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Monday, March 31, 2008

Anything 3D Related Going On At NAB 2008? You Bet!

**SAME DAY UPDATE - There are also some pretty nifty 3D sessions before the conference starts up by way of the Digital Cinema Summit. Check out the battle royal between competing 3D projection companies! Interesting IMAX 3D is not there...

New Dimensions - New Challenges: Real World Experience with 3D
April 12 • 4:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Las Vegas Convention Center S222

Just when you thought you mastered the art of digital video production, along comes stereoscopic production to make your life even more interesting. This session will address some of the interesting challenges and creative solutions that have recently emerged in release of 3D films.

Moderator
- Howard H. Lukk, VP, Production Technology, Walt Disney Studios
Presenters
- Wendy Aylsworth, Sr. Vice President, Technology, Warner Bros.
- John Nicolard, Head of Digital Production, FotoKem Digital Film Services

Stereoscopic Projection Systems
April 13 • 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Las Vegas Convention Center S222

The exploding popularity of 3D motion pictures has fueled dramatic innovation in stereoscopic projection technology. It’s come a long way since the days of cardboard red/blue glasses - and even since last year’s Digital Cinema Summit! Hear first hand about what’s new from the leading innovators in 3D imaging.

Moderator
- David Monk, Professor, EDCF
Panelists
- Simon Cho, CTO, Master Image Co. Ltd
- Joshua Greer, President & Co-Founder, REAL D
- Boyd MacNaughton, President, NuVision/Xpand
- David Schnuelle, Sr. Director, Image Technology, Dolby Laboratories

Stereoscopic Movie Making
April 12 • 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Las Vegas Convention Center S222

3D image capture ha introduced a enw set of creative tools for use by the Cinematographer - along with new challenges. Learn about the technical advancements and creative innovations from today’s pioneers in stereoscopic production.

Moderator
- Buzz Hays, Sr. VFX Producer, Sony Picture Imageworks
Panelists
- Jim Mainard, Head of Production Development, DreamWorks Animation
- Steve Schklair, CEO, 3ality Digital Systems
- David C. Seigle, President, In-Three, Inc.

...and this session which is important to 3D movies as the future lies with laser projection with polarization at the light source:

Spotlight on Projection Technology: Is Laser Light Source Practical?
April 12 • 2:15 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Las Vegas Convention Center S222

The enjoyment of motion pictures is all about lighting up the theater screen with engaging images that tell a story. For over fifty years, short-arc Xenon lamps have provided the light to make movies possible. But is that about to change? Recent advancements in laser technology open the prospect of projection systems with longer life, extraordinary efficiency and a vastly expanded color gamut.

Moderator
- Casey Stack, President, Laser Compliance
Presenters
- Bill Beck, Founder and CEO, Laser Light Engines
- Greg Niven, Exec VP of Marketing, Novalux, Inc.

Thank you to Neil for the heads up - Don't know how I missed all this cool stuff!!

NAB 2008 features a full day of 3D related events! Director Eric Brevig ("Journey To The Center Of The Earth 3D") headlines the day - see his photo below as well as a frame from "U2 3D". The show runs from April 14th to the 17th at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

Check out the schedule for the 3D related activities:

Monday April 14 – Stereoscopic 3-D Film

Powered by Real D 3D

9:45 am – 10:00 am

Welcome and Introduction

10:00 am – 10:30 am

3-D Primer

The ABC’s of Stereoscopic 3-D Image Capture, Content and Exhibition

Phil Streather, CEO, Principal Large Format and 3-D producer and consultant, “Bugs!” (3-D)

10:40 am – 11:40 am

Art of 3-D Filmmaking

Today’s top 3-D filmmakers discuss how to design and compose in 3-D, the creative and technical constraints and opportunities the medium presents, scripts best suited to 3-D realization and how to use 3-D to expand storytelling.

Moderator: Perry Hoberman, USC, Associate Research Professor, USC, School of Cinematic Arts, Interactive Division

Peter Anderson, ASC, 3-D director of photography and VFX supervisor, “U2 3D”; “T2 3-D”; and “MuppetVision 3-D”

Eric Brevig, director, “Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D”; visual effects supervisor, “Men in Black” and “Total Recall” (Academy Award for Special Achievement in Visual Effects)

Phil Captain 3D McNally, global stereoscopic supervisor, DreamWorks Animation; stereoscopic supervisor, “How to Train Your Dragon” (D.A.); “Monsters vs. Aliens” (D.A.); and “Meet the Robinsons” (Disney)

Vince Pace, CEO, Pace; executive producer, “Hannah Montana Concert Film”; 2nd unit director of photography, “Avatar”; and director of photography & producer, “NBA Finals Game #2”

Rick Rothschild, executive show director, SVP, Walt Disney Imagineering; “Mickey’s PhilharMagic” (Walt Disney World Resort); “It’s Tough to be a Bug!” (Disney’s Animal Kingdom); “Captain EO” (Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort)

Sean Phillips, director/cinematographer, MacLeod Productions and director, “Sea Monsters” (3-D); cinematographer/VFX Supervisor, “Magnificent Desolation” (3-D); and cinematographer “Bugs!”

11:50 am – 1:00 pm

Case Study: Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D

Production and postproduction of the first live action/visual effects film created exclusively in 3-D for digital 3-D release.

