Spaced Ranger said:
... I'm not sure it's at all clear that projection prints like these would provide noticeably more detail--perhaps even less.
Could this really be true?
Yes. Remeber, the Blu Rays, even with their issues, are sourced directly from the original source element, and each frame is scanned with care. Most of the issues with the bluray occur after that point, as people mess with the image.
By comparison, a 35mm general release print is usually scanned and printed from something other than the original elements. Theys are often created under rushed circumstances; trying to deliver thousands of prints to thousands of theaters to make release date. For release prints, Time and cost are more important that quality. In pristine qualiity, its not a given that 35mm release print will contain more detail than a bluray. After arriving at a theater, they degrade further as they are handled by staff, moved, spliced, rewound, and played over and over, becoming more damaged with every step.