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Guess Who’s Shooting Some Of His New Film In IMAX!!

Hey, everyone. “Moriarty” here. You ready for the biggest Bay-hem yet? When I was at the EAGLE EYE screening, I was talking to some of the IMAX folks afterwards, and they were hinting at a major IMAX announcement happening sometime this week. Sure enough, they sent over a press release today that confirms it: Michael Bay is shooting some of TRANSFORMERS 2 in IMAX. That’s right, DARK KNIGHT. You’ve changed things. While doing EAGLE EYE press, DJ Caruso was talking about how much he wants to shoot some or all of Y THE LAST MAN in this large-frame hyperclear format, and now Bay’s stepping up to bring us some crazy robot spectacle this way. I’m thrilled. I hope more event filmmakers start exploring the ways they can make the theatrical experience special again. Yes, good storytelling is always the most important thing about any film, but if you can use the biggest and best tools available to a modern filmmaker, then DO IT! Here’s the press release that was sent over from the IMAX folks. They seem genuinely excited, and after the difference that the IMAX screens made in the DARK KNIGHT run this summer... they should be.
LOS ANGELES, CA, September 30, 2008 – IMAX Corporation (NASDAQ: IMAX; TSX: IMX), DreamWorks Pictures and Paramount Pictures today announced that director Michael Bay will shoot key sequences of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen with IMAX® cameras. Bay will integrate the IMAX footage with state of the art CGI to create an unprecedented look and feel for the highly anticipated sequel to last year’s box office hit, Transformers. As previously announced, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen will be released to IMAX® theatres simultaneously with the movie’s wide release on June 26, 2009. The movie sequences shot in traditional 35mm will be digitally re-mastered into the unparalleled image and sound quality of The IMAX Experience® with IMAX DMR® (Digital Re-mastering) technology. The IMAX DMR scenes will appear in the traditional “letterbox” shape, while scenes shot with IMAX’s cameras will expand vertically to fill the entire IMAX screen. “The extraordinary level of detail and intensity captured by the IMAX camera creates many exciting possibilities for us with this film,” said Michael Bay, the film’s director. “IMAX’s all-encompassing format will take this story to a new level, and I am once again very excited to share The IMAX Experience with Transformers fans around the world.” “The addition of another amazing title from DreamWorks and Paramount, combined with more groundbreaking use of IMAX technology by Hollywood’s top filmmakers, are examples of how far we have come as a company and a distribution platform over the past several years,” said IMAX Co-Chairmen and Co-CEOs Richard L. Gelfond and Bradley J. Wechsler. “The growth of the IMAX theatre network, fueled by the economical benefits of the new IMAX digital system, is driving interest from virtually all of the top studios, which is resulting in more IMAX movies for audiences to enjoy.” “Michael Bay’s innovative use of IMAX cameras will create a spectacular cinematic adventure for moviegoers next summer,” added Greg Foster, Chairman and President of IMAX Filmed Entertainment. “We’re very excited to be integrated as a core part of the Transformers production, and with the skilled marketing and distribution teams at DreamWorks and Paramount, the timing is ideal given our expanding global audience and network footprint.”

Drew McWeeny, Los Angeles

Readers Talkback
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  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:06 a.m. CST

    Are there even IMAX theaters outside of the USA?

    by DerLanghaarige

    I've never seen one here in Germany.

  • I said this right after Farverearearu announced he was doing it for IRON MAN 2.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:11 a.m. CST


    by parallax_r

    Even if you didn't like the first movie, this is what it is all about - GINAT ROBOTS on a GIANT SCREEN veing all GIANT and shit. Gnar-gnar.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:12 a.m. CST


    by parallax_r

    Ginat, even. Sorry for my poor typing skills. night.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:12 a.m. CST

    Oh, and they cant film an entire movie in IMAX, and heres why:

    by Mike_D

    the cameras are too friggin' loud when they're running, thats why Nolan only filmed the action scenes in the format.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:15 a.m. CST

    Megan Fox's IMAXed Ass.

    by imagin78

    You know that softcore porn director Bay will shoot his next slow-mo perv shot of Megan Fox in IMAX.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:16 a.m. CST

    Our eyeballs will bleed

    by deanbarry

    tears of joy...providing the movie doesn't suck.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:16 a.m. CST

    Megan Fox In IMAX?

    by drew mcweeny

    <P>I hadn't considered such a thing. <P>I'm considering it now. <P>And I like. Oh, yes. I like.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:24 a.m. CST

