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It's Unlikely 'X-Men: Days of Future Past' Will Be Released in 48FPS

by
October 14, 2013
Source: AICN

X-Men: Days of Future Past

A year ago we posted a story with the headline "Is Bryan Singer Shooting X-Men: Days of Future Past in 48FPS 3D?" Looks like we finally have a real answer - yes he is. There's a story going around, originating from sources at Ain't It Cool News, that Singer's X-Men: Days of Future Past was indeed shot in 48FPS (and 3D) and will be released in 48FPS (or HFR) next May. The big reason for keeping all of this on the down low? "The filmmakers played coy because of the negative reaction to the technology when the Hobbit film was released," one source claims. No surprise there. I'm glad to know he's still pushing forward with it.

AICN is claiming that two separate sources have confirmed that Days of Future Past, hitting theaters May 23rd, 2014 next summer, was originally shot in HFR (High Frame Rate) and will be released in 48FPS 3D. This goes along with all of the hints that director Bryan Singer kept dropping over the last year, including that mention from last December at The Hobbit premiere. That also may be the same place he first fell for HFR and decided to make X-Men that way. Here's the new quote AICN received confirming the HFR plans:

X:DoFP was shot in HFR and will be released in 48fps. The filmmakers played coy because of the negative reaction to the technology when the Hobbit film was released, but love the results and will be standing behind a theatrical release in high frame rate.

Despite this news still be unconfirmed by the studio itself, I believe it's true. And I believe the strategy that studios are adopting for HFR movies is to slowly roll out the option, but without focusing any marketing on it (until Avatar 2). As in, we know it'll be there and it'll be offered for those who want it, but until it becomes accepted by all audiences, it will remain a "secret" aspect of a couple major productions. Sounds about right.

Back in March earlier this year, when I interviewed Bryan Singer (for Jack the Giant Slayer), I asked him specifically about HFR and X-Men. At the time, he said: "Some certain people have different feelings about the look. I found it really interesting... It probably wouldn't be practical for X-Men: Days of Future Past. But I wouldn't rule it out for the future." He must've been playing coy because it seems like he changed his mind before shooting began on Days of Future Past and if all these unnamed sources are to be believed, we'll be seeing this new X-Men movie in HFR. I, for one, still think HFR is the future but I also believe we still have another 4 to 5 more years until audiences adjust to the format and embrace it. Only time will tell.

Update! This didn't take long. Variety has published a denial from the studio saying that none of this is true. "Fox isn't sure where the rumor came from but insists the story is false." They don't specify exactly which part of the story is false and no other details are included, but it sounds like they're denying that Days of Future Past will be released in HFR at all. We'll be keeping close watch for any more updates from here.

Update 2: An update on IGN includes this tidbit: "Sources close to the film tell IGN that shooting in 48fps was explored, but the filmmakers ultimately ruled against it." Sounds like they decided not to use HFR after all. Our original post remains above, though the title is now changed to reflect it's "unlikely" position.

