Audience reaction to Hollywood’s first high frame rate movie, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey was decidedly mixed, but frame rates—along with higher resolution, laser light, immersive sound and second screen experiences were very much on the minds of digital cinema leaders last week at the International Broadcasters Convention.
During the event, this community debated how to respond to the advancements taking place in home entertainment. “TV [technology] is moving faster,” admitted Disney’s vp production technology Howard Lukk during a panel discussion. “What keeps us up at night is how [cinema] stays the premium experience.”
While a move to 4K resolution is a big topic, numerous leaders said that more pixels alone isn’t the answer. They also want to see higher frame rates, a wider color gamut and expanded dynamic range.
Offering the theater owners perspective, Phil Clapp, president of the International Union of Cinemas warned that ultimately theater owners will adopt new technologies based on the business model. “Will it make a difference and can I monetize it? Or can I market it as the gold standard?”
Clapp added that attention needs to be placed on marketing, noting that the industry as a whole didn’t effectively introduce last December’s release of The Hobbit in high frame rates and “left the audience to find its way.”