In keeping with technological advances, Jackson shot the adaption of the prequel to the trilogy, The Hobbit, at 48 fps — but not everyone is happy about the change.
Exhibitioners and press, who were treated to a 10-minute preview of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey in Las Vegas earlier this week, complained that the new frame rate makes the film look jarringly realistic — more like ESPN broadcasts, which run as high as 60 fps in HD, or a daytime TV program.
“It reminds me of when I first saw Blu-ray, in that it takes away that warm feeling of film,” one exhibitor toldVariety. “It looked to me like a behind-the-scenes featurette.”
Jackson defended his decision to shoot in 48 fps in a lengthy note posted to his Facebook page in April 2011. Shooting at the higher rate “hugely enhance[s] clarity and smoothness… Looks much more like life, and it is much easier to watch, especially in 3D,” he wrote.
“I see it as a way of future-proofing The Hobbit,” he added.
The Hobbit, which chronicles the journey of a hobbit (played by Martin Freeman) swept into an epic quest to reclaim treasure taken by a dragon, will be released in theaters in two parts. The first part, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, is scheduled to arrive Dec. 14. The film’s other stars include many who appeared in The Lord of the Rings, including Elijah Wood, Cate Blanchett, Orlando Bloom and Ian McKellen.