Thursday, April 24, 2014

TITLE CHANGE: Hobbit 3 Now Titled THE HOBBIT: THE BATTLE OF THE FIVE ARMIES !

SURPRISE! Tim here, and Peter Jackson has revealed today that the third Hobbit movie will in fact be called: The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. That's right. Read below what Jackson had to say on his Official Facebook Page announcing the title change:

Peter Jackson


Inside Information...

Our journey to make The Hobbit Trilogy has been in some ways like Bilbo's own, with hidden paths revealing their secrets to us as we've gone along. "There and Back Again" felt like the right name for the second of a two film telling of the quest to reclaim Erebor, when Bilbo's arrival there, and departure, were both contained within the second film. But with three movies, it suddenly felt misplaced—after all, Bilbo has already arrived "there" in the "Desolation of Smaug".

When we did the premiere trip late last year, I had a quiet conversation with the studio about the idea of revisiting the title. We decided to keep an open mind until a cut of the film was ready to look at. We reached that point last week, and after viewing the movie, we all agreed there is now one title that feels completely appropriate.

And so: "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies" it is.

As Professor Tolkien intended, "There and Back Again" encompasses Bilbo's entire adventure, so don't be surprised if you see it used on a future box-set of all three movies.

Before then however, we have a film to finish, and much to share with you. It's been a nice quiet time for us—Jabez and I happily editing away in a dark cave in Wellington—but those halcyon days are quickly coming to an end. It will soon be time to step into the light. Expect to see and hear much about The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies in the coming months.

And there's also The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Extended Cut, which we're in the process of finishing, with over 25 mins of new scenes, all scored with original music composed by Howard Shore.

It'll be a fun year!

There you have it. At least he revealed some additional information about The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Extended Edition and how much extra footage we can expect. More than likely additional Mirkwood footage will be in there, including Bombur taking a nap after his dip in an enchanted stream as per the book. Also, it's nice to hear that the There and Back Again title isn't completely abandoned as it may show up in box sets of the movie. Here's to hoping for an awesome Extended Edition Trilogy Box Set titled The Hobbit: There and Back Again.

Fear not as the release date for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies is still December 17th, 2014. And, look for word on the release of the The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Extended Edition release date.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

WATCH: The First 5 Minutes Of HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2


Here's the next iteration of the planned trilogy of HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON tales - and we get to watch a full 5 minutes from it. Lots of action by way of a dragon race the vikings like to engage in, so some mild visual spoilers in this, but nothing really concerning the overall story I would say.

The imagery looks better and better everytime I see a Dreamworks Animation project! The score is well done again too and with hearing Jay Baruchel's voice again, it was a welcome memory from the first.

Here's the storyline for the movie:
The thrilling second chapter of the epic HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON trilogy brings us back to the fantastical world of Hiccup and Toothless five years after the two have successfully united dragons and vikings on the island of Berk. While Astrid, Snoutlout and the rest of the gang are challenging each other to dragon races (the island’s new favorite contact sport), the now inseparable pair journey through the skies, charting unmapped territories and exploring new worlds. When one of their adventures leads to the discovery of a secret ice cave that is home to hundreds of new wild dragons and the mysterious Dragon Rider, the two friends find themselves at the center of a battle to protect the peace. Now, Hiccup and Toothless must unite to stand up for what they believe while recognizing that only together do they have the power to change the future of both men and dragons.

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2 flies into theaters June 13.


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Must Watch: New BTS Featurettes For X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST


Here's a couple of new featurettes for you and after that last trailer I'm sure you're itching for more. The first one shows Magneto retrieving his helmet from his previous captor's vault and the second focuses on the early '70's wardrobe for some airport scenes and Jennifer Lawrence's Mystique character.

For me BTS scenes are like the appetizer before the meal. I really enjoy seeing directors at work and their crews. Love how Singer came up with the idea for Fassbender's Magneto breaking into a vault to reclaim his helmet! Much better than making a new one.

