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» Film-Tech Forum   » Operations   » Large Format Forum   » Hollywood films to hit the big, big screen (Page 1)

 
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Author Topic: Hollywood films to hit the big, big screen
Bob Brown
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 146
From: Grand Rapids, MI
Registered: Apr 2002


 - posted 11-27-2002 04:47 PM      Profile for Bob Brown   Author's Homepage   Email Bob Brown   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Well, anyone have any comments?

Hollywood blockbusters will be shown on Imax screens next year, ushering in what could be one of the biggest revolutions in film-going since Cinemascope.

Up to now, the nine giant Imax cinemas in Britain have been limited to showing the small number of films shot using specially adapted cameras, usually mountaineering or adventure epics, educational films or the handful of Walt Disney animated features shot in the format.

But a breakthrough in remastering technology will allow all films to be adapted to be shown on the massive seven-storey-high wrap-around screens. The technique was pioneered on Ron Howard's film Apollo 13, about the disastrous US mission to the moon, and proved a huge hit again this month in the US with Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones.

Although Imax bosses yesterday refused to divulge which film would be first to be seen at the same time as it was released in conventional cinemas, there is strong specula tion it could be the third instalment of the Lord of the Rings trilogy .

Imax's joint chief executive Brad Wechsler said the company planned to release one remastered classic "like Lawrence of Arabia, and two big event-type pictures like Harry Potter III and Lord of the Rings on the same day as the normal release next year".

Imax technicians in Toronto have done tests on Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone and the first Lord of the Rings film. Its director, Peter Jackson, said: "This is the way I dreamt my movie would be shown."

Mr Wechsler said if the third part of the Rings were shown, it would not be cut, unlike Apollo 13, which lost nearly a fifth of its length in the transition to the very big screen. Star Wars was also cut, apparently because Imax projector booths cannot handle films longer than two hours. "We will probably have to put in an intermission for the public to recover, it might be a little overwhelming for them. Imax are not like normal cinemas, it's far more full-on," Mr Wechsler said.

He said at between $2m and $4m, the cost of transferring films to Imax was cheap by Hollywood standards. "Putting a film on an Imax screen can turn a good film into a great film, and make a great one better. People will go to see an Imax film long after it has stopped showing in normal cinemas."

Admission prices to see an Imax version of a blockbuster will be a third more than normal cinemas.

It could be five years, however, before the first 3D films are released at the same time as their two-dimensional counterparts in multiplexes. But Mr Wechsler claimed it would be relatively easy to release computer-generated animation films like Toy Story and Shrek in 3D versions. "We could have Buzz and Woody flying around Imax cinemas right now with children reaching out to touch them. In fact, the studios were so impressed with our technology there were worried if they showed them in Imaxes no one would go to see them in normal theatres."

The cost of transferring normal films to 3D is likely to be much steeper, close to $10m. That, however, would not stop them making new films in the format, he said.

Imax cinemas are showing a remastered version of Disney's The Lion King over Christmas with one of their own 3D animated features, Santa vs the Snowman.

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Brad Miller
Administrator

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From: Plano, TX (36.2 miles NW of Rockwall)
Registered: May 99


 - posted 11-27-2002 04:49 PM      Profile for Brad Miller   Author's Homepage   Email Brad Miller       Edit/Delete Post 
This is ridiculous. Just bring back normal 70 5 perf and let normal theaters run it on giant sized screens. IMAX's aspect ratio and general theater design leaves much to be desired with the standard composition of Hollywood movies. Leave IMAX to run IMAX-specific films, the way it should be.

This is also not primarily a manager related topic. Moving thread.

