Parking cost seems to me to be exactly on point.
The current 3D phenomenon is motivated by those who see Home Theater as the problem - i.e. a technology that keeps people out of movie theaters. Read the comments by James Cameron, George Lucas, or Steven Speilberg. They are desparately seeking some means to re-establish movie theater attendance. All three think 3D might just be it.
As I have said earlier on this thread I believe 3D technology will not save movie theater attendance. For several reasons:
- 3D will be available at home also
- Home 3D may very well be better
- Demographics (parking) can't be reversed
DLP Home Theater projectors are fast enough to allow active (shutter) glasses. Some witnesses testify that such a set up is very, very good. It probably is the case that movie theaters will never use active glasses. The current passive polarized glasses seem to result in a dim, dark picture. Therfore it seems likely that if 3D proves to be more than just a passing fad it may very well be better appreciated in your Home Theater rather than in a public movie theater.
Parking is one of the symtoms of irreversible demographic change. When I was little I went to the movies very often. That meant I walked. Theaters were so common that even if I had a driver's license I wouldn't have driven. Indeed up until about fifteen years ago I still usually walked to the movies. I drove to work every day but at least three first run movie theaters were just a few blocks away - why drive?
So consider 3D technology as a means of getting me back into a movie theater seat. There is only one 3d DLP theater in the whole San Francisco Bay Area. I could get there on a BART train or I could drive across the Bay Bridge. If I want to go to a suburban movie theater, there are still some and they are easy to drive to and park for free. But they don't have 3D. If I want to see a 3D movie it's a major expedition and expense.
I like the idea of 3D but I don't see it being very sucessful as long as it is so difficult to get to and so expensive. I don't believe it will spread to the suburban multiplexes either. Digital DLP movie venues appear to be retreating not advancing. Fewer and fewer new releases are being shown digitally in the handful of theaters that have invested in DLP equipment. It was obvious to me three years ago that DLP Cinema looked better than regular projected film. However I seem to be the only one who cares. The theaters have not put in more DLP projectors.
People on this forum care about projection quality but the public as a whole seems indifferent. People who care about PJ and 3D are likely to have a Home Theater. This is the first reason why public theater 3D is doomed. Parking is the second.