The Dog Days of 3D

Creative COW by Angela Gyetvan

The Gartner-Hype chartThe entertainment industry went nuts for it. Exhibitors mounted an all-out effort to install it into their cinemas. Major consumer electronics manufacturers bet their futures on it.

Creating it involved special beam-splitter camera systems, and the cost of production was generally three times higher than the cost of a "regular" movie. And it stalled in the marketplace, until televisions that could play it became ubiquitous.

I'm surely talking about 3D, you ask?

No, I'm talking about Technicolor, and the subtractive color process introduced by the company in 1932.

Technicolor's process was the most widely-used color process in the film industry -- so popular, that by 1947, an astounding 12% of all film were made using it. Twelve percent! So popular, that the government ordered a break-up of the company's near-monopoly on color movies. So popular, that none of the movies nominated for "Best Picture" in 1947 were shot in color.

So, exactly when did color movies become the standard? When color TV's became popular in the 1950's. The ability to watch color movies at home immediately boosted the percentage of movies shot in color to more than 50%. read more...


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