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Want To See THE HOBBIT In 48FPS? You Might Have To Drive (Or Fly) A Ways...

Nordling here.

There was quite a fuss at Cinemacon earlier this year when Warner Brothers screened about 10 minutes of footage from THE HOBBIT at 48 frames per second, as opposed to the regular rate of 24 frames per second that we all see when we sit down at the cinema.  And the response was decidedly mixed.  Many people who saw it didn't care for the look at all, comparing it to live television and claiming that the sets didn't look real, while others thought it looked striking and beautiful - people would need to get used to it and that perhaps 10 minutes wasn't enough time to acclimate to the technology.

When I read about the footage myself, I was concerned - no doubt it will be something of a paradigm shift for movie geeks - and Harry and I talked about the possibilities on the phone for a long time.  One of my biggest concerns is that my eyes aren't in the best condition, and as all these new technologies come into play, I worry that movies are going to leave people like me behind.  I think 3D dims the screen entirely too much, for example.  That said, I haven't seen frame one of 48fps and I remain optimistic that seeing it is going to be tremendously exciting.  Devin Faraci, who decried the technology, admitted that the outside tracking shots of THE HOBBIT that he saw at Cinemacon were truly groundbreaking stuff, and Peter Jackson and his team have had quite a bit of time to tweak and correct the movie so that when it does open, I'm confident that it's going to look incredible.

That is, if it opens in 48fps near me at all.  According to Variety, Warner Brothers is being very careful due to the feedback from Cinemacon, and will be releasing THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY in 48fps in very limited markets, with the possibility of rolling it out to more theaters across the country if feedback is good.  I don't think that's the way to go with this, personally - WB shouldn't be cautious about this new technology if they have faith that it works.  More recent generation digital projectors can be upgraded to include the new frame rates - many already have been in anticipation of the movie - and I really want to see it in 48fps to judge it for myself.  I know Harry is very excited for the new technology, and I really want to check it out.  Hopefully we all will very soon.

Nordling, out.  Follow me on Twitter!

Readers Talkback
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  • Aug. 8, 2012, 12:56 p.m. CST

    I'm surprised, I thought the 24fps would be the exception

    by TheSeeker7

    I honestly was thinking the 3D 48fps was going to mostly be the standard around the country, and you'd have to likely go well out of your way to find a plain old 2D 24fps showing.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 12:57 p.m. CST

    I'm cool either way

    by fat_rancor_keeper


  • Aug. 8, 2012, 12:57 p.m. CST


    by CimmerianWarrior

    PJ seems to be losing wieght again.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 12:57 p.m. CST

    by CimmerianWarrior

    Unless this is that promo picture from the very begining.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 12:59 p.m. CST

    I definitely want to see it in 48fps the first time.

    by Sardonic

    I don't doubt that it will be jarring (I took have bad -- though not terrible -- eyes), but I still think it's logical and exciting progression of cinema. I'd definitely consider driving a little bit (luckily I live near Philadelphia, so there must be some decent theaters around the major east coast cities...though I'd rather have to go all the way to New York if possible).

  • Really, what does that mean to most people and how do you show off the difference to "sell" it? 3-D as debatable as it may be, at least has a clear definition of what makes it attractive.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:05 p.m. CST!

    by Ninja Nerd

    Actually, this is not that new. Ebert wrote about increasing film stock speeds with an analog system that used a partial vacuum to keep the film aligned when running at a higher rate past the light source. Doing this in the digital age is a logical progression. More data should create a better result. That said, people are different and many things are NEVER going to be "one size fits all." You, and many folks, including Ebert decry the dim output of 3D. Personally, I have excellent night vision, so I do NOT object to the visual quality of most 3D content. Of course, the actual quality of the film itself is always debatable. Every "converted" film that was not shot in 3D looks like trash to me. Avatar, How To Train Your Dragon, and Toy Story 3 were pretty good. Of course, none of those were "live" presentations. Watched some Olympic events this week in 3D and have mixed reviews. Diving was kinda cool, tennis...not so much. Overall, I will probably exert some effort to see The Hobbit at 48fps. I think the finished product will be very good to flat out stunning.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:06 p.m. CST

    Key edit required!

    by matt l

    The last paragraph says "According to Variety, Warner Brothers is being very careful due to the feedback from Cinemacon, and will be releasing THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY in very limited markets...". What you meant was "...will be releasing THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY in 48fps in very limited markets..."

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:08 p.m. CST


    by LethargicJ

    Who wants to hear actors talk?? HA!!

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:13 p.m. CST

    no ifs or buts....

    by Jaymie69

    this is the way movie making is going to be. period. get used to it.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:13 p.m. CST

    Fuck this. I want a 8k digital Showscan presentation. Now.

    by Ricardo

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:14 p.m. CST

    If no 48fps, I'm staying home

    by Rupee88

    I'll just download it at some point. I'll gladly pay to see it in 48 and I'm in a major market so hopefully it will play that way here.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:15 p.m. CST

    I have excellent Nightvision

    by Dan

    Is that your superpower?

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:19 p.m. CST

    Will I need those limited edition Hobbit glasses?

    by StatelyWayneManor

    If so, no deal.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:20 p.m. CST

    I wonder, in the case that the audience rejects

    by jack

    the 48fps version Hobbit, how much is this going to affect Cameron's plans for the 60fps versions of Avatar 2 and 3?