    Why is it that all the event films going IMAX

    by blindambition238

    Happen to be the one made by guys who have been shooting some of the more visually confusing action sequences... 300 not withstanding.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:26 a.m. CST

    Please Michael Bay!

    by loodabagel

    Just die already. I'm ashamed Moriarty would even mention you in the same sentence with The Dark Knight.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:27 a.m. CST

    MMM Fox

    by mattforce7

    I wanna make a sex tape on Imax w megan fox....Oh wait, bay can suck balls, that is all

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:57 a.m. CST

    But will they be wides angle scenes?

    by Reelheed

    I think not. Enjoy your 40foot squeeling car tires.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 3:01 a.m. CST

    MAMMA MIA has earned more money than THE DARK KNIGHT...


    ... in the UK. I'm English, but what kind of twats are we?? More people have been to see MAMMA MIA than THE DARK KNIGHT!?!?!?

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 3:31 a.m. CST

    The Dark Knight

    by Mr. Lahey

    I believe the scene in which the Joker removes his mask was an IMAX shot, if I recall correctly. As for Transformers 2 scenes in IMAX, I'll start saving now. I went to TDK four times in IMAX. It has ruined the regular theater experience. People actually gasped at the opening shot of Chicago.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 3:33 a.m. CST


    by Fortunesfool

    he'll have to calm down the spastic editing. That shit just won't cut it in Imax.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 3:58 a.m. CST

    my eyes are going to get fucked-x

    by frg10

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 4:16 a.m. CST

    IMAX Around the World

    by jazzdownunder

    280 screens in 38 countries, although 60% of them are in the US. Even down here in tiny little New Zealand we have a 3D IMAX. But Transformers 2? Meh.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 4:28 a.m. CST

    IMAX outside US

    by Bourne Again

    I'm writing this from Delhi and we have an IMax screen about 8 miles from my place. However, nowadays they don't usually show IMax contents over there. Just your normal letterbox format even in IMax screen. Lack of quality contents for IMax screens is a big issue.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 5:38 a.m. CST

    Mr Lahey

    by anyrandomhero

    I know exactly what you mean when i saw TDK in IMAX there was a collective "fuuuuucckkk" from the audience when that opening shot came on screen....the first film I saw in IMAX and it ruined the average cinema for me

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 6:43 a.m. CST


    by Rommel Catuncan

    the last movie I saw at IMAX was "Dogville".

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 8:26 a.m. CST

    Megan Fox:

    by half vader

    "Does my ass look big in this format?"

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 8:31 a.m. CST


    by half vader

    "Like the side of a house!". Of course it could do wonders for her little boobies if she turned around. Russ Meyers in 3d imax! You know you want it! Comin' at ya!

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 8:43 a.m. CST

    Mike D and Mr Lahey - size and noise

    by half vader

    Yep the noise thing is an issue for dialogue scenes - Joker removing his mask was dubbed as are the majority of all action movies (EXCEPT for predominately dialogue scenes), but directors do like some respite from it especially with any decent amount of dialogue and on a set (there's a reason they're called soundstages). Look at/listen to some other DK scenes where you can hear the dialogue reverb-ing and bouncing off the walls of the set quite naturally. <p> I think the even bigger issue is the size of the cameras and how hard they are to move. Nolan has mention this too. I can't remember how much filming time you get out of an IMAX mag... Anyway size and noise is why folks are looking to the RED (that's how they write it all in caps) 5k rez camera as a possible solution.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 8:43 a.m. CST

    YAWN..and the point is?!?!?!?!?!

    by j2talk

    Seriously why the Fuck bother? Prestige factor? seriously it cant add that much to the bottom line as IMAX is too limited, filming in IMAX gives NO added benefit to the lucrative home video market...You wanna really make an impact to movie goers as a WHOLE send the film out on 70mm prints-'course you may need to train some projectionist on how to care for the print

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 8:46 a.m. CST

    Fuck Bay

    by Crow3711

    Basically, now we'll be able to not tell what the fuck is happening on screen in mind-boggling clarity? That doesn't even make senes. Transformers was the biggest piece of shit ever made and the sequel makes me wish I was dead.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 9:13 a.m. CST

    Ah yes...

    by Mr. Nice Gaius


  • Sept. 30, 2008, 9:15 a.m. CST


    by Mr. Nice Gaius

    "senes"???<P>And as for the biggest piece of shit ever made, go watch BLOODRAYNE and get back to us.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 9:40 a.m. CST


    by FuckMichaelBay

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 9:41 a.m. CST


    by FuckMichaelBay

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 9:41 a.m. CST


    by FuckMichaelBay

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 9:42 a.m. CST

    No, the worst movie ever made

    by xevoid

    was Hamburger: The Motion Picture. Manos, The Hand of Fate notwithstanding.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 9:56 a.m. CST

    will this work for a CGI wankfest?

    by dauphin534

    Most of the The Dark Knight's imax shots were in-camera-photographed action with a few dramatic scenes mixed throughout. Will Bay's style of frenetic cutting and big CGI robots cut it in imax? i don't think so?

