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Archive for the ‘3D Interviews’ Category

I just read this interesting article/interview with James Cameron, who is arguably the most important force in the 3D industry. His assessment of 3D in theatres and at home is refreshing. I have pasted the most important parts below. Unfortunately, there is no mention of VR, where 3D, of course, is currently achieving its ultimate potential.

 

After Avatar cracked open the potential for 3D in cinema, the Canadian filmmaker had further success with the format when the 2012 conversion of Titanic earned $US343 million around the world.

Six years ago, Cameron predicted 3D would be standard in cinemas by 2016. And while the widespread perception is that audiences have gone off the format – deterred by an often disappointing experience and more expensive ticket price – he challenges that view.

“At that time we probably had 1500 screens 3D globally and we’re now up to 45,000 screens,” he says. “Pretty much every major film that’s made is offered in both 3D and 2D. I’d call that pretty standard.

“Now that doesn’t mean that everybody chooses it. We’re running at, depending on the title, anywhere from 40 to 60 per cent of ticket-buyers choosing the stereo option.

“But the total number of people viewing movies in 3D is about a 10 x multiple of what it was when I released Avatar. And probably a 4 or 5 x multiple of where we were [in 2012] so I consider that a pretty resounding success story.

But surely no-one is buzzing about 3D the way they did when Avataropened.

“They shouldn’t be,” Cameron says. “In 1961, the expensive movies were in colour and the cheap ones were in black and white. They put a big sign on the poster or the marquee that said ‘In Colour” and people would go to a movie because it was in colour.

“Cut to five or 10 years later, people weren’t buzzing about colour. It was just a fact of life.

“Honestly, I can point to any number of interviews where I predicted in our best case scenario, we would measure success when it was no longer remarkable. And that’s exactly where we are now.”

But Cameron accepts 3D television has failed and the movie industry has let itself down by hastily converting new movies rather than shooting them in the format.

“The conversion of classic titles where you have the time and energy to do it properly is not a problem,” he says. “The problem is when you’re trying to jam it in in post-production on a new Avengers film or whatever …

“I also think the industry has done itself a disservice by not stepping up on the projection technology to get the light levels up. That’s now on the horizon … there’ll be a big incremental evolution over the next few years where the 3D experience gets much more vibrant and dynamic.”

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The founders of Virtual Content Group talk about the VR industry and why they merged  their three award-winning businesses.

SK: Soenke Kirchhof. Co-Founder. Berlin. http://invr.space/
TH: Torsten Hoffmann. Co-Founder/CEO. Melbourne. http://3dcontenthub.com/
GCQ: Gallien Chanalet-Quercy. Co-Founder. Paris. http://www.cow-prod.fr/en/ 

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  1. What is your background and how did you catch the “VR bug”?

GCQ: I come, like the three of us, from a strong 3D background and have always been interested in new ways to tell stories. When the first 360 photography gear was released, we immediately tried to use it for storytelling and built our first rigs.

SK: With my background as a producer/CEO, I always focused on new ways of storytelling and formats. For example, I started one of the first internet TV Stations in Germany back in 2005 – just to be able to distribute art projects that I was interested in. In 2006, I founded Real Life Film International, focusing on stereoscopic 3D, to tell stories in more immersive ways than in flat 2D. Shortly after that in early 2008, I was part in a research consortium on immersive storytelling; we also shot the first 180° degree project with the first prototype of Fraunhofer HHI´s Omnicam. Over time, there were more projects in 360° for Dome Projections – and since 2014, we have produced and collaborated on over two hundred projects in 360°.

TH: Licensing content is a competitive and crowded business. I stumbled into stereoscopic 3D ‘by accident’ and 3D Content Hub became one of the leading distributors in this niche – which quickly disappeared. What 3D promised back then, VR actually delivers now. This became clear to me as soon as I saw the first few 360 clips on GearVR. VR will take a few more technology iterations to really take off – yet the first few headsets and experiences are already quite impressive.

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  1. What is your proudest professional accomplishment to date?

SK: My favorite moment was when Disney decided that they will not shoot in Los Angeles or with the largest German studio, but with us a relatively small and unknown company. We had been involved in the development of the camera system (which was awarded by the International 3D Society shortly afterwards) and Disney was convinced that we understood the creative aspects of working with it as well as the technical details.