The BTS also revealed some of the native 3D camera rigging by 3ality Technica and the 3D tent village where the stereographer (my friend John Harper) reviews the stereo shots. Check out the screen caps I made at the end of the post!

So have a watch!

Here's the storyline for the movie:
The ultimate X-Men ensemble fights a war for the survival of the species across two time periods in X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST. The beloved characters from the original “X-Men” film trilogy join forces with their younger selves from “X-Men: First Class,” in an epic battle that must change the past – to save our future.

X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST opens on May 23 in native 3D.

























Source: CBM

Watch: Behind The Scenes TV Spot For Marvel's GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY


A few great new shots in this TV spot for Marvel's GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY! Love seeing Vin Diesel getting performance capped for Groot. The effects look fresher for this movie - not sure why. Loving what I see. The genre for this one I think will resonate with a ton of people.

Here's the storyline for the movie:
Marvel’s GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY finds space adventurer Peter Quill the object of a bounty hunt after stealing an orb coveted by a treacherous villain, but when Quill discovers the power it holds, he must find a way to rally the quartet of ragtag rivals hot on his trail to save the universe.

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY opens on August 1.


MUST WATCH: Final Trailer Set Free For X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST !!


OMG. Here it is. This movie looks like no other superhero movie before it! Yes there's an ensemble like THE AVENGERS. Yes there's time travel like in SUPERMAN. Yes it's all in 3D. But DOFP unites all of those qualities into one movie and amps it up! A HUGE ensemble cast. Time travel galore AND let's not forget the highest quality native 3D that modern technology (3ality Technica and ARRI) and one of the best crews can give us! Yeah, I'd say we're in for one behemoth of a movie.

Check out this trailer. I can understand wanting to hold off for a pristine viewing of the movie, but the trailer itself pulls together a better understanding of what has already been presented to us through all the marketing thus far, but in doing so uses a ton of new footage. I found that there was some visual spoilers in it, but not a huge amount. Your call.

I will say that Led Zeppelin's "Kasmir" has been over used lately, but hey - I love the tune. I don't tire of it.

Here's the storyline for the movie:
The ultimate X-Men ensemble fights a war for the survival of the species across two time periods in X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST. The beloved characters from the original “X-Men” film trilogy join forces with their younger selves from “X-Men: First Class,” in an epic battle that must change the past – to save our future.

X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST opens on May 23 in native 3D! Congrats on the trailer Mr. Singer!



Monday, April 14, 2014

Blackmagic URSA 3D-Capable at $6,500 Per Camera!

"The new URSA Cameras do support genlock and should work with 3D, but will also need to be frame synced."
- Rick Rivera

Tim here, and I've gotten confirmation from Blackmagic Design (via Rick Rivera, a Support Representative) that their new URSA camera will be 3D-Capable. More accurately two URSA cameras can be synced together for Stereoscopic 3D production. This makes this the most affordable 4K Cinema Camera to be able to be used for Stereoscopic 3D! Or does it?

At $6,500 roughly for the PL-Mount version of the camera ($6,000 roughly for EF-Mount), this definitely comes in as the most affordable 4K Cinema Camera. However, the media that it records on to is super expensive. It records on to CFast Cards, and to give you an idea about how much it costs: 120 GB = $1,200! How much 4K RAW gets recorded on to one 120 GB CFast Card at the normal 24 frames per second? Sadly, 6-Minutes! (Source)

Now there are 2 card slots in the camera, so that means you could technically record 12-Minutes before needing to reload both cards; but, that's a total of 240 GB at $2,400 for 12-minutes of RAW footage. OUCH! During a regular shoot you'll want a couple of cards available to continuously shoot. So if you dump two cards while two cards are in the camera that gives you 4 cards, but you'd likely want 6 cards to be safe. Thus, you're looking at $7,200 for recording media!