Moderator: Rob Hummel, president, DALSA Digital Cinema

Eric Brevig (Photo), director, “Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D”; visual effects supervisor “Men in Black” and “Total Recall” (Academy Award for Special Achievement in Visual Effects)

Charlotte Huggins, producer, “Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D”; “Fly Me to the Moon” (3-D); and “Encounter in the Third Dimension”

Ed Marsh, VFX Editor & 3-D Consultant, “Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D”; and editor/creative producer, “Ghosts of the Abyss” and “Aliens of the Deep”

Chuck Shuman, director of photography, “Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D”; director of photography for VFX, “Lord of the Rings I, II, & III” and “The Indian in the Cupboard”

Paul Martin Smith, editor, “Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D”; “Star Wars Episode 1 - The Phantom Menace”; and “Behind Enemy Lines”

1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Lunch

2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Case Study: U2 3D

Expanding the language of 3-D through innovations in sound, image capture, graphics and post.

Moderator: Jim Mainard, head of production development, DreamWorks Animation

Peter Anderson, ASC, 3-D director of photography and VFX supervisor “U2 3D”; “T2 3-D”; and “MuppetVision 3-D”

John Modell, co-founder, 3alty Digital Entertainment; producer, “U2 3D”

Tim Sassoon, president, Sassoon Film Design; “Mummies 3D”; “Sea Monsters”; “Wild Child”

Steve Schklair, CEO, 3ality Digital Systems; 3-D/digital image producer, “U2 3D”

Olivier Wicki, editor, Blue Rock; editor, “U2 3D”; U2 “Original of the Species”; and MAC “Haute Voltage”

3:05 pm – 3:30 pm

Live 3-D Transmission from Los Angeles

Steve Schklair, CEO, 3ality Digital Systems;

Howard Postley, COO/CTO, 3ality Digital Systems


Also I have word that RED is supposed to officially introduce us to their Scarlet 2K Pocket Pro at NAB! That is one product I am really looking forward to seeing. If you are aware of Red you know they make very affordable cameras - their Red One system is ~$16,000 and it is a 4K camera! I believe the Scarlet is going to be a 2K camera and priced in the $3,000 to 5,000 range but hey I could be wrong. Not likely, but hey :-)

Don't forget that the Red Ones can be arranged in 3D configuration! Bob Johnston, Executive Producer at Paradise FX tipped me off on that one...

If you want the full NAB 2008 schedule, I have posted it here. Thanks Rochelle for the updates!


Sunday, March 30, 2008

Tintin Original Artwork Fetches Over $1.2 Million

Wow. The Europeans love Tintin. First of all over 200 million Tintin comics books have been sold worldwide in 6o languages. And now the original oil artwork for the cover of "Tintin in America" just sold for €764,200 (over $1.2m) at a Paris auction (Artcurial) on Saturday.

The auction included 650 original comics of the Belgian creator, Hergé (Georges Remi) who passed away in 1983.

The Tintin frenzy seems to be really picking up in Europe and the chatter from overseas definitely points to a kind of warning to Spielberg, Jackson and company: Do the job right.

Brit teenager Thomas Sangster was also revealed to be the choice to play the Tintin lead last week - quite a week for Tintin fans indeed. Can you feel the momentum building on this? You bet. Kids are going to love it, Europeans are nuts for it and I suspect there will be a hook or two for older audiences in North America announced soon. The worldwide box office on this 3D trilogy could be SCARY...

Source: CBC
Further Reading: Tintinologist.org

Are We Seeing The Future Of Animation? Gaming Developer Hired For "Avatar" Backgrounds And Effects

We knew that James Cameron is a gaming aficionado and that he has a vision of how the movie industry and video gaming may converge down the road... But how far down the road?

Seems we may have arrived. Cameron has gone out and hired Jacob Stephens, a classically trained and experienced video game designer away from Lucas Arts to join his "Avatar" effects team where he will be focusing on background and animation / design. Sure, this perhaps has happened before but I have not heard of it. Cameron gets it! He realizes just how closely related these two entertainment industries are and is seeking to optimize it. Stephens has created over 50 other video game environments that have gone on to win awards and become best sellers including several of the Star Wars games.


"I've been trying for years to find a job where my skills could be used in film, and it looks like I finally have" stated Stephens.

Cameron of course is working with Ubisoft to create "Avatar" the video game as well.

I can clearly envision Cameron building a stable of versatile movie AND game designers and using the exact same backgrounds and environments made for one in the other. Think about it: It saves a heckuva lot of development time and also translates the feeling and immersion from one medium to the other. Its all part of the same franchise regardless! Makes perfect sense. Of course Cameron makes perfect sense most of the time.

December 2009 seems like an eternity doesn't it? Well the wait is going to be well worth it. Can't wait to pick up a game controller for the game either!

Image courtesy of Press & Sun-Bulletin


Friday, March 28, 2008

Check Out This Review Of the Recent Dallas Maverick's 3D HD Game

The Star-Telegram has run a review of the recent Dallas Mavericks NBA game that was broadcast live to the Magnolia Theater via satellite with 305 patrons watching with their mouths wide open.

Apparently the best moment of the game came when Stackhouse drove the baseline, beat his man and then dunked HARD on Tim Thomas - lots of 3D layering and stunning action. Check out the highlights in 2D on ESPN right here. Stackhouse was dunking all game it seems - he had a massive one hander at the 15 second mark of that clip.

"Four special binocular-style TV cameras were used in the telecast. Mike Anastassiou tells people to just imagine a high-def picture... now make it four times better. That's 3-D HD."

"It will take 8-10 years before consumers will be able to easily buy 3-D TVs that don't require glasses," Mark Cuban wrote in an e-mail. "Hopefully, in the short term, we can push the costs down enough to do 10 or so Mavs games next year."

"I think it's [going to be] mainstream in '09 for movies, with limited 'live' special events, like Mavs games, concerts, plays," Cuban e-mailed. "At some point in 2010, you will see it in bars and special-entertainment environments."

Mainstream in 2009 is an understatement. 2009 will be THE year for 3D movies, mark my words.