GCQ: a) the premiere of my first feature film as executive producer in London, b) accepting the Lumiere Award in LA alongside Jean-Pierre Jeunet for Best 3D Commercial of the Year for the World of Warcraft commercial, and c) the recent Lumiere award for Temptation of St. Anthony VR for Arte Creative.

TH: a) figured out many ways to monetise 3D content and paid out about $3 million in license revenues to independent filmmakers, small production firms and freelancers b) built a network of hundreds of content creators and clients all over the world and finally c) wrote, crowdfunded, directed and produced my first documentary about the controversial technology Bitcoin and won 4 international awards for it. 

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Ed Mazza has recently published a paper about Marketing 3D (download here: Marketing 3D Version 2) We have interviewed him exclusively for 3DContentBlog.com

Please introduce yourself and your background in 3D. 

Ed Mazza is a marketing and communications consultant with experience in marketing and communications planning, product marketing, training, strategic and tactical marketing. This experience includes a wide variety of products and services including 3D consumer and business products, digital signage advertising, Smart Grid for electric water and gas utilities, cloud computing and telecommunications.

 

Why did you write this report?

I have written the paper “Marketing 3D – Moving 3D to the Mainstream” and others in this series of marketing 3D products because I perceive a need to arm the overall 3D industry with the tools necessary to bring 3D to the public. When I first worked in the 3D industry as a Director of Marketing for an autostereoscopic display company, I fell into the trap that many before me and since have fallen into: This technology is so cool that people will be drawn to it. However, nothing could be further from the truth. Even though 3D has been around for many years, it has a perception problem, a PR problem if you will.

Due to past negative perceptions of 3D and 3D as a fad and also the overwhelming 3D press touting the dangers and death of 3D, the acceptance of 3D by the public is going to take a different approach than your typical marketing effort. It is going to take an industry wide demand generation program. It is going to take convincing the public, one segment at a time, that 3D does add to the viewing experience and not just for jump out of the screen effects that in some cases do not even match with the story.

What is the future of 3D in your view?

3D and other advanced visual technologies have a great potential to change the way we view any visual content. 3D visual technologies add yet another tool to the arsenal of story tellers, no matter who they are or what story they are telling, another tool to tell their story. Just as moving pictures, sound, and color added to the way we tell stories, 3D provides yet another tool to immerse the target audience in the story or message. 3D also provides a new and unique and exciting viewing experience for the general public.

I believe that 3D has a bright future and together with the other advanced imaging technologies such as 4k and 8k, 3D can finally make the break from the reoccurring fad that comes around every decade or so to a generally accepted viewing experience. I also believe that in the end, glasses or no glasses will not be a barrier to public acceptance of 3D in the home market. The end user can choose the right technology that fits their desired viewing experience.

How would you handle all the ‘3D is Dead’ press? Won’t any PR attempt bring the negative press to the forefront?

It seems that negative press will always be there. With the current situation, the press not includes not only your standard online and print media, but also includes many bloggers with an incredible following. Many in the media seem to crave an opportunity to find fault and to be the one who can say in the end that “I told you so.” Negative press is not necessarily a bad thing. Negative press gives the opportunity to not only respond with the real story along with proof points but also to change the conversation. For example, Apple has become quite good at handling negative press. With the latest release of the IPhone 6 and IPhone 6Plus, many in the press jumped at the chance to criticize the new larger sized products. They especially pointed out and relayed the rumor that the larger phone can bend. I saw many stories of people walking into stores and bending the phone. Apple jumped on this and in fact changed the conversation to the advantages of the larger phone. In the end apple iPhone 6 sales reached a record 10 million iPhones in just three days

For 3D let’s change the conversation. Let’s talk about advances in the user experience. Let’s talk about what we have learned about the technology and where it is going. Do not get into a argument with someone who is not going to change their mind. Let’s change who we are talking with. Let’s use other press, other editors, and other channels such as blogs and social media to get out our message. Another method would be to use reverse SEO. Put out as many messages, articles, and press releases with positive messages targeted to the public that will in turn push down the bad press in the search engine listings.

