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Technicolor Unveils New 3D Film Technology

December 18, 2009 11:22 | By

3D films have taken off and proven to be a real moneymaker for the film industry. In fact, they are generating as much as three times the in-theater attendance as 2D features.

During the “golden era” of the early ’50s, projecting 3D involved running film simultaneously through two synchronized projectors.

Because film passes through the gate slightly differently, the left eye image would not align properly with the right-eye image and the eyes constantly had to adjust. This was enough to cause headaches and nausea. Digital projection solved those problems with its ability to lock in the left- and right-eye images, but the expense to exhibitors of purchasing new digital projection systems has proven to be a limiting factor when it comes to converting theaters for 3D projection.

Now Technicolor has developed a technology that uses existing 35mm film projectors, so that 3D can be screened from 90 percent of the installed projectors in the world. The Technicolor system uses a single projector, splitting the image on one frame of film in two, and incorporating a dual-lens projection system, so that both the left- and right-eye images are projected at the same time, eliminating eyestrain, fatigue and nausea. Using polarized instead of the anaglyph glasses, the color and image quality is great. All that is required to use the system is a set of lenses that replace the standard lens on most film projectors and a silver screen. This new system can be used on most of the film projectors already installed in the world, at a cost way below that of a new digital projector, and third-party technicians can be easily trained to install the 3D lens.