I’ve been working over at IMAX in Santa Monica the last few weeks, overseeing the conversion of RIDDICK into its giant-ass supersize-me format. Hasn’t always been an easy task: David Eggby and I shot the movie widescreen (2.40:1), yet the native aspect ratio of IMAX is much taller (1.90:1). That’s no small difference to reconcile.
My solution was to adopt different aspect ratios within the same movie – something that was never done 10 years ago when film was still king. But now that we use an entirely digital pipeline, we can vary the size of the image on the screen – on a shot-by-shot basis. So that’s what I opted to do for the IMAX version. (RIDDICK will have about 300 IMAX screens.)
And don’t confuse IMAX with 3D as some do. They’re distinct things, and a movie can be one…can be the other…can be both. So RIDDICK will be big – but not extra-dimensional. I think straight IMAX yields a superior viewing experience and is here for good. But 3D? Not sure it’s so much more immersive than a screen 70 feet high. That said…
The good folks at IMAX did run IRON MAN 3 for me in both large format and 3D. And let me tell you, it was quite a spectacle. So I’ll keep my mind open for awhile longer on the ultimate utility and fate of 3D.
RIDDICK is set for release in the US and Canada September 6. Next post, I’ll try to include international release dates since some of you who live overseas have been asking.