James Cameron Thinks All Entertainment Will Inevitably Become 3D

August 22, 2013
Source: BBC

James Cameron

Thanks mostly to James Cameron and the success of Avatar, movie theaters and audiences began embracing 3D technology like gangbusters, for better or worse. While there have certainly been milestone films utilizing the third dimension element in theaters, many more have failed with hasty post-production conversions done for the box office buck, with no regard for whether or not it actually enhances the theatrical experience. As with all technology, it will get better with time, and to that end, that's why the director of Aliens and Titanic thinks that eventually all entertainment will be presented in 3D. More below!

On the BBC (via The Playlist), Cameron said, "For me it's absolutely inevitable that entertainment will be 3D, it'll all be 3D eventually, because that's how we see the world. When it's correct and convenient for us, we pre-select for that as the premium experience." Obviously he's speaking about filmed entertainment since there are plenty of other forms of entertainment that are literally 3D such as plays, sporting events and more. His biggest piece of evidence for this fact is that three out of the last four Oscar winners for cinematography went to movies that were filmed in 3D: Avatar, Hugo and Life of Pi.

Thankfully, Cameron also acknowledges that terrible conversions have tainted the medium, in addition to cable networks dropping their 3D broadcast programming, but he thinks that the technology will ultimately become a mainstay and potentially the default form of visual entertainment. But for now, with 3D ticket sales dropping to a new low, audiences don't feel as compelled to catch a film in 3D. That might have more to do with the extra cost of seeing a movie with really uncomfortable, cheap glasses then feelings on 3D itself, but we won't know that until 3D grows more over the years and invades homes.

How do you feel about 3D? Do you think it will become the default for visual entertainment?

Find more posts: 3D News, Discuss, Movie News



Star Trek is the only film I went to see in both mediums and I much prefered traditional 3d over the stereoscopic 3d. Action is more difficult to follow and I never stop realising I'm watching a film, that forth wall stuff, I don't think you can put it all down to the glasses either. It worked well in every animation I've seen, I'll give it that

Richie G on Aug 22, 2013


traditional 3d?

Linkfx on Aug 22, 2013


"Those who don't remember the past are condemned to repeat it." We flirted with 3-D in the 50's (House of Wax, Creature from the Black Lagoon, etc.), we tried it in the 80's (Treasure of the Four Crowns, Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone, etc.) and we're trying it in the 10's. So, by my watch, every 30 years we're going to try 3-D and fail miserably. See ya'll in 2040 with your dorky glasses!

jmesserman on Aug 22, 2013


'fail miserably' is hardly what has been happening with Digital 3D. It's just about making sure that the technology doesn't stagnate. 3D films have caused some of my most memorable theatrical experiences ever, Avatar, Life of Pi, Pacific Rim. It's about brightness, it's about filming techniques, and quite possibly about higher frame-rates(and filming in those frame-rates properly)

Chris Groves on Aug 22, 2013


Chris I'm probably the wrong person to comment on this anyway. I'm one of those curmudgeonly curs who goes to the cinema for solid storytelling, quality acting, precision directing. All the other hogwash is just distraction and noise to me. So yes, I'm outing myself as 'that guy who is in the 2-D line for Star Trek Into Darkness and Man of Steel.' To a guy like me, the ultimate 'cinema presentation process' is a great screenplay... 🙂

jmesserman on Aug 22, 2013


Well said jmesserman

Payne by name on Aug 23, 2013


So I'm guessing you see an absurd number of stage-plays? Obviously those things are important, that goes without saying. But there is a reason films aren't projected in grainy black and white any more. People LIKE a good visual presentation. It's the reason HD TVs caught on. If the presentation of a film didn't matter...then visual technology wouldn't improve. It's not the end-all-be-all. But it's important. I don't see EVERY movie that comes out in 3D in 3D...because some films are just better suited for it. But I saw Pacific Rim in IMAX 3D and it was the best time I had in a theater since The Avengers. I was simply countering your point. 3D doesn't keep a movie from having good screenwriting no more than being in 2D gives a movie a better screenplay...they are totally different aspects. There Will Be Blood being shot in 3D would not have made Daniel Day-Lewis give a less legendary performance. I'm saying that 3D is a viable technology when done right. If you watch a low-budget, straight to DVD film with god-awful's easy to poke fun and think lowly of CGI as a wholr. But you look at how it's implemented in Jurassic Park or Avatar...and it changes the story. EVERY aspect of film, acting, directing, writing, effects, cinematography, and yes, even 3D....can be done in a way that makes you doubt why you love movies so much as well as in a way that makes your jaw hit the floor. It's not a matter of 'definitively good' and 'definitively bad'

Chris Groves on Aug 23, 2013


I cannot stand 3D it has been awful. Avatar sucked as a movie and as a 3D film as well. It isn't done to enhance the film , simply to charge a 40% premium price for the ticket for a money grab. I would rather all theatres be IMAX (not fakemax) screens and films made for the format, instead of trying to shove 3D gimics down the audiences throats.

hi hello on Aug 22, 2013


Avatar sucked as a movie? Keep telling yourself that. The rest of the planet didn't think so.

