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post #1 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 12:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Avatar 2 and the 3D Hype Cycle



Will 3D make a comeback when the sequel to Avatar comes out two years from now?

James Cameron's Avatar is the most successful film of all time, grossing over $2.7 billion since its 2009 release. The movie gets a lot of credit for pushing 3D into the mainstream; thanks to Avatar, 3D was among the most-hyped features on new TVs and projectors for a few years. The problem is that reality didn't live up to the hype.

Skip forward to 2014, and you'd think the post-Avatar push to popularize 3D was nothing but a fluke. After all, past attempts at promoting 3D fizzled when the novelty wore off. Why would the 3D frenzy that followed Avatar be any different? One possible explanation resides in a concept called the Gartner Hype Cycle. It consists of five phases: the technology trigger, the peak of inflated expectations, the trough of disillusionment, the slope of enlightenment, and the plateau of productivity.


"The Hype Cycle is a branded graphical tool... for representing the maturity, adoption and social application of specific technologies." - wikipedia

Undoubtedly, Avatar was the technology trigger that gave 3D the momentum it needed to make the leap from commercial cinemas to home theaters and ultimately into people's living rooms. Prior to Avatar's premiere, 3D was a cyclical fad that appeared every few decades, only to recede. The technology was waiting for a trigger, and James Cameron provided it. The enthusiastic initial reception to Avatar created a peak of inflated expectations for the format; ESPN launched a network dedicated to 3D sports, and studios rushed to post-convert movies into 3D. The result was a glut of headache-inducing pseudo-3D that soured the public on the format’s potential. The hype bubble burst, and 3D went from the peak of inflated expectations to the trough of disillusionment in no time.

Now, there are signs that the disillusionment phase is close to finished. The slope of enlightenment awaits and Avatar's sequel is likely to be the catalyst that makes it happen. Cameron is committed to making three more Avatar films, and this time around there are a lot more 3D-equipped commercial cinemas, home theaters, and TVs than there were when the original Avatar came out. Plus, when it comes to blockbuster movies, no other director has Cameron's record of accomplishment: Avatar and Titanic are the number one and number two top-grossing films—ever.

If Avatar 2 manages to renew the general public's interest in 3D, viewers will find a sizable selection of 3D titles on Blu-ray as well as 3D streaming via services like Netflix, YouTube, and Vudu. Furthermore, playback technology continues to improve, thanks to innovations such as passive-3D UHDTVs that can play 1080p 3D Blu-ray without any loss of detail, unlike their 1080p counterparts. These days, the home 3D experience can rival a commercial cinema, thanks to larger screen sizes and higher resolutions. By the time Avatar 2 comes out, it's possible that glasses-free 3D TVs will be on store shelves, and I would not be surprised if there will be a version of the film designed for viewing with virtual-reality goggles.

The three forthcoming Avatar sequels will undoubtedly be 3D spectaculars and are sure to secure Cameron another spot or two on the top movie-moneymaker list. More importantly, the Avatar sequels are bound to be a showcase for the most advanced 3D filming techniques. That's the key to the slope of enlightenment; each Avatar sequel needs to raise the stakes in terms of what you can do with the medium, instead of leaving everybody hanging. Are you looking forward to a 3D renaissance?


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post #2 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 12:42 PM
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Wish I could say I was looking forward to a 3D renaissance, but 3D in general bore me.
The only thing I'm looking forward to in terms of AVATAR sequels is a better story than the first!

Cameron is usually good at sequels though.
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post #3 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 12:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickyDeg View Post
Wish I could say I was looking forward to a 3D renaissance, but 3D in general bore me.
The only thing I'm looking forward to in terms of AVATAR sequels is a better story than the first!

Cameron is usually good at sequels though.
You gotta hope. Certainly, Aliens and Terminator 2 are among my all-time favorite action movies. If he brings Avatar up to that level thanks to a better script, I'll be quite thrilled.

I think 3D has a lot of untapped potential, especially with the potential quality improvements promised by higher frame rates and UHD/4K resolution.
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post #4 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by imagic View Post
You gotta hope. Certainly, Aliens and Terminator 2 are among my all-time favorite action movies. If he brings Avatar up to that level thanks to a better script, I'll be quite thrilled.