Cuban is also working on 3D theaters in which you do not need glasses to view events / movies - read more about that here.

To see the whole Star-Telegram game review - jump on over here.

Image courtesy of AP

From Under Bite To Over Kill: Williamson Cast In Final Destination 4

Mykelti Williamson has been cast in New Line's "Final Destination 4" which will be shot in 3D. Producer is Craig Perry.

His role is unknown at this point.
He is best known for his part in "Forrest Gump" where he played "Bubba" with a protruding lower lip and a particular appreciation for shrimp.

He joins a cast made up of
Shantel VanSanten, Bobby Campo, Hayley Webb, Nick Zano, Krista Allen and Andy Fiscella. It was interesting to see some of the casting auditions on YouTube.

If you are interested in hearing what the opening sequence will be like in the "innovative ways to die movie of all movies" check it out here.

Final Destination 4 has already begun shooting in New Orleans this month.

Source: Variety

Thursday, March 27, 2008

"Calling All Robots": Disney, Zemeckis, Performance Capture and 3D?

Disney is teaming with Robert Zemeckis' ImageMovers Digital to bring us a performance capture movie entitled "Calling All Robots" which will utilize the very same technology used in "Beowulf". This obviously hints at the project being 3D, but this has not been confirmed as of yet. I'm working on it!

Michael Dougherty will write the movie which is said to lean on the history of Godzilla genre pictures. He also wrote "Trick 'r Treat" (due for release soon) as well as the big budget "X2: X-Men United", "Superman Returns" and "I, Lucifer".

This is yet another feature project that was brought to fruition because of today's exciting performance capture technology - it simply was not possible before now. That gets my blood pumping let me tell you; remakes and sequels are all well and fine but when Hollywood starts bringing out the projects that were collecting dust because of technical challenges - it lights a fire. It is exactly what we need right now - challenging projects that push the envelope of what is possible. Add in that third dimension and you have the immersion and originality that is so sought after today. Onward and upward!

Check back for 3D updates on this project!

Source: Variety

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Thank You To Our Sponsors

A special thank you to the following sponsors for our shared passion in 3D:

:: Passmore Lab - 2D to 3D Conversion with No Upfront Cost.

:: Real D - The Global Leader in 3D.

:: iZ3D - 3D Monitors for a 3D World.

:: Text Link Ads.

:: Google Adsense & Referral Ads.

Monday, March 24, 2008

"Fly Me To The Moon" 3D Is Tracking VERY Nicely!

It seems that the nWave Picture's "Fly Me To The Moon" (awesome official movie website!) could have a box office out of this world.

The 3D animation features the voices of Tim Curry, Christopher Lloyd, Robert Patrick, Nicollette Sheridan, Kelly Ripa and "Buzz" Aldrin as himself! We polled MarketSaw readers this month and here are the results of the question:

"What is the 3D movie you are looking forward to the most for the remainder of 2008?"























We are not the only site tracking the orbit of this movie. Check out the results of a SliceOfSciFi poll on their website - they have "Fly Me To The Moon" winning their Fantasy and Animation category.

IMAX Adding 31 More Regal Theaters

IMAX has been busy. They inked a deal with AMC Entertainment for 100 theaters back in December, 07 and now they have announced a pact with Regal Entertainment for an additional 31 theaters. Their IMAX screens can exhibit both 2D and 3D films and they are officially on the wide release distribution for Dreamworks Animation's "Monsters vs. Aliens", "How To Train Your Dragon" and "Shrek Goes Forth" pegged for 2009 and 2010 releases.

IMAX will have about 300 theaters running by the end of 2010. While this number falls well below competitive 3D projection screen numbers, IMAX is known for gloriously large screens. Keep up the good work IMAX.

3D fans in Alaska (you know who you are!) take note that one of the theaters opening will be in Anchorage.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

What Is Powering The 3D Revolution? Cameron / Pace 3D Production & RealD's 3D Projection

Sure there are other options out there, like the RED One system is stereo configuration and Sony for example. But there is a clear leader and visionary emerging and they are out of the starting blocks like lightning. A lightstorm perhaps (gentle nod towards Cameron's production company).

The Vince Pace, James Cameron 3D camera system is simply the best out there right now based on ability to deliver, availability and experience. The RED system definitely is the most affordable (each camera is about $16k plus peripherals, versus ~$100k for each Pace camera [Sony]).

Take a look at the Cameron/Pace system contribution:
- Mark Cuban is using them for a live NBA game that will be broadcast via satellite to the Magnolia Theater in Dallas on a 40' screen this Tuesday night (March 25th). This follows about a year of activity since Pace/Cameron was used for a 3D live broadcast of the NBA All Star Game last year and a 3D HD game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the San Antonio Spurs in last years finals.
- Feature films have readily adopted using the technology AND the expertise of the Cameron/Pace operators. Some movies that used them include: "Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert Tour" (which was turned around in record time); "Journey To The Center Of The Earth 3-D" and "U2 3D".
- They are in the depths of creating "Avatar", a ~$250m (my estimate) 3D sci-fi thriller. The consensus is that this movie will be the turning point for 3D for the masses and will mark the dawning of a new age of cinema.

What I really admire about Pace/Cameron is that they are not enshrouding their technology in secrecy but rather leasing out the technology and helping others achieve their 3D productions. Sure it is a business model and it is working for them, but they are also the undisputed leaders in 3D Production (like RealD is the leader in 3D Projection). It is simply awesome that they are willing to spread this around.

RealD Visionaries
Speaking of RealD, they are undoubtedly the world leader in 3D Projection installations around the world. I have a hard time keeping up with all of their theater updates (found here)! Other options include IMAX 3D and Dolby 3D.

