Where can you develop 35mm film? It’s a common question that is a lot harder to answer nowadays than it was in the past.

If you were born before the early 2000s, you likely know of 35mm film or have used a camera that takes that type of film. This type of film is stored in single-spooled metal canisters that don’t allow light in, which is why they can be loaded even in the brightest sunlight. This film is also used in many disposable cameras, so even if you’ve never loaded 35mm film, you’ve likely used it without even knowing it.

Nowadays, most people use digital photography, such as digital cameras or their mobile devices, and because of this, finding a place that will develop 35mm film can be rather tricky. Fortunately, there are still some places that cater to developing this film. Keep reading to learn how to load and unload 35mm film and find out exactly where to go for 35mm film developing.

In This Article

Loading and Unloading 35mm Film

Whether you’re trying out a 35mm camera for the first time or trying to retrieve pictures from your grandparents’ old camera, make sure you know how to properly load and unload the camera so that you do not damage the film.

To load a camera with 35mm film, follow these steps:

  1. Open the back of the camera by locating the rewind knob and pulling up.
  2. While pulling up on the rewind knob, insert the canister, with the film tab facing you, into the back of the camera directly below the rewind knob.
  3. Once the film is in place, push down on the rewind knob to hold it there.
  4. Locate the spool with the slots on the right-hand side.
  5. Lightly pull on the film strip and insert it into a film slot. Make sure it goes all the way through the spool.
  6. Once your film is threaded, pull on the film advance lever. If you followed step five correctly, you will see that the film strip has gone all the way through the spool and that the sprockets line up with the holes in the film strip.
  7. To make sure the film is secure and will operate properly, press the shutter button and pull on the advance lever.
  8. Close the camera, making sure that it snaps shut, and push the rewind knob all the way down.
  9. Press the shutter button and pull on the advance lever. Repeat this step until the photo counter is at zero.

To unload a camera with 35mm film, follow these steps:

  1. Once the last picture has been taken, rewind the film by lifting the rewind lever and pushing the rewind release button found on the bottom of the camera.
  2. Manually rewind the film until it releases from the spool on the right-hand side and is completely inside the original canister.
  3. Pull up on the rewind knob and remove the canister from the camera.
  4. Close the back of the camera, and send your film in to be developed!

Where to Get 35mm Film Developed In-Store

There are a number of stores where you can still go to drop off your film and have it developed.

1. CVS

  • Cost: $12.99 for double prints of 12 exposures, $17.85 for double prints of 24 exposures, and $21.99 for double prints of 36 exposures.
  • Returns negatives? No
  • One hour printing available? No. 35mm film or disposable camera is available for pickup in seven to 10 days. Advanced Photo System, black and white, 110, and slide film is available for pickup in three weeks.
  • Online ordering available? No. Visit your local CVS in person to develop your 35mm film.
  • Additional information: CVS has many deals on prints, including percent-off coupons and package deals. Learn more about CVS’s special photo offers.
  • Find your nearest CVS
  • Note: Not all CVS locations process film. Check with your CVS location beforehand.

2. Walgreens

  • Cost: $13.99 per 24 exposures from 35mm film, disposable camera, or Advanced Photo System negatives.
  • Returns negatives? No.
  • One hour printing available? Yes
  • Online ordering available? No. Visit your local Walgreens in person to develop your 35mm film.
  • Additional information: Walgreens has many deals on prints, including percent-off coupons and package deals. Learn more about Walgreens’ special photo offers.
  • Find your nearest Walgreens.

3. Walmart

  • Cost: Not specified. Contact your local Walmart for exact pricing.
  • Returns negatives? No.
  • One hour printing available? Yes
  • Online ordering available? Yes, you must drop off your 35mm film in-person, but you can have your pictures uploaded and available online for an additional cost. Learn more about online ordering.
  • Additional information: Walmart has many deals on prints and gifts. Learn more about Walmart’s special photo offers.
  • Find your nearest Walmart.

Where to Get 35mm Film Developed Online

CVS, Walgreens, and Walmart all offer film developing services, but none of them return your photo negatives to you. If you’re looking to keep your negatives and to manage your entire 35mm film processing order online, try one of these websites.

