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Big Budget movies getting boost from IMAX release?


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#1 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 04 May 2007 - 02:39 AM

I was watching Sunday Morning Shootout yesterday and Peter Bart or Peter Guber, I can't remember which, mentioned that many blockbusters were getting a boost from their release in IMAX theaters which is a 65mm format. As I remember, they were specifically talking about Spiderman 3. My question is I know S3 was shot in 35mm, and I'm assuming it was a blow up to 65mm for the IMAX release, what does that do to grain? I mean 65mm is so much bigger than 35mm, it's GOT to lose some quality and are the really big movies going to start being produced in 65mm? If so, what challanges does that pose for the filmmaker? Hand held shots would pretty much be out of the question so is that going to change the way movies are shot and are we going backwards in a way to the style of filmmaking practiced when the huge Mitchells roamed the Earth? Just some thoughts. B)

Edited by James Steven Beverly, 04 May 2007 - 02:44 AM.

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#2 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 04 May 2007 - 04:07 AM

I don't know about the IMAX presentations of these films, but I've seen 70mm blow up prints in the flagship west end cinemas. The quality was always superior to the normal 35mm prints found in other cinemas.

BTW I've also seen DV video blow up to fill IMAX with on a video projector, that's something you definitely don't want to watch.
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#3 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 04 May 2007 - 09:53 AM

None of these Hollywood films are shot with the IMAX release in mind -- for one thing, IMAX is 4x3 and most of these movies are 2.35 and thus letterboxed on the IMAX screen. Because they weren't really designed for IMAX, it's better to sit closer to the back row. You'll still get some benefits from IMAX projection (steadier, sharper, etc.).

The blow-ups use the IMAX DMR process, which is basically heavy grain reduction plus sharpening, which gives the movies a certain look, sort of plasticy. They also have to use whatever master the studio provides for them. The "Batman Begins" IMAX version looked pretty good because it was a 4K (plus a little 6K) D.I. done by the IMAX people from a 35mm anamorphic IN (since the movie itself did not do a D.I.) But most other times, the IMAX people are working with a 2K D.I. provided by the studio.
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