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:21 p.m. CST


    by fat_rancor_keeper

    NO FIRST FOR YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:27 p.m. CST

    Additional cost for 48fps?

    by NAM37

    Does anyone know if they are intending on charging more for 48fps screenings? (It would be a very Hollywood thing to do...)

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:29 p.m. CST

    48fps Might Be Fun—Unless they Charge More

    by batmccoy

    It's tough to ask the audience to pay more for something they were not even asking for without even guaranteeing the the other pitfalls of making a film. Even veteran directors (Ridley Scott, Speilburg and Lucas) have been getting the basic elements wrong. Plot problems galore.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:30 p.m. CST

    @siv: "Selling" 48fps

    by Unscripted

    The way you sell it is to give it a bombastic, impressive, utterly meaningless name and hype the hell out of it. Movies have been doing it since at least the 1930s. Even "3D" itself is something of an invented name for the appearance of depth on a flat screen. So, whoever owns the tech needs to give it a splashy name like HypRVizion or DoubleEyes or RealiView, and then begin the usual hype-fest that it's just not worth watching movies in any other format.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:30 p.m. CST

    48fps on Blu-ray?

    by Uzala

    Can Blu-ray handle 48fps? Is it possible to transfer The Hobbit to Blu-ray this way?

  • ... what? You can't be that stupid, certainly. You mean the therminology is used to define the 3D movie experience itself?

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:32 p.m. CST

    Problem with 48fps

    by Harrigan

    The problem comes in when something is filmed on a set - the soap opera effect combined with the lack of real lighting can take you out of the fantasy pretty quickly.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:46 p.m. CST

    Yes, but Devin's a certified twat - Who cares what he thinks?

    by gruntybear

    Here's an experiment that you all can do. Go to Devin's site and start writing rhapsodically about how "Pacific Rim" will be the best live action version of "Neon Genesis Evangelion" yet. Step back and catch the plentiful LULZ as Devin flips the fuck out. That child ain't right. He ain't right at all.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:48 p.m. CST

    I hate it when purists win

    by Logan_1973

    Go play your 8 tracks.

  • Can't wait!

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 1:53 p.m. CST

    Quick pan at 24fps sucks

    by Rupee88

    Even at 30fps, it is still blurry and jarrying. 48fps is the way to go (if not 60 or 120) and they will figure out the kinks eventually. It's inevitable that this change will happen, but question is will it be this year or in 5 or 10 or a few more.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:04 p.m. CST

    I'm just hoping 24fps doesn't look wonky.

    by MuadDibuhhh

    If this was filmed in 48fps 3d, meant to be 48fps 3d, then I really hope that when it's "dumbed down" for regular 24fps, it doesn't look shitty.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:14 p.m. CST

    I convert my Blu Rays to 60fps

    by Han Cholo

    It does take some time to get used to but imagine watching your favorite movie playing out at a much smoother frame rate. It's hard to go back once you've gotten used to it.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:23 p.m. CST

    48fps tickets will cost twice as much..

    by Darth_Inedible

    Theaters should screen the 48fps version at 24 fps for a special 4 hour presentation.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:23 p.m. CST

    I am waiting for the buttery smoothness that is 120FPS

    by Darr Furr

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:23 p.m. CST

    Warner Bros. must have some confidence.....

    by drewlicious

    Why else would they greenlight a third film?

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:24 p.m. CST

    FAP FAP FAP FAP.....

    by Darr Furr


  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:28 p.m. CST

    you haven't seen 1 frame of 48fps? yes you have.

    by Jubba

    you just haven't seen 48 of them in a single second yet.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:30 p.m. CST

    I didn't know Peter Jackson had a stoma

    by tangcameo

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:31 p.m. CST

    High Frame Rates is not new technology

    by The Aquarian 1

    Douglas Trumbull, genius behind many of the effects in Kubrick's 2001 and Visual Effects Supervisor on Close Encounters, Star Trek, and Blade Runner (no big deal, I'm sure he has NO idea what he's talking about) did a bunch of frame rate tests in the 70s and discovered that 72fps is the frame rate where quality improvements, noticed by the audience, cease. Shooting and projecting at a higher frame rate than 24fps is not anything new, nor is it a "new technology." Peter Jackson is definitely on the right path, too bad he's shooting on digital. The high frame rate probably makes the "digital" look even more than shitty than it already does. If he were to shoot this on 35mm or 70 or IMAX, The Hobbit would be a landmark in technical cinema history.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:32 p.m. CST

    I'd give it a shot as long as I don't have to pay more.

    by BilboRing

    If they are going to charge more to see the movie then they can go fuck themselves. If not, it could be cool.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:38 p.m. CST


    by Russell

    Watch the trailer on YouTube or dl it from and that's how it looks in 24fps. Not shitty at all and that's how i'm seeing it. In 2D. Fuck the PJ plants posting on here.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:38 p.m. CST

    Convert bluray to 60fps???

    by Dubster32

    How can you add in frames that don't exist??

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:38 p.m. CST

    So, my local AMC that has bad ass Sony 4K might not show it?


    WTF, WB? First, you phone in catalog BD titles and look like DVD. Then, you let Nolan fuck off the 3rd Batman film. Now, you let Jackson film the way HE wants, and might not let the masses see it? What a bunch of dumb mook mutha fuckas!

