frame rate

You might have heard the footage from The Hobbit that screened at Cinemacon wasn’t met with the resounding praise one would have expected. In fact, quite a few people in attendence were down right unimpressed with the new frame rate saying it made the movie look cheap! Peter Sciretta of /Film said the 48 FPS made it look like “a made for television BBC movie,” and adding, “It looked uncompromisingly real — so much so that it looked fake.” Wha-?!? This doesn’t sound like the future of movies both James Cameron and Peter Jackson were promising.

Jackson met with quite a bit of criticism for his Hobbit footage, and not one to back down, he’s been responding to the backlash to several different media outlets.

To The Hollywood Reporter Jackson admitted the new frame rate, “does take you a while to get used to.” Adding,

Ten minutes is sort of marginal, it probably needed a little bit more. Another thing that I think is a factor is it’s different to look at a bunch of clips and some were fast-cutting, montage-style clips. This is different experience than watching a character and story unfold

With Entertainment Weekly he mentioned people seemed to enjoy a scene between Bilbo and Gollum,

That was the same 48 frames the rest of the reel was. I just wonder if it they were getting into the dialogue, the characters and the story. That’s what happens in the movie. You settle into it. It’s literally a new experience, but you know, that doesn’t last the entire experience of the film — not by any stretch, [just] 10 minutes or so.

Jackson did admit he won’t be releasing the new trailer at the higher frame rate, instead going with the ‘ole reliable 24 FPS.  Was this influenced by the recent criticism? Maybe, but here’s his reasoning,

I personally wouldn’t advocate a 48-frame trailer because the 48 frames is something you should experience with the entire film. A 2 1/2 minute trailer isn’t enough time to adjust to the immersive quality. There can only ever be a real reaction, a truthful reaction, when people actually have a chance to see a complete narrative on a particular film.

But what if even after seeing the entire movie, audiences still don’t like the faster frame rate?

I can’t say anything. Just like I can’t say anything to someone who doesn’t like fish. You can’t explain why fish tastes great and why they should enjoy it.

I’m getting a little worried about the 48 FPS. Having watched  movies on TVs that sport the 120 hz or faster frame refresh rate, I know what Peter Sciretta means by it looks so real it appears fake. I’m hoping that this is a matter of adjusting and after a few minutes I’ll be so immersed in the world of Middle Earth I won’t give a flying fuck how fast the frames are zooming through the projector.

Thankfully, even if it turns out we do hate 48 FPS, the studios are making sure The Hobbit will also be releasing in 24 FPS.

What are your thoughts on this evolution of movie technology? And what kind of effect will it have, if any, on The Hobbit‘s success?

Source: /Film

Both James Cameron and Peter Jackson have said they plan to shoot in the higher frame rate of 48 fps for some time and it seems we’ll have our first major motion picture released at that speed by the end of the year. The first part of Jackson’s Lord of the Rings prequel, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will release in 48 fps as opposed to the more traditional 24 fps this December. The catch is, as of now, most theatres can’t accommodate the higher frame rate.

Okay, before you freak out and think you won’t be able to see The Hobbit, come on, do you think movie theatres are going to let the opportunity of making mega-money slip by? Hell no. Most chains will use this opportunity to update their equipment. Of course, if you live in a small, one theatre, one screen kind of town you might have reason to worry.

The frame rate refers to the speed at which the individual frames, of which there are usually thousands making up one movie, move through the projector and are, uh, projected. Twenty-four fps has been the standard of the industry for a long, long, long time. But filmmakers like Cameron and Jackson are hailing 48 fps and its even faster sibling, 60 fps as being better at, “reducing or eliminating jutter and other motion artifacts.”

The Hollywood Reporter has all the nitty-gritty details on the conversion and by all means check out their original article. Are we on the verge of another advancement in movie technology? How long before all films are shot at this higher frame rate and 24 fps becomes a thing of the past? Only the future knows.

And actually, you might know sooner than later if your local theatre will be capable of projecting at 48 fps because it’s rumored the next trailer for The Hobbit will release at 48 fps this summer.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey releases December 14th.