Sagamanus on Aug 22, 2013


Why? Because box office dollars equals quality? By that logic, Michael Bayhem's Transformers are some of the best movies ever made. It's OK you liked Avatar, but don't speak for the rest of the planet, please.

cobrazombie on Aug 22, 2013


Avatar is quality. The rest of the planet also thinks so. I assume you liked the avengers. It made money but no where near as much as avatar. But still a lot. What if I told you the avengers sucked and that money wasn't everything as my argument?

Sagamanus on Aug 22, 2013


Transformers, Alice, Pirates of the Caribbean, Iron Man 3....I would add more, but the I'd get crucified 😀

dawko on Aug 22, 2013


Don't forget the avengers and man of steel.

Sagamanus on Aug 22, 2013


Holograms are the way of the future, sorry.

BinaryChaos on Aug 22, 2013


Yeah does he mean holograms or 3D television sets? Holograms will no doubt be the future but I can't imagine people wearing those ridiculous glasses every time they want to watch something.

axalon on Aug 22, 2013


I think he meant any device carrying a screen will be in the 3D format just like the Nintendo DS 3D handheld game that doesn't require glasses to get the 3D full effect. There are already screens out there that can produce 3D without using glasses and the Nintendo DS 3D was the first in the market to reach the mass public. Many theatres haven't adapted to such a screen and I don't know the reasoning behind that but the glasses are practically unnecessary now! Not a lot of people are aware of that unfortunately. There is already a breakthrough in hologram projecting in using mirrors to manipulate a 2D image to look like hologram projection and I'm telling you it is very impressive!

BinaryChaos on Aug 22, 2013


The reason you only see that technology in devices like the Nintendo DS is because it only works from a fixed prospective. It won't work in a theater or on your TV because only people sitting within the correct viewing angle would see the effects properly.

Robb on Aug 22, 2013


Physicist say all the problems like viewing angles for no glasses 3d can be solved, I watched a video not too long ago about that with Dr. Kaku. Eventually we will see screens movies theater size that can do this. They just have to go through this beginning stages to get to that point. Like how they had to go ahead and make movies in black and white to get to color. If the technology sits on the shelf, it doesn't improve.

tonhogg on Aug 28, 2013


I think he's gone crazy.

germss on Aug 22, 2013


The technology just needs to advance. That's one of the problems. It's such a burden for theaters to be constantly evolving. It was hard enough to get all theaters to adapt to Digital 3D, what are the next steps? There are NUMEROUS things about 3D that can/need to be constantly improving. 3D filming techniques(literally capturing better 3D imagery), the glasses being more comfortable, and the projection being brighter...little things like that make a world of difference. But 'superior film viewing' is sort of pulling in two directions. On one hand, you have the immersion of 3D, which is great...but digital cameras don't capture QUITE as much detail in the imagery. On the other end, audiences gravitate toward IMAX theaters and movies with scenes shot with IMAX cameras, where it's about bigger, brighter screens and a a level of image quality and detail that is un-matched. Film technology is improving and pulling in so many different directions, there is no telling just where it could settle.

Chris Groves on Aug 22, 2013


Not with this tech Jim. Glad the sales are falling finally. I'll certainly never see a 3D movie again (with current gen tech) if it can be helped. IMAX? Sure - I'll shell out a few bucks for that.

avconsumer2 on Aug 22, 2013


He's the worst.

Jackson on Aug 22, 2013


Fuck the 3D trend.

Blake Sturchio on Aug 22, 2013


3d is not the future. It is fun though.

Linkfx on Aug 22, 2013


I think all that money has gone to his Jimbo's head. No amount of Avatard movies will force people to like 3D.

cobrazombie on Aug 22, 2013


Wake me when you don't need glasses to watch 3D. Until then it's another fad-turd. I don't even know what that is but I'm tired and it's the most insulting thing I can think of in this state of mind. Just to whinge further, who is the idiot who invented Dolby 3D and why is it still in theatres? 3D is bad enough but sometimes in smaller cities one doesn't get too many choices and the only way to see a movie you really want to see on the big screen is in this hideous format.

Ross Carroll on Aug 24, 2013

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