Presented theatrically in IMAX format, the trailer forAvatar 2: The Waterway was eventually released in 2:39 format. Explanations.
It doesn’t take much to be happy, and the editorial staff of Ecran Large saw this when they discovered the first trailer forAvatar 2: The Waterway ahead of the press screening of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Between magnificent 3D and ample staging, the return to Pandora amazed us.
And here is the drama ! After an exclusive theatrical broadcast, 20th Century Fox unveiled this Monday, May 9, said trailer on the Net, tainted by the good big black bands typical of the 2:39 format (also nicknamed Cinemascope). Gold, the first images ofAvatar 2 were shown theatrically in 1:90 format (a more vertical format often used in television, but especially associated with IMAX in the case of cinema).
The problem is that for some (starting with the author of these lines), this revelation acted as a cold shower. A priori, the official release of the trailer ofAvatar 2 in 2:39 makes the latter the official format of the film, while the 1:90 version, containing 26% more image, should be reserved for IMAX theaters.
Of course, this case is far from new, because from Christopher Nolan’s films to the latest installments of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the sequences shot with IMAX cameras often lead to image format changeswhich are not necessarily visible if you discover the work in a standard room.
However, where films like Transformers: The Last Knight assume to play with this fluctuating relationship to the format, other feature films standardize their editing. This may still make sense in cases where a few scenes are involved, but movies like Avengers: Infinity War Where Endgame were shot entirely in 1:90, before being cropped in 2:39 in non-IMAX theaters.
Above, the 1:90 version, and below, the 2:39 version
Therefore, one should wonder what the original format of the feature film is, especially now that Disney+ has finally given access to extended versions of its Marvel episodes. And it is clear that the 1:90 offers a much more airy staging, moreover with regard to the often pachydermic realization of the Russo brothers, and their size plans on characters surrounded by empty sets. At least in 1:90 the tops of the heads don’t get cut off by the frame limits.
To put it another way, the 2:39 continues to establish itself as an immutable element of the great spectacle film, whereas it was originally thought of as a Hollywood response to the success of television in the 1950s. One could consider that in the same logic, the IMAX today plays this role, but the horizontality of the image in Scope always prevails over the rest, so that certain films give the unpleasant impression of punishing the spectators who would not have liked to pay more for their cinema ticket to discover the IMAX version.
We lose depth without a good part of the branch
As forAvatar 2, difficult not to complain about the loss of scale of the official trailer. Admittedly, Cameron still works just as well on his relationship to the horizon line, but his management of Pandora’s topography is above all based on its verticality. Whether it’s the sky or the seabed that this second film promises to explore, the 1:90 images mark much more strongly a grand scale ratioespecially on this shot where the Na’vis ride their sea creatures towards a strange mountain in an arc.
On the 2:39 version, the black bands cut the edge of the summit, and hide the surface of the water which grazes the lens. All these elements, however, need to be related together, because Cameron’s staging has as a priority the enhancement of the ecosystem of his universe, to better implement the bodies of his characters, and therefore their point of view. of sight.
It still stings a bit…
As is, the trailer in 2:39 ofAvatar 2 seems cramped in this format, even if it remains of course exotic and magnificent. The Cinemascope format is not bad in itself, but a film still has to be designed specifically for it and its needs (The Batman being a perfect recent example). This choice seems all the more strange that Cameron had precisely chosen the 1:85 for the first shutter… or at least in part.
Indeed, if Avatar is only available on video in 1:85, the film was released in cinemas in 2:39, but only for 2D screenings. James Cameron always preferred the horizontality of Cinemascope, but also admitted that the verticality of 1:85 allows a better approach to 3D and its depth. This manipulation of formats is therefore not only due to the IMAX of The Way of the Waterbut one can nevertheless wonder about the merits of this approach and about the comfort of reading the feature film for the spectators.
The 3D sessions ofAvatar 2 in standard cinemas will they be offered in 1:90 or 2:39? While Cameron claims to offer his film with lots of different tools (including HFR), what format will be chosen to accompany them? In any case, we hope that the sensation of sublime that Pandora vistas give us will not be too tainted by this questionable strategy.
#Avatar #mess #format #trailer