I think 3D has a lot of untapped potential, especially with the potential quality improvements promised by higher frame rates and UHD/4K resolution.
I do have hope, because like you Aliens and Terminator 2 are among my own favorites as well. Thing is he's doing no less than 3 sequels to AVATAR, with a story potentially spread out over those movies? Will be interesting to see how he pulls this off and in what direction the movies will go. Perhaps each will be standalone? I understand he's brought in several co-writers for the scripts.

I've been to countless 3D showings since 2009 and none have immersed me more than a regular 2D showing. I'm a bit fed up of it now so 2D showings are my priority. However, that said, because of the potential quality improvements you mention I will give the next AVATAR in 3D a try when it comes out.

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post #5 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 01:00 PM
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I definitely don't think Avatar 2 is going to do anywhere near as well at the box office as the first one (at least in North America), but I'm not dumb enough to openly predict that and bet against Cameron.

Avatar's greatest 3D strength is that nearly the entire thing was created inside computers, much like an animated film. The depths were all easily quantified because the dimensional information was all right there.

The films that came right after it (Alice in Wonderland, Clash of the Titans) both did really well in 3D. A large part of that was people really enjoying the production design and cinematography on Avatar and expecting something similar. But those were both post conversion and don't look anywhere near as good.

You also have to consider 3D was a stealth cover to get movie theaters to update their equipment to digital.

For a long time it was very hard to find a blockbuster with showtimes NOT in 3D. It felt like for every traditional presentation that there were three or four 3D ones.

I'm not seeing that now. I went to almost every major blockbuster at my "home" auditorium on opening night this year, and of the 12 auditoriums only one was showing anything in 3D. Thats down from half or more on big weekends in the past few years.

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post #6 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 01:11 PM
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I find the biggest problem with 3D is depth of field. Traditional cameras have a focal point when photographing which blurs out other objects that are not within that focal point (close objects blur when focal point is far, for example). This unfortunately gets translated into 3D when converted. However, I noticed that Avatar also has this problem. And for me this is what ruins the effect. Now I have this blurred object in front of me. As I see it, successful 3D presentation requires depth of field to be presented correctly. In addition, the framing of the image has to be precise to aid in the effect. I am curious to see whether Avatar 2 and subsequent 3D films will address this issue.
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post #7 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 01:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post


Will 3D make a comeback when the sequel to Avatar comes out two years from now?

James Cameron's Avatar is the most successful film of all time, grossing over $2.7 billion .................................................. .................................................. .................................................. .................... Are you looking forward to a 3D renaissance?
Nice write up BTW, to answer your question, my answer would be no. NOT a 3D fan at all.

Now, if in two years this film is released with 4K/DCI color space/4:4:4/12bit/HDR & HFR......Now you have my attention, until then everything else is pretty much "Deep Color"...... its available but no one uses it.

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post #8 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 01:33 PM
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Good question. I imagine that most people that want 3d in the home already have it and use it somewhat regularly. I'm certain Avatar 2 will give a boost to theatrical 3d revenue and 3d sales of it will flourish on purple-ray, or whatever we have at the time, but will it be at least partially responsible for a resurgence in 3d at home? Eh, I dunno.

However, I have a better question. Will Avatar 2 cause a spike in 4K sales? If James Cameron is James Cameron then he's going to be filming in 4K and possibly HFR (a quick search online helps add fuel to that theory) and if the tv manufacturers want a movie to get consumers to bust into a new format, it's Avatar 2.
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post #9 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 01:42 PM
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I think the glasses free 3D TV's will be the start of taking 3D out of the novelty market... I know a lot of people who get headaches from the glasses and it seems like Ultra D solves those problems to an extent, then Holographic will come, etc etc. 3D is the future... I'd be willing to bet that 2D displays will be extinct within 10/20 years, or at least among the minority of displays.

