Ever since Avatar raked in $716 million in the US/Canada, studio executives have been
scrambling to find the next 3D movie to release. We have seen a slew of 3D movies come out over the last few years with mixed results. None have been able to quite match the sucess of Avatar, and there is some speculation that the novelty of 3D is wearing thin. Disney, however, has an interesting approach: They are re-releasing movies such as the Lion King in 3D to a new generation of movie goers. Disney decided to release the 17 year old movie with the expectation of making $15 million as parents that saw the original when they were children now take their own kids to share in the experience. However, in the first ten days of release, the movie generated a surprising $61.5 million and has been the number one movie at the box office for two weeks in a row.
In light of this success, studio executives are gearing up to re-release their own 3D remakes. Here are a few that are upcoming:
February 10th 2012 – Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace.
April 6th 2012 – Titanic.
Summer 2012 – Top Gun .
Is this the start of a disastrous avalanche of 3D remakes? Are we setting the stage for Gigli-3D and From Justin to Kelly 3D? I think a disastrous future for 3D can be avoided if we stick to a few basic commandments for re-releases.
1) Thou shalt not try to re-release box office flops in the hopes that 3D will make them a success. No one wanted to see Batlefield Earth the first time!
2) Thou shalt not impose unnecessary 3D effects on great films. We don’t need extra things flying at us, or gnawing on our faces. If a great movie is going to be transformed into a 3D re-release, then it should include tasteful dimensional effects that add to the story. Viewers should not feel distracted by 3D reality – they should feel that it envelopes them and helps with the suspension of disbelief.
3) while we are on the idea of careful conversions into 3D, lets throw this commandment in: Though shall take your time when making conversions. It has to be done right! Don’t just rush through them or it will cheapen the 3D brand.
4) Thou shall give each 3D re-release the proper marketing campaign – one fit for a brand new release. Do not let the audience think this is just a cheap trick to make the Hollywood studios a few extra bucks. The re-release has to be done with an appropriate level of publicity.
Hopefully the coming year will prove that 3D can be used to increase a film’s value, and not just a trick to sell movie tickets. We've seen that vendors such as TekSpree.com have made home 3D market affordable by bringing inexpensive 3D Shutter Glasses to market. Lets hope Hollywood can continue the trend with re-releases.
What do you think? Let us know below!