EDITORIALS

Robin Hood Might Go 3D, Too? Will 2010 Be the Year of 3D?

by
December 24, 2009
Source: The Wrap

Robin Hood in 3D

Okay, I know that 3D has been around since 1890, so it's already had plenty of time to shine, and 2010 probably won't be different than any other year before it. Or will it? This is the second rumor we've heard in the last week about a major movie being converted to 3D (the other one was Clash of the Titans). Might the success of Avatar have something to do with it? And more importantly, were the studio execs really waiting to see if Avatar would fail (because of its 3D) before deciding to jump on the bandwagon and convert all of their event movies to 3D, too? Sorry for so many damn questions, but there's a lot on my mind right now!

Sharon Waxman of The Wrap ran an article titled Hollywood Seized by 3D Mania. In it, she mentions that Terminator 2 is on the "fast-track" to be converted and re-released in 3D. We first heard that James Cameron was going to go back and convert some of his older movies to 3D (including Titanic) back in September, so that isn't exactly news. She adds that George Lucas is "exploring a 3D version of Star Wars," which we've also heard before, and that Spielberg wants to convert Jurassic Park to 3D as well. So starting in 2010, I think we're definitely going to see this "3D mania" really take off with an overload of 3D movies.

Interestingly, she also mentions that "Ridley Scott is breathing down the neck of executives at Universal to get them to approve making a 3D version of... Robin Hood, according to one person close to the project." She says that it would only cost an additional $7 to $8 million to convert that movie to 3D. Is it really that inexpensive compared to the $200 million budget? "The question is -- what will that add to the box-office total?" And that is a very good question. Once people start to notice that the 3D is gimmicky and it wasn't shot with 3D in mind (like Avatar was), they may get turned off. Who knows if it'll even happen anyway?

What would James Cameron think about all of this? We know that he doesn't like converting live-action movies shot on regular cameras to 3D. Late last year, he publicly criticized Tim Burton for doing this with Alice on Wonderland, saying that it "doesn't make any sense to shoot in 2D and convert to 3D." So although it's his beautiful movie Avatar that is causing Hollywood to go 3D crazy, I have a feeling that he wouldn't be happy with everything they're doing now. The studio execs are all hungry for 3D and are going to convert almost everything they can (including summer tentpoles). But will the 3D even look good? Probably not.

"You wouldn't want to remake Star Wars, or Close Encounters, just because you can do it in 3D. It's bad. Then you're just back into terrible remakes of good movies," producer Gavin Polone told The Wrap. Polone is developing the sequel to Zombieland, which as we already know will be in 3D as well. "Zombieland makes a lot of sense -- it's an action movie, there's stuff coming at the camera. We'll write to it. You don't want to make a heavy drama that way." Of course he's right, but I don't think that's the concern. My concern is that Hollywood is going to convert every damn action movie to 3D just because Avatar made over $100 million.

And that's why I'm wondering if 2010 is going to be "the year of 3D?" The new year arrives in only eight more days and I can bet that as soon as it hits, we're going to start hearing about lots more 3D projects. Not only new stuff in the works for the future, but movies that are coming out next year may also be converted to 3D - like Clash of the Titans and Robin Hood. I don't think Gavin Polone gets it though. Its not about "stuff coming at the camera." Did he even see Avatar in 3D? The reason the 3D in that movie was so amazing was because Cameron used it to immerse people in that world, not make things pop out of the screen at them!

This started as news about Ridley Scott's Robin Hood potentially going 3D and turned into an editorial on the future of 3D . I'm probably just rambling by now, but I had a lot on my mind that I wanted to say. Now it's your turn to chime in. After seeing Avatar, do you want to see movies like Robin Hood in 3D?