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Bob Brown
Expert Film Handler

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From: Grand Rapids, MI
Registered: Apr 2002


 - posted 11-27-2002 04:52 PM      Profile for Bob Brown   Author's Homepage   Email Bob Brown   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
OOPS!! Sorry about that Brad, I was not sure where to put it. [sleep]

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Joe Redifer
You need a beating today

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From: Denver, Colorado
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 - posted 11-27-2002 05:31 PM      Profile for Joe Redifer   Author's Homepage   Email Joe Redifer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I agree with Brad. Can you imagine the ENTIRE Lord of da Ringz movie (any of the three) sitting on an IMAX platter? It can't be done. IMAX cannot handle films that have any sort of length to them. So the movies must be compromised in length. Then there is the screen, which I believe is the same aspect ratio as a TV.

With 5-perf 70mm playing in a real movie theater, it would cost less and be presented in a far more appropriate fashion. This whole IMAX thing boggles my mind.

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Bob Brown
Expert Film Handler

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From: Grand Rapids, MI
Registered: Apr 2002


 - posted 11-27-2002 06:06 PM      Profile for Bob Brown   Author's Homepage   Email Bob Brown   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Joe Said: "Can you imagine the ENTIRE Lord of da Ringz movie (any of the three) sitting on an IMAX platter? It can't be done."

Well I think it can be done. I will leave the why and how's to Adam or Gordon, as I am still a rookie in the IMAX world, but I CANT WAIT to see it!

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Paul Linfesty
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From: Bakersfield, CA, USA
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 - posted 11-27-2002 08:43 PM      Profile for Paul Linfesty   Email Paul Linfesty   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Another vote for Brad. Even ignoring the diff in intended AR (yes, Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings both could be opened up, since they were shot in Super 35 instead of true scope)IMAX is a process of SCALE and HEIGHT. Humans are not MEANT to be shown giant-sized in IMAX; they are supposed to be shown as human-sized. It's the surrounding world that engulfs them, which is why IMAX is really not that suited for dramatic storytelling (see WINGS OF COURAGE as a perfect example). IMAX should juust concentrate on what it does best, museum science, nature and history productions. This melding with Hollywood will probably doom it alltogether.

I fail to understand this rush to IMAX when, as Brad pointed out, 5 perf 70mm(since Im dreaming anyway, maybe IB Technicolor for 70mm too!)would be far more ideal on a properly masked screen in a conventionally-designed theatre is perfectly suited to dramatic storytelling. Hollywood forgets that buzzwords like IMAX have very short lives when the product doesn't live up to the hype.

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Gordon McLeod
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 - posted 11-27-2002 09:26 PM      Profile for Gordon McLeod   Email Gordon McLeod   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Well just do changeovers and then there will be no problem with length

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Michael Schaffer
"Where is the
Boardwalk Hotel?"

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From: Boston, MA
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 - posted 11-27-2002 10:18 PM      Profile for Michael Schaffer   Author's Homepage   Email Michael Schaffer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
As for IMAX 3D you have one print for the left and one for the right eye, it should indeed be possible to run longer shows by changing over between the two prints. Of course, the two 3D prints are supposed to run at the same time, but I guess it would not be a too drastic modification th the system to show them one after another.
Apart from that, I also think it is not a good idea because of the aspect ratio. Obviously IMAX is not doing very well, so they have to develop "new ideas".

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John Walsh
Film God

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From: Connecticut, USA, Earth, Milky Way
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 - posted 11-27-2002 11:04 PM      Profile for John Walsh   Email John Walsh   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
People like large screens, and most multiplexes have smaller screens. To run regular 5/70 films (even if they were avaiable) on the average multiplex screen isn't enough to satisfy the average moviegoer into thinking they are getting something "different" or "better."

Patrons don't care about most techinal details. The aspect ratio doesn't matter (ie: projecting a 1.85 picture on a large format 1.33-ish screen.) After running Beauty & Beast, Lion King, not one patron even mentioned the AR difference.

Personally, I think there may be money in having a large format theater, provided the projector can run regular (35mm) and 70mm films. I don't know how to explain it, but it's the same kind of reasoning some people had when they bought the LOTR DVD when it first came out, then again when the special edition DVD came out. They want the film; then they want even 'more."

