The Future of 3D with Peter Jackson, The Hobbit, Martin Scorsese and Hugo

This behind-the-scenes video on the set of The Hobbit in New Zealand is a must-see for 3D lovers and haters, alike. If you’re doubting the need for 3D (like Roger Ebert) or if you’re a Tolkien purist who thinks the two-part Hobbit saga is a calculated cash grab, I ask you to watch this video because it really shows how much the dedicated filmmakers behind films like this are melding artistry and brilliant technology to create a truly unique cinematic experience.

If Roger Ebert thought his letter from Walter Murch (see the link above) closed the case against 3D, I’d say this video tears the letter and the envelope it came in to shreds.

My favorite part is the two concept artists drawing the same picture next to one another, one in red pencil and the other in blue, while wearing 3d glasses.

They’re not doing a bit. This is their job…

At this juncture, I’d like to formally announce that I plan to shoot all my future blockbuster movies in Red Epic 3D 48-frame 5K. Why would you want to shoot in anything but Red Epic 3D 48-Frame 5K? All of you latte-sipping “indie” auteurs can keep your digital camcorders and your CP-16s, I’m sticking to Red Epic 3D 48-Frame 5K!

Hey Pete, can I just borrow, like, $85 million?

Think about it for a minute, maybe check your account balance at the Hobbiton Trust (a credit union, not a huge corporate bank. Occupy Middle Earth!).

Look, we all have complaints about 3D, but they are usually about “bad 3D,” films that are not taking the time to really weave it into the visual fabric of the movie, usually due to rushed post-conversions of films shot in normal 2D. Personally, I’ve never got a headache from watching a 3D movie, so I don’t share that complaint (although the glasses can be heavy on the nose and I can’t help but worry about the germ-fest being held on my particular pair of goggles).

In fact, I’d say we’re seeing a split in the medium and the marketplace. a top and bottom tier, if you will. The top tier includes films shot in 3D by filmmakers like Jackson, Scorsese and Cameron as well as studios with the financial muscle and bench of techies to do it right, like Pixar and Dreamworks Animation. The bottom tier consists of the post-converted rush jobs and films by directors who don’t understand 3D technology and aren’t willing to take the time to learn.

I agree it’s a rip-off to charge $5 extra for a ticket to any 3D movie, even if it’s this month’s low-budget slasher movie that hired a couple nerds to CGI  some machetes that fly at your face. But for a masterpiece that took two to three years to create, directed by a cinematic genius…I’ll happily plunk down the extra cash.

Speaking of the masters, Martin Scorsese’s Hugo, his first 3D film, is getting tons of buzz as the first industry screenings have been held around town and no less than James Cameron is calling it “a masterpiece.” Deadline’s Pete Hammond dubs Hugo a serious Best Picture contender and a moving film for adults as well as kids.

Scorsese received an enthusiastic standing ovation when he was introduced, just as he did again today after a DGA screening for a Q&A moderated by James Cameron, who told him Hugo was a “masterpiece.” He added, “finally there is a Scorsese film I can take my kids to.” And Cameron also told Scorsese it was the best use of 3D he had seen, including his own films. At Saturday’s Regal Q&A, Legato actually credited the innovations in Avatar for making possible a lot of what Hugo was able to do. Musician Slash was among those also at the DGA screening  and he later tweeted “Fantastic movie!”

That’s it, people. If Slash loved the movie so much he was compelled to tweet about it, I’m sold.

For the record, Hugo is in theaters soon for this holiday season, but The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (part 1 of 2) will not premiere until December of 2012.

In closing, I’m looking for a friend to treat me to that new 3D RomCom at the Arclight Hollywood this weekend. Don’t be cheap, it’s only $76.50 for two tickets. It’s assigned seating, dude!

Good Luck and Happy Writing (in 3D),


Click to read excerpts

“In truth, I found this book to be brilliant.” Joan Reeves, best-selling author,

“I’ve read your book, and can honestly say it’s one of the best.” -Steve Isles, Director/Producer & Composer (Guy Ritchie’s RockNRolla)

“A must read for serious screenwriters.” -J. Stephen Maunder, writer/director (Tiger Claws I, II, III, The Veteran, Shadows in Paradise)

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