We’ve seen various comments from director Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy, Blade 2) on both his future and present prospects. Below are the latest comments he’s made on two of those projects, Pacific Rim and Hellboy 3.
Pacific Rim is his upcoming ode to giant monster and giant robot movies. Sites such as the excellent MarketSaw had speculated that the film would be in either shot in native 3D or post-converted for theater presentation, but recent on the record comments from the director himself had quashed those rumors. According to del Toro, dispite the decision to shoot the film (first time for him) digitally on RED EPIC cameras, the choice had been made early on that the film would not be in 3D. Tests had been done and the effects they were getting back were counter to the objectives they were trying to meet with the film.
The movie as previously described is about giant monsters and robots fighting it out in epic fashion on the giant screen. The 3D process appeared to miniaturize the characters which kind of kills the whole giant-ness of the piece. Shortly after the director’s comments went mainstream however, the studio announced that they were indeed releasing the film in 3D. Of course this begged the question whether the director was being overruled by the studio.
Talking to Shock Till You Drop, del Toro confirmed that he had been part of the (change of mind) decision to release the film in 3D after all. He claims that they will be taking a different approach to the conversion that would help avoid the minitiarization effects that had turned him off to using the medium in the first place, but fans have still had concerns that a post-conversion process this late in the game would result in a less than desirable product. These comments address that are directly from GDT in his own words…
I finished PAC RIM way under budget and under schedule. As of this writing I am WEEKS ahead on my delivery to ILM- so, all I needed was to get Legendary WB to authorize us HOW to spend the money we had for post (vis a vis the 3D conversion, which was not originally contemplated)
Also in the same comments he talks about how Pacific Rim may or may not translate to a long in development film such as Hellboy 3 or At The Mountains of Madness (An HP Lovecraft adaptation he’s been trying to make since before he was a known name). On the prospects of doing what he wants post-Pacific Rim he says…
…that doesn’t immediately translate into HB III or ATMOM. Studios calculate investments (specially in sequels) based on the grosses of each installment. Both HB and HB II were profitable to the studios but that was back in the day when DVD / home video was exceedingly rentable. Now the numbers become more conservative. PAC RIM is a big concept film that has a very clear universe and stakes. The Hellboys have always been tricky to market and many merchandising deals have even fallen through based in the title alone. The third part is also the one that requires the biggest budget because HB has to become the Beast and thus bring the end of the world to fruition. Not a cheap scenario.
Financing is always more complicated (and mysterious) than it seems from the outside.