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Daryl C. W. O'Shea
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From: Midland Ontario Canada (where Panavision & IMAX lenses come from)
Registered: Jun 2002


 - posted 11-27-2002 11:06 PM      Profile for Daryl C. W. O'Shea   Author's Homepage   Email Daryl C. W. O'Shea   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Michael, the SR projectors are already capable of doing a single changeover during a show.

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William Leland III
Master Film Handler

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From: Charleston, SC,
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 - posted 11-27-2002 11:25 PM      Profile for William Leland III   Author's Homepage   Email William Leland III   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I just became an IMAX operator in July, so naturally I think showing new Hollywood movies on 70mm/15 would rock. The sound is better, the picture is better, look at SWEP:II. There is no comparison to the 35mm format. Who really cars what size the people are. Most IMAX features have people staring in them. Yes, we would have trouble with platters. Challenges are what propel this industry. Intermission would have to used. Brad I don't see why you be apposed to this. It makes film better, new technologies will come of this.

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Brad Miller
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From: Plano, TX (36.2 miles NW of Rockwall)
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 - posted 11-27-2002 11:35 PM      Profile for Brad Miller   Author's Homepage   Email Brad Miller       Edit/Delete Post 
I am opposed to the general idea because at least in the Dallas area IMAX theaters leave much to be desired. We have a choice here of the Cinemark with it's incredibly bad sound, dust issues with the projection and flat screen with the picture hitting the hand railings, or we can go to the IMAX at Fair Park where they are afraid to turn it up past maybe 60-70db or so and watch scratched prints with a honky sound quality to it. Oh yeah, I can't wait.

Also, IMAX by it's nature was designed so that the center point of attention of the image is toward the bottom of the screen. The exact opposite is true of Hollywood films. This forces you to constantly be looking up past an awkward point if you were to watch a mainstream film with it's intended cropping. There is also the argument that just like how people do not like pan and scan videotapes and prefer letterbox, IMAX is destroying the movie in the same manner.

The only "IMAX" presentation I have been impressed with is at the Omni Theater in Fort Worth. Those guys have a great setup and know how to do it right, but I would never watch a Hollywood movie there. If more IMAX theaters were like the presentations I have seen at the Omni, then I might be somewhat interested in checking it out just for kicks. But the sheer design of the 1.33 screen just sucks for Hollywood movies.

IMAX needs to stick with what it does best and stay away from Hollywood films. [thumbsdown] [thumbsdown]

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William Leland III
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From: Charleston, SC,
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 - posted 11-28-2002 12:02 AM      Profile for William Leland III   Author's Homepage   Email William Leland III   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Brad, Sorry to hear about the crappy IMAX theatres, in your area. If you are ever in Charleston come see us. Charleston IMAX Theatre. You won't be disappointed.

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Joe Redifer
You need a beating today

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From: Denver, Colorado
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 - posted 11-28-2002 02:10 AM      Profile for Joe Redifer   Author's Homepage   Email Joe Redifer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Just because it is IMAX does not automatically mean it has better sound than 35mm theaters. I have heard a few IMAX's in my time, and all of them have had their asses kicked BAD by your typical mall theater when it comes to sound.

I find it amusing how people on this forum whine and bitch about proper aspect ratio, but turn a blind eye when it comes to IMAX. Nothing pisses me off more than people who are hipocritical.

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Dick Vaughan
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From: Bradford, West Yorkshire, UK
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 - posted 11-28-2002 03:20 AM      Profile for Dick Vaughan   Author's Homepage   Email Dick Vaughan   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Longest run currently on a single IMAX plate is 120minutes so a SR equipped theatre with 4 120 minute platters could run 4 hours using changeovers [Eek!]

there are plans to introduce a 150 minute platter so up to 5 hours on changeovers [Eek!]

Time to reinforce those projection room floors and beef up those muscles

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