What is even more thrilling is that they are not simply resting on their laurels but aggressively expanding AND innovating. Their recent XL technology allows for the projection of 3D movies on to screens larger than 60' from a single projector! This was never possible before in the quality required for large audiences (some 2 projector systems exist for this, but are a challenge to align properly risking headaches/nausea) as 3D movies split the light beam essentially into two streams (one for each eye) and therefore a dimmer picture is produced. XL is much, much brighter and solves the dim 3D problem!

The RealD polarized 3D glasses are lighter and cost FAR less than the Dolby alternative. In fact the RealD glasses can be branded for a movie and allowed to be taken home rather than confined to the theater (with the added risks of theft, damage, cleanliness). The glasses are a major reason for their success. Bono of U2 recently designed his own RealD glasses for a premiere of "U2 3D". Those customizations are a powerful marketing tool.

With the 3D revolution resting in the capable hands of Pace/Cameron and RealD (who are standing on the shoulders of the 3D pioneers) I have little worry about the execution of the vision. Let's rev this 3D engine up and experience the thrill of cinema once again through the eyes of a child. I remember what that was like and I am giddy about bringing it back!

Full disclosure: RealD is a sponsor of MarketSaw / Pace Technologies is not currently a sponsor.

Companies: [Pace] [RealD]

Friday, March 21, 2008

Umm - What The Heck Is Steve Jobs Up To? Apple Files A Wacky 3D Projector Setup!

**SAME DAY UPDATE: Further details of the Patent Application in yet another diagram shown to the left. The system does indeed take into account the position of the observer to create a personal viewing experience no matter where you are in the audience and you are NOT required to wear glasses. Apple states that processing power today makes this technology possible.

[macrumors]


Well, well, well. What do we have here? Check out the diagram to view exactly what Apple has in store for the masses in the coming years. Or not. What the heck does it mean? Damned if I know. I'd be curious to hear what you think it is.

[via Gizmodo]

DEBATE BELOW: Is this a 3D home entertainment device, 3D business presentation device or a 3D commercial projector system?

Guillermo del Toro Hinting At Only Directing The First Hobbit Movie




I have said here before and I will say it again
- del Toro loves "The Hobbit" and truly gets it, but his grasp of other Tolkien works, let alone trying to bridge "The Hobbit" and "The Fellowship of the Ring" is sorely lacking.

Here is an quote from a recent (March 18th) interview of del Toro with TORn:


“At this stage anything I say is of no consequence for I am not yet signed to do “The Hobbit.” Negotiations advance but are still ongoing.”

“All I can say is that I am diligently going through all Tolkien material related to Middle-earth but only as a way of bridging a gap in my reading. I still respond the strongest to “The Hobbit,” but as an avid reader of Mythology I find a lot of his other writings fascinating. A perfect Cosmology forged from very eclectic sources.”

This is his del Toro's own admission and I don't hold it against him at all. So when it comes down to directing the two Hobbit movies our theory still holds a TON of water: Jackson will helm and produce the SECOND Hobbit movie meshing together the Hobbit and LOTRs eras while del Toro will direct with Jackson producing the first Hobbit movie.

Of course Jackson could just helm both. He has managed to have Spielberg direct the first Tintin movie (that we predicted here) to free up time for such endeavors. We also continue to think that Zemeckis will helm the second Tintin and Jackson bringing up the the third.

And yes, we are still certain that both Hobbit movies will be shot in 3D. Awesome stuff.

Still trying to get word from my sources on up to the second developments! Stay tuned...

Livin' In A Sangster's Paradise: Tintin Lead Finally Cast?

According to the Daily Mail Thomas Sangster has been cast as the lead in 3D movie trilogy "Tintin" along with Andy Serkis as Captain Haddock. Steven Spielberg is directing the first with Peter Jackson helming number 2. This is in the face of earlier reports that Kristen Myburgh had been close to signing on (see the fan art below of Kristen as the lead - thanks "AllAboutTintin" for the image).

Here are some excerpts from the item:

"A London schoolboy studying for his A-levels is about to sign up to play comic book hero Tintin in a trilogy of films to be directed by Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson.

Thomas Sangster, 17, from South London, has already been to Los Angeles to work on preproduction test sequences with both directors.

Sangster, you may recall, was the lad who starred in the Richard Curtis film comedy Love Actually, where Liam Neeson played his stepdad and his leading co-stars were Emma Thompson and Bill Nighy (who, actually, walked off with the picture)."

"The Tintin film, though, is shrouded in secrecy - to a most frustrating degree.

Sangster's London agent refused to respond to multiple telephone messages.

However, on the agent's website there's chatter about Sangster being in the middle of his A-levels but that, despite this, he would be flying "to LA for preproduction of his next project . . . watch this space".

An executive who worked with Sangster in Los Angeles recently told me: "Thomas seems to be the one.

"He was just great, but I'm not certain if anything has been finalised yet."

"I've heard various tales about the third film: some say Spielberg and Jackson will direct it together; others claim that James Cameron, who made Titanic, will be at the helm."

Well you heard here that we believe that Robert Zemeckis will direct the third iteration of "Tintin" and it will definitely NOT be Cameron.

The anticipation is sky high for this 3D movie trilogy especially in Europe and everyone's hoping that it will be contagious in North America. With the sheer power directing them and the talent being assembled how could it not?

Awesome premise for 3D as well - a young Indiana Jones type running around Europe on grand adventures!


[Source]

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Dreamworks Animation's "How To Train Your Dragon" 3D Cast Revealed...

Variety reports that Gerard Butler, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, Jay Baruchel and Christopher Mintz-Plasse will lend their voices to the much anticipated animation from Dreamworks: "How To Train Your Dragon" 3D.

Peter Hastings is directing and Bonnie Arnold is producing.

