With much of the film world anxiously awaiting the rise of the 48 frame per second frame rate that has become one of the hottest technical talking points within cinema the past year or so, the first film to usher this change in in any major way will be the upcoming (and newly minted trilogy) take on ‘The Hobbit’ by Peter Jackson.
However, it may not be the big rolling out that one would have expected for what is basically an entirely new format.
Variety reports that the studio, WB, will be rolling out the 48fps prints of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey in very limited release, for a cavalcade of reasons. With an upgrade of projectors running roughly $10,000, markets aren’t going to be too kind to take a huge chunk of change to upgrade for one film basically, and with buzz coming out of CinemaCon earlier this year being rather negative, it doesn’t seem like it is something that distributors find important.
Personally, it’s only a matter of time before this is the norm, but at this point, it just doesn’t seem to be taking. It’s an expensive frame rate to jump up to, and while I’m far away from anything resembling a tech head, it just doesn’t appear to be ready. CinemaCon buzz was beyond mixed, some calling it the future with some calling it nearly unwatchable. At this point, it may be both, and it will take time to change that.