The price will drop as most recording media has in the past for the industry. And Blackmagic Design isn't the only company using CFast Cards. ARRI is betting on the CFast technology as well as its the primary recording media for their new AMIRA camera. The AMIRA is the lower cost ($45,000) documentary version of their ALEXA. The ARRI ALEXA can record on to three media: SXS Cards, XR Modules (XR Capture Drives), and CFast Cards (through adapter). This should help bring the price down of the CFast media, and as well increase the sizes of cards.

Coming back to the cost of the Blackmagic URSA for 3D Production we need to look at the cost of the camera body and media for each eye. Say one already has lenses and the other necessary camera accessories and just needs to know the cost of the cameras and media. Two PL-Mount URSA Cameras will cost $13,000 to the average consumer. Say one buys 6 CFast Cards per camera, then that's 12 CFast Cards total and will cost $14,400. That means that the URSA in a 3D-Capable capacity costs $27,400! Wow, that's affordable compared to the RED Scarlet or Epic. Each Scarlet will cost $14,500 for the body alone; thus, two Scarlets are $29,000 before RED SSD's for recording media. The Epic is more money than the Scarlet, obviously. The ALEXA is expensive at $75,000 per camera. In the end, The Blackmagic URSA is still the most affordable 4K Camera for Stereoscopic 3D Production!

Let's look at some of the Technical Specs for the Blackmagic URSA compared with the ARRI ALEXA since they are so similar in physical design.

  Blackmagic URSA ARRI ALEXA
Picture of Camera
Effective Sensor Size 21.12mm x 11.88mm (Super 35) 23.76mm x 13.37mm (Super 35)*
Effective Resolution 3840 x 2160 2880 x 1620*
Exposure Latitude 12 stops 14+ stops
Frame Rates 3840 x 2160p (23.98, 24, 25, 29.97, 30, 60)
1920 x 1080p (23.98, 24, 25, 29.97, 30, 60)
Sensor frame rate support: Up to 60 fps
ProRes HD 0.75 - 120 fps
ProRes 2K 0.75 - 60 fps
DNxHD HD 0.75 - 120 fps
ARRIRAW 0.75 - 120 fps
Exposure Index ISO Presets: 200, 400, 800, & 1600 ISO Presets: 160, 200, 400, 800, 1600, & 3200
White Balance Presets for 3200 (tungsten), 4500 (fluorescent), 5000, 5600, 6500, and 7500 (variety of daylight conditions). Presets for 3200 (tungsten), 4300 (fluorescent), 5600 (daylight) and 7000 (daylight cool). Automatic calculation or manual white balance for 2000 to 11000 Kelvin, adjustable in 100 K steps
Lens Mount EF, PL, B4, HDMI (Camera body without sensor, features an HDMI 4K input with mounting plate to connect any HDMI camera for URSA quality recording, monitoring, audio and timecode.) ARRI Exchangeable Lens Mount (ELM); ships with Lens Adapter PL Mount with LDS contacts, 54 mm stainless steel PL mount, Super 35 centered. 52.00 mm nominal flange focal depth without FSND filters.
Weight 7.5 kg/16.5 lbs ALEXA XT body with XR Module: 7.3 kg/16.1 lbs.
Dimensions Length: 312 mm/12.3", width: 155 mm/6.1", height: 244 mm/9.6" Length: 332 mm/12.95", width: 183 mm/7.20", height: 158 mm/6.22"
Connectors
Output:   1 x 12G-SDI -- 10-bit 4:2:2
1 x 3G-SDI -- down-converted signal for monitoring
Input   1 x 12G-SDI
Reference   1 x Reference input
Timecode   1 x Timecode input
1 x Timecode output
Analog Audio Inputs   2 x XLR -- selected mic/line level and +48 V phantom power
Analog Audio Output   1 x 1/4" TRS -- for headphone monitoring
SDI Audio Output   2-channel via SDI output
Remote Control   1 x LANC on 2.5 mm sub-mini -- controls record START/STOP, iris, and focus
USB   1 x USB 2.0 mini type B for software updates
Supported Standards   SDI Compliance: SMPTE 292M
SDI Audio Sampling: 48 kHz and 24-bit
1x media slot for XR Capture Dive or SxS adapter
2x BNC recording out HD-SDI, 1.5G/3G (REC OUT 1 and REC OUT 2)
2x BNC monitoring out HD-SDI, 1.5G (MON OUT 1 and MON OUT 2)
1x XLR 5-pin analog audio in (AUDIO IN)
1x BNC return video in HD-SDI, 1.5G (RET/SYNC IN)
1x LEMO 16-pin external accessory interface (EXT)
1x Fischer 2-pin 24 V power in (BAT)
3x Fischer 3-pin 24 V remote start and accessory power out (RS)
1x LEMO 2-pin 12 V accessory power out (12 V)
1x LEMO 5-pin timecode in/out (TC)
1x TRS 3.5 mm headphone mini stereo jack (AUDIO OUT)
1x custom LEMO 16-pin electronic viewfinder (EVF)
1x custom LEMO 10-pin Ethernet with 24 V power (ETHERNET)
1x Fischer 5-pin Lens Data Display (LDD)
2x Fischer 5-pin Lens Control System (LCS)
1x Fischer 12-pin for CLM-2, CLM-3, CLM-4 or later (IRIS)
1x Fischer 12-pin for CLM-2, CLM-3, CLM-4 or later (FOCUS)
1x Fischer 12-pin for CLM-2, CLM-3, CLM-4 or later (ZOOM)
BNC connectors designed for fast exchange without camera disassembly. These connectors require a special tool.

