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When Hollywood first started experimenting with the idea of bringing 3D movies back to theaters, it wasn't that big a deal. After all, 3D has been around for decades already and audiences were already fully aware of the difference between 3D and 2D movies. When it comes to higher frame rates, however, such as in the case of Peter Jackson's The Hobbit, it's going to be a much different story. While people who study film are fully aware of the difference between 48 frames per second and 24 frames per second, the common movie-goer likely has absolutely no idea what either one means and will just be surprised when their screening of The Hobbit looks funny. If people in Hollywood really want HFS to become the next big thing it means that they will have to give the audience time to adjust and learn about the presentation method. And so that's exactly what planning for Jackson's latest epic.
Variety is reporting that for the roll out of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Warner Bros. will be keeping the number of theaters showing the movie at 48fps fairly low. It's possible that not even all major cities will have theaters showing the film in the select format. If audiences react well to the presentation, however, the second and third installments of the series will have more and more theaters showing the movies at the higher frame rate.
What's more, apparently the trade has heard from people who have seen the latest footage shown in 3D and 48 frames per second and say that it is a sincere improvement over what was shown earlier this year at CinemaCon. That presentation, which I was actually present for, was widely criticized for being too sharp and realistic to properly capture the fantasy world of Middle Earth. Fingers crossed that they're right.
To learn more about frame rates, head over HERE and to read more about The Hobbit head over to our Blend Film Database.