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CTAA 3D COUNCIL LOGOThe 3D market in China has been called the ‘last one standing’. International 3D distributor Torsten Hoffmann (3D Content Hub) sits down with three Chinese experts to talk about the latest developments. Torsten has licensed a large amount of stereoscopic 3D titles to Chinese broadcasters and VOD platforms and has also successfully exported 3D documentaries made in China to the international market place. Yulu Wang is from the international Relationship Department, China Television Artists Association (CTAA) 3D Council, and has been involved the 3D work from 2012, focusing the 3D international Relationships. Jim King was active in the TV broadcasting industry as a distribution manager of foreign satellite TV channels before shifting to the online video markets. He produced the CCTV Internet Spring Festival Gala 2012 in 3D and is now focusing on R&D, holds several patents and is now working as CTO with imcube Technologies. Jingyu Lee is the general manager of mosky4D. This Chinese company is mainly engaged in producing stereo effect movies for Science and Technology Museums, including circular-screen and full-dome documentaries such as Morph.

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Torsten: China has become a more important player in the global 3d industry. Why do you think there is more interest in 3D in China than in the West?

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Interview by Torsten Hoffmann, originally published on 3DContentBlog.com (April 2014)

1. What’s your background in 3D and how did you get started?

geek1When I was a kid, there was a local cable channel that would occasionally broadcast anaglyph 3D movies. I got to watch films like Revenge of the Creature, Gorilla at Large, The Mask, and Dynasty (the 1976 kung-fu flick) in 3D. At the time, they were the most amazing things I’d ever seen on a television screen.

Years later, after I had brief careers in audio engineering and video production, I wanted to make animated music videos for some songs I’d recorded. I stumbled across the software program Anime Studio Pro, which was able to render things stereoscopically. It sounded interesting, so I looked into what it would take to make something in 3D. I discovered that it was much more economical to make and view things in 3D than it had ever been before, so I jumped in and started learning as much as I could.

2. Tell us more about The Simple Carnival.

The Simple Carnival ( www.simplecarnival.com ) is my musical moniker. I make Beach Boys-influenced pop music and experimental easy listening. There’s also quite a bit of Electric Light Orchestra, Todd Rundgren, and Steely Dan influences in what I do. I play most (or all) of the instruments on The Simple Carnival’s recordings, and have released four CDs since 2005.

It’s impossible to pull off The Simple Carnival’s sound in a live performance unless I hire a full band or play along with pre-recorded tracks. So instead of playing live, I try to find interesting ways to release the recordings that I make in my studio.

A few years ago, I’d written the songs that were intended to go on the next Simple Carnival album. However, once I started learning about 3D, the album took a left turn and became a 40-minute 3D music video movie called Smitten 3D.

I’m still working on Smitten 3D as we speak. When it’s done, it’ll be a 3D blu-ray with eleven animated 3D music videos. Currently, four of the videos for Smitten 3D are done and I’m working on the fifth. The four that are done have been screened at film festivals around the world.

3. The video for “A Geek Like Me” was awarded the Ray Zone Award for Achievement in 3-DIY at the LA3D Movie Festival this past December. Why do you think it was so well-received? (more…)

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al talkingAl Caudullo, a long-time business partner and friend and I just returned from our second 3D Expo in Beijing. Last year we were successful with selling his (and other) films to the Chinese 3D channels. And 2014 looks to be promising for the 3D industry in China as well. I have spoken at several 3D events and blogged at length about this market in the past. See here, here, and here. So today, I am copying Al’s speech from last week about the Chinese Opportunity in the 3D Industry.

“Ladies and Gentlemen, Honored guests and 3D industry professionals I would like to thank the organizers for inviting me back for a second year. I have lived in Thailand for the last 12 years. And have been asked to speak about Chinese opportunity in the 3D Industry. A statement was made recently that, I felt summed up the theme here today.

“Hollywood must start thinking bigger about China.”
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Guest article from 3DGuy.TV: The Intelligent Filmmakers Bible Part 1 of 2

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An interview with the author of the best-selling filmmaking book, Master Shots.
Jim Jarmusch was quoted as saying, “Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery – celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: “It’s not where you take things from – it’s where you take them to.”

Christopher Kenworthy was listening. Chris has fueled our inspiration with his first three books called “Master Shots”. Volume 1 gave us “100 Advanced Camera Techniques”. Volume 2 gave us “100 Ways to Creatively Shoot Dialogue Scenes”. Volume 3 entitled, “The Directors Vision”, gave us 100 ways to stylize our movie.

These books act as a compilation of master shots that you can recreate on a small indie film budget. Illustrated with either stills from a film that highlight the use of the shot or with 3D graphic diagrams showing the blocking of the shot.

Included are the technical details on how each shot is set up, the focal length of lenses used, and the emotion that the shot should imprint upon the audience.

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