September 2018

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Stereo World Magazine July/August 2018, Vol. 44, No. 1

Stereo World cover art

The July/Augustl 2018 issue of Stereo World magazine is now available

Inside this issue:

Australian Pirates of World War One by Ralph Reiley
Home Theatre 3-D by Lew Warren
Creature from the Black Lagoon Approaches 65
European Gems: Mythology in the Stereoscope or Pygmalion Photographer
European Gems: The Hearth of the Matter
Stereo Visions at Big Ears 2018
The Unknowns
3-D: Double Vision at LACMA
Classifieds
NewViews
Editor’s View
50s Flavored Finds and more!

Join the National Stereoscopic Association and get six issues of Stereo World magazine with your annual membership.

To order individual printed back issues of Stereo World from the past three years only, write to:

Back Issues
P.O. Box 86708
Portland OR 97286

Or, email strwld@teleport.com.

Back issues are $8 each postpaid in the U.S. and $10 each for international shipment

 

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Fujifilm Finepix W1 Hello Kitty 3-D Camera and 3-D Digital Picture Frame Viewer (2010)

Fujifilm Hello Kitty 3-D camera

Fujifilm Hello Kitty 3-D camera

Fujifilm Hello Kitty 3-D camera

Fujifilm Hello Kitty 3-D  digital viewer

In 2010, Fujifilm was still manufacturing the Fujifilm Finepix W1 3-D camera. In Japan, Fujifilm released a limited edition Hello Kitty version of the W1 3-D camera and a 3-D V1 digital viewer to celebrate the 50 year anniversary of Sanrio who is the creator of Hello Kitty and friends.

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Waiting for Our Revenge

A word from 3-D Film Archive Technical Director, Greg Kintz

Creature Legacy 3-D Blu-ray cover art and Revenge of the Creature poster art.

Editor's Note: This article was written before the 3-D Blu-ray of the Creature from the Black Lagoon Complete Legacy Collection was released. The package has been released with an inferior non-standard 3-D Blu-ray specification. See our other article for more details.

When Bob Furmanek first shared his Revenge of the Creature findings with me before he took the 3-D Film Archive's "Revenge" webpage public, I was a bit taken aback, as I had originally assumed Revenge was last "escapee in 3-D". Meaning, one of those 3-D shot titles that barely made it out in depth at the end of the Golden Age 3-D releases, most likely with a limited 3-D release. I was shocked to read the history behind the scenes for this title and the lessons that could still be learned today. If you haven't checked out his extensive collection of material on Revenge of the Creature already, it's well worth checking out.

Before shooting had even started, 3-D in the box office was already essentially dead, but as Bob Furmanek's research shows, Universal clearly still saw a viable market for 3-D, rebuilt the underwater 3-D rig that had already been dismantled, and urged distributors to show Revenge in depth. Before shooting had even started, the studio felt there was still considerable public interest where occasional 3-D titles could succeed. And they were right. In 1955, when the 3-D craze was easily considered over and all exhibitors were allowed to show the film in either 2-D or 3-D, almost half of the premiere showings for Revenge of the Creature were in 3-Dimensions. It was encouraging enough where Universal considered making new 3-D titles, and in 1957 they reissued both It Came From Outer Space and the first Creature from the Black Lagoon in their original dual 35mm 3-D formats which again had profitable runs. This too after 3-D movies as a whole had been considered dead by the industry and public alike.

While it did have a successful run, the original 3-D release of Revenge of the Creature suffered a bit, being a victim of circumstance. Many of the stereoscopic features of the 1950s had the luxury of 3-D retakes if needed, as well as additional "3-D TLC" work in post, should any obvious issues with the stereoscopic presentation need corrected. But as Tom Weaver noted in his recent book Universal Terrors 1951-1955*, due to a variety of reasons "Revenge" was running behind schedule and at least $22,000 over budget, which was no meager amount in 1955. Adding to the troubles were also additional shoots for new scenes weeks after filming officially wrapped. With these delays and overages, it is no wonder the various 3-D issues were not at least partially dealt with in post production.

Revenge of the Creature had a variety of stereoscopic issues. Ranging from out of sync scenes where one eye can be a frame or two ahead of the other eye, some reverse cut 3-D scenes where the right eye is seen by left eye and vise versa, some occasionally wildly inconsistent stereo window placement, and some phasing and brief 2-D shots. Thankfully with today's latest digital tools and our experience with vintage 3-D material, mostl of these issues have been dealt with, literally on a shot by shot basis. So it is no promotional stretch at all to easily say Revenge of the Creature has never looked as good in 3-D as it does now**.

Universal's restoration team for this project was top notch, using the best elements and keeping extremely detailed notes all along the way. Their team were always very receptive to our input as well. I cannot wait to see the final disc, as just the improvements I saw from their first scanning tests to when we officially began our work was considerable. I have no doubt further refinements continued long after our contributions were in place, so trust me when I say we're just as anxious to see the final REVENGE as everyone else.

Greg Kintz
Technical Director
3-D Film Archive

* Tom Weaver's excellent book Universal Terrors 1951-1955 also has extensive coverage of the 3-D classics It Came From Outer Space and Creature from the Black Lagoon. Highly recommended.