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:42 p.m. CST

    How about releasing a 48 fps trailer already!

    by Saen

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:55 p.m. CST

    @pissed off and bitter 60fps

    by AlibyebyeEssmob

    You're an idiot and a Philistine. Begone with you.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:58 p.m. CST

    @pissed off and bitter 60fps

    by AlibyebyeEssmob

    You're an idiot and a Philistine if you interpolate to 60fps. Begone with you.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:58 p.m. CST

    Christ, double post...

    by AlibyebyeEssmob

    Anyway, I hope the conversion down to 24fps doesn't hurt the movies.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 2:59 p.m. CST

    @ricarleite4: "3D"

    by Unscripted

    I am not so dim that I don't know "3D" doesn't mean "three-dimensional"... but NO film is actually three-dim. It's just an optical illusion. Look back at the earliest such films and you'll see that "3D" was used as a catchy trade name much like Sensurround or 70mm or THX... no matter how much fact is in the name, most of it was glitz and glam. (Or flim-flam...)

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 3:05 p.m. CST

    Dubster, I was wondering that myself!

    by Clabog592

    It's impossible to add something thats not there! I feel like Peter Jackson said something to the effect that the fast motion scan that some people can see on there tv will not be a problem with the Hobbit, as there will actually be 48fps of footage. It will not just be a 24fps movie sped up. I personally can't wait to see it in this new format, so hopefully there will be a theater in the Boston area equipped to show it!

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 3:10 p.m. CST

    I want to see it in 48fps!

    by Proman1984

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 3:13 p.m. CST

    Dubster it is like upscaling

    by jack

    you use the 24 frames that you already have to fill the missing 24 frames from your 48fps second.

  • It just changing some lines of code that are in the video file. Cinema Tools in the Final Cut Pro suite does this for footage. No need to render or re-encode it just tells the computer to read the file a different way.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 3:20 p.m. CST

    I don't get the appeal of 48 fps at all

    by Mattyboy122

    Especially in regards to the whole 'fast pans will be clearer' thing. Like, do you want to see everything in a fast pan? Doesn't that automatically fuck the 'whip pan' as a method of transitioning between shots or scenes? You'd be able to clearly delineate when the break in the editing takes place, but at 24fps it's like a sleight of hand trick. I guess that's what 24fps comes down to for me. I may sound nostalgic or old-fashioned (I'm only 25, so I'm not an old codger), but 24fps has a certain magical quality to it. Even lower frame rate silent era films have a magical quality to them, because the lower frame rate allows for these magician tricks. 48fps and its ilk is better suited for live television, or broadcasts of theatrical performances. When it comes to cinema, 24fps should be the standard (my opinion, of course).

  • With the Hobbit films being created differently than the LOTR trilogy, I will not be able to sit down and enjoy all the movies back to back... its going to be like Star Wars and the prequels all over again. When we you watch the Hobbit films then the LOTR films you will be shocked on how much difference there is between video quality. IMO faster film rates decrease the movie magic and make films look more fake. I hope they work on the color in the Hobbit films because the trailer before The Dark Knight Rises IMAX looked horrible to me, the colors were way to bright and the sets looked fake and thats at 24fps... but the sets could have looked like that to me because I've been keeping up with the making of video blogs for the Hobbit and the sets are engraved into my mind already. Either way I'm looking forward to watching the Hobbit this winter.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 3:40 p.m. CST

    mattyboy122 you are so correct!

    by Max

    I use whip pans for transitions often. The fast blur allows your eyes and brain to smoothly transition from scene to scene instead of using a hard cut that could be extremely jarring to the audience.

  • So there.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 3:42 p.m. CST

    The more things change...

    by PorkChopXpress

    ...the more they stay the same. I can remember seeing a ton of trailers for classic films in the decades following colorization where they spent more time talking about the new "Cinemascope" format they were introducing, than the story they were telling. Ultimately, nobody left the theater talking about how amazing the new Cinemascope turned out to be and nobody remembers it, now. 48p is an advancement in image capture and projection for theatrical presentation...something to differentiate seeing it at home from seeing it in a theater, which is something theater owners are desperate for. I'll check it out and maybe it's the future, maybe it's just another gimmick - like 3D - which will end up fizzling in the long run. I'm willing to give it a look, though.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 3:48 p.m. CST

    judenw: that's insane, and pointless

    by ByTor

    If a film is shot at 24 fps, you can't make it 60 fps. All you're doing is adding dupe frames, which accomplishes NOTHING. Why do you think people decomb/IVTC DVDs, etc. back down to 24 fps? Because dupe frames are pointless. Waste of time.

  • I've seen some stuff shot on DV run at 48fps and it really took me out of the show. Imagine an episode of America's Got Talent, but as crisp as humanly possible and transferred to a fictional movie scene. That gives you an idea of what to expect. Very "live HD television" look to it. I don't like it personally, the same way I hated certain shots in Public Enemies that weren't lit properly and looked home video-ish.

  • And we will be there witness it for better or worse. Then again, I may have primates in the family tree.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 4:12 p.m. CST

    I hope I can see it in 48 FPS and 3D somewhere in my area.

    by frank

    I plan to see it in 2D at 24 FPS first, but I am very curious about the new technology and would like to see it that way as well. It is physically impossible for me to be more excited about these movies. I would still like to hear more information about how the story will break down among the three films. Also I’d like to know what the titles will be.

