Now only Kodachrome's images endure as original colour film is made obsolete

IT CAPTURED some of the most iconic images of the 20th century, showing us the world in the brightest hues technology could provide.

However, Kodachrome, the first commercially successful colour film, has become history after it was developed for the last time yesterday.

Dwayne's Photo, a family-run business in Kansas, was the last place where the 75-year-old Kodak product could be developed. The die was cast after Kodak announced in June last year that it would stop making the chemicals needed to develop Kodachrome in a round of cost-cutting after the company reported an 84 million loss.

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It pledged to supply Dwayne's Photo with the chemicals until the end of 2010.

The shop's machine was shut down for the last time, but only after fans of the film had travelled there from across the world to get theirs developed.

Artist Aliceson Carter, 42, travelled from London, while a railway worker from Arkansas spent $15,798 (10,198) developing 1,580 rolls of film of pictures of trains.

Before running out of chemicals, Dwayne's was processing 700 rolls of film a day.

Its employees took to wearing T-shirts with the epitaph: "The best slide and movie film in history is now officially retired. Kodachrome: 1935 - 2010."

The last roll to be processed was an image taken by Dwayne Steinle, the shop's owner. The machine is to be scrapped.

As the world turns digital, Kodachrome sales have plummeted and the camera giant made the decision to axe the first commercially successful colour film last year after 74 years.

Kodachrome's heyday came in the 1950s and 1960s, when it was favoured by still and motion-picture photographers for its rich tones and vibrant colours.

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In November 1963, Abraham Zapruder used Kodachrome to inadvertently film the assassination of President John F Kennedy in Texas. Ten years earlier, Kodachrome was used to film the Queen's coronation.