*ARRI ALEXA has 3 Sensor modes 16:9 (23.76mm x 13.37mm at 2880x1620 pixels), 4:3 (23.76mm x 17.82mm at 2880x2160 pixels), and Open Gate (28.17mm x 18.13mm at 3414x2198 pixels)

As you can see from the above comparison the Blackmagic URSA is a pretty decent camera when compared to the ARRI ALEXA. Naturally the ALEXA is higher end and a camera that would be more prefered by the professionals. However, for a lower-end professional camera the URSA is capable of delivering good quality for those looking to make a project to get them noticed. And Blackmagic will only improve the camera.

Some additional details about the Blackmagic URSA can be found in the link below, but one of the best things about the URSA is that its sensor and lens mount assembly can be changed. This means you can upgrade to the latest sensor technology in the future and keep your investment in the camera body! Now that's a sweet deal. And, the sweetest part of the whole deal is that Blackmagic Design packages the cameras with the full version of its DaVinci Resolve Software!!! They also did this with their previous cinema cameras. What this means is you get the full professional color grading software many feature films use. What's more is that DaVinci Resolve comes with a plethora of Stereoscopic 3D finishing tools. More information about DaVinci Resolve can be found here.

That's the Blackmagic Design URSA Camera for you. You can read more about it on the official Blackmagic Design Website here. The Blackmagic URSA Camera is scheduled to be released late July 2014.

Must Watch: Segment From Opening Fight Of X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST !


The MTV Movie Awards produced this clip from the upcoming Fox mega-movie X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST. Take note of how the mutants are using their abilities in ways we haven't seen before and the care that director Bryan Singer has taken to effectively team up the characters to defeat the new enemy.

Here's the movie's storyline:
The ultimate X-Men ensemble fights a war for the survival of the species across two time periods in X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST. The beloved characters from the original “X-Men” film trilogy join forces with their younger selves from “X-Men: First Class,” in an epic battle that must change the past – to save our future.

X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST opens on May 23 in stunning 3D - natively shot by the best in the business.

Watch: New Times Square Clip From THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2 !


And the clips just keep on coming! Here's the latest from Sony for THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2 featuring the Times Square showdown between Electro (Jamie Foxx) and Spidey (Andrew Garfield).

Watching this - keep in mind that one of Spider-man's abilities is precognition in his spidey-sense. So it may seem like he is moving impossibly fast, but in actuality the lore has him seeing what will happen and acting before it happens. Makes for an incredibly cinematic moment when time is frozen or in slow motion.