I noticed on the ultra D site that they are putting up advertising displays in crowded places... if people get a chance to see that in person it might make them want the same at home. I guess We'll see.
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post #10 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 01:57 PM
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Not a 3D fan either and frankly, Mr. Cameron is way overrated as a filmmaker and story teller. Sure he has technical skill, but his storytelling ability leaves much to be desired IMHO. Avatar was a total borefest.
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post #11 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 02:06 PM
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I didn't realize he had 3 sequels online. I saw it in Imax and was floored by the depth of the image. I jumped on the 3d passive tv bandwagon. 95% of my viewing is 2d but 3d still has a place for me if its done well.
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post #12 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 02:28 PM
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I'd just wish they would go ahead and release THE ABYSS and TRUE LIES on Blu-ray. What's the hold up on that??
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I said this in the Is 3d dead? thread. The standards for 4K/uhd will(higher bit panel/color space, hopefully either DP 1.2 or HDMI 2.1) be in place by December 2016. OLED will be taking over the market, and by the time Avatar 2 hits home in 2017 there will be another push for 3d in home again. Mostly passive and glassless 3D.

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post #14 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 02:51 PM
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Thumbs up

I jumped right into 3D at the start with an optoma HD33 projector 120" screen and a Toshiba 55" 3D tv. Then I started making my own holiday travelogue videos with 3D camcorders the latest a Sony TD30 model. Really looking forwards to advances in the tech esp. glassless TV. I still love watching a good 3D movie native or converted as long as its filmed properly but 3D home movies are something else - its like you are re-living the moment.






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post #15 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 03:06 PM
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Not a 3D fan either and frankly, Mr. Cameron is way overrated as a filmmaker and story teller. Sure he has technical skill, but his storytelling ability leaves much to be desired IMHO. Avatar was a total borefest.
I agree... well sort of. I do enjoy everything pre-Avatar. I think the Avatar story & vision were interesting but the characters and culture felt uninspired, basically like alien native Americans... but I do think it was visually stunning to a degree (I think some of the humans were CGI'd/ or they just look fake for some reason). It was a let down because I saw Cameron in a charlie rose interview talking about all the botonists he hired to make the world unique and convincing... that He did right. Most sci fi movies don't get aliens right... I like how Kubrick consulted with Carl Sagan for 2001 space Odyssey, and the film "Alien" I think does a good job of showing how different a sentient species could be.

All that being said though I wasn't bored by Avatar... I do just like to look at pretty things every now and then. I'm not a big fan of the new hobbit movies... but man... that 3D trailer for the 5 armies I think is the best visual fidelity I've seen yet coming from hollywood... I was in awe. But what I'm really holding out for is Star Wars 7... I think if they do that right it could be a game changer for Atmos & 3D... though it is being shot in film so it might not have the same fidelity as the hobbit though right?

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I'd just wish they would go ahead and release THE ABYSS and TRUE LIES on Blu-ray. What's the hold up on that??
It kills me too.
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post #16 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 03:20 PM
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3D on these 4k sets is truly great. Passive 3D with full 1080 per eye. It is a home theater experience I have been wanting for years.
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Not a 3D fan either and frankly, Mr. Cameron is way overrated as a filmmaker and story teller. Sure he has technical skill, but his storytelling ability leaves much to be desired IMHO. Avatar was a total borefest.


There ya go
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post #18 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 03:38 PM
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Am I the only one who think Avatar was mediocre at best and, aside from T2 ,Cameron is a mediocre director?
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post #19 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 03:46 PM
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its interesting that you guys are bored with 3d, I still enjoy it and if a movie has a 3d option, I tend to go for that one over a 2d version.
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post #20 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 03:52 PM
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Am I the only one who think Avatar was mediocre at best and, aside from T2 ,Cameron is a mediocre director?
Yes.

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post #21 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 03:57 PM
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3D doesn't have to make a comeback with me; I'm already all deep in.

And I'll be right there with 'Avatar 2 - 3D' ...Be it with Dolby Atmos and 4K, or not.
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its interesting that you guys are bored with 3d, I still enjoy it and if a movie has a 3d option, I tend to go for that one over a 2d version.
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3D doesn't have to make a comeback with me; I'm already all deep in.

