THE HOBBIT Director Peter Jackson Responds To Negative Reaction Of 48 FPS Footage

At Las Vegas' CinemaCon Peter Jackson unveiled new footage of The Hobbit, but instead of screening it at 24 frames per second, he increased it to 48 frames. The technological advancement didn't sit well with viewers who found it visually unappealing.

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By nailbiter111 - 4/27/2012


Peter Jackson decided to buck the norm when it came to filming his new back-to-back films for The Hobbit. Instead of going with 24 frames per second he decided to up the ante to 48 frames. This advancement was put on display a few days ago at Las Vegas' CinemaCon when Jackson screened ten minutes of The Hobbit. The reaction was not glowing to say the least. Many found the images to be something akin to a live sporting event. It was too life-like for some, taking them out of the fantasy world that the movie is built around.

Peter Jackson has heard the complaints and has decided to defend the new technology.
“Nobody is going to stop. This technology is going to keep evolving. At first it’s unusual because you’ve never seen a movie like this before. It’s literally a new experience, but you know, that doesn’t last the entire experience of the film; not by any stretch, after 10 minutes or so. That’s a different experience than if you see a fast-cutting montage at a technical presentation.”

“There can only ever be a real reaction, a truthful reaction when people actually have a chance to see a complete narrative on a particular film.”


With anything new it must be assumed that an adjustment period will be needed. There is a chance that the viewer will enjoy the higher frame rate when they become more accustomed to it. Jackson is quick to point out that as a possible conclusion to the negative responses.
“A couple of the more negative commenters from CinemaCon said that in the Gollum and Bilbo scene [which took place later in the presentation] they didn’t mind it and got used to that. That was the same 48 frames the rest of the reel was. I just wonder if it they were getting into the dialogue, the characters and the story. That’s what happens in the movie. You settle into it.”


Dan Fellman, president of domestic distribution for Warner Bros. came to Jackson's defense.
“It might not initially be accepted by all, but eventually [Jackson] feels it will be and eventually it can only improve. I think by the time he presents this film finished, the majority of moviegoers will accept it and be pleased.”



The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is due out on December 14, 2012, with The Hobbit: There and Back Again arriving a year later, on December 13, 2013.



The Hobbit is an upcoming two-part epic fantasy film directed by Peter Jackson. It is a film adaptation of the 1937 novel of the same name by J. R. R. Tolkien and prequel to The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. Jackson, director of The Lord of the Rings, returns as director of the film and also serves as producer and co-writer. The film will star Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins and Richard Armitage, known for playing Lucas North in the BBC drama series Spooks, as Thorin Oakenshield. Several actors from Jackson's The Lord of the Rings film trilogy will reprise their roles, including Ian McKellen, Andy Serkis, Hugo Weaving, Cate Blanchett, Christopher Lee, Ian Holm, Elijah Wood, and Orlando Bloom. Additionally, composer Howard Shore, who wrote the score for The Lord of the Rings film trilogy, has confirmed his role in both parts of the film project. The two parts, entitled The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: There and Back Again, are being filmed back to back and are currently in production in New Zealand; principal photography began on March 21, 2011. They are scheduled to be released on December 14, 2012 and December 13, 2013, respectively.


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nowtheresaBATman - 4/27/2012, 7:02 PM
48 FPS? WOW! damn Avatar 2 is suppose to be 60 FPS I think.



