Hollywood directors fighting over their toys

Filed under: by: Aaron Price on Saturday, December 13, 2008 @ 12:25 AM

While in the throws of a Wikipedia bender, I stumbled across an interesting debate between two visionary directors: James Cameron and Tim Burton. Cameron is filming his first post-Titanic fiction movie in 3D. It's a sci-fi shoot-em-up called Avatar. Burton is filming his next big movie, an adaptation of Alice in Wonderland/Through the Looking Glass. Both are planning to release the movies in 3D.

In my last post I mentioned how easy it is to take 3D animation and re-render it into a 3D movie. Both of these movies are going to include heavy use of CGI (animation), all of which can be re-rendered. However, what about the live actors?

Cameron is doing it the traditional way: by filming the actors from two viewing angles. Burton is going to film in 2D and use computer gimmickry to try and recreate a 2nd viewing angle. Traditionalists call this cheating. Burton's producer sez that if you can't tell, who cares? He scores a point there. It's all about fantasy, anyway. But can the technology truly pull it off?

Cameron also goes on to attack the DVD releases using the blue-red anaglyph glasses. I'll explain soon why that is considered low quality, but is thus far the only option available.

Hollywood power plays and gossip about 3D technology? Stereoscopy has arrived.