was soon found in pretty much all film cameras intended for professional use, regardless of manufactorer.
Over the years, more than 17,000 Arriflex 35 cameras were manufactorered. The design recieved not just one but two Scientific and Technical Academy Awards; one in 1966 and another one in 1982.
- When the Arriflex 16ST was introduced in 1952, it was the world´s first professional 16mm camera with a reflex viewing system.
- The Arriflex 16BL, a self-blimped 16 mm camera, was launched in 1965.
- In 1972, Arri began to sell the the lightweight Arriflex 35BL, which quickly became a sought-after alternative to the more bulky blimbed cameras of the era.
- 1975 saw the launch of the Arriflex 16SR, a camera where the redesigned viewfinder featured a through-the-lens light meter.
- The Arriflex 765 was a 65 mm camera released in 1989, when 70 mm release prints had become in vogue in the movie industry.
- The early 1990s was a hectic period, when Arri released the Arriflex 535 camera, the Arriflex 535B, the Arriflex 16SR 3, and the Arriflex 435.
- After acquiring the Moviecam company in 2000, Arriflex created the 35 mm camera platform Arricam.
- Arriflex D-20, released in 2003, was Arri´s first digital camera. It formed the foundation for the D-21. Since it used a 35 mm CMOS sensor instead of CCD, it was possible for the user to utilize standard 35 mm lenses.
- When the Arri Alexa camera premieered in 2010, it caught a lot of praise for its ability to compress 1080p footage to ProRes QuickTime formats and facilitate direct-to-edit workflows. Later models in the Alex range are the Alexa Plus, Alexa Studio, Alexa M, and Alexa 65.
- Arri Amira has been available since 2014.