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PARANORMAN 3D Blu-ray Release
January 28, 2013


Directed by Chris Butler & Sam Fell

Toy Story 3: An IMAX 3D Experience
July 19, 2010

Toy Story 3 Released In UK Today

After refraining from watching any trailers, searching for pre-renders and taking a hiatus from following Lee Unkrich on twitter I can only presume that Toy Story 3 will be the must see film of the year and will be booking IMAX 3D tickets as soon as possible.

March 31, 2010

Dreamworks new animated feature film How To Train Your Dragon is out in UK cinemas today and will be available to watch in IMAX 3-D

Watch The How To Train Your Dragon Trailer in full Quicktime HD 1080

Should be a great one as it is currently getting some fantastic reviews.
IMDB currently 8.3/10! Rotten Tomatoes currently 97%!

Behind-the-scenes of How To Train Your Dragon on YouTube (above)

Animation Mentor graduate Mike Stern worked on the film.
You can Follow Him Here On Twitter

Wee Brian who was one of the three animators on Aardman’s The Deadline also worked as an Animator.

Interesting Production Videos collated on the CGsociety Forums.

Animation World Network interview with Directors Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois, also includes interview with Head of Character Animation Simon Otto entitled DreamWorks Unleashes the Dragons

AVATAR Blu-ray UK Release Date
March 16, 2010

Dir: James Cameron

It has been confirmed today that Avatar will be released on Blu-ray and DVD in the UK on April 26th 2010. As yet there is no word of a release date for the 3-D version of the film which will probably be announced when 3-D technology becomes mainstream and more affordable in the home, so it could be a while yet.
January 18, 2010

Just got round to seeing Avatar in IMAX 3-D. Instantly, from the very first scene, you know that you are about to witness something special. The film is visually stunning and James Cameron utilises the 3-D effect brilliantly, using depth to the fullest without overly pushing the effect out of the screen. Some 3-D films try to exaggerate the effect unnecessarily, which causes image separation and is therefore hard for your eyes to adjust. The camera technology in this film is so good that your eyes don’t have to over compensate and the large polarising glasses retain the vibrant colours of the 2D version.

The 3-D in Avatar is most effective and not surprisingly so, with scenes that have obvious depth, such as the sleeping pod room, the AMP suit hanger, the briefing room full of RDA soldiers or scenes high in the huge Home Tree, looking down to the distant jungle floor of Pandora below. The projected 1.78:1 image, which almost fills the huge 65ft x 48 ft IMAX screen, assists the 3-D effect so much so that it sometimes gives you the feeling of vertigo. The sheer size of the screen transports you into the lush alien world and seems to connect the audience more emotionally with the characters.

One slight disappointment however was that, as IMAX is still projected from 70mm film (as opposed to being entirely digital) the orientation of the film running through the projector still produces a certain amount of blurring and strobing when there is a lot of fast motion on the screen. To help compensate for this, the 3-D separation is purposely held back by the compositors on certain action scenes, resulting in a less exaggerated effect, which seems to be more pleasing to watch.

Is 3-D the future of cinema? Well for now it seems to be looking that way, especially on the IMAX screens, currently drawing audiences back with record breaking box office figures BoxOfficeMojo.com. If only the technology existed where IMAX 3-D was entirely digital and without the glasses. I think Avatars’ success though, is not only down to the new (ish) 3-D technology, but word of mouth about the breathtaking CG and quality of the performance capture, with some people even going back to see the film several times. The release of Avatar will hopefully push the technology along at a faster pace and we should start seeing quality non anaglyph 3-D in our homes sooner than expected.

Although the story may have been told many times before and there are obviously influences from James Cameron’s other films, as it turns out, the film proves that this is definitely not a bad thing at all.

CORALINE In Digital 3-D
May 11, 2009

Coraline Crawls Through a 3-D Depth Enhanced Tunnel to the Other World

Having purposely waited to see a 3-D feature, amongst the recent surge of films (started by Chicken Little in 2005) and since the announcement that Coraline would be made in 3-D, I can honestly say that it was worth the wait as I thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

The technology behind 3-D, such as the development of digital projectors and filters etc has moved on, but the 3-D experience in the cinema hasn’t really changed a great deal since I first witnessed polarized 3-D (as opposed to red and blue anaglyph 3-D) 10 years ago in the IMAX film Encounter in the Third Dimension (3-D) Although it has taken a while to arrive in regular cinemas, major film companies have now started to embrace the technology, producing films with great stories as opposed to simply showing off new technology. This is maybe due to the fact that they have realised modern cinema audiences are getting used to computer animation and want something more.

Other Dad and His 3-D Enhanced Piano Hands

Coraline is shown in RealD which uses circular polarized light for better performance. The 3-D effect was not used as just a gimmick as I first feared, rather to create a more immersive experience, to enhance the immaculately detailed character design and sets which make up the entire world in which the quirky storyline is set. It seems to succeed the most when the effect is pushed ‘into’ the screen, past the original screen plane to create depth. This depth is mostly noticeable in scenes such as the purple tunnel to the other world and when scenes have a narrow depth of field, such as at the dinner table. Although it is present, there is not too much strobing and bluring when the effect is pushed ‘out’ of the screen.
“If I was ever lost about how much 3-D to use, I would just look to the story. Very much of what is coming off the screen – once you start to go there, it really makes it difficult to edit and it hurts your eyes if you don’t do it right. Where it served the story, to just have a couple of moments, like a needle in your eye, the trapeze, a few things…but mainly I used it to try and get people to come into the world with Coraline.” – Henry Selick
Coraline in 3-D: magic and artistry come to life (Cineplex article)

However much I love computer animation, Coraline in 3-D lends itself to stop-motion and wouldn’t have been half as immersive if it was created entirely in CG. I am in two minds though whether I would rather watch a feature film in pristine regular High Definition digital format or whether I should embrace the new 3-D technology wholeheartedly. The trailer to Pixar’s new film UP did look fantastic in 3-D.

Future 3-D technology where polarized glasses are not required, which the boffins are calling Auto-stereoscopy 3-D is currently in development for both the cinema and LCD/Plasma screens. I don’t know if the existing 3-D effect will be successfully transferred to regular living room HD plasma screens, what with the special projectors, lenses, filters and depolarization screens involved in the RealD cinema process. Maybe a cut down, less advanced technique will emerge as twice the amount of existing Blu-ray data has to be displayed.