Earlier this week the folks at Entertainment Weekly posted that pre-sales for the highly anticipated Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II are showing more people are opting for 2D rather than the current fad, 3D. I was curious as to what my fellow movie goers locally were choosing, so I asked my buddy that works at the theater. 2D is selling more than 3D as well. In fact, with the sales they've gotten for 2D, they are actually saving one of their biggest screens for just that. Originally their plan was to have both of their largest theaters in 3D.
Anyone who reads my blog knows how unnecessary I think 3D is. I've been patiently waiting for this to fade out. I jumped for joy when Part I of Deathly Hallows nixed the decision to show in 3D. Now with arguably the biggest film of one of the most successful franchises on it's way, can Harry Potter fans show the world that movies can make bank without the 3D price tag?
I find 3D a negative for plenty of reasons. Here's why I don't like it, and why Harry Potter in particular could suffer from it.
1) Darkness. I found Thor hard to watch at times because the screen was so damn dark. 3D films in general are darker on screen, and every single Potter film after Prisoner of Azkaban has been especially dark. Lots of blacks and greys and gloomy scenery. Plus 3/4 of Part II is going to be the battle of Hogwarts, which takes place in the middle of the night. This can't be good.
2) It wasn't shot for 3D. Movies that are converted into 3D in post production are especially useless. Certain films like How to Train Your Dragon use 3D to an advantage that works. One could also argue that cartoons are easier to convert than live action. What was the point of 3D in Thor? What was the point in Alice in Wonderland? Hell, Tron: Legacy didn't have a need for it either! This movie is going to be intense, it doesn't need any gimmicks added.
3) This isn't a theme park, I don't care if shit jumps out at me. Sure seeing Honey, I shrunk the audience at Disney World when I was 12 was fascinating, but I don't need to have Neville Longbottom lunging at me in my seat. I don't understand the appeal. Things get in my face on a daily basis, it's nice to sit back and watch a movie and not have that happen. I also can't stand when you're watching something in 3D, it goes at you, you flinch, then laugh loudly about it. IT WASN'T GOING TO GET YOU!
4) It's expensive. Theaters tack on an additional $3.00-$8.00 per ticket to buy 3D glasses. (that you can't reuse) Ok, so this wouldn't hurt the movie at all. The studios do this on purpose, but when you're breaking all your records, deep down you'll know you didn't deserve it. The Dark Knight still holds the record for best Midnight showing. I've always thought the last Harry Potter film could come close or surpass it, but is it really as great if you add that surcharge?
5) Glasses. Ask anyone who wears glasses if they like having to wear ANOTHER pair on top of them. I'll give you a hint, no one likes it.
What do you think? Do you think more people buying 2D tickets for Harry Potter will give studios a clue that 3D is over? I can only hope.