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 10:45 a.m. CST

    Great news!

    by fassbinder79

    Very excited about Transformers 2. I hope it will be the Bad Boys 2 equivalent of the Transformers universe.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 11:20 a.m. CST

    The partial IMAX trend is disturbing

    by Eyegore

    I love IMAX and I love 3D and of course IMAX 3D, but I don't want to see movies with a few minutes IMAX here and a few random 3D moments thrown in just for the 3d sight gag parts ya know (-sarcasm-)). It's the transitions I find most disturbing. Make these movies consistent please. All IMAX or all 3D or all IMAX3D.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 12:14 p.m. CST

    A major arthouse director is doing it too

    by s0nicdeathmonkey

    I have been told not to say whom. But you guys are gonna freak.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 12:30 p.m. CST

    If only the world would grow up...

    by Knuckleduster

    ... and give us IMAX 3D porn.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 12:37 p.m. CST

    No mention of 3-D

    by Vern

    I'm still sticking with my prediction that watching that style of editing in 3-D would be so disorienting that after testing it they would just forget about it being released in 3-D. Maybe that already happened.<p> Either way they better rope off the front section of the Imax theaters or people's eyes might be permanently damaged from spinning around trying to find a way to interpret the millions of shiny abstract shapes wiggling around on the screen.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 1:31 p.m. CST

    RE: eyegore

    by two fathoms deep

    I was wondering if it was disorienting when they switched them. I don't care if they do change it in the middle, I'm just concerned about being taken out of the movie. Anyone else dislike the switching?

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 1:34 p.m. CST


    by blindambition238

    Terry Gilliam?

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 1:35 p.m. CST

    or David Lynch

    by blindambition238

    Not know what the hell you're even supposed to be experiencing in hi-def!

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 1:46 p.m. CST

    my guess

    by Vern

    Soderbergh. It will be his follow up to BUBBLE but in Imax instead of camcorder.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 2:23 p.m. CST

    never seen a theatrical movie in IMAX but...

    by billyhitchcock

    ...that changing from letterbox to fullscreen a number of times throughout the movie sounds bullshit! does it really do that? surely that completely ruins the experience?

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 3:02 p.m. CST


    by half vader

    His version of Robocop?

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 3:09 p.m. CST

    No Billyhitchcock, it actually works really well because

    by half vader

    pretty much every time they go to an IMAX sequence it's a big vista with the cities and lots of buildings. In other words, 'vertical' imagery. <p> As opposed to say, the gang meetings with a lotta people around a desk - in other words, horizontal compositions/imagery. It's actually really appropriate and not jarring at all. <p> The regular dvd version will just be in scope though like the non-IMAX. The Blu-ray will ape the IMAX by changing format (although the taller format isn't quite IMAX's 1.66 to 1, it's a little more squat. Looked fine on the Batman Begins preview though).

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 3:12 p.m. CST

    Vern, wouldn't 3d IMAX tranformers work BETTER

    by half vader

    than non-3d IMAX? At least you'd have depth cues to know what was generally say, a limb rather than some 2d metal blur still framed too tight but now travelling the length of a football field in a 1 second cut?!

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 3:16 p.m. CST

    And Billy

    by half vader

    It goes from scope to regular widescreen (as in no bars on a widescreen telly, not an old-fashioned set). "Fullscreen" generally means old-fashioned tellies. Although I guess in a few years when all TVs are wide that won't be appropriate. <p> Right. Enough posting. And avoiding work...

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 4:28 p.m. CST

    Fuck Michael Bay!!!

    by Han Cholo

    Can't stress that enough.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 4:31 p.m. CST

    Oh and can someone explain...

    by Han Cholo

    What the big difference with IMAX is? Is it the aspect ratio? Can't be much to do with clarity as most California theaters use digital projection. I don't understand.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 4:48 p.m. CST

    Half Vader RED is not IMAX...

    by J.B.M.A.

