Saturday, January 22, 2011

Has 3D Already Failed?

Kristen Thompson posts the first part of an examination of how 3D is faring financially in both the movie and TV arenas. It includes this very interesting quote from Daniel Engber:
Then we come to the weekend of June 18, 2010, when Toy Story 3 opened in more than 4,000 theaters around the country. It was a huge weekend for the Pixar film—one of the biggest of all time, in fact, with more than $110 million in total revenue, and $66 million from 3-D. Yet a close look at the numbers shows something else: On average, Toy Story 3 pulled in $27,000 for every theater showing the movie in 3-D, and $28,000 for every one that showed it flat. In other words, the net effect of showing Woody, Buzz, and friends in full stereo depth was negative 5 percent. The format was losing money.
And because ticket prices for the 3D version were higher, it means that the opening weekend saw more people viewing Toy Story 3 in the flat version than in the 3D version.


Anonymous said...


Daniel said...

I don't think it's failed. And until ticket prices are the same for both 3D and regular showings, all these analysts are just speculating.

Tom Ruegger said...

The analysts aren't speculating.
They're stating raw facts here.

David said...

Hi, Mark.

Have you seen the letter "Why 3D Doesn't Work and Never Will" by Walter Murch , posted on Roger Ebert's blog ? --

"Why 3D Doesn't Work and Never Will" by Walter Murch

Interesting take on 3D from the respected editor and sound designer Walter Murch. (actually the title "Why 3D Doesn't Work and Never Will" is Roger Ebert's , but that's the gist of Murch's letter) .


Mark Mayerson said...

Hi David. Thanks for the link to the article. I saw Walter Murch speak in Toronto late last year and he mentioned the problem with focus and convergence. I hadn't thought about it before, but it makes perfect sense.

Anonymous said...

The focus/conversion thing is a problem for SOME people, but by no means all. My grandmother, for example, cannot focus her eyes properly and so cannot see 3D.

For those of us who do have the ability, 3D can be pretty awesome. But the ticket prices for it are too high.