Cameron Slams Harry Potter Deathly Hallows 3D Conversion Farce

Jonathan Sutton

Producing movies in 3D has quickly become a growing trend with movie studios. They want a film that practically leaps off the screen, one that audiences can reach out to and almost touch. It all sounds like a good idea, but not every one is on board with the way 3D movies are made, especially when it involves adding 3D effects as an afterthought to movies originally shot in 2D.

James Cameron – well-known writer and director of such films as Titanic, True Lies and the Terminator series, and of course the 3D visionary whose Avatar 3D movie success paved the way for Hollywood’s current obsession with 3D films – has criticised the hasty and reckless manner in which movie studios convert films to 3D in post-production (rather than initially shooting them in 3D) for the sole purpose of milking the 3D gravy train.

Speaking at the Blu-Con 2010 event at The Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills earlier this month, Mr Cameron denounced Warner Bros for attempting to add 3D effects to the latest installment in the Harry Potter franchise. The film studio eventually had to abandon 2D-to-3D conversion for Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 1, as they ran out of time to complete the project in 3D before the scheduled US and UK release date.

Claiming that a rushed 2D-to-3D conversion job – he cited Clash Of The Titans as a prime example – would erode the public’s confidence in 3D movies and make the entire film industry look bad, Mr Cameron expressed his view that post-production 2D-to-3D conversion should only be reserved for classic movies like ET, Jaws, Indiana Jones, Titanic and Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, where re-shooting these perennial favourites in 3D is simply not possible.

At the Blu-Con conference, Mr Cameron also gave an estimated time frame of eight to ten years for glasses-free 3D technology (also technically known as autostereoscopic 3D) to reach mass market penetration.