1. The Dark Room

  • Cost:
    • $11 for standard scanning with accessing to online gallery and photo CD
    • $15 – $20 for enhanced scanning
    • $16 – $26 for scanning + prints
    • Additional charges for slide film processing, cross processing, push, pull, panoramic, sprocket or half frame, and proof sheet
  • Time to develop: Most orders ship within one to three business days after The Dark Room receives your film.
  • Additional information: You can pay online or by mail. To pay online, fill out the online form, add the order to the online shopping cart, pay for it, and follow the instructions on the receipt page. To pay by mail, print the order form and a postage-paid label or request that a postage-paid mailer and order form be sent directly to you.
  • Learn more at The Dark Room website

2. Fromex

  • Cost:
    • Color film:
      • $5.99 for processing only
      • $0.45 per 4×6 print
      • $0.89 – $6.95 per print for enlargements and framing
    • Black and white film:
      • $5.99 for processing only
      • $0.69 per 4×6 print
      • $1.45 – $9.95 per print for enlargements and framing
    • Additional charges for shipping, digital proof sheet, CDs, DVDs, and more
  • Time to develop: Approximately one week from the time you put the film in the mail to when you get it back
  • Additional information: To get your film developed, download, print, and complete the order form. Then, place your film and form in a bubble wrap mailer, download the free mailing label, and mail it to Fromex.
  • Learn more at the Fromex website

3. Old School Photo Lab

  • Cost:
    • Color and black and white film:
      • $11 for developing only
      • $16 for developing and scan
      • $22 for developing, scan, and 4×6 prints
      • $27 for developing, scan, and 5×7 prints
    • Additional charges for push, pull, sprocket scans, CDs, DVDs, and uncut negatives
  • Time to develop: Two to seven days, not including shipping time to and from Old School Photo Lab
  • Additional information: To get your film developed, place an online order, print out a prepaid shipping label, and just send in your film.
  • Learn more at the Old School Photo Lab website

4. The Photo Place Inc

  • Cost:
    • Color film:
      • $6 for developing only
      • $12 for developing and digital contact sheet
      • $13 for developing and scan to CD or developing, scan, and upload
      • $11 – $24 for prints
    • The Photo Place Inc does not develop 35mm black and white film.
    • Additional charges for push, pull, sprocket scans, CDs, DVDs, and uncut negatives
  • Time to develop: For 5 rolls or fewer, your film will be processed in one to two business days.
  • Additional information: To get your film developed, download, print, and complete the order form and the prepaid mailing label, and send in your film.
  • Learn more at The Photo Place Inc website 

5. Sharp Film Processing

  • Cost:
    • Color film:
      • $7 for developing only
      • $9 for developing and CD
      • $12 for developing and one set of  4×6 prints
      • $14 for developing, one set of 4×6 prints, and CD
    • Black and white film:
      • $10 for developing only
      • $12 for developing and CD
      • $15 for developing and one set of 4×6 prints
      • $16 for developing, one set of 4×6 prints, and CD
    • Additional charges for uncut negatives, high-resolution CD, and shipping
  • Time to develop: Depending on the quantity, Sharp Film Processing can process color film in as little as two days and black and white film in as little as three to four days.
  • Additional information: To get your film developed, download, print, and complete the order form. Then, mail the form, payment, and your film to SharpPrints.com, 3306 Mall Dr., Eau Claire, WI 54701
  • Learn more at the Sharp Film Processing website

6. Swan Photo Labs

  • Cost: Starts at $14.99
    • Color film:
      • $14.49 for processing and CD only
      • $14.49 for 24 exposure single 4×6 prints, $17.99 for double prints
      • $16.99 for 36 exposure single 4×6 prints, $19.99 for double prints
    • Black and white film:
      • $14.99 for processing and CD only
      • $19.99 for 24 exposure single 4×6 prints, $24.99 for double prints
      • $23.99 for 36 exposure single 4×6 prints, $29.99 for double prints
  • Time to develop: Processing and printing usually take one day.
  • Additional information: To get your film developed, download, print, and complete either the color order form or black and white order form. If you want to pay online instead of mailing your credit card information, you may do so here. Then, place your film and form in a 6×9 padded envelope, download the free mailing label, and mail your film to Swan Photo Labs.
  • Learn more at the Swan Photo Labs website

In Summary

As you can see, there are many places that still offer 35mm film developing and printing, both online and in person.  You can also have your photos put on high-resolution CDs. Whether you found an old camera in the basement and want to know what’s on it or need to develop disposable cameras that you placed on your wedding reception tables, you now know where to get your 35mm film developed, how much it will cost, and how long you’ll have to wait