    At least not yet. You refer I assume to the yet-to-be-released RED EPIC? It now seems unlikely that it will have a sensor anywhere near large enough to reach 70mm levels of clarity. Chances are it will simply be a better resolution of HD replacement for standard 35mm feature cameras. One of my chums owns 2 RED ONEs and whilst he has been extremely impressed with what they've shot he still chooses 35mm over them at present.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 5:29 p.m. CST

    Can't they digitally just IMAX the 35mm stuff?

    by TallBoy66

    That's how they did attack of the Clones for the IMAX show a few months later, I thought that was pretty cool. If it's going to keep doing this BIG-SMALL-BIG-SMALL bullshit, I'm calling Hollywood out on this as being bullshit. you can fawn over the few shots all you want, until they IMAX up the whole movie (I get they can't shoot the whole thing IMAX cams, but they can do it in post later), then this is just a limp-wristed half-assed fad.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 5:33 p.m. CST

    Okay, Clones was shot digital

    by TallBoy66

    But they still IMAXed the fucker after the fact, not this half-assed shit. Shoot the smaller scenes traditionally, shoot the bigger scenes IMAX, make it all match in the end. DO IT FULL, DO IT RIGHT. Don't fuck with us, Hollyweird, you can only navel gaze your innovations so much until we all don't give a fuck.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 6:09 p.m. CST

    Pissed Off And Bitter

    by Mr. Lahey

    IMAX film stock is gigantic. Think of the megapixel difference between a shitty $50 digital camera and a $1000 digital camera. The IMAX image at the size it's shown is crystal clear.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 7:20 p.m. CST

    JBMA I didn't say I preferred RED personally

    by half vader

    to IMAX I said that there are murmurings out there about using it for that purpose. <p> I can see that your friend would choose 35mm but I also think (this is my personal opinion now) that a digital camera shooting 2k IS analogous to the REALITY of 35mm under realistic conditions. By which I mean - for features pretty much everything goes through a digital IP these days, and both those and visual effects are generally done at 2k, not higher. So the quality of the finished film people see will be 2k. Although colour fidelity will be higher if captured on film and this will be carried through more than if they started in digital. THEN, there's further loss of resolution when the thing gets to the vast majority of cinemas, which are not digital. I'm not even talking wear. Just the act of running films loose in the gate because they're threaded onto a single reel and you lose even more effective resolution through the lack of focus. So I'd argue that realistically, 2k digital end-to-end stomps all over traditional for rez, and 4-5k is analogous to 65mm/70mm. As for RED, apparently colour definition is better than other digital formats at the top end and is nowhere near the dreaded digital blow-out of others. So it's improving, but I still think it'll be a while before it equals film. <p> I can see why your friend likes 35mm but he would get to see it under the best end conditions, which almost no-one does. By the way I'm not saying things should be dumbed down. I love stuff shot on film and projected digitally. <p> Your last couple of posts were confusing. That IMAX 'technique' that is glorified uprezzing IS bullshit! It's the same as the garbage about uprezzed DVDs being as good as HD media, it's just not the same as IMAX resolution, it's interpolated up. The only difference is the lack of incompetent projectionists. And paying double for said competence. I have an IMAX cinema 5 minutes down the road from me. They play regular 35mm blown up to IMAX size at night. The uprezzing may be a bit better, but it's NOT the same as it actually being IMAX rez or even proper 70mm.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 9:44 p.m. CST

    Michael Bay Raped My!

    by Cheif Brody

    Somebody had to say it! They will eventually figure out how to make all movies in IMAX...It's ineveitable...It will be the ONLY reason to leave your comfy home theater. Let's just hope Bay shows as much reverence for the technology as Nolan did with TDK.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 10:15 p.m. CST

    Yeah, the picture's huge, but I love IMAX for its SOUND.

    by flickchick85

    The 1st movie I ever saw in Imax was the Lion King. And as soon as that opening "Circle of Life" sequence ended, rumbling the theater with that big bass pop as the title hit the screen, I was Imax's bitch for life.

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 11:37 p.m. CST

    Do you guys have to pay double for an IMAX feature?

    by half vader

    We do Downunder, pretty much. 25 bucks takes the shine off a bit. You SHOULD get the most amazing thing ever for that money!

  • Sept. 30, 2008, 11:57 p.m. CST


    by shagg187

    There are FIVE IMAX venues in Germany. As of 2006, there were 280 IMAX theatres in 40 countries (60 percent of these are located in the U.S. and Canada).

  • Oct. 1, 2008, midnight CST

    half vader

    by shagg187

    You don't pay DOUBLE for IMAX. You pay $2 extra (atleast here in Canada).

