Bobby Jaffe, the chairman Legend Films (3D movie conversion company) – 3D conversion mostly suits action films, such as Top Gun or The Matrix, but Avatar proved it’s best to use the technology to immerse the audience in the story rather than throw things at them. This is the new, more sophisticated era of 3-D.
University of Southern California reported that after seeing a 3-D film in the cinema in 2009, 40% of people would prefer to watch television in 3-D, too.
Studio executives are drawing up schedules of popular films that will be “retro-fitted” with 3-D technology after the science fiction blockbuster. Experts now predict that 3-D will become the new multiplex standard within five years.
Retro-fitting a screen classic with 3-D imagery could take as little as four months, using software to manipulate a digital copy of the film.
Last week technicians at Weta, the production company that had worked on the trilogy, said they had experimented with 3-D battle scenes and proclaimed them to be “gob-smacking”.
The Lord of the Rings is expected to be re-released after Jackson has finished producing the two-part version of JRR Tolkien’s The Hobbit over the next two years. This would mean that a 3-D version of The Fellowship of the Ring, the first part of the trilogy, could be in cinemas by Christmas 2012.
It may be beaten to the screen by a revamped version of Star Wars. George Lucas, the director, spent $13m filming the original in 1976, added special effects in 1997 and 2004, and will now spend another $10m to change it into a 3-D spectacular.
Wired has a list of movies that they would like to see getting a 3D upgrade. However, I think all action blockbusters will get remade into 3D and it will just be question of where the cutoff is for people being willing to make a trip to the theater to see a re-release.
The IMAX version of “Avatar” has pulled in more than $60 million at the box office, about 15% of the movie’s overall $420 million take in the U.S. so far. Still, IMAX appears to have room to grow — the IMAX version of “Avatar” plays on only 5% of the total screens showing the movie.
3-D TV coming soon to your living room, that’s why more films may be made especially with IMAX in mind. So instead of making a movie and deciding to show it in 3-D on IMAX as an afterthought, IMAX technology will be part of the original vision and plan for the film.
“If you can create a spectacle, they will come, as we have no doubt seen with ‘Avatar’,” Bock said.
As of September 30, 2009, there were 403 IMAX theatres (280 commercial, 123 institutional) operating in 44 countries.
Imax already had expansion underway in Asia. The Canadian company has 20 theaters in China, and Don Savant, senior vp and managing director, Asia Pacific, said that by 2013, Imax would have more than 30 theaters in commercial multiplexes in China.
Expect a faster expansion of Imax theaters with double the current number or more by 2015.