Why Avatar Was Revolutionary and the Studios Just Don’t Understand Why
Ever since Jame’s Cameron’s Avatar hit movie theaters last year people have been oohing and ahhing at the technology that was employed to make the very-true-to-life planet of Pandora seem real. His use of 3-D technology and the ability to create photorealistic computer-generated characters out of pixels was cool and ahead of its time and cost a whole lot of money to make…and it shows. The film *looks* great and it’s enjoyable and all, but I’m glad it didn’t win the Best Picture Oscar. That would have been like giving Star Wars the Best Picture for having really awesome special effects.
And everyone said that Avatar would be a game changer, the meme was coming down the pipe even before the movie was released and the whole understanding of why it would be the game-changer-to-be was because of the photorealistic characters. But for some reason that whole angle of the film has been lost in the cloud that it was in 3-D.
Glorious 3-D! Plants and animals and those Huey helicopter looking VTOLs and floating mountains and all. All of it in 3-D. And like I said earlier, the film looks great.
So now other studios have latched onto that breaking new technology from the 1950’s also and films all over the place are about to be released in 3-D, whether you want them to be or not. Clash of the Titans was filmed in standard 2-D, but after Avatar splashed big Warner Bros. went back and made Titans into 3-D to satisfy this unquenchable desire for Perseus and the Kraken and Medusa’s head to be in 3-D. The remake of Piranha is going to be in 3-D and even more films are coming out in that cutting edge 20th Century technology.
But butts in the seats in theaters have been declining for the past several years since HD has been introduced into the home theater market. The big studios have been asking themselves what could bring people back to the theater and they think they’ve found it, for now.
Going back to the game changer – I don’t see why the studios haven’t figured out yet why Avatar is really such a big deal, because it’s fairly obvious. Maybe it’s because of legal issues that would be involved in the making of film, but the logical end to what Avatar has brought us is filmmakers being able to have any actor or actress, living or dead, in their film. George C. Scott as Robert E. Lee in a Ridley Scott picture? Done. Jimmy Stewart and Jim Carrey finally together in a comedy after all this time? Doable. Grace Kelly back to play Julia Roberts’ mother? Not impossible. All it takes is a bunch of LEDs on a stand-in actor’s head and we can paint Charlie Chaplin in a new comedy from the Farrelly brothers. He could eat poop or something and then do a funny dance.
Voice talent could be big then and actors that never got work before could (secretly) put blockbusters on their resumes. Like I said, legal issues abound, since the families of these people might disagree with allowing their loved ones to return from the grave to be resurrected again on the big screen, but everyone in Hollywood has a price, right?
So 3-D? It’s a fad again. Hollywood should look to the real future – harvesting dead actors for profit.