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Updated! Cinematographer Wally Pfister Talks 3D And IMAX Possibilities For BATMAN 3!

Beaks here...

Cinematical's Todd Gilchrist caught up with Christopher Nolan's longtime cinematographer, Wally Pfister, last weekend, and, wouldn't you know it, BATMAN 3 came up! As expected, Pfister was tight-lipped on details, but he did make a few semi-revealing remarks about the possibility of Nolan's third go-round with the Caped Crusader being shot in stereoscopic 3D or IMAX. According to Gilchrist, while Nolan and Pfister share a "disinterest" in the 3D format (Pfister calls it a "fad"), they have yet to shoot down the idea of utilizing the format. "What Chris and I have talked about is doing something cool and something interesting," said Pfister. Does this mean shooting the entire film in IMAX? Perhaps. Pfister said he's talked to Nolan about it - though he also acknowledges, once again, that the IMAX cameras are very unwieldy (i.e. heavy and really fucking loud). So Nolan and Pfister are not fans of 3D, but they could be open to going that route if they can find a way to do something "interesting" with the technology. I'm sure Warner Bros. is full of suggestions as to how to make it "interesting" - like "We financed INCEPTION; you're doing this in 3D." Nolan's a very smart man, so I'm sure he understands that 3D is and always will be a gimmick, and that the IMAX portions of THE DARK KNIGHT were far more immersive than anything in AVATAR. To that end, I'm thrilled to hear that he'll be shooting BATMAN 3 on film; this means you can rule out Nolan using the new IMAX 3D digital cameras, which are expected to be ready to go in early 2011. Head over to Cinematical for more Pfister talk.

Update: Cain Rodriguez sent me the following summary of Pfister's comments from Dallas. Very interesting stuff...
-- Pfister, just like Nolan, does not like digital cameras: "The image quality of film" exceeds that of the high end digital cameras like "the Genesis camera and the Red camera." He said that he and "Chris [Nolan] are 'devotees' of film." -- Because of his and Nolan's feelings toward Digital Cinema, Pfister does not want to shoot in 3D. He actually had some pretty harsh things to say about the format, he says that "it's great for like amusement park rides like the 'Honey I Shrunk The Kids' ride at Disneyland." He said that 3D is not realistic and "it's a distraction. Can you imagine Memento in 3D? With Joey Pantoliano's glasses sticking out 'a few feet' with his hair all the way back there?" --Pfister said that he met with Brad Bird a few days ago and that Bird told him that his teenage sons thought that the IMAX used in The Dark Knight was more realistic than the 3D in these new movies. --He loves the clarity and latitude that shooting in 65 mm and in IMAX gives him. He can "underexpose by as many as 5 F-stops and overexpose by two. The digital cameras can't do that." --His heroes include: Gordon Willis, Stanley Kubrick, Roger Deakins, and some French cinematographer whose name is escaping me. He also mentioned loving the cinematography in Terrence Malick's films. --Tips for shooting digitally: "If you really have to shoot daylight [exteriors, you have to] use as [much] soft light as possible. Shoot at magic hour: Dawn and Dusk. Stop shooting in the afternoon." --Although he loves the image and large frame provided by IMAX in The Dark Knight, he would much "prefer [everything] to be in 2.35:1"

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