Ian McKellen Defends 'The Hobbit' From Criticisms Over the Film's Format

Ian McKellen

'It's not the sort of crude 3D that comes out of the screen,' so the Gandalf the Grey depicter says, defending Peter Jackson's controversial works in 'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey'.
Earlier this year, Peter Jackson was slammed with criticisms over his decision to use 48 frames per second technology for the 3D version of "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey". Though a number of critics said that the advance technology only made the film "looked like a made-for-TV movie," Ian McKellen believed that it made the pic's visuals more impressive.

Defending Jackson and "The Hobbit" from the criticisms, the veteran actor playing Gandalf the Grey in the upcoming trilogy told BBC, "I've seen enough of it to know it's going to be just as exciting as Lord of the Rings." He went on, "In fact in some senses it's more exciting because it's in three dimensions."

"It's not the sort of crude 3D that comes out of the screen. Rather it brings you into Middle Earth. You see round the corners. You see everything," the 73-year-old British actor continued. Though saying that Jackson was not surprised with the criticisms, McKellen noted that the director was happy with the result, "It's not absolutely complete yet but Peter Jackson's very pleased with it."

Jackson pushed the envelope a bit further when working on "The Hobbit" trilogy. Aside from adding the 48FPS technology instead of the usual 24FPS, he would use the latest sound format from Dolby called Atmos. "I strive to make movies that allow the audience to participate in the events onscreen, rather than just watch them unfold," Jackson said. "Wonderful technology is now available to support this goal: high frame rates, 3D, and now the stunning Dolby Atmos system."

The New Zealand-born filmmaker said back in April that he wouldn't stop implementing latest movie technology for his films no matter what critics said. "Nobody is going to stop. This technology is going to keep evolving," he insisted. "At first it's unusual because you've never seen a movie like this before. It's literally a new experience, but you know, that doesn't last the entire experience of the film; not by any stretch, after 10 minutes or so."

The first "Hobbit" film will be released in the U.S. on December 14, while its follow-up "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" will open next year on December 13. Its final installment, "The Hobbit: There and Back Again" is set to arrive in cinemas on July 18, 2014.

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