  • For the second one, my suggestion is On The Dragon’s Doorstep. That is a variation on one of the Hobbit chapter titles, so I think it would fit nicely with the other two titles.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 4:23 p.m. CST

    Subjectivity of the viewing experience...

    by Darth Macchio

    It's about as inviolate as you can get when it comes to personal preferences for viewing film. This could be a deal-breaker for many people if the industry embraces it. I have not seen it or anything like it outside of Imax, etc, but I also feel that 3d has been somewhat unremarkable as an "effect" in what I've seen thus far (admittedly, very little) I'd also agree that it dims the screen far too much without having a compensatory benefit in the virtual third dimension. People's eyes are an overtly personal thing, probably never moreso than what works best for each of us watching a film in a darkened theater - fluorescent lights give me a headache if they're not dispersed by a filter as I can perceived the 60Hz cycle giving it a mild strobe effect. Some people see it and it doesn't bother them and some don't see the strobe effect at all. Who is right? Answer? All 3 of us. So yes, they need to make sure they're accounting for all types of viewers and viewing needs. I actually sorta rejoiced hearing that the 48fps would be a limited run as I'm sure I'll love these movies on a visual level with the standard 28fps (i believe that's the standard) and all the regulars and I'd like the option of maybe checking it out in 48fps as well...but having nothing but 48fps seems unwise given the decidedly mixed reaction. If 48fps caused eye strain, I'd know in about 5 minutes after the images appears and I'd have no choice but to walk out. I love this version of Middle-Earth but it would not be worth getting a migraine headache if that's what ended up happening. I doubt it would..but still, nice to have choices. Sux tho for the smaller regional areas - they may not get a 48fps showing at all...

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 4:28 p.m. CST

    I prefer 10th generation bootleg VHS.

    by adeceasedfan

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 4:36 p.m. CST

    Cameron's 60fps Avatar 2 will instantly make 48fps redundant

    by performingmonkey

    60fps much easier to convert for monitor refresh rates, mobile devices etc. i.e. the future.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 4:41 p.m. CST

    performingmonkey, good point

    by ByTor

    48 FPS won't sync well with 120 Hz displays at all. You'd need 240 Hz. Even plasmas with the 600 Hz field drive won't do it correctly.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 4:53 p.m. CST

    I'll be seeing it

    by Mr Lucas

    at the BFI IMAX in London ("biggest screen in Britain" as they always tell you before the main presentation!). I'm sure it will look and sound as it's supposed to (and priced accordingly).

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 5:50 p.m. CST

    Yes, night vision is my super power...

    by Ninja Nerd

    ...and with my devastating wit, charm, and amazing good looks, I'm a force to be reckoned with. Especially if my date has had several adult beverages...

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 6:12 p.m. CST

    If Jackson is confident in 48fps and in 3d....

    by Allen

    ...just imagine how good the special effects must be in the film. Would love the chance to see what PJ can do at 48fps just out of pure curiosity, but I'll be happy either way.

  • I want to watch the Hobbit, because it's THE HOBBIT I'd rather they tried this out with something like Avatar did, or Jurassic Park, where seeing the new technology was part of the anticipation itself as it stands now I will go opening night to see it in 24fps, and then a week later to check out the 48fps for purely A/V nerd reasons

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 6:14 p.m. CST

    will it be possible to see this movie in 48fps, but NOT 3D??

    by Rebel Scumb

    I hate 3D, but will give 48fps a chance, but would prefer not to have to put up with the former in order to expirence the latter

  • I've actually seen several comments here and elsewhere of people claiming 'yeah 24fps sucks crap, FINALLY things will be in 48fps' as though up until this point in history EVERY movie has been a painful expirence because of insufficient frame rate

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 7:12 p.m. CST

    this pisses me off. I want to see the film as PJ intended it: 3D 48FPS!

    by where_are_quints_hobbit_set_reports

    y'all haterz can wait and watch it on torrented cam at 240px with mono sound or whatever the fuck makes you happy... but I want it the way the filmmaker meant it to be! I'm in the south so probably there will be no theaters within 1200 miles showing the 48fps version. THIS SUX.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 7:20 p.m. CST

    I'll watch it in 10fps flash video

    by John Brown

    or as an animated GIF.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 7:27 p.m. CST

    I second rebel scumb...

    by Patrick

    Please do not make me put up with 3D so i can watch this in 48fps. I am legitimately excited about 48fps, but I gave up on 3D after watching just one post-converted shitfest. Wearing sunglasses in a dark room does not seem very logical to me whatsoever.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 7:30 p.m. CST

    covjack I would like to watch it on an original 1989 gameboy

    by where_are_quints_hobbit_set_reports

    Or the display of a calculator

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 7:57 p.m. CST

    Seeing TDKR in 2D IMAX felt like a huge MOVIE with zero gimmicks

    by performingmonkey

    3D is a gimmick and is fucking up cinema, I don't care what anyone says, no-one will convince me otherwise. 48fps is in the same mold. As with 3D it's all about making a movie experience LESS like a movie experience and MORE like a fucking exercise in pandering to the ADD generation. As well as playing into the hands of the new world motto that we must come up with some new bullshit in order to get MORE money out of people, even if it's an inferior product. The big problem the studios have is selling 48fps to the people. Even 90% of the people who visit this site are either partially or totally ignorant to what 48fps even means or what its pros and cons are. So they're already coming out with bullshit about less eye strain for 3D etc. If you don't get on with 3D then 48fps won't make a fuck load of difference. Also, darkness issues with 3D films will remain the same with 48fps. It is a FACT that instant gut reaction to 48fps, from an UNBIASED and UNAFFILIATED viewer, is one of dislike.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 8:03 p.m. CST


    by mattythelionheart

    I hate the man, but I wholeheartedly support his endorsement of Maxivision48. Jackson is an innovator for filming this at 48fps, but he's still using digital cameras, which is a finite medium. Film can always be re-adjusted and re-mastered and adapted to whatever comes next with technology. Anything shot in digital is going to stay exactly how it is. No improvement for them in the future. That being said, what the fuck is wrong with WB? If they were iffy about the format, then why the fuck did they let him film it in the first place? I doubt this movie will make them go bankrupt if shown only at 48 fps.