"Comic adventure is set in a mythical world and centers on a scrawny teenage Viking who must capture and subdue a wild dragon. Story is based on the book by Cressida Cowell.

Project marks the second film the studio will produce in Ultimate 3-D; the first is "Monsters vs. Aliens." "Dragon" is slated for a domestic release on March 26, 2010."

Check out other exclusive sneak peaks at concept artwork here and here.

Monday, March 17, 2008

In Chicago Until Thursday

Hey guys - I will be in Chicago until Thursday of this week at a conference and Internet access will be intermittent, but I will still be monitoring my site, email and sources and will update ASAP. Hopefully you won't notice much difference!

Man am I CRANKED!! Crank 3D on its way!!!

/Film is reporting that Crank will have a 3D installment made and I am dying to hear more already. Yes, only the original stands today (that movie was simply awesome - first time I laughed out loud - in a theater - in years!) but Mark Neveldine has confirmed that they will begin shooting "Crank 2" at the end of April, this year and that "Crank 3" will be in 3D!

They do have a movie in between the two movies to shoot too ("Jonah Hex") but we could be looking at a 2011 release of Crank 3D.

I was so happy with the original Crank and I am a big fan of Jason Statham. It is just my kind of movie. I could take a few more of these NO PROBLEM. And in 3D? All the action sequences are gonna rock to be sure!

Good News For "Battle Angel" Fans: Manga Preserved!

I have heard it from a couple of different commenter's as well as discussion boards that the action scene passed on to me by my "Source #3" does not hold water because of several things including the fact that cars and bullets are illegal in the original story. Well my friends it turns out that you are right. I have been on the horn with my sources for some time now and #3 just got back to me with the good word - here is his email:

"Cameron was rewriting someone else's draft for the studio -- but he wasn't happy with much of it. For what I know, Cameron had to rush to complete his makeover, and even when he did, he still had so much he wanted to change. Unfortunately because he had to rush off and begin everyday work on Avatar, he did the best he could.

From what I've been told now, Cameron has completely reworked the draft to match the manga. What existed before with the amazing, almost surreal action sequence is now gone, obliterated within development hell.

Cameron's still furiously typing away at Battle Angel while cutting Avatar and working on that respectively. The screenplay in its form is still damn action-packed and dramatic, as well as being well written. It still isn't where it should be, and Cameron's working away on making sure that (it will) hold up.

What he's worried about? Making sure his actress doesn't despise the new draft he's writing. After all, she too is a big fan of the manga, and was told from the start to read much of the script with the pretense that cities, characters, and events would most likely change."
So there you are. You were right and my source #3 has cleared the air - the battle scene that was mentioned has been canned in favor of the original intent of the manga. My other two sources are solid on their information however. I don't mind passing this info on to you as I report it when I get it and that action scene was definitely part of the script at one point - but obviously scripts evolve and with Cameron at the helm it has to be perfect. His creativeness is unparalleled and I can't begin to imagine where he will take us with Battle Angel - but I know I am damn excited by it.

Hmmm. His actress is a manga fan too. Who the heck is it?

Image via JoBlo

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Björk Premieres Her 3D Music Video "Wanderlust": Huge Production!

Musician Björk has just premiered her latest music video, "Wanderlust" in three dimensions at the Long Island City branch of the Deitch Gallery (New York). Apparently patrons were waiting for the 3D movie and had to settle for the 2D version initially as the 3D version WAS STILL RENDERING on the production office's servers! Now THATS a tight project schedule! :-)

Regardless, those that stuck around toward the end were rewarded with the arrival of the 3D version and suitably impressed. The images are from the video, followed by the production credits - check out the number of workers involved in this!

Thank you for the tip Fabián! [Source]

Directors: Encyclopedia Pictura (Isaiah Saxon and Sean Hellfritsch)
Production Company: Ghost Robot
Producer: Mark De Pace
Executive Producer: Zach Mortensen
Label: One Little Indian
Commissioner: Paul McKee

Post Production Company: UVPHACTORY
(Scott Sindorf, Principal and Co-Founder
Damijan Saccio, Principal and Co-Founder
Alexandre Moors, Creative Director
Brian Welsh, Executive Producer)

CGI Supervisor: Damijan Saccio
Executive Producer: Brian Welsh
Lead CGI Artists: Tim Marinov, Susie Jang, San Charoenchai
CGI Artists Daniel Uranowski,
Nayoun Kim, Nicholas Fischer, Raj Soni,
Jeff Baghai, Nick Martinelli,
(Special Thanks to Dilip Singh from Softimage for R&D assistance)
Compositing Supervisors: Matthew Lane-Smith, Encyclopedia Pictura, Tenzin Phuntsog
Compositors: Isaiah Saxon, Sean Hellfritsch, Matthew Lane-Smith, John
Dorocki, Mike Burgoyne, Toon van den Broek, John Earle
Compositing/Rotoscoping interns: Gyunam Kim,
Production Manager: Matthew Achterberg

Art Director: Isaiah Saxon
Practical Effects Supervisor/Associate Director: Daren Rabinovitch
Fabricaton Supervisor: Tirsch Hunter
Lead Puppet Artist: Vanessa Waring
Mold and Cast Supervisor: Erick Dunn
Mold Maker: Sabrina Lessard
Puppet Mechanics: John Weissberger
Costumers: Cat Warner, Lia Cinquegrano, Katie Casano, Susan Hasselbrook, Emily Boullear, Mikaela Holmes
Lead Landscaper: Judge Finklea
Landscaper: Chris Lawson
Lead Carpenter: James Bolenbaugh
Carpenters: Jamie Ven Eyck, Ryan Cheresnick
Matte Painter: Ram Bhat
Previsualization: Mike Plunkett