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  • ikkf
    Ok, so does 48fps automatically mean you get the soap opera effect? If so, then yuck.
    • Bl00dwerK
      If that movie is like a soap then it'll probably be the one thing they get right. The X-Men are nothing but a mutant soap opera...
    • Chris Groves
      Not necessarily 'automatically'...you have to be careful about HOW you are filming something. As others have said, 3D and action scenes, and things like wide-shots look superb in HFR, it's smaller, more intimate scenes that seem to be adversely affected.
  • Nielsen700
    NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!
    • HyperJ
      I know, right... I just hope they also skip those new-fangled inventions like color and sounds as well.
      • Nielsen700
        Yeah, 48FPS is definitely on the same level as color and sound. My bad.
      • axalon
        I think it's good they're trying to innovate
        • DAVIDPD
          +1 It's better to try and fail, then to never try at all.
          • axalon
            Yeah, man. I thought the action sequences in The Hobbit looked amazing in 48fps. Same with the sweeping shots across the Middle Earth. Maybe they could have some type of variable frame rate? 24fps during the slower paced scenes then crank it up to 48fps when things get really busy on screen.
          • Chris Groves
            Douglas Trumbull is working on just that thing. A process that involves filming at 120 FPS, from which numerous lower frame-rates(60, 48, 24) can be derived, and from which a director can pick and choose when to go high and low with the frame-rates. Because I believe virtually all digital projectors and HDTVs already cruise along at VERY high frame-rates(even standard TV is 60FPS and uses a pull-down affect to show 24FPS footage) and so you essentially get the same pixels held on the screen longer. The process Trumbull has a patent on would give you the option of providing the additional information to show. It's a little complex. But let's saw a screen is running at 48 FPS, but is showing 24 FPS content. It simply holds each frame on the screen for 1/24th of a second, flashing each 'pixel/frame' twice. With 48 FPS content, it would flash each one once, making room for the extra information. TO PUT IT SIMPLY - There is absolutely a process where one could adjust frame-rates within a film from scene to scene. Working with digital projection and presentation this is possible. Back in the film days, you couldn't have a film reel adjust projection speed at random points in the movie(to my knowledge)
  • http://www.youtube.com/user/skazillashmack Danimal
    Not a fan of 48fps at all. Saw the Hobbit in 48fps, and while I will say it made 3D look incredible, it completely took away from the film. Would have completely ruined it for me if I hadn't seen it in 24fps before that. I'm glad I got to experience it though.
  • Chris Groves
    The thing about HFR, that master Douglas Trumbull always illustrated, and reiterated when talking about The Hobbit...is that you can't shoot it like you shoot a typical movie. He speaks about how you need to abandon or change the traditional "cinematic language" because the visual you are getting is much closer to "real life" so you need to film it more as though you are 'looking through a window into reality, and not just watching a movie' Instead of dicing a sequence up into close ups and over the shoulders, perhaps a single, wide shot of both individuals would be best, or one long POV shot from just one character's perspective. Trumbull has spoken about how Kubrick tried to get away from traditional shooting techniques on 2001. Stating that he wanted to make a first person experience, not a third person experience. Just as there are right and wrong ways to shoot 3D(Some films are amazing while others are just bad) there are better and worse ways to translate the film-making process into HFR. HFR isn't really here to replace 24 FPS, but it's here to present an alternative, different cinematic experience, more of an immersion into events than just watching them. I think there is an avenue for that. Unfortunately, like 3D, we might have to wait until James Cameron comes along with the Avatar sequels for people to really buy the notion that 'When HFR is done right, it's mind-blowing' Gravity, for example, would have been twice as visceral and immersing if it had been filmed with HFR, because it was ALL about making YOU feel as if you were in the film, not just watching it.
    • cg
      You make a good point, but a film makers job is always to allow the audience to immerse themselves into a film. The way you write it seems as though no film maker has been able to do this up until the use of HFR. I would have to disagree. The HFR "look" is something that to me is aesthetically unappealing as opposed to the look of 24fps. It does, like many have stated have that "soap opera" look where everything is so smooth. It's missing that grit and that feel of film (even when shot on digital at 24fps). When I go to the cinema I go for a movie and its aesthetic appeal and quality, its sound etc. Not for a movie that has those qualities but hidden behind and new look.
      • Chris Groves
        Regarding the 'immersion' I was more-so trying to say that: The techniques that might immerse an audience in a 24 FPS film might not immerse them with a HFR film, meaning the techniques have to change. Just as a shot that is great in 2D might not work in 3D(and vice-versa). I mean, movies like Avatar, Pacific Rim, Life of Pi and Gravity were superb in 3D. But the shaky-cam style of Michael Bay or the rather shaky "snap-zooms" in Man of Steel probably wouldn't translate as well. A film like Cloverfield makes no sense to show in 3D. Frame-rates are similar in my opinion, I'm not saying you don't get immersion until you go HFR, but you have to make adjustments to get the higher level of immersion that HFR CAN(but not always does) yield. Ultimately, I don't think "traditional" films and styles will be the best fit for HFR. I think 24 FPS and HFR films might wind up being quite different stylistically and aesthetically.
        • Ry
          The future I really think is 48FPS or higher that includes motion blur to imitate our natural viewing experience.
  • DAVIDPD
    I'd see it in 48.
  • SV7
    I go to the movies to watch films on a big screen. Watching 3d thru glasses make the screen look small, like it's a little play in front of my eyes. And the glasses annoy me. And the bad conversions of some films totally ruined the experience for me (Star Trek into Darkness was one - worst looking 3d ever - was this just my screening?). I love going to the movies and watching a movie projected onto a big, 2d screen.
    • Jacob Denton
      I agree. I believe that was one of the main reasons Del Toro spoke against releasing Pacific Rim in 3D. However, I absolutely loved the HFR in The Hobbit and it really made the 3D enjoyable. I feel it outweighs 3D in my opinion. I would see movies in 3D if they were in HFR, or at least some films for sure.
  • cobrazombie
    Good call. 24fps is the sweet spot for cinema. Maybe a variable frame rate would look better, but the technology needs more development and testing before burdening theater chains with more half-satisfactory upgrades.
  • Such heroic nonsense
    3D is overrated!
  • sanch
    Give 48 fps more time !

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