  • If it doesn't show that way in my town, I have no interest in seeing it. Fellowship of the Rings was a good film, but each subsequent film became more ponderous and uninteresting. Fuck them if they chicken out and release this crap in standard fps. They won't see me in a theater seat if that happens. Fuck Jackson and the cheap-ass cash grab he rode in on.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 8:19 p.m. CST

    Looks like those 120/240HZ Tvs at Costco

    by Glenn

    I don't want my motion smoothed out. I'm all for clarity and depth, but once the motion starts looking like reality, I feel like I'm watching a sitcom. A good example was watching Pirates of the Caribbean 3 at Costco, on a large TV with one of those huge refresh rates -- and it took me right out of it, so much so that when I helped my brother-in-law buy a 65" 3D Vizio, I made sure you could turn that feature off, and he agreed...and he's a layman blue collar guy, your everyman. I saw Showscan back in the day, some Alpine Race movie, and loved it -- but that was an amusement park styled ride/film, not a movie movie. Great technology, would not want to see an actor within 10 miles of it, though... Usually if you're doing a pan, you're panning FROM something TO something, you're not seriously focused on the in-between, and if you are focused in-between, then the pan is moving at a rate of speed that can accommodate the eye and brain anyway (you know, like moving over pictures on a mantle etc). 3D is boring, looks like maquettes in pop-up books and somehow de-scales everything -- I find it makes the world look smaller, strangely; it's almost like you need to force the frame into deep focus a la Citizen Kane to get the most out of it. Digital is getting better all the time (Sorry Pfister, but if it's good enough for Roger Deakins...). I hope hope hope Peter Jackson proves me wrong but I don't have high hopes. Maybe newer generations will eventually accept it as the norm, in the same way that they've accepted shitty resolution as looking "real", due to YouTube and countless indie no-budget films and iPhone movies. Who knows. Be right back -- gotta go run some kids off my lawn.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 8:30 p.m. CST


    by Paul Denton

    We've had the ability to shoot/project in 48fps for decades. Audiences and filmmakers alike prefer 24fps because of its artificiality. It's the ideal framerate for human eyes to recognise a dreamlike moving image, it's immersive yet static. There's a reason we settled on 24fps so long ago, and stayed. Jackson wants a piece of the technical relevance pie, but he's picked the wrong slice. It's no surprise at all that people are responding to his footage poorly.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 8:38 p.m. CST

    @dar1980 -- Yeah but...

    by Glenn

    We're gonna age out and be irrelevant soon anyway. Unless I get a haircut, then I'm fuckin' Gold! Seriously, we just gotta wait til the film drops and see for ourselves. The only thing I can say for now is, maybe it will work once you get used to it, like 20mins in. But I don't wanna have to get used to a format while trying to take in a story. I hate to sound like a plebe jerk, but it's the same problem I have when going to see theatrical plays -- takes me 20 mins to settle down and get past the fact that I'm watching actors pretending on (usually) bad/nonexistent sets. I know, I know -- I agree with you, I sound like a moron, but I just can't help it. Probably because I've known many an actors' group in my life who need sooooo much attention, that it irks me that they're putting this need on display onstage. This is hypocritical of me because movies require the same basic skill/talent -- but at least in movies, I'm not in their presence... I bring up that last point because the framerate of film provides me a distance from that uncomfortable reality discussed above: Not only am I not on the streets of Gotham, not only do I not want to be anywhere near the streets of Gotham, but the film speed is also providing me a psychological distance from reality to help buttress my proximity to Gotham. I can still enjoy Gotham blowing up, but it's at arm's length. Maybe actors and performers and divas will eat up 48fps. Me? I don't want that shit touching me with a 20 foot pole. Then again, I'm writing this post from inside a closet with too-long fingernails and tissues on my feet. Hang on, gotta put seed in the birdcage (if I can find my flashlight).

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 8:40 p.m. CST

    Marketing ploy

    by Bobba Phat

    I wonder if this is a way for WB to build hype for 48fps: make it a "limited edition" type of thing to create false sense of "need" or "desire." I know before I was pretty blase about seeing Hobbit in 48fps, but now that it's going to be in limited markets I'm more intrigued. Kind of like when "Paranormal Activity" rolled out in limited markets, and then had a "vote to get this movie playing in your area" type campaign. They were obviously going to do a wide-release of "Paranormal Activity," but their marketing plan drummed up extra interest. As I'm a teacher, I'm on vacation when this film is released, and I might drive the 2ish hours up north to L.A. to check out new tech. I'm kind of a tech nerd anyway, so I'd consider seeing it regardless. But now I'm a little more interested to see it in 48fps just to see what the hype (or hate) is all about. If this is intentional marketing (and I'm likely giving WB _WAY_ too much credit), then I will be interested to see how it turns out.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 8:47 p.m. CST


    by Glenn

    I agree with you on every point so don't take this as a criticism...but 24fps was an economic decision back then: the least amount of film used that still provided the least-stuttery motion. Not to mention for audible sound quality, of the optical track playing across the exciter lamp in a projector. Luckily 24fps stuck and has been successful all these decades. So far IMAX is the best I've seen. Too bad its depth of field is so narrow. I'm actually wholly interested in seeing this new NHK super-duper HiDef that looks like you're peering into a window. Maybe that's the ultimate solution -- somehow achieve ultra-resolution while retaining the same framerate, so that it still retains that otherworldly motion with fantastically immersive image quality.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 8:50 p.m. CST