Fabricators: Oran Bumroongchart, Theresa Nguyen, Jason Krugman, Amanda Scuglia, Thu Tran, Akash Nihalani, Genevive Simms, Alexis Distler, Mary Kate Rex, Lily Montemarano, Mac Pohanka, Maggie Lysikiewicz, Elizabeth Heilich, Sara Greenwalt, Rebecca Bersohn, Katrina Vonnegut, Nadia Lachance, Amanda Blue, Thu Tran, Katie Widloski, Gabriel Abrantes, Alex Carver, Jenae Wilkins, Mihail Kossev, Trey Kirchoff, Nadia Lachance, Max Nova

Stereographer: Sean Hellfritsch
Digital Imaging Technician: Nick Kay
Technical Consultatant: Joel Edelstein
First AC: Bobb Lovett
Lighting Designer: Michael Yetter
Gaffer: Corey Eisenstein
Key Grip: Olivia Kuan
Grip: Danya Apt
Grip: Fletcher Wolfe
Grip: Andrew Roddewig
Grip: Kevin Phillips
Grip: Jim McGibbon
Still Photographers: Nathan Jones, Brian Derballa, Alyona Mindlin
3d Guru: Greg Dinkins

Hair & Make-up: Andrea Helgadottir
Body Make-up: Cheyenne Timperio
Body Make-up Assistants: Nina Stewart, Loran Gurgin

Choreographer: Chris Elam of Misnomer Dance
Pain Body: Coco Karol
Bjork Double: Bryne Billingsly
Lead Puppeteer: Jessica Scott

Production Coordinator: Emily Anderson
2nd Assistant Director: Stephanie Hamilton
Production Assistants: Eli Stonberg, Jacquelyn Moses, Tiffany Chung, Danilo Parra, Brian Debralla, Mihail Kossev, Sarah Casey, Hunter Fairstone Levin, Alex Tibbets, Bobby Saferstein, Ben Bindra, Robert Montemarano, Mike Burden

Very Special Thanks:

Jessica Zambri and Jennifer George
Matt Quigley
Mike Bellon, Anne Gale & the crew at Barney Studio
Matthew Barney

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Coraline Release Set: Are We Looking At Another 3D Theater Clash??

According to IMDB, Coraline's wide release date has been set: February 6th, 2009. However, in fine award seeking fashion, it will also be seen in limited release in December of THIS year.

Hmmm. Disney's "Bolt" is scheduled for release for November 26th and by that time of year we MAY be able to see optimistically 2000 3D theaters in the US in total - are we going to see another clash of 3D films like we did between "U2 3D" and Hannah Montana? U2's concert was superior (my opinion) but suffered due to timing and limited 3D theaters (less than 700 in that case). If you will remember, Disney's "Best of Both Worlds" was also scheduled as a one week "limited" engagement. We all know what happened there - money happened.

Let's get these scheduling executives working together here and not at each other's throats. Look, we are only looking at a window of another 18 months until there are sufficient 3D theaters that we don't have to worry about these things nearly as much. Until then; make it work.

You don't have to look far for futher conflicts: Lions Gate's "My Bloody Valentine 3-D" launches a couple weeks before Valentines on January 23rd! I don't think they want to give up the Valentine's Day box office seeing as their movie is based on the 'celebration'. Yet, there's Coraline pegged for Feb 6th. Sandwiching that is Dreamworks Animation's "Monsters vs. Aliens" slated for March 27th.

Make. It. Work. - Damn.

RealD's XL Technology Illuminating At ShoWest !

RealD continues to lead 3D digital theater projection technology with demonstrations of their innovative XL technology which allows projecting 3D movies on screens larger than 60 feet!

Before the release of this theater technology there was really no one offering the ability to effectively project standard Hollywood issues 3D images on a 60' or larger screen without using two projectors - which obviously doubles the cost of the equipment but can also cause severe issues with ensuring the images line up correctly or risk audience headaches and nausea.

XL technology is yet another step toward RealD being universally accepted as the standard Digital 3D projection technology. I have seen the others in action (IMAX 3D and Dolby 3D) and my opinion is that RealD is the clear leader and continues to set the pace for the industry.

Full Disclosure: RealD is a sponsor of MarketSaw. However, I had the same opinion before they partnered with us.

Here is the full press release:

REALD 3D BIGGEST AND BRIGHTEST AT SHOWEST

3D Cinema Leader RealD Uses RealD XL Technology to Bring Digital 3D to Larger Screens Than Ever Before

Los Angeles (March 13, 2008) – RealD 3D, the global leader in 3D, continued its innovations in 3D cinema at the ShoWest film conference with spectacular demonstrations of its RealD XL larger-screen technology, which allows RealD's next-generation 3D experience to reach screens over 60 feet wide with a single projector. RealD XL was first unveiled at the November 5, 2007 premiere of Paramount Pictures' Beowulf in Los Angeles.

On Tuesday , DreamWorks Animation chairman and CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg presented a sneak preview of the studio's Monsters vs. Aliens (releasing March 27, 2009 through Paramount) along with a special 3D clip of DreamWorks's 2D summer film Kung Fu Panda, both in RealD 3D, at the Paris Las Vegas Theatre Des Arts. The clips were shown on the Des Arts's 60-foot screen utilizing RealD XL with a single DLP projector and impressed nearly 2,000 convention-goers with the depth, clarity, and color of the 3D visuals. Mr. Katzenberg said, "The proprietary tools and techniques that we've developed as a part of our 3D initiative and the use of Real D's groundbreaking XL technology together allowed us to project onto the silver screen 3D images with unprecedented clarity during Tuesday's ShoWest presentation."

