Comic-Con to CES/Thoughts on 3D/Fortune Favors The Bold

09Feb10

During Comic-Con last summer, James Cameron urged Peter Jackson to consider that “fortune favors the bold” when Jackson told the audience he didn’t have the support of Warner Bros. to back conversion of Lord of the Rings to 3D.  Cameron described how content grows the ecosystem and once there is a Lord of the Rings 3D and Titanic 3D it sends a message to consumer electronics manufacturers that there will be demand, to make 3D Blu-rays, and that in turn gives studios a broader market to back 3D, beyond just theatrical revenue but into the home as well. (video)

Roll forward to today and just as Cameron predicted, CES 2010 was all about 3D.  If the success of Avatar proves anything, it is that people will spend on a ride.  Since you have to be there to experience it, 3D has proven to be a panacea for piracy.   All one needs to do is look at the record box office numbers to know that immersive happenings with social currency sells.  So studios are making big bets on 3D both for the big screen and little screen.  In addition to all major television manufacturers announcing 3D integration, Sony is releasing a 3D firmware upgrade for PlayStation 3, and is launching the Sony Discovery IMAX 3D channel.  At NATPE 2010, David Zaslav, CEO of Discovery Communications explained that the reason why Discovery is investing heavily in 3D is that today’s viewer is looking for relatable content, and 3D makes it “closer to real.”

Other movie directors getting on board include David Yates who is releasing Harry Potter and the Deathly Harrows in 3D, Tinto Brass, Director of Caligula, who will begin production in Italy this summer of the first erotic film in 3D, and Louis Leterrier who just got Warner Brothers to move the release date for Clash of Titans to April 2 to allow time for the conversion to 3D.

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