Anthrax - 4/27/2012, 7:10 PM
,man that suck hope it doesnt blow
mayo23 - 4/27/2012, 7:16 PM
Is 48fps akin to watching something on an HD tv? cause it's still distraction after 2 hours...
JerBear - 4/27/2012, 7:54 PM
@mayo23
Not quite since The Hobbit was MADE in and for 48fps. Watching older movies and TV shows on HD TV may be distracting because they weren't made for the framerate.
Irons - 4/27/2012, 8:18 PM
Someone said it's more of like watching live sports in HD TV, which makes it less cinematic (at least as we know it) and everything moves faster than we're used to on the big screen. I would imagine that would seem really weird, but I'm intrigued at the same time.
Ghostt - 4/27/2012, 8:28 PM
Not excited for this movie. And that trailer doesn't get me hyped at all. I smell fail on this one, Jackson
AlSimmons - 4/27/2012, 8:37 PM
Ghostt, have you even read the Hobbit?? Nothing happens the first half of the book. Everything is lopsided towards the last half.
estarmuerta - 4/27/2012, 9:18 PM
"It was too life-like for some, taking them out of fantasy world that the movie is built around." This is the dumbest thing I've ever heard.
Gambitz - 4/27/2012, 9:29 PM
24fps or bust.
LoudNoises - 4/27/2012, 9:31 PM
The footage from the trailer looked fine. More than fine. I have faith in this guy. He's practical and innovative at the same time. A rare combination for directors these days.
thedudeabides - 4/27/2012, 9:48 PM
I hate everything about it, the fluid motion caused by doubling the frame rate is not natural for my eyes and gives me a splitting headache every time I view it on a television. Then again, I hate seeing a film digitally in a theater as well, must be a problem having perfect vision I guess since I can make out the little dots on the screen.
prettynuclear2 - 4/27/2012, 9:51 PM
The trailer was 24 fps. I think this movie has other problems though. The guy who's playing Bilbo isn't really impressive and this feels like a retread of LOTR.
LordHuck - 4/27/2012, 9:56 PM
So it looks like the best Broadway production in the history of ever?
BooYah - 4/27/2012, 9:59 PM
Can someone explain what this 48 frames thing means?
LordHuck - 4/27/2012, 9:59 PM
prettynuclear2

you have got to be kidding me? Martin Freeman was Peter Jackson's number one choice of anyone on the planet to play Bilbo. A fan favorite casting suggestion for ages as well.

From what I have seen He is doing a great job as Bilbo.

It's supposed to fell like a retread. Its the same universe with many of the same characters only set 70 years earlier. Feeling like LOTR is a success.
NoAssemblyReqd - 4/27/2012, 10:03 PM
Even the trend in TV sitcoms was to go from higher fps videotape to 16mm film. Why Jackson and Cameron think we'd want to go back to that live video BBC look for movies is beyond me.
pro346 - 4/27/2012, 10:25 PM
I'll take a more life like experience over the other option any day....if you watch certain movies in 24fps it looks bad lots of shudder.
Pusher - 4/27/2012, 10:25 PM
I am looking forward to it. 3 years ago at big box retailer I saw part TDK on an HD big screen that had the tru motion feature (120h)on.

I was mesmerized and made the switch to HD and Blu.

Later on I learned folks refered to this tech on HDTVs as the soap opera effect and as many people that love it there were just as many that hate it.

I think it is a natural evolution and some people just like the way film looks now.

When you look at the progression of frames per minute from silent picture to 48 fps it seems as natural an evolution as any technology or medium.

Pusher - 4/27/2012, 10:26 PM
^^^^Frames per second I mean^^^^
Pusher - 4/27/2012, 10:27 PM
Footage looks badass in 24 fps. I did not think Jackson had the balls to have the dwarves sing of their history at Bag End, it gave me chills.
113 - 4/27/2012, 11:06 PM
Really couldn't care less about LOTRs and Hobbits. So boring.

And yes I clicked on this article just to say that. Good day.
HarrisonBergeron - 4/27/2012, 11:06 PM
I am confident that 48fps will go the way of Sony's Mini Disk or the HD DVD, just because something is new and high tech does not mean that it is necessary or that it will catch on.
LordHuck - 4/27/2012, 11:18 PM
Only if it yields to 60 FPS
pintoman - 4/27/2012, 11:30 PM
But honestly, if you settle in to it and don't notice it, then what's the point of having it in the first place? No one was going to the theater asking for this....All we ask is a good story with good effects (and yes, Howard Shore's soundtrack).

Someone has to pay extra for this—but if I have to adjust to it I won't.

It literally doesn't help the storytelling process. I say we skip this technology and jump forward to something like the holodeck on TNG. I would pay extra for that!

Or do what Disney did: make a theme park where people can visit and touch real people, places and things from middle Earth. That's next Peter. Making the fantasy real.

ISleepNow - 4/27/2012, 11:43 PM
Mr Jackson might consider the wisdom of utilizing a technology suited to capturing realistic detail and movement for rendering a completely fantastic universe.
He might have to turn around & tape a strip of gauze across the lens for his closeups or just use it Very selectively as I've been sayin'
pintoman - 4/27/2012, 11:56 PM
I prefer pulp in my orange juice.

I prefer white-washed jeans over all black.