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  • Steven Kar
    They're going to convert T2 into 3D without Cameron's blessing?
  • Haha!
    3D has no place in film! When are people going to realise this? 3D adds nothing to the experience. Visuals are meant to enhance the film, not the image. 3D belongs in videogames and rides, not a feature film. And how will Robin Hood in 3D change your life? Russell Crowe's gigantic head coming out of the screen? Give me a break. 3D will be dead again in a few years when audieces will wake up and find that 3D adds nothing to film. Film is fine as it is. If you need a 3D gimmick plastered over to sell the film, then there is something awfully wrong in the world today.
  • Van Castle
    I have to say I don't like the idea of ROBIN HOOD being converted to 3D. I'm glad that James Cameron tried pointing out that a movie shot on 2D should not be converted; it isn't the same image. And yes, the great amazing incredible aspect about Avatar's 3D was that it pulled you into the world, it made the world of Pandora life-like. In all honesty, I think 3D should remain limited. It should only be used for special films that have something magical about them which would render its life-like qualities much more applicable. If CLASH OF THE TITANS were shot in 3D, then I'd understand, because it creates a completely different atmosphere, with creatures and ancient worlds. Use 3D to immerse us into worlds we don't see everyday. Tarsem's new project WAR OF THE GODS, or Guillermo Del Toro's THE HOBBIT could be shot in 3D and displayed, because these are new worlds, and creating them lifelike will add to its magic. Jurassic Park is a movie that could apply for 3D filming, but it was made sixteen years ago. Leave it be. Only films which have yet to be filmed can be considered for 3D, and that's if they film it that way, in order to immerse you into a completely different world. I think Ridley Scott should wait to try out the 3D cameras for his two futuristic sci-fi projects: BRAVE NEW WORLD & THE FOREVER WAR. Those films incorporate worlds which 3D would make irresistible to watch and analyze. James Cameron changed the way 3D works. Let's respect it and do it right.
  • Cineprog
    I first thing i saw Alice in wounderland Trailer on front of Avatar last week the trailer was in 3D with Burton shooting in 2D and Converting to 3D the Depth was not there it was not as good as Avatar Depth, in my opion the Tech is not quite there yet to convert 2D movies in to 3D this is Diffrant if it is a CG movie like Toy Story.. some shot will work, some won't in the convertions from 2D movie to 3D. it also starts to become Gimmicky.
  • http://www.westernoutlaw.com Malkie
    Here we go again. Seems the fad for 3D rears its ugly head every ten years or so. YawN.
  • beavis
    i've never seen a movie (avatar included) in which 3D added anything i felt i was missing without the 3D......it's a gimmick that's been tried before. and #3.....with all respect - cameron didn't change ANYTHING as far as i'm concerned. yea, he made a great movie. BUT, it wasn't the first time a good movie has been made. besides, i'd argue that there are other directors (if given the budget of a third-world country and over a DECADE to make it) who could do the same style of movie. personally, i liked the LotR movies much more than avatar. and it has NOTHING to do with jackson or cameron.......i just think the movies are better. (of course - LotR have the advantage of the books storyline) so, i can't respect something (3D) i care nothing about.
  • samuel j
    #2 is right
  • Scott
    This reminds me of how some of the tv shows in the mid-60's started using a bunch of garish colors, JUST because color tv was becoming widely available to viewers. The original Star Trek series suffers immensely from this, as every single thing in the show, the sets, the costumes, and even the lighting is multi-colored, as though this would help 'push' that new technology. All it does is detract from the experience, and I tend to think that in a few years, when 3-D is either the norm or it's gone, it will be just as painfully clear when watching these new movies that have stuff 'popping out' everywhere.
  • Tra la la la la di da
    I find it hilarious that this article is above the copout one. It's just awesome! I'm sorry Avatar did nothing. New Moon was double that of Avatar. If it was 3D, yeah, things could have changed because of the people but Cameron's movie was just a another hyped action movie. Wasn't overly spectacular, 3D was the same I felt, and the visuals were nothing I haven't seen before. All he had was natives v marines story again with stuff blowing up. I was really hoping Monsters v Aliens would kill 3D but it drags on. It needs to die.
  • http://scottwblack.tumblr.com Scott
    "Will 2010 Be the Year of 3D?" I hope to hell not.
  • Raj