    It would help if people actually knew what they were talking about

    by Turd_Is_Floating_Underneath_The_Gravy

    Anyone making comparisons to pre-existing movies displayed on high frame televisions being amongst them. Increased frame rate features on HD televisions - ie. TrueMotion - involves interpolating made-up frames that never existed in the original negatives to begin with, since those movies were originally shot at only 24fps. Thus, an unnatural sped-up quality to the proceedings. This is not at all equivalent to a film that is actually FILMED then DISPLAYED at a higher frame rate, which is much smoother and more natural. Chicken-little luddites always abound whenever technological breakthroughs are on the horizon. Let them wallow in stagnant nostalgia; the rest of us will at least give things an objective day in court before deciding.

  • Go fuck yourselves.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 9 p.m. CST

    @ turd_is_floating_underneath_the_gravy

    by Glenn

    I hear ya. It was meant as analogy. However... I've seen Trumbull's Showscan work in the past. I've since seen short 48fps tests. I work in QC post, I've also been a camera AC in both film and early HD. The Costco TV thing, and the tests I've viewed, left me with the same uneasiness. That said, I'll wait to pass judgment until I see actors and sets and costumes in a 2hour format (3hr, for Jackson). I'm no luddite, I embrace anything that helps move the form forward. I love CGI when it's well done (Dark Knights, James Cameron, War of the Worlds mostly, etc). I'm looking forward to 11.2 sound. I myself am currently working on a technology that will help audiences insert images of sugar cookies into their favorite movies, at the touch of a button.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 9:03 p.m. CST

    Talkbacks in general

    by Glenn

    ...need more humour, less slapdowns and less "fuck this" and "fuck you" and "fuck that, assclowns!" and "FACT!" and people who drink too much coffee and get that Julia Roberts vein in their foreheads over things that are not nearly as important as health care and mexican cartels buzzsawing off judicial heads.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 9:04 p.m. CST

    deaft0ne, I'm fucking myself right now.

    by Queefer Sutherland

    Thanks for the suggestion.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 9:06 p.m. CST

    turd_is_floating, I agree with you, but I have an issue with your name

    by Queefer Sutherland

    The word "underneath" is redundant. "Under" and "neath" mean the same thing.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 9:06 p.m. CST

    @deaft0ne: So am I

    by Glenn

    I want to send you the towel after. It's not large, about 2 square ft in total. What's your address? I'll put a sugar cookie in too. Or a pizza roll, whichever you prefer.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 9:10 p.m. CST


    by Glenn

    is a term even Mike Nichols has used on commentaries, and he's as bright as they come. But it was still funny... you friggin' butt-jester. (See? I kept it PG.)

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 9:34 p.m. CST

    PG on AICN?

    by Queefer Sutherland

    This site is at the very least PG-13.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 9:38 p.m. CST

    I have a feeling that I'm going to love 48fps.

    by magnum

    I love the look of the 120hz TV's at Future Shop and Wal-Mart. I understand why people don't like it, but I can't help but want EVERYTHING to look like that. I can't explain it very well, but I don't see the difference between 120hz and 60hz besides the fact that 120 is WAY smoother and clearer. Now that I've seen 120hz all I can see on regular TV's (even mine but in time I can ignore it) is that stutter between every frame. It's actually kind of irritating to like it so much, because everyone seems to hate it which means it won't catch on any time soon. Gah!

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 10:02 p.m. CST


    by brobdingnag

    I won't see it in 48fps because when they announced that they were going to turn the Hobbit into a colossal cash grab by adding a third film that was never planned I decided I won't be seeing these films at all. These films will be for Jackson what the SW prequels were for Lucas.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 10:06 p.m. CST

    brobdingnag, you're so right.

    by Queefer Sutherland

    I only planned to see the first one because of the 48fps. Otherwise the movie holds no interest for me. I grew weary with those fucking hobbits after the first film. I couldn't stand their whiney asses by the end of the third travesty.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 10:10 p.m. CST

    Great, now they'll charge a 3d surcharge and a 48fps sucharge

    by bowtiehoon

    that's my guess on things...

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 10:31 p.m. CST

    Let's roll 48fps slowly, but shove 3D down their throats!

    by DustoMan

    Way to lead with technology!!!!