Wednesday at ShoWest, New Line Cinema and RealD screened New Line's summer tentpole, Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D (releasing July 11, 2008), also at the Theatre Des Arts , in RealD 3D utilizing RealD XL. New Line Cinema President of Domestic Distribution David Tuckerman said, "We were thrilled to screen Journey in its entirety in RealD 3D to ShoWest attendees. The film looked great on the extra-large screen- bright, sharp, and colorful- and the audience was blown away."

RealD 3D's ability to reach larger screens than any other digital 3D technology enables exhibitors to show the upcoming slate of 3D movies in their largest auditoriums, increasing both the potential audience for 3D films and incremental revenue for the exhibition community. Drew Kaza, EVP, Digital Development at Odeon-UCI Group, said, "RealD's ability to bring 3D to larger screens is great news for those of us who have embraced 3D and wish to maximize its potential in our largest auditoriums. We are thrilled that screen size is no longer a constraint of great digital 3D."

Michael Lewis, RealD 3D chairman and CEO, said, "RealD is committed to 3D cinema and to innovation. 3D is all we do - and this expertise allows us to continually upgrade our cinema technology, providing the absolute best 3D experience available. RealD XL is the latest example of that."

RealD was recently named to Fast Company's "Fast 50" Most Innovative Companies.

RealD XL will be available as a component of the RealD 3D system for larger theaters in late 2008.

RealD is the global leader in 3D, bringing the most advanced and enjoyable digital 3D experience to cinemas worldwide. RealD’s next-generation technology, deployed across the world’s largest 3D platform in 24 countries, provides a stunningly realistic viewing experience beyond the usual concepts of 3D cinema. The impact of 3D upon today’s moviemaking has been compared to the advent of color film when once there was only black and white. Beyond cinema, RealD is the worldwide inventor and provider of key stereoscopic technologies used in science, manufacturing, marketing, and other industries, with thirty years of scientific development behind its systems. RealD’s mission-critical 3D visualization technologies are used by organizations such as NASA, Pfizer, BMW, Boeing and more. For more information, visit www.reald.com.

"Fly Me To The Moon" Wows at ShoWest

Apparently (I did not see it), the 10 minutes of "Fly me To The Moon" footage really wowed the ShoWest audience with its realistic portrayal of well, just about anything in the movie.

People are starting to realize that even animation can seem all that much more real when presented in 3D.

"Fly Me To The Moon" launches August 22nd of THIS year.

Andy Serkis: Spielberg Directing First Tintin - Jackson The Second / Serkis Confirmed as Capt. Haddock !

I knew Jackson would NOT be doing the first iteration of "Tintin". Just too much going on in his world - not that Spielberg is any less busier, however Steven is tackling it first. That bodes well for "The Hobbit" if Warner can come to terms with The Tolkien Trust soon. I have my sources digging away to find out more.

Shooting on "Tintin" officially begins in September.

We learn all of this from Super Perf Cap Man, Andy Serkis who was recently interviewed by IndieLondon. Love Andy's interviews - he is always so forthright. Here are a couple of questions relating to "Tintin":

Q. Are you going to be reuniting with Peter Jackson again for Tintin?
Andy Serkis: In fact tomorrow I’m flying out to start on Tintin. Steven Spielberg is directing the first one, and then Peter Jackson is doing the second. The bulk of the shoot starts in September but things got a little bit moved around after the writers’ strike.

Q. Were you at all worried when Peter first got back in touch that having played Gollum and King Kong, he might ask you to play Snowy the dog?
Andy Serkis: [laughs] Absolutely, in fact people assume that I am, which is even more disturbing [he’s playing Captain Haddock].

Be sure to read the whole interview right here.


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

10,000 B.C. means Better Cinemas? Well Digital at least but not 3D... Yet.

Hold your horses folks. So many media outlets are reporting that four major studios (Disney, 20th Century Fox, Paramount and Universal Pictures) have all agreed to finance the conversion of 10,000 3D compatible theaters to the tune of $700m. Hey - that is truly great news.

But it ain't 3D. Yet. Those same theaters are only getting digital projection. They still have to select their 3D projection of choice (most opt for RealD) at ~$25k a site and the tally for that project is another ~$250m. The studios save on the high cost of distributing heavy film canisters all over the world and replace that with electronic movie file transfers, so it makes sense to do this quickly. The conversion to 3D is more in the hands of the theater chains - they will make more money by charging 3D premiums. I don't want to downplay this too much because digital conversion simply had to happen first! I am happy as can be - to see the studios working together in almost a billion dollar project is breathtaking.

The media outlets must keep this in mind when they are writing their articles! This deal that was announced certainly goes a heckuva long way toward 3D being everywhere, but it is still going to require forward momentum after that. Oh, it will still get done because 3D is truly changing the movie going experience, but there are still a challenge or two left. Onward and upward!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Lord Of The Rings 3D Closer To Reality??

Folks - straight from a tipster to TORn it looks like a CNBC reporter has some knowledge about The Lord Of The Rings "rumblings" about the trilogy being re-released in 3D. The intrepid tipster used his cellphone to capture the video and then posted it to YouTube! Check it out here:



Could it be that my sources were right all along? :-) Of course they are... but hurry up with the announcement already!! Thanks Shawn for bringing this to my attention quickly! Perhaps there are some rumblings taking place at SXSW and ShoWest...

MarketSaw's 3D Contest Event! Win a 22" 3D Gaming Monitor and a Walk On Speaking Role in "Horrorween" 3D!

How awesome is that? This is all part of the ShoWest week fun we are having! More details to come shortly, but MarketSaw is teaming with a number of partners and we are giving away some pretty damn good prizes!! Here is a taste of what it is that you could win:

1. A 22" 3D Gaming Monitor from iZ3D ! (A $999 Value) YES - those are 3D polarized glasses beside the monitor - you get two pairs.