** Every once in awhile someone will post a comment questioning our laborious shot by shot stereoscopic correction process, or might lament missing "the original charm" of the first run stereoscopic presentation. We are never upset when hearing this question and sometimes chuckle a bit, as it is a case of one simply not understanding the original issues often found in these 60 plus year old titles. We see stereoscopic
3-D on a horizontal plane, per the horizontal spacing difference of our two eyes. In addition, our eyes expect the images to be the same size with no geometric issues or level differences. When these differences occur, our eyes are called to do things they were never designed by nature to do, and that typically results in discomfort, eyestrain, or even to see a double image. The most common issue with these titles is vertical misalignment, which literally causes one eye to look up while the other looks down.. something one would never have to do otherwise. Like 60hz hum in audio, or torn film frames, this is obviously not what the director ever intended. The original productions often did do a fair amount of corrective work in post, but in the analog world of film in the 1950s, this meant a generational loss of quality and additional time and money. With these analog complexities in mind, a good number of issues were often allowed to slip by. Thankfully today's tools allow these corrections to be completely lossless in quality, plus allows for a level of stereoscopic alignment previously unobtainable by the original film makers. And that, literally... is a relief to the eyes.

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Universal Quality Sinks on Creature from the Black Lagoon Legacy Collection 3-D Blu-ray

Creature from the Black Lagoon Legacy Collection 3-D Blu-ray cover art.

Although many people will still purchase the Creature from the Black Lagoon Legacy Collection 3-D Blu-ray because they will take what they can get for any classic film 3-D release many others have let Universal know their displeasure for releasing the set at a non-standard, lower quality Blu-ray specification. The same problem is found on the 30 film boxset as on the 3-disc legacy set.

The 3-D Film Achive did their usual great work to restore the film for 3-D Blu-ray but Universal dropped the ball by releasing the Blu-ray with a compromised image. A comment from The 3-D Film Archive reads, "Our 4K workflow restoration from original 35mm elements has been greatly compromised by this half-resolution, non-standard 3-D release on Blu-ray."

3-D enthusiasts reacted immediately by writing to Universal through the company's contact us page and on their Facebook page to urge them to release a proper version of the film. Universal's contact page is located at https://www.uphe.com/contact-support for those who want to politely ask for Universal to redo this release in a high quality version.

Editor's Update
Apparently enough people contacted Universal about the low quality Revenge of the Creature disc that they company is offering a replacement disc. However, it is unclear if the replacement disc is going to be a full resolution version. Universal's release about how to get a replacement disc reads as follows.

Dear Consumer.

We apologize that you are having difficulty with your copy of Creature From the Black Lagoon: Complete Legacy Collection.

Universal Home Entertainment is offering replacement discs for Revenge of the Creature and Creature Walks Among Us, which are included with your collection. To receive replacement discs, please email the following information:
• Your shipping address
• Daytime telephone number
• A copy of your sales receipt
OR a photo of the two discs and the packaging
Please sent the above requested information to the email address below:

USHEConsumerRelations@visionmediamgmt.com

We hope that you will continue to enjoy this and future Universal releases.

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Michael Jackson's Thriller 3-D Coming to IMAX on Sept. 21

Michael Jackson's Thriller 3-D is being remastered into IMAX 3-D folliwing a partnership between Michael Jackson's estate and IMAX.

The partnership was announced Wednesday, Aug. 29, which was the anniversary of the singer's 60th birthday. Michael Jackson's Thriller 3-D will be released in U.S. IMAX theatres beginning Sept. 21 and will play for one week.

The estate's co-executors say Jackson loved to give his fans the "latest and greatest in technology and entertainment experiences."

Director John Landis' short film originally premiered in Los Angeles in 1983. The 3-D version debuted at the 74th Venice Film Festival in 2017. View-Master® also released a Thriller 3-reel packet, talking cartridges, and viewer gift set in 1983.

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Auction Results

Will Vinton Studios When the Stars Came Dreaming View-Master reel.

WIll Vinton Studios View-Master reel envelope.

A View-Master® reel featuring images from a movie produced by Will Vinton's Studio is being offered for $29.99 in an online auction. This is a movie preview reel of a short animation film titled When the Stars Came Dreaming. The film was written and directed by Jean Poulot and stars Bob Maza. Jean Poulot is an animator who created the custom reels for Will Vinton's Claymation Studio. The reel also comes in a special Will Vinton envelope. The reel includes five scenes from the film and two scenes of the actual filming. According to the seller, a very short run of this reel was made and never distributed. The seller had three copies of the reel available for sale.

2001: A Space Odyssey lenticular postcard art.

2001: A Space Oddyssey postcard back.

A 2001: A Space Odyssey 3-D lenticular postcard is currently up for bids online. The postcard was produced in 1968. Printed in Japan by Toppan.

Where Eagles Dare 3-D lenticular postcard art.

A 3-D lenticular postcard featuring the 1968 MGM motion picture Where Eagles Dare sold for $259 with one bid. The classic war film stars Richard Burton and Clint Eastwood.

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