I prefer cookie dough with lumps.

I prefer a wooden coffee table over a plastic coffee table.

I prefer film over digital.

I prefer 24 over 29.9 and I prefer 24 over 48 (in a movie theater).
pintoman - 4/28/2012, 12:00 AM
Sorry, I have more...

If they really want to improve my viewing pleasure, please have fewer seats in the theater and make sure every seat has a great view. Also, make sure the minimum wage projector button pusher has the thing focused.
TheSensationalSpiderman - 4/28/2012, 12:33 AM
Something I just don't get. WB gets put down a lot on here especially with TDKR but I guess people seem to forget The Hobbit is WB also.
timotey - 4/28/2012, 12:39 AM
Many people still say the same thing about 3D, yet many are willing to shell out the money for it anyway, me included. And I'm talking about true 3D here, not converted material. I saw Tron both in 3D and 2D - 2D was almost unwatchable after how crystal clear the 3D experience was. Technology keeps moving forward. We need to move with it or wither and die.

Will this experience be unusual? Yes. Will it be bad because of it? Not necessarily. People need to calm down and make their own opinion.
KnobGoblin - 4/28/2012, 1:48 AM
It's uncinematic. Which is a shame because when I think of cinematic I think of Lord of the Rings.
AmahlFarouk - 4/28/2012, 2:10 AM
Higher fps is sort of unsettling and harder to get used to, but Peter Jackson's right in that you get used to it and soon you forget you're watching a film.

Gonna be awesome any way.
BAIKINMAN - 4/28/2012, 2:37 AM
"This movie is going to be THE BEST!!!"..... "People are complaining because they can (see the movie better?, and in 3D??)".."Get the [frick] Out-a-here"...
INSTANTJUSTICE - 4/28/2012, 3:28 AM
"It’s literally a new experience, but you know, that doesn’t last the entire experience of the film"


Most if not all people don't want to look at a flat video-like image when they go to the cinema.
StreetProdigy - 4/28/2012, 5:28 AM
I don't understand all the criticism. When I watch things at 48fps or play games which are made to run at a higher frame rate I see it as a huge improvement. Everything is much more fluid and life like, when you go back to something that is 24fps it looks choppy and crappy(for anyone who plays halo[30fps] and call of duty[60fps] when you switch back and forth the difference is amazing, halo looks like its broken or made in the silent film era).

It really makes it look outdated, I really think the only reason the switch hasn't been made is because it will cost the movie industry more money to double the film, oh and people like to complain about anything that is different.
ultimatefan1974 - 4/28/2012, 5:39 AM
Funny thing is TDKR was presented in 48fps too and people didn´t seem to complain. Maybe the IMAX photography helps.
NotThatGuy - 4/28/2012, 6:07 AM
I have the utmost faith in Jackson's telling of The Hobbit. I imagine things could be cleaned up in post production if make up flaws are visible. I'm betting after the 1st 10min passes so will the wonkiness of 48fps.
MadTitan - 4/28/2012, 6:30 AM
not interested at all after seeing the Trailer, LOTR series is way gone. and i'm not in any way a fan of twilight just to make things clear.

seems like another generic fairytale movie to me...
ThunderCougarFalconBird - 4/28/2012, 6:41 AM
@ nowtheresaBATman - does that mean Avatar 2 will be over quickly? Sure hope so!
GLprime2814 - 4/28/2012, 8:56 AM
Don't get the whole fps thing, so I can't say if it's a good thing or a bad thing.
mainstream05 - 4/28/2012, 9:28 AM
I keep seeing these comments that say things to the effect of, "After a while, you forget it's in 48 fps." If I forget about it, why is it even being used? Same thing with 3D - a common argument in defense of 3D is, "After a while, you forget it's in 3D." Again, what's the point then? 3D and high frame rates don't seem to have a consistent affect on everyone; some hate them and some embrace them. But if it creates a barrier that stops any significant number of people from being engaged in the movie watching experience, why use it? Why make it harder for viewers, any number of them, to become engrossed with the film, and then brush it aside by saying, "You'll get used to it."?

Defenders seem to like to compare 48fps and 3D to color and sound. But those were quickly embraced, because the majority of moviegoers have a sense of hearing and see colors. 48 fps is something we're already exposed to, and when a large amount of people tell you it's not enhancing the experience, listen to them. It's NOT the next step.
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