2. A Walk On SPEAKING Role in the now in production 3D Horror Spoof movie: "Horrorween" from Adirondack International Pictures. Others involved in this movie include: William Shatner, Jenna Jameson, Dom DeLuise, Cindy Morgan, Donald Trump, Flavor Flav, Alice Cooper, and Chuck Lamb - The Dead Body Guy! It is directed by Joe Estevez.

More prizes are looking to be added and you will have details shortly on how to enter. For starters, you could certainly sign up to the newsletter as that will be one condition of entry!

Time to start living a 3D life guys!! :-) Watch for more details...

Monday, March 10, 2008

James Cameron's 3D "Battle Angel" Update!

Aha! Information is starting to pour in on this exciting follow up project to "Avatar" - James Cameron's "Battle Angel"! I have multiple sources now (more than 2, but less than 4 lol) reporting a few things to me and I must simply pass them on to you as I know you are damn well interested. Who wouldn't be? My comments in green - here we go!

1. Straight from source #1: "During 2004-2005 the entire second floor of the Lightstorm building was dedicated to the Battle Angel art department, which was "massive". The entire ceiling above the workspace was modeled to resemble the hanging sky city from the manga so that the artists could "live in" the world they were creating. Pretty cool, huh?"
YES. DAMN cool.

2. Source #2: Cameron already has his Battle Angel! Yes, you read correctly! It is a done deal apparently - her name is all over the scripts. She is a nobody right now, but look for her to use this movie like Arnie used Terminator to catapult herself to super stardom.
Believe me, I am working on a name! Only a matter of time...


3. Source #1: Cameron threw away Laeta Kalogridis' script and is cowriting with someone else (ghostwriter/story editor). The interesting thing about this news, to me, is that Cameron is basically writing the script himself (with some assistance), as opposed to having someone else (Laeta) write it for him. Good news, in my opinion. Laeta's name will still appear in the credits in some form for legal reasons, however.
AWESOME. A Cameron written film demands attention to be sure.

4. Source #1:
"As for the script itself, Cameron is basically condensing the first 3 graphic anime books into the first movie, "but that can still change". Oh, the original Battle Angel script was "drivel"-- plagued by length and pacing issues which persisted despite multiple drafts.
We all hope that all those scripts troubles are well behind Mr. Cameron now!

5. Source #2: Cameron is definitely working on the Battle Angel script during the little downtime he gets on the "Avatar" post production and call backs.
Here Cameron is, doing a $250m (my estimate) sci-fi perf-cap 3D "Avatar" that he has been percolating for a decade and all the logistics of getting it done - oh and inventing/tweaking the damn 3D equipment to shoot it and the editing / effects to bring it all together with darn near 2 years of post production - and he has time to tackle "Battle Angel"? I mean even a little bit? Obviously his work is not work to him - it's a passion and who can blame him for that. All I know is, as a fan of everything he has done - don't stop! Can't wait to see them Jim. Both of 'em.

6. Source #3: **SPOILER ALERT** - Probably the biggest, most expensive and memorable scene in "Battle Angel" - highlight white text below to be enlightened!

The Act 2 /Act 3 break is amazing. Battle Angel is on top of a roof with the ENTIRE city being overlooked - sweeping 3D vistas! She is being chased so she jumps off of the roof and plays toad on each car on the way down - the cars are flying! There are explosions, bullets flying and cars exploding all while people are driving. My source says most of the budget for the movie has gotta be blown right here on this sequence!! It is going to demand the best that the crews can deliver to get this right and Cameron is Mr. Perfectionist so I am drooling already.

**SPOILER ALERT** Highlight the white text above to view.

Now does this sound like a movie to anticipate or what?
Hopefully this gets done in time for a summer 2012 release because all this waiting time for Cameron movies is killing me!

Thought this fan art was pretty cool - check it out:


Showest Updates: Monsters vs. Aliens Pic! Disney to Release "Up" in 3D!

Keep checking back to this post as I will be updating this throughout ShoWest!

>>UPDATE: (March 12th) -
"Monsters vs. Aliens" wows its ShoWest audience as footage brings loud applause! There is no doubt that Katzenberg's "Ultimate 3-D" is very successful in bringing the viewer INTO the movie rather than having objects COME OUT to you. That is the key - that is the 3D ANTI-GIMMICK. For all those who still do not believe me or Katzenberg - please check out "Monsters vs. Aliens" when it finally comes out next spring, because it won't disappoint. Of course there are other 3D release coming out soon - BUT I cannot vouch for their artistry yet.

>>UPDATE: (March 11th) - Awesome new image from Dreamworks Animation for the 2009 3D "Monsters vs. Aliens". Here are the announced actors who will lend their voices:

>Kiefer Sutherland
- General W.R. Monger
>Reese Witherspoon - Susan Murphy
>Stephen Colbert - The President
>Seth Rogen
- The Jellylike B.O.B.
>Rainn Wilson
- The Evil Alien Gallaxhar
>Hugh Laurie
- Dr. Cockroach
>Will Arnett
- The Half-ape, Half-fish Missing Link

MvsA is directed by Rob Letterman and Conrad Vernon and is based on the horror comicbook "Rex Havoc". It is still set for a March 27th, 2009 release.










>> Disney is going to release "Up" in both 2D and 3D on May 29th, 2009. This now adds to their other 4 movies due for release next year namely: "G-Force" (July 24th); "Toy Story" (Oct 2nd); A Christmas Carol (Nov 6th); and "Frankenweenie". Thanks to Peter over at /Film for the info.

>> Fox's "Ice Age 3" is now known as "Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs" and is still scheduled for release July 1st, 2009.

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