3D on the big screen ‘waste of money’, says Hollywood star


Director of this year’s Edinburgh International Film Festival conceded he has mixed views on 3D films.

HOLLYWOOD actor James McAvoy has condemned the current craze for 3D movies as a “waste of money.”

The Scots actor, who stars as Professor X in new movie X Men: First Class, says the technology is an excuse to charge people more.

Most cinemas charge around 2 extra for a 3D ticket and another 1 for reusable glasses, adding around 12 to a family ticket.

But McAvoy has slammed the use of 3D in cinemas.

In an interview to promote his latest movie – which is 2D only – he said:

“I think it’s good thing X-Men is not 3D. In fact, thank God this movie is not in 3D.

“3D it just an excuse to charge you an extra ten bucks at the theatre. And then in the end it’s not 3D at all, it’s just a waste of money. “

The Last King of Scotland star said that 3D is becoming too common and thinks it should only be used if it is done properly.

And he also rejects the method of adding in the effect post production such as the 2010 movie Clash of the Titans.

He added:

“I maintain you can’t do a good conversion of a two-hour movie with high quality in a few weeks like they tried to do with Clash of the Titans.

“I don’t mean to throw that movie under the bus because my buddy Sam [Worthington, star of Avatar] is in it, but I think everybody realised that this was a point at which people had gone too far. “

James Mullighan, director of the Edinburgh International Film Festival, said that the reason 3D films cost more to see is because they are more expensive to make.

But he admits that he does have a mixed view of some 3D films.

He said:

“The idea of things coming out of the screen and making you jump out your seat are done very well but I think it’s a waste of time and money and I wouldn’t pay for a ticket to go to one of those films.

“But the film Pina is a great example of using 3D to get right amongst a contemporary dance crew. Another good example is Cave of Forgotten Dreams.”

Talking about the premier of the Lion King at the EIFF he said: “I think it will be a special and exciting event.

“Lion King is a favourite among children and adults alike and everyone will like to feel even closer to the animals and the plain.

“It may well be that we look at the film after and think that they have just made it into 3D for the sake of it but I’m sure the studios have other things they could spend their money on. “

In September last year, Simon Pegg also tweeted about his dislike for the 3D craze.

On one post on Twitter he said:

“3D used in films not aimed at children is like seeing someone you respect trying too hard. Like witnessing your dad in leather trousers. “

And added:

“3D has it’s place and it’s fun but it’s a variation not an evolution. Cinemas refusing to show 2D trails with 3D films is worrying. “

He also shared a view with McAvoy saying that

“there is a growing propensity to convert 2D into 3D just to charge more at the door.”

3D film is derived from stereoscopic photography and has existed in some form since the 1950s.

There was a later worldwide resurgence in the 1980s and ’90s driven by IMAX and Disney-themed venues.

But it wasn’t until Avatar was released in December 2009 that the 3D bug truly hit.

Director James Cameron is also currently working on the 3D remake of Fantastic Voyage and writing and planning Avatar sequels.

And at a convention last year he said that you soon won’t need glasses to watch 3D films.

He said: “Once we get to auto-stereoscopic, that’s watching 3-D without glasses, it is going to be the way we watch all of our media. That’s probably eight to 10 years away.”

The 3D craze seems to be gripping the nation with many old films being converted and the introduction of 3D televisions.

Many Wimbledon matches will also be screened in High Definition 3D at hundreds of cinemas around the world following a deal announced between Sony and the All England Lawn Tennis Club.

In January last year, BSkyB became the first broadcaster in the world to show a live sports event in 3D when Sky Sports screened a football match between Manchester United and Arsenal.

Even the Disney classic The Lion King is being re-released to cinemas in 3D is set to premiere at the final weekend of the Edinburgh International Film Festival.

But there are some suggestions that the future isn’t completely bright for 3D.

It was recently reported that US audiences were choosing to see cheaper 2D versions of new blockbusters such as Pirates of the Caribbean 4 and Kung Fu Panda 2 for the first time, indicating that the stereoscope boom may be over.

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