    It's obvious that studios have chosen to go 3-D as a means of marginalizing movie ripping and downloading. You can't copy a 3D movie and watch it on your computer... or even TV. Even casual movie goers who might have ordinarily just waited for the DVD, decide well I guess this is one we have to go see in the theater... That's why 3D is here to stay... and the industry has been so gung ho about it.
  • http://twitter.com/gimmesumsuga Mathieu
    Cameron saying in reference to Alice in Wonderland that it "doesn't make any sense to shoot in 2D and convert to 3D." Well, it makes one kind of sense. Financial sense. Burton and his producer already said that it was much cheaper to do it this way and that after extensive testing no one could tell the difference between the same footage shot on the two different cameras. I'm all for 3D films being made in 3D rather than converted, but as Alice was designed from the outset to work in 3D as well as 2D rather than 2D compositions adapted to meet demand for the latest fad, I think that movie will fit the technology far better than Robin Hood will. Having said that, Scott had already been shown scenes from Avatar by Cameron and was blown away. He's been planning to shoot his forthcoming sci-fi projects in 3D, so maybe he had his conversations with Cameron in the back of his mind while shooting Robin Hood? I guess we'll find out...
  • sumonesumtime
    I saw Avatar two days ago and almost went back to see it yesterday. I was a big sceptic regarding all the hubbub about the movie. But I think it changed movie making. The shots without any CGI were arresting and the shots that were mostly CGI were amazing. I've never experienced something so visually stunning on a big screen. I'm an aspiring filmmaker and to me the goal of a film, whether it's Avatar or Ballast, is to create a world that is real enough to capture the audience and have them believe in that world. The 3D depth that James Cameron created with Avatar enhanced the reality in a drastic way, in my opinion. I think everything should be shot in 3D. Not just big budget action. To me it seems that this is the next step in movies. And all the naysayers are holding on to some type of purity, just as many do when any art form changes.
  • beavis
    no, #14.........i'm not holding onto anything. i saw avatar and it was a good movie - that's all. each classic movie that's created stands on it's own merits. your notion of a movie having to have a "world that is real enough to capture the audience and have them believe in that world" and that only 3D can enhance reality in a drastic way is not true. look at the "black and white" era: movies like "grapes of wrath, 12 angry men", and "raisin in the sun" are classics which didn't need 3D to show the situations and struggles/emotions of the time. i could go on and on with a long list of great movies that are still a good watch today and NONE of them had 3D.' 3D will never become the norm due to eveyone having to change their tv, video players, and having to buy expensive 3D glasses. then there will be the increased cost on top of the already high cost of HD movie discs. HD is still in the process of being adopted by the mainstream population - not to mention many are just now starting to look into buying HD tvs.......let alone HD tvs capable of playing 3D movies.(which is a newer tech than HD tvs) and why would anyone interested in an HD tv worry about if it has 3D capability? they'd have to pay more and there are 0 movies which they could buy to take advantage of it! nope. except for a very small minority, the general public isn't that interested in 3D. if it weren't for online sites like this, very few people tout 3D in any appreciable way. nope - 3D isn't necessary and will never be the norm.
  • xerxex
    these directors are sell outs, 3-D is in fact the death of cinema.
  • germs
    We should all fight the studios and avoid converted 3D movies. Until we show them that it doesn't guarantee box office success, they will continue to abuse the tech.
  • Andrew
    @ #9 Tra la la... I find it hilarious that people like you are still saying "the visuals weren't anything you hadn't seen before". Um... just not true. Because no one has used this tech before. It simply isn't possible to say that. As reinforcement, I direct you to any serious review. The "hater" comments just don't stick when referring to the visuals. Sorry, you're more than welcome to pick something else to hate on if you want...
  • Neeyon
    I felt compelled to add a comment regarding this topic since I have been following the development of 3D in it's recent incarnation. One of the most compelling reasons studio execs are excited to convert upcoming film projects to 3D is the added security it adds to their film from piracy. Sure it will be a while (if ever)before a film will be released in 3D format only. But the studio execs are all watching with anticipation how their customers will react to 3D films. Now if a film was to be released in 3D only and the general public gobbles it right up, more will definitely follow. With the growing concern that they have towards piracy and how to combat it, James Cameron may have just provided the studios with a compelling reason to add 3D to upcoming projects.
