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Without question, one of the summer’s biggest (and possibly most surprising) hits has been Marc Forster’s World War Z. And now, it’s going to get bigger.
IMAX Corporation, Paramount Pictures and Skydance Productions announced in a release that Brad Pitt’s global zombie apocalypse thriller has been digitally re-mastered into the IMAX 3D format, and will be released into select IMAX theaters domestically for a one-week engagement beginning Aug. 2. You can check the film’s official Web site for more details.
I say “most surprising’ because the predominant buzz on Forster’s World War Z leading up to the June 21 release date was beyond negative. Pitt and his director reportedly clashed on set. The film’s ending – a massive, digital zombie battle in Moscow – was scrapped by studio executives who didn’t believe it worked. Screenwriters Damon Lindelof and Drew Goddard were brought in to come up with a new – and in my opinion, better – ending to the film, leading to costly reshoots and even more questionable press.
But then a funny thing happened on the way to the box office. Forster’s movie began screening, and audiences realized it wasn’t bad. In fact, the “ doomed” blockbuster has earned more than $460 million worldwide. Domestically, it is the eighth-highest-grossing film released in 2013 (ahead of potential blockbusters like Pacific Rim and The Lone Ranger). And now it’s going to play domestic IMAX theaters – something it already has done internationally, to great response. Imagine how cool the airplane-crash sequence from Z will look on the IMAX screen.
I’m beyond impressed that World War Z was able to flip its narrative, simply by delivering a quality movie-going experience. Critics and audiences were so ready to bury Forster’s movie sight unseen that it practically arrived in theaters with an inch of dirt shoveled on top if it. Now, Paramount has announced plans for a sequel, and our very own Kelly West called it the best movie of 2013 … so far. The fact that Paramount is re-releasing it in IMAX at a time when blockbusters are starting to peter out is just another vote of confidence for a summer movie that earned the praise. Here’s the trailer again, to refresh your memory. So, do you think that you’ll go see World War Z once again on the IMAX screen, before the summer season ends?