The Hobbit looks 'made for TV'

Michael Edwards
Yahoo UK Movies News
25 April 2012

Ten minutes of the movie adaptation of 'The Hobbit' footage was screened at CinemaCon in LA yesterday... and people hated it.

Bloggers over at IGN said it looks 'made for TV', while compared it to old episodes of 'Doctor Who'.

[Related story: Police called to Hobbit casting]
[Related story: The Hobbit - five things we learnt from the trailer]

A viewer overheard by the Chicago Tribune said it reminded him of 1970s show ‘I, Claudius’.

The problems seem to stem from director Peter Jackson’s decision to shoot in 3D at 48 frames per second (fps).

Films are usually shot at 24fps, and have been for decades, but the advent of High Definition digital screens has allowed TV shows to inch their frame rate higher - that's what makes HD look so sharp, and objects occasionally appear to move faster than usual. Now Peter Jackson has decided to follow suit, and it sounds like it's not a good look for the big screen.

A projectionist, cited in the LA Times, said: "It was too accurate - too clear. The contrast ratio isn't there yet, everything looked either too bright or black."

If it really is this tech shift that's causing the bad buzz for 'The Hobbit', it might not have such a big problem come release day, since not all cinemas are kitted out for 48fps digital projection. But Jackson's commitment to the change may yet cause him some headaches... and his audience too.

The footage itself showed a battle scene, some trolls and a sequence featuring Gollum.

The film stars Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins, and sees Sir Ian McKellen return as Gandalf and Andy Serkis reprise his role as Gollum.

'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' hits UK cinemas on the 14 December 2012.

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