  • one
    3D is nothing more than a sales gimick. It adds nothing to the overall experience of a movie and once you get it on Bluray or DVD...it doesnt matter anyway! I respect Ridley alot, he is one of the few film greats, but I do disagree with him on this choice to push Robin Hood into 3D...not a good idea.
  • Cody
    No just no....why??! This movie doesnt need this, with movies like avatar its understandable but a Robin hood epic. I just dont understand how some people in hollywood could even think of this shit. What some sword coming out of the screen and distrcting me, now Im good. If this is true Ill be sure to see it normal.
  • Cody
    No just no....why??! This movie doesnt need this, with movies like avatar its understandable but a Robin hood epic. I just dont understand how some people in hollywood could even think of this shit. What some sword coming out of the screen and distrcting me, now Im good. If this is true Ill be sure to see it normal.
  • beavis
    #17.....you're right that the tech hasn't been used before - but wrong if you're saying no movie ever looked as good. that's not true at all. (and i don't need a review - IV'E SEEN IT) i liked avatar.the visuals were impressive; but, the story was weak with "so-so" acting. it was a good watch; however, i think there have been many movies that were of better overall quality than avatar. (it takes more than visuals) so andrew,if you feel this is the "best" movie ever made - you really need to watch more movies. even with avatars great visuals/effects - it wouldn't make my all-time top 20. it's good.......not great.
  • Gex
    Avatar is overrated, and so is 3D. Yeah the new 3D is nice, but it shouldn't be mainstream (especially with the whole 3D home television thing). It should only be done on certain occassions for certain movies. But Hollywood won't do that, because they're just a bunch of cash hogs who couldn't care less about what we think. Avatar was just a nice experiment. I would like to see some future movies in that type of 3D, but at the same time I wouldn't feel like I missed out on much if I saw the same movie in 2D.
  • giraffic
    I still have not seen a movie in 3D and had no plans to, but then... I haven't seen Avatar either, and I want to kill myself for it, but I refuse to NOT watch it in IMAX.
  • tir na nog
    3d already exists,its called the theatre......Sam Mendes. I can see why a film like avatar would work with huge vistas,and does,kind of{in some scene's}.But other films,eg your average movie,is there a point? And Avatar was released in 2d and 3d,for people who dont like 3d,which does'nt really separate it from downloadable content unless you go 3d. Over-rated film,as an a event it was great,there's a differance.Its early days for this technology,3d cgi-interacting,it will improve.Who would'nt want to see the opening 20 mins of Gladiator or saving Private Ryan in seamless 3d.
  • Tony R
    I'm seeing a lot of comments of movies don't need 3d and why are the movie studios forcing this on us. My question is where have you guys been the last 4 years? I will tell you why movies are getting 3d, a small little problem called way more ticket sales. This whole thing started because since Polar Express in 2004 the 3d version has sold way more tickets than the 2d version. Even though way more theaters are showing the 2d versions of these movies, people are by passing it and going to the 3d version. Many mulitpexes have the 2d version in one room and the 3d version in another. Selling 2 3d tickets to every 1 2d ticket sold. The public has voted with its dallor bills and hollywood answered their request for more 3d. Sorry you don't like it but more people voted for it than against it. Now if for every 1 3d ticket sold 3 or 5 2d tickets sold then you would see 3d not getting the exposure it has. These arguments make no sense if you look at the numbers, which obviously many are not.
  • d1rEct
    Bloody 3D is over the top.
  • http://www.elte.com Lighting Toronto
    Gawd I REALLY hope that this 2D >> 3D conversion fad dies out quick! If you using 3D cameras and/or CGI fine it adds to the movie. Otherwise you are just giving us a headache for no good reason (Those glasses can be hard on the eyes. My friend had a splitting headache after watching avatar.. 3 hour movie after all)
  • http://firstshowing.net Nathaniel
    Hey its worth it. I havent really watched a 3D movie but i know it'd be COOL... Besides its 50-50.... depends on their budget and maybe even public demand for a more entertaining, moving and even a scarier movie. With Avatar starting it off with a BANG surely more will follow. ^__^V
  • paul
    This is an interesting article on Avatar http://www.moneyteachers.org/Deadmanmusings8.htm
  • Atarien
    2d is boring and un-interactive. Why not go 3d on everything? Staying 2d is like playing an N64 when you have a Wii available. Maybe u like to go back to it once in a while for nostalgic purposes, but it's nothing when compared with wii fun.

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