In The Battle Between 3D And IMAX, We All Lose

Illustration for article titled In The Battle Between 3D And IMAX, We All Lose

Now that Dark Knight director Chris Nolan has boasted about shooting his bat-epic on IMAX how many will follow in his footsteps and make movies for the big boy screen? Flight Of The Dragon has announced that it will be going the way of the Bat and filming the live-action dragon flick in 4K resolution for IMAX release. And while it's not particularly scifi, everyone knows that once you get the dragons, zombies and superheroes are never far behind. But with the rise of Avatar and other 3D scifi epics (who also combine IMAX screenings with their 3D techniques) are we about to see a rift between 3D and IMAX technology, as Nolan seems to think? More importantly, is storytelling going to take a backseat to 3D and IMAX whizbangery?


In an interview with, Nolan expresses his disinterest in the 3D craze:

I'm interested in the massive canvas, seeing that larger-than-life canvas that IMAX gives you, and you create a massive quality by the clarity and the size and brightness of the images. So that gives you a great physical sense, like you would get in a 3D movie, but it doesn't diminish the scale of it. So you're still dealing with a huge, larger than life canvas, that I think is the best way to use that format. I also hate wearing those glasses.

Charlotte Huggins, the producer of Dragons and also producer of 3D pictures Journey to the Center of the Earth and Fly Me to the Moon called the change a challenge. "4K [IMAX] is the next challenge ... and the special venue really pushes the envelope," she said.

How many other producers and directors will be abandoning 3D craze and hefting the massive cameras required to shoot a film in 4K.

James Cameron is still intent on playing in both sides of the pool. Never officially stating that he will be releasing Avatar on IMAX but still hinting at the possibility.

So what will happen to our dear little indie house theaters? Will they go the way of the Drive-In making ways for massive IMAX screens and a plethora of strained necks, bad backs and headaches formed by overstimulated corneas? Gone will be the days of pre-drinks before the movie. Have you ever tried to watch an IMAX movie after a bottle of red? Not a good idea.


[Hollywood Reporter]


@riotnrrd: 4K is bad enough (12K ugh)...but add 3D to the mix and watch VFX budgets's hard enough to do the work now, in 3D your tracking has to be perfect - not just very very good - perfect, compositing is a nightmare in 3D and yeah, the amount of data is staggering, not just models, textures and rendered elements, but stuff like shadow maps and all the other stuff that goes into a shot..x2!