Can't wait for this movie. Spider-man has always been my fav superhero since I was 4 years old. Here's hoping the franchise kicks it up a notch.

Here's the storyline from the movie:
It’s great to be Spider-Man (Andrew Garfield). For Peter Parker, there’s no feeling quite like swinging between skyscrapers, embracing being the hero, and spending time with Gwen (Emma Stone). But being Spider-Man comes at a price: only Spider-Man can protect his fellow New Yorkers from the formidable villains that threaten the city. With the emergence of Electro (Jamie Foxx), Peter must confront a foe far more powerful than he. And as his old friend, Harry Osborn (Dane DeHaan), returns, Peter comes to realize that all of his enemies have one thing in common: Oscorp.

THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2 opens on May 2 in 3D, IMAX 3D and flat.


Saturday, April 12, 2014

Guy Ritchie's KING ARTHUR To Be Released In 3D


Couple of pieces of news here - firstly, Guy Ritchie has been finally confirmed to helm KING ARTHUR (he has been attached since 2010) for Warner Bros. and Village Roadshow and secondly it will be in 3D. Whether or not it will be a native 3D production or a conversion is still being held closely to the vest. Always hoping for native!

KING ARTHUR is expected to be released on July 22, 2016 and it looks to be the first of a six film franchise.

Here's a teaser of the King Arthur legend courtesy of Wikipedia:
Although the themes, events and characters of the Arthurian legend varied widely from text to text, and there is no one canonical version, Geoffrey's version of events often served as the starting point for later stories. Geoffrey depicted Arthur as a king of Britain who defeated the Saxons and established an empire over Britain, Ireland, Iceland, Norway and Gaul. Many elements and incidents that are now an integral part of the Arthurian story appear in Geoffrey's Historia, including Arthur's father Uther Pendragon, the wizard Merlin, Arthur's wife Guinevere, the sword Excalibur, Arthur's conception at Tintagel, his final battle against Mordred at Camlann and final rest in Avalon. The 12th-century French writer Chr├ętien de Troyes, who added Lancelot and the Holy Grail to the story, began the genre of Arthurian romance that became a significant strand of medieval literature. In these French stories, the narrative focus often shifts from King Arthur himself to other characters, such as various Knights of the Round Table. Arthurian literature thrived during the Middle Ages but waned in the centuries that followed until it experienced a major resurgence in the 19th century. In the 21st century, the legend lives on, not only in literature but also in adaptations for theatre, film, television, comics and other media.

More info when I get it!

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

New Photos From DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES !

We saw one the apes clutching an assault weapon during a recent TV spot and now we have another one pointing a shotgun. Seems these apes aren't all about spears at all and have adapted to the human technology that suits their needs. Not all of it does apparently though.

It'll be interesting to see Caesar lead his group of apes while the humans struggle to make a comeback. I'm looking for human interest AND ape interest stories here and when the two factions meet - look out!

Here's the storyline for the movie:
A growing nation of genetically evolved apes led by Caesar is threatened by a band of human survivors of the devastating virus unleashed a decade earlier. They reach a fragile peace, but it proves short-lived, as both sides are brought to the brink of a war that will determine who will emerge as Earth’s dominant species.

Says Serkis: "Caesar not only has a wife, but also an infant son and a teenage son. This film centers around the notion of family — the survival of the family and what lengths you would go to to protect them when life is extremely hard and tough."

Check out our exclusive interview with Andy Serkis (Caesar) if you missed it! Tim and Andy talk about 3D, the 3ality Technica rigs - and you know, cool MarketSaw stuff :-)

DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES opens on July 11.



Source: USA Today

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Movie Review - CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER, 9.2 Stars! Spoiler Protected, $300M Opening!


Yes, the hype is real. Get out and see CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER and see it on the largest 3D screen possible. The story alone is worth the price of admission and it's not your typical superhero one trick pony. It's rare that a story like this makes it's way on the screen in this genre, but MAN, I'm hoping for more.

