Getting More Immersed with Indiewire


  The Penske Media purchase of Indiewire has resulted in an expansion of my role as crafts and awards season contributor.  Beginning this week, I begin Emmy coverage of below-the-line contenders along with my usual Oscar season crafts reporting, working closely

Immersed in Blu-ray: Hitchcock and Bogart


The WB Archive Collection gets Hitch and Bogie on Blu-ray and they've never looked better for home viewing. In Kent Jones' indispensable doc, Hitchcock/Truffaut, he reminds us that Truffaut was on a mission to correct misconceptions about Hitch as a lightweight

Immersed in Books: Farber on Film


For the first time, the complete writings of film critic Manny Farber is available from Library of America, edited by Robert Polito (Savage Art: A Biography of Jim Thompson). Manny Farber (1917-2008) was the first modernist film critic to write like a modernist.

performance capture

Trailering New Man of Steel

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Movies, performance capture, previs, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

In the second trailer for Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel (June 14), the tone remains somber but the imagery becomes even more Christ-like as Superman (Henry Cavill) grapples with his duality: “The World’s too big, Mom.” Read more

Weta Digital Exec VFX Producer Moran Passes Away

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, performance capture, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Long-time Weta Digital VFX executive producer Eileen Moran passed away in Wellington, New Zealand last week. She joined Weta from Digital Domain in 2001. Moran was in the hospital and unable to attend the recent world premiere of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey on Nov. 28, on which she served as co-producer. Read more

10 Shortlisted in VFX Oscar Race

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Movies, Oscar, performance capture, previs, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has shortlisted 10 movies for VFX Oscar consideration for the 85th Academy Awards, headed by such frontrunners as The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Dark Knight Rises, The Avengers, and Life of Pi. Two pleasant surprises: John Carter and Skyfall. My predictions: The Avengers, TDKR, The Hobbit, Life of Pi, and Skyfall. Read more

The Hobbit Vlog #9

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Clips, Movies, performance capture, previs, Production Design, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Peter Jackson and the wizards of Weta delve into the down to the wire post-production process on The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (Dec. 14) in the latest video blog, commencing with editorial, previs, and VFX. Read more

Academy Tech Council Adds 8

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Movies, performance capture, previs, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Doug Cooper, Paul Debevec, Ray Feeney, Josh Pines, David Stump, Steve Sullivan, Bill Taylor, and Beverly Wood have joined the Science and Technology Council of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, bringing the Council’s 2012–2013 membership roster to 25. Read more

The 48 FPS Hobbit to Screen in 450 Theaters

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Movies, performance capture, previs, Production Design, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Warner Bros. will be playing The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey at 48 fps/3-D in 450 screens when it opens Dec. 14. Read more

Talking the Future of Cinema at Palo Alto

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Events, Festivals, Movies, performance capture, previs, Tech, VFX, Videogames, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

I will be returning to the second annual Palo Alto International Film Festival this weekend, moderating “The Future of Cinema: Extended and Experiential.” Joining me tomorrow at 1:00 pm at Talenthouse will be filmmaker/technologists John Gaeta (creative director/founder, Float Hybrid), Kim Libreri (VFX supervisor at ILM), Rudy Poat (creative director, Microsoft Studios), and Habib Zargarpour (creative director, Microsoft Studios). Read more

Immersed in Blu-ray: The Avengers

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Blu-ray, Clips, Movies, Oscar, performance capture, previs, Shorts, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

The year’s mega blockbuster superhero movie comes to Blu-ray this week from Disney looking and sounding as spectacular as you’d expect. The success of Joss Whedon’s Marvel mash up can be summed up in its self-mocking attitude (taking a cue from Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man) and in finally getting the Hulk right. And along with a multitude of bonus features (including deleted scenes and A Visual Journey), comes a nifty short:  Item 47 involving certain alien technology left behind. Read more

Trailering More Hobbit

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Books, Cinematography, Oscar, performance capture, previs, Production Design, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

“The dwarves are determined to reclaim their homeland,” declares Gandalf at the start of the new trailer for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (Dec. 14). And what a lush homeland Erebor is.  But this prequel adventure involving the unassuming Bilbo (Martin Freeman) turns dark soon enough, of course, as Bilbo and the 13 dwarves enter the wild and encounter the Goblins, Orcs, Wargs, and Sorcerers. Read more

The VFX Tipping Point?

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Movies, Oscar, performance capture, previs, Production Design, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

I assess the Digital Domain fallout and the symptoms plaguing the VFX industry in my latest TOH/Indiewire column.  However, I also point out a few success stories to counter the gloom and doom. Read more