  • Oct. 1, 2008, 12:55 a.m. CST

    No mention of Dark Knight?

    by most excellent ninja

    What the fuck?

  • Oct. 1, 2008, 2:36 a.m. CST

    most failed ninja

    by kungfuhustler84

    I guess you never really read the entire articles dipshit. It was right there at the top, and people mentioned it all throughout the talkbacks.<p>Don't bother with a retort. Actually you probably won't even bother to read this post since you apparently have the attention span of that karate kid from Smokin Aces.<p>Ritalin boner.

  • Oct. 1, 2008, 3:30 a.m. CST


    by Vern

    Regarding the 3-D making it easier to tell which end of the giant pile of grey machine parts is the head: you might be right. But I'm thinking it's the opposite. Although the editing in Transformers wasn't as extreme as in previous Bay movies the shots are still very short. If the robots are still as detailed (and I'm betting they'll be MORE detailed) I think the 3-D will make it even more difficult for your eye to take everything in before the next shot comes at you. But that's only a theory, you could be right that having it dimensional will help tell which way things are pointing.<p> I would say "we'll see," but judging from this press release they've already ditched the 3-D plans and are confident that we don't have the attention span to remember they ever said that.

  • Oct. 1, 2008, 6:52 a.m. CST

    It wasn't MY posts that were confusing...

    by J.B.M.A.

  • Oct. 1, 2008, 7:08 a.m. CST

    Ooops...half post!

    by J.B.M.A.

    'Twas Tallboy66 with the confusion. I'll meet you half way on the RED/film argument. I'd agree that a lot of what we see at cinemas isn't really at prime quality. However most DP's discussing the future of RED in it's various forms maintain that regardless of the 'k' rating in theory, RED is not yet producing anything close to 4k in actuality. I seem to recall something like a 3 point-something average even in it's raw state, not IMAX quality. Most DP's are still arguing for a 4:3 sensor so they can use proper anamorphic lenses! RED will have to work very hard with the EPIC I think to push things to IMAX levels - but maybe they will. At this stage it's a very new player in an old game.<p> Incidentally my mate with the REDs spends most of his time on set, so he rarely sees his work for 35mm properly graded until it hits cinemas.

  • Oct. 1, 2008, 8:42 a.m. CST

    Yeah JBMA

    by half vader

    Fair enough, and I did mean to say that in terms of matching every last bit of detail in a perfect situation, 4k for me is preferable for 35mm. I was really pleased they went the whole hog for Blade Runner, and it paid off with the vistavision stuff, even though it's a 35mm film. Did you see it digitally projected in 4k? It was amazing. <p> Yeah RED will probably take a few years, but I hope they succeed because the price for small filmmakers is great, the things look to be built like tanks and they seem to be so aggressive it'll keep the big boys honest. I agree with what you say about not being true 4k quality - it's probably analogous to the cheapo still digital camera guys who offer rez as a cheap alternative to decent low-noise/quality colour sensitinity & optics, which cancels itself out as far as I'm concerned. Having said that, considering the little 3k RED prosumer thing is only going to be 3 grand, that one looks mighty appealing for a bit of fun... <p> And looking back I think my post WAS a bit confusing. And geeky as fuck.

  • Oct. 1, 2008, 8:58 a.m. CST


    by half vader

    Yeah maybe you're right. The 3d could also be confusing and annoying because you'd feel like you were constantly being jabbed by sharp metal angles appearing and disappearing in fast cuts (geddit? haw!)... although that's probably a metaphor for every Bay film in general! <p> I don't disagree with the idea of making those fuckers super-detailed, but if you're gonna do that, move the camera the fuck out and slow the cuts when the action is compli-ma-cated (as Homer would say). Or if you're gonna go tight with detailed stuff simplify the damn silhouettes. Did no-one learn anything from Joe Johnston and Ralph McQuarrie's genius on Star Wars? Ya can't have it both ways. The first TF film proved that. <p> I listened to the commentary on TF for the exact reason of hearing Bay justify himself or admit he fucked up at the end. He did talk about how hard it is (we all know that), but then when we got to the end battle... nuthin'. Hmmm. Considering that his only STRENGTH is lighting and framing... what happened?!! <p> And what was with the Circuit City (or whatever the fuck they called it) thing for that matter? Yeah generally LA or New York are the generic movie cities, but the way Bay shot it (familiar street signs and all) it didn't just look like 'some city', it looked like L.A.! Even the bits shot on the backlot! <p> I recognised it and I'm not even FROM America!!