Jackson to 'trial' Hobbit's fast frame rate on limited audience

Director's controversial faster 48 frames-per-second will be tested on audiences before being used on sequels

Hobbit director Peter Jackson is reportedly planning to trial his new faster frame rate technology on limited audiences in the US when the film is released.

Criticism emerged when early footage of 'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' was shown shot at a faster 48 frames-per-second, with audiences saying that it felt 'too real'.

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Hobbit... 48 frame projection to be limited to gauge response (Copyright: Rex)

But it's now thought that issues have been ironed out in post-production and that it could be used on all three films, if audiences like it.

Most films are shot and screened at a far lower 24 frames-per-second rate, while 30 frames-per-second gives the impression of something made for television.

Initial reaction to the footage shot at high speed was not positive.

Critic Steve Weintraub of film site Collider said after seeing early footage: “48fps is so jarring that I’m not sure casual moviegoers will enjoy it. While I figured the image quality would improve at 48fps, it’s like looking at real life on a movie screen and not in a good way.

“You no longer have motion blur. You no longer can hide stuff in the darkness. It was such a change that by the end of the presentation, I wasn’t sure I wanted to watch the entire movie in this new 48fps format. This is definitely not what I expected to say. Ultimately, it just didn’t look cinematic and it sort of looked like HD TV.”

The film is released on December 14.