And I'll be right there with 'Avatar 2 - 3D' ...Be it with Dolby Atmos and 4K, or not.
Same. TVs with bad 3D ruin it, but a good 3D experience is very enjoyable. By time avatar 2 3D hits we should have some more choices for 3D without glasses.
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post #23 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 04:39 PM
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its interesting that you guys are bored with 3d, I still enjoy it and if a movie has a 3d option, I tend to go for that one over a 2d version.
I'm in the same boat. I tend to buy the 3d action flicks when they come out. I avoided 3D until Christmas 2013 but have enjoyed it since.
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Am I the only one who think Avatar was mediocre at best and, aside from T2 ,Cameron is a mediocre director?
All Cameron did in Avatar was rip off three films and even threw in a scene from Aliens, copying himself. Yes, the CGI was sensational. That was about it.
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post #25 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 04:44 PM
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Glasses, no glasses, it don't matter to me; I'm already wearing glasses. ...I can't see good past few feet.
And I can't wear contact lenses because of an accident to one of my irises (scratched for life).

* But it'll be a blast for many people when true 3D freedom will be with us. ...No 3D glasses.
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Are you looking forward to a 3D renaissance?
I'm looking forward to what comes next.
I'm not sure VR is that technology, at least not for me. Not yet.
A point brought up here already was about focus and it got me thinking we may need films to be shot with objects as individual points of focus, analogous to what we're expecting from audio during Atmos playback. A point in space per pixel, captured and rendered individually and digitized with its own depth cues.

Or

Find a way to actually layer (millions of them when and where appropriate) the video stream and create the display that could replay it with the same depth cues.

Its too far out there, would take way to much time, money and memory but I think we're heading that direction.

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post #27 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 04:48 PM
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I don't know whether 3D will become popular, or one of those 'standard features almost everybody turns off' like frame interpolation, but I can say personally, 3D is of no concern to me, and never will be. it simply does not work for me, and I've never seen any 3D presentation that could compete with the 2D version.


so this is just one vote for no 3D. but I don't really care as long as it never becomes the only option. while I find it annoying I can't view a movie in atmos without it also being 3D, I've gone the theater once in the last 4yrs, so I think I can get over it.

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post #28 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 04:49 PM
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What's VR, 4D Holography?
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post #29 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 04:52 PM
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I am a fan of 3D myself. When movies are released in 3D I prefer to see the 3D version. If the movie is good enough that I want to add it to my personal collection I purchase the 3D version for home viewing. I consider Avatar groundbreaking not only for the 3D, but the high level CGI work that was done in that movie. My personal favorite for 3D viewing at home is Prometheus. I do not know if that movie was shot as 3D, or if it was done in post production but I think that movie had excellent visual depth for the 3D effect.
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post #30 of 114 Old 09-04-2014, 04:53 PM
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I cant wait to hear Cameron tell us again how everything on TV is going to be stereovision.

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I'm not seeing that now. I went to almost every major blockbuster at my "home" auditorium on opening night this year, and of the 12 auditoriums only one was showing anything in 3D. Thats down from half or more on big weekends in the past few years.
Last time I looked some flicks were available in stereovision only although perhaps outnumbered by mono films.

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Originally Posted by Gary Seven View Post
I find the biggest problem with 3D is depth of field. Traditional cameras have a focal point when photographing which blurs out other objects that are not within that focal point (close objects blur when focal point is far, for example). This unfortunately gets translated into 3D when converted. However, I noticed that Avatar also has this problem. And for me this is what ruins the effect. Now I have this blurred object in front of me. As I see it, successful 3D presentation requires depth of field to be presented correctly. In addition, the framing of the image has to be precise to aid in the effect. I am curious to see whether Avatar 2 and subsequent 3D films will address this issue.
I am pretty sure Avatar was recorded on stereographic cameras and not converted. As for DOF, stereovision is never going to present that well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by morbidcorpse View Post
Am I the only one who think Avatar was mediocre at best and, aside from T2 ,Cameron is a mediocre director?
If you had wrote aside from Terminator and Aliens I would of agreed with you.
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