  • Higher FPS capture fine for science, nature, music video, CG, motion simulators or anything that benefits *live on stage*. PJ would be better to take the classy approach and step-print everything but the landscape shots down to 24FPS. No different than a feature having selective shots in IMAX. That could roll out higher FPS in a tasteful and intriguing manner instead of going full-on bollocks. Trumbull seemed to back down a bit on higher FPS at SIGGRAPH today, saying it's not for everything, seems invasive for drama, etc. Projectors, monitors and televisions will ultimately have variable frame rates, allowing *cinematic* directors to manipulate projection speed in more desirable ways.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 10:39 p.m. CST

    48fps is a more difficult art form

    by ironburl

    good thing they have a master filmmaker for their initial push. This technology raises the bar on directors.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 10:44 p.m. CST

    Re: This Is Not The First Time Theatrical FPS Presentation Changed ...

    by ArmageddonProductions

    I'm sure theatergoers had to make a bit of an adjustment when they started watching movies on the big screen at 24 fps standard once movie cameras were outfitted with crystal-sync motors for the talkies, as opposed to whatever Christ-only-knows speed they were watching them at when cameras were hand-cranked. The thing is, 24 fps is NOT real-life speed, it's capturing images intermittently, which is why you get that "movie" look, and why it doesn't matter whether or not something is shot on film or on digital HD. Video is actually capturing more images per second (29.97 non-drop fps) and looks more fluid. Today's hi-def sets all have high refresh rates and scanning speeds ... try watching an old movie now on a $2,500 1080i plasma set being fed from a Blu-Ray player's HDMI. You'll see everything either looks faster, more fluid and kind of disjointing from the way you were used to seeing it, or you've adjusted your brain to accept that as the norm. Same goes here.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 10:48 p.m. CST

    Where's Cotton McKnight?

    by KGersen

    about how 48 fps hasn't got any black people behind it or something....come on dude, where you at?! Think about it

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 10:53 p.m. CST

    Yeah, I need one adult for The Hobbit. In 3D. At 48fps. IMAX.

    by maxjohnson1971

    Yes, sir. That'll be 47.50

  • everything looks like old gumby cartoons because there is no motion blur. but i googled it and peter jackson put in fake motion blur and it sucked

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 11:07 p.m. CST

    izmo, Comparing natural motion to stop motion is ludicrous.

    by Queefer Sutherland

    People are so freaked out by something new. Jesus. Give yourself some time to get used to it.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 11:11 p.m. CST

    i'm not sure what you mean

    by izmo

    If you watch someone running in real life you will see motion blur. If it was filmed at 24fps you will see motion blur. If it's filmed at 48+ there is no motion blur and when you watch it there will be no blur unless they add it.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 11:14 p.m. CST


    by izmo

    i just saw that video of james cameron saying 24fps is dead. so i now agree with 48fps

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 11:26 p.m. CST


    by izmo

    i just realized the hobbit is shot in 48fps so it's gonna look weird in 24fps too unless they add the blur?

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 11:30 p.m. CST

    ^* second frame

    by justmyluck

  • I wouldn't be surprised if Cameron had WETA pump out AVATAR's VFX again at 60FPS just for that purpose, integrating them with the sequels.

  • Aug. 8, 2012, 11:50 p.m. CST


    by izmo

    actually that would be cool if they thought of that for the new wizard of oz movie. i know in the trailer it's black and white and 4:3 and then goes to color and widescreen but they could have done fps too

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 12:56 a.m. CST

    Want to see Peter Jackson rape a dead corpse at 48 FPS?

    by Jt

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 1:25 a.m. CST

    by Janeane The Acerbic Goblin

    TV shows have been shot at higher frames since the 50's. This isn't some spanking new technology. Jackson should have stuck with 35mm. It was fine for the original trilogy.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 2:47 a.m. CST

    @covjack An animated gif of the entire movie would

    by Bedknobs and Boomsticks

    be awesome. Doubtless it would crush ones bandwidth, though.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 2:54 a.m. CST

    I'm going to watch it in 1 frame per minute; The Hobbit movie fotonovel.

    by Bedknobs and Boomsticks

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 2:56 a.m. CST

    I though Trumbull just wants to crank it up temporarily to 48 fps

    by Bedknobs and Boomsticks

    during the action scenes? Not for the entire movie, like here.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 5:12 a.m. CST

    48 fps over 24 fps

    by rguerr2

    Definitely I would like to see this movie at 48 fps. I think if it will work Mr Jackson would one of the few directors that can make it work. Hopefully WB will release it to some theaters here in Canada. I am close to Toronto so that would be good. I'll drive there ( about 124 miles ) to see it.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 5:36 a.m. CST

    Among those skedded to speak...

    by Fawst

    Seriously, Variety? Fuck you. You don't modify a multi-syllable word to make it have the same number of fucking syllables just because you think it's cool! Skedded... suck my balls!

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 7:07 a.m. CST

    Compromise @ 36FPS and everyone will be happy

    by Hockey Mask

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 7:52 a.m. CST

    *I have no idea what you guys are talking about*

    by StatelyWayneManor

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 8:27 a.m. CST

    Converting 24fps bluray to 60 fps is utterly pointless...

    by irishraidersfan

    It's pure interpolation, digital guess work. If something is shot at 60fps, get it at that framerate, but don't up convert. And yeah, it is like up scaling - it's not as good as the genuine thing.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 8:37 a.m. CST

    What I don't get (nothing to do with framerate)

    by Mugato5150

    The first Hobbit has obviously been in the can for a while, yet he just recently decided to make 3 of them? So is he stretching the second one out or just scraping the appendices for new shit? As for charging for for the 48fps show, I doubt they'd try to charge extra for something most people don't know WTF it is.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 8:42 a.m. CST

    My experience of 48fps

    by Keith

    I thought it looked amazingly horrible, and no longer looked like a movie. It looked cheap instead of having a feel of grandeur. It's possible that this is because my brain has been over-trained to expect cinema to look a certain way. I really don't know. But I hated it.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 8:42 a.m. CST

