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The 3D revolution in India is transporting storytelling and profits – into a new dimension

Do you know that the 3D revolution started 27 years ago in the Indian film industry? Yes that’s right. 27 years ago, India made its first 3D movie ‘My Dear Kuttichathan’, which was later dubbed in Hindi as Chhota Chetan. The movie created history and went on to become a major box-office hit. But what happened to Indian 3D films after that?

It seems technology had to catch up with the vision of filmmakers – and now it is ready. Today, 3D is the next big thing in the art of storytelling. With James Cameron’s film Avatar in 2009, 3D began to be seen in a new light. In its first two weeks, Avatar grossed an exceptional Rs 56 crore in India. And two years later, the 3D rage is still going strong, with Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part Two, which opened on 600-odd screens in India, breaking all box office records.

Bollywood is slowly catching up with this trend too. Vikram Bhatt’s 3D film Haunted paved the way for over a dozen more Bollywood films to be made or converted into 3D including Bhatt’s own films, Raaz 3 and Dangerous Ishq. Other 3D titles include Don 2, Joker, RA.One and Sher Khan. Some filmmakers mark 3D as the biggest revolution in cinema since the advent of colour and sound in films.

And 3D is not only limited to feature films but also advertising, gaming, sports, mobile and more. So was it just the technology which held us back all this while?

Shooting in 3D is expensive in India, partly because we don’t have many experienced technicians available here yet. Filmmakers are not fully exposed to this technology, which makes it challenging to shoot in 3D in India.

Prime Focus is helping to change this. We offer another option to filmmakers 2D to 3D conversion, which is a more economical way to get your 3D film to the big (or small) screen. At Prime Focus, we are uniquely placed to provide superlative stereoscopic 3D post-conversion for long-form, short-form and feature-film projects through our proprietary process View-D.

Utilising our international teams of artists in Los Angeles, London and Mumbai, we have already completed the conversion of a huge line-up of Hollywood feature films, including Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, Transformers: Dark Of The Moon, Green Lantern and Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 2.

The year 2010-11 has seen an unprecedented number of 3D theatrical film releases, which are either converted to 3D in post-production or natively shot using special cameras – or a hybrid of the two techniques. 3D technology is becoming ubiquitous among viewers/audience, with a constantly rising number of 3D movies being released. There is a global market for 3D, and India is uniquely positioned to exploit that. The Indian film industry is not far from making its first, full-fledged 3D blockbuster.

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