Sunday, January 03, 2010

The Impact Of AVATAR On Directors Like Michael Bay

Jim here. Do you remember my questions for Michael Bay last spring at ShoWest about 3D? Bay essentially dismissed 3D as almost laughable. Then he backtracked somewhat to leave the door open to see whether AVATAR does well. He did attempt to explain why he thinks he can't use 3D on the Transformers movies, but we all know that it can be done.

AVATAR's final battle scenes lock that one up don't they? Some of the most complex battle scenes you will ever see were in AVATAR - in full, glorious 3D.

I don't mind when a director thinks of himself as old school. Heck Bay has been around the block and has earned the right to say anything he wants - and yes, this post is hopefully going to put some pressure on the powers that be to consider S3D for future Transformers movies because I believe that the fans are the ones missing out here. Do you know where I am going with this?

I have uploaded my questions and answers for Michael Bay so you can have a listen again to put things in perspective:

So while Bay is saying 3D is a gimmick (I was stunned to hear him say that), he is leaving the door open for future use. Wise move. You can be fairly certain that Paramount will be breathing down Bay's throat for S3D for Transformers 3 given the outrageous cash that AVATAR is generating. Can you imagine what TF2 would have made with the extra impact that 3D brings? And then add on an extra 25% box office on top of that increased box office?

Now let's be CLEAR here:
I am not saying that Bay is going to deliver a significant plot here that compares with a Cameron movie - he has not done that yet. What I am saying is that with his visuals in 3D it could be quite an achievement. I am not going to lie here - I like Michael Bay movies. They have their place in my library. Some days I feel like a no holds barred action movie and he fits the bill. But until he embraces 3D, he really is making his movies in a second class fashion. And if I know Bay, he does not want to be second class in anything.

Don't fool yourself. AVATAR has changed the game in amazing ways. This generation will expect and WANT to have more of this caliber movie! TINTIN is really going to capture this attention as it is using the same technology as what Cameron used and is being delivered by two of the greatest storytellers of all time. If Bay does not embrace this technology and run with it, his movies will start to fade and fade fast compared to what is coming in the next decade.

The bottom line is that directors like Michael Bay will have to adapt. Even against their will. I doubt Bay is NOT impressed with AVATAR - he has to see what is there for him. Bay is too good a director to not understand this.

Will S3D kill off 2D entirely? Someday perhaps. But I don't want 2D to completely go away - I enjoy movies - period. It is just that I enjoy 3D movies MORE. I expect to see 2D movies for quite sometime. But I DO expect 3D screens to outnumber 2D screens soon and tentpole films to favor 3D. That is coming, mark my words.

If I was a director, I would get off my butt and do something original and innovative in S3D and stop waiting for Cameron to pull off another magic show. Bay is capable of doing wonderful things in 3D. Jackson, Spielberg and Ridley Scott WILL be doing wonderful things. The time is now to stand up and show what you are made of.

AVATAR was the line in the sand. Everyone wants to be on the right side of that line and it is clearly S3D.

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Jim Dorey
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