    3-D sucks, I hope this is better

    by caprica

  • I love them for sports and for news footage. Not for drama.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 8:48 a.m. CST

    Re: pissed off and bitter

    by Keith

    'I convert my Blu Rays to 60fps. It does take some time to get used to but imagine watching your favorite movie playing out at a much smoother frame rate. It's hard to go back once you've gotten used to it.' I once watched The Empire Strikes Back upscaled to double the frame rate. It looked AWFUL. Everything looked like a really obvious set. All the magic was drained from the experience. I could tell that I was watching a bunch of actors in Shepperton, not a bunch of rebels on Hoth.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 8:56 a.m. CST

    I hate when film makers want to use big franchise films

    by Samuel Fulmer

    For their experiments that can totally f up the look of their film. Kind of reminds me of Attack of the Clones. I got bored and watched only the big action scenes the other day, and god does it's digital cinematography look awful, even worse than I remember it. Now granted shooting on film wouldn't have saved the terrible script/direction/acting, but maybe the film would have at least looked good.

  • Avatar looks like it's really happening. Grass blows like it's real grass and you feel like it's reality. Unfortunately everything is timed wrong and so you get some jerkiness and the 'cinema' feel is destroyed. So if the movie is shot at a higher frame rate and timed correctly then I expect it to be very much the same as the effect I'm talking about only with no timing issues. Is that completely clear to all of you? Good.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 8:59 a.m. CST

    And no I'm not against experimenting with cameras

    by Samuel Fulmer

    Just do it with something new, not an established line of films, because like with the last 2 prequels, you're going to have films that don't look like they belong with the others due to their digital roots.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 9:15 a.m. CST

    Imagine Planet Earth in 48fps?!!

    by kidicarus

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 9:25 a.m. CST

    Meanwhile PC gamers want 120 Hz panels for 120 fps

    by BrandLoyalist

    We've been stuck with a measly 60 fps ever since LCDs took over. An inconsistent 90-100 fps was not uncommon in PC games at the end of the CRT tube era. This can only be a win. I am way more excited about 48 or 60 fps for film and TV than I've ever been about 3D.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 9:26 a.m. CST

    Imagine Middle Earth in 48fps?!!

    by jack

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 9:26 a.m. CST

    Imagine Pandora in 60fps?!!

    by jack

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 9:27 a.m. CST

    Imagine Star Wars Galaxy in 48fps?!!

    by jack

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 9:28 a.m. CST

    Imagine the Matrix in 60fps?!!

    by jack

    where the Matrix is in 60fps and the real world in 24fps?!!

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 9:47 a.m. CST

    I can't stand Variety-speak either.

    by Mugato5150

    It's fucking obnoxious. But most industries have own little annoying language.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 3:36 p.m. CST

    well cozycozy, you can have both

    by Mugato5150

    They're not mutually exclusive. If you watch an old movie in 13fps it looks like a bad stop motion effect in parts. So maybe this is better, I don't know I haven't seen it yet. Frankly the thought of three movies based on The fucking Hobbit doesn't blow my skirt up but I'll see at least the first one because I'm curious abut the 48fps thing.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 6 p.m. CST

    Talking Animals

    by Allen

    A little off topic, but this will be interesting to see, something new for PJ's team, unless they are the ones who did the cgi for the Narnia films? I don't think they did. Anyway, CGI was decent in those films, but they did particularly well with the cgi talking animals. Can't wait to see Gwaihir speak (has his voice been cast?), and of course, Smaug... .

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 6:08 p.m. CST

    The bottom line is, has to be done right

    by Allen

    As much as 3d is criticized, watching Avatar in 3d is a different and superior experience to watching any other 3d movie that came out after that. Wasn't a big fan of the movie overall, recycled plot, but the visuals, in 3d and on the big screen is an experience, and i felt like I was watching a breakthrough. I'm guessing the Hobbit will match or surpass it. The same might apply to the 48 fps, which i'm guessing works better with 3d since wearing the glassed does make the film darker. I don't think 3d is that much of a departure. Watch most great films and you can tell the director and cinematographer are already thinking in 3 dimensions for almost every shot. Watchg LOTR recently, one might guess that PJ already had 3d in mind, but i just think its natural, especially for the really good directors.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 8:31 p.m. CST


    by StrokerX

    You could still add a whip pan to a 48fps film in post.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 8:37 p.m. CST

    We've never seen good cgi in 48fps

    by StrokerX

    or really any time of well funded special effect. We've only seen the usual live stuff...I'd be curious just to see some crazy weird fantasy shit in 48ps. Could suck tho...gotta love the smokey feel of today's and especially yesterday's film. Just feel goooood.

  • Aug. 9, 2012, 8:38 p.m. CST


    by StrokerX


  • Aug. 9, 2012, 10:14 p.m. CST

    i can wait for beyond real life infinite frames per second.

    by Balkin Flabgurter

    and then we all ascend into the sun and eat chocolate while peter jackson remakes the lord of the rings for eternity. i had a dream where i was in a version of heaven where sarah silverman was in a bikini scissoring her dog all day.. maybe i was just cheesing...

  • Aug. 10, 2012, 3:17 a.m. CST

    james cameron hates 24fps for judenw

    by izmo

  • Aug. 10, 2012, 3:18 a.m. CST

    re: james cameron hates 24fps for judenw

    by izmo

    i don't think that's james cameron tho it's james cromwell

  • Aug. 10, 2012, 8:38 a.m. CST

    izmo thanx for the link

    by jack