Posts Tagged ‘The Wizard of Oz’
People go to the movies at all times during the course of the year, but summertime always seems to be the period when movies are most popular. It’s the time of year when we can usually look forward to a blockbuster or two, whether they be special effects extravaganzas or what have you, which attract massive crowds of patrons young and old to the local cinemas where they eat tubs of popcorn and drink frosty beverages. What is it exactly, though, that attracts, or even compels so many to see summer releases? Is there something special about the films themselves, or the audiences who watch them? The answers to these questions can be found by figuring out what all of these various audience members have in common, and how what that is relates to the movies they’re seeing.
There is a big debate going on about the influx of 3D movies that has been going on the past few years, and continues going on strong. Some claim that the technology has already reduced itself to a gimmick, while others believe wholeheartedly that it is the future of cinema. Who is right? Can anyone be wrong? In order to come to any kind of conclusion, we first have to look at the facts.
Much of this topic comes down to economics. An article in Variety by Pamela McClintock examines this angle in-depth, and answers a lot of questions regarding why the film industry is so keen on this latest and greatest technology. To put it simply, there is a lot of money in it. The unfathomable success of James Cameron’s Avatar has driven a number of studios into a frenzy, spurring them to make some 2D movies into 3D in order to cash in on the popularity. The upcoming Clash of the Titans (April 2nd) is one such film that was made into 3D at the 11th hour. For some, these half-baked conversions are one of the major points of contention. The claim is that such last-minute conversions are adding to the thinking that 3D technology is nothing more than a money-grabbing gimmick. This may be true, but consider this: producing a film in 3D from the get-go adds $20 million to its budget almost automatically, while converting a film into 3D during post-production only adds $10 million to the budget (some studios even claim $5 million). The issue over post-production conversions, then, may not entirely be an issue about getting more money from audiences, but also about saving money. So, it is not completely about the first goal of business (making profit) but also the third (reducing cost). But what about the second goal (increasing revenue)? Read the rest of this entry »
Much has been made about James Cameron’s newest cinematic juggernaut Avatar. With the film’s production said to exceed a record-setting $400 million, it has made back roughly 75% of that cost just 5 days after its release (domestic + foreign). The vast majority of that price tag is due to the groundbreaking special effects and 3D presentation (as I’m sure you’ve all heard), which required the kind of technology and personnel that only the likes of a Hollywood studio can provide. Many like to deride Hollywood because of its “gross” financing for projects intended for mass consumption, however on occasion (such as with Avatar) we are reminded that Hollywood is capable of delivering us something truly striking and amazing. Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy is another example that can be referenced from this decade. Big name studios love cashing in on such films, and audiences love paying to see them. When done right (unlike with, say, Waterworld) big budget extravaganzas have the ability, and by all accounts likelihood, to be very notable and even pivotal artifacts within the world of movies. So, then, what could all of this mean? What could the tremendous success of Avatar lead to? Read the rest of this entry »