3D is playing a huge role with this Cap release. 40% of all screenings were in 3D and the box office showed it with $96.2 million from the US and Canada this weekend. And the all important overseas markets delivered on all cylinders too with a blammo $207 million! Cap 2 is April's largest opening EVER.

I love how CATWS philosophy is political but still with tons of action. Marvel is definitely on to something by building each standalone movie with a different tone. For example GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY will have much more humor built into it than the other Marvel franchise movies - it's brilliant.

I have two sore points that I have to get out of the way first and then on to focusing on the brilliance of this movie. Note that I have typed out the spoilers in white text below, so you will have to simply highlight those areas to read them if you have already seen the movie.

WARNING SPOILERS BELOW THIS LINE:
What bothered me about this movie and it's not even addressed - which really gets under my skin, is that this is a MAJOR, MAJOR attack on S.H.E.I.L.D. and the world at large - huge in scale and in fact does warrant all the Avengers assembling once again!! This is not a Cap only adventure we're talking about. Nick Fury was considered DEAD. One second from Hydra domination. Where on earth was Tony Stark? The Hulk? Hawkeye? I can understand Thor being hard to get a hold of, but even he would monitor something like this! All we get is Cap and Black Widow. Look, all I'm asking for is an explanation. Remind us that all of Stark's suits are gone. That Bruce Banner is perhaps hiding again. That Hawkeye has residual brain issues from being tapped in THE AVENGERS. :-) C'mon.

Secondly is the loss of suspension of disbelief when Hydra shows up in a super old computer system. I call BS on that one. And anyone in information technology would too - which happens to make up a LOT of this movie's target audience. A sentient computer? I don't care who is in it. Sentient? That won't happen for another 25-25 years! Moving on...

END OF SPOILERS

Here's the storyline for the movie:
After the cataclysmic events in New York with The Avengers, Marvel’s “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” finds Steve Rogers, a.k.a. Captain America, living quietly in Washington, D.C. and trying to adjust to the modern world. But when a S.H.I.E.L.D. colleague comes under attack, Steve becomes embroiled in a web of intrigue that threatens to put the world at risk. Joining forces with the Black Widow, Captain America struggles to expose the ever-widening conspiracy while fighting off professional assassins sent to silence him at every turn. When the full scope of the villainous plot is revealed, Captain America and the Black Widow enlist the help of a new ally, the Falcon. However, they soon find themselves up against an unexpected and formidable enemy—the Winter Soldier.

So yes, the story was amazing - worth a 94% for their efforts.
A treat. Acting was up to standard and because of the talent involved (Redford et al) I gave it a 92% delivery. Character development wasn't as strong (88%) as the original Cap movie, but it didn't need to be as his origins had already been done. Loved what they did with the Winter Soldier. I had some trouble with suspension of disbelief (84%) as I have outlined in the spoiler section - therefore can't go into details. Suffice to say it wasn't an overly jarring experience, but noteworthy.

The Russos did an amazing job directing the movie (93%) and apparently they are approached for the next Cap as well. Good! The sound and score (91%) are what I expect from a Marvel production - amazing! Cinematography was better than average (92%) with the cityscapes playing interesting roles in the movie. The visual effects were marvel standard as well - meaning, WOW (97%). Very well done.

Finally the 3D was a little less than what I anticipated, but still clearly top notch and well worth seeing in 3D. I think that unless my 3D score is down around 70% - you need to see any superhero genre movie in 3D. It really delivers what the directors and writers want to you. The movie was definitely planned in 3D and deftly delivered in a post production 3D effort from Stereo D. One shot in particular I loved and that's a shot of Steve Rogers talking and the city background is all out of focus - a beautiful depth of field shot and with the 3D applied was almost like art. Stunning shot. It's the little things like that. Go see this movie!

CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER is now playing in 3D, IMAX 3D and flat.

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