Christmas in multiple dimensions
by Aurore Engelen
16/12/2009 - This week’s major release is of course the new film by James Cameron, director of world box office record-holder Titanic (1997). He is quietly preparing to revolutionise 21st-century cinema by launching the first live-action 3D feature with other modern digital effects.
20th Century Fox is releasing Avatar on an impressive 89 screens, only 22 of which are equipped for 3D. There has been a slight drop in the rate at which Belgian theatres are being equipped, even though the country was leading the way in Europe in 2007, when the exhibitor Kinepolis proudly opened ten 3D-equipped theatres. By way of comparison, over half of the theatres launching the film in France are 3D-equipped.
However, competitors are keeping pace with multiplex giant Kinepolis, in particular Luxembourg group, Utopolis, Euroscoop (Belgium and Holland) and Imagix (Wallonia). Moreover, Liège-based company XDC is at the forefront in this field and will soon have equipped almost 1,000 screens across Europe.
Those films bold enough to compete for audiences alongside Avatar are aimed mainly at children, who are too young for Cameron’s film. Cinéart is releasing French-born Belgian-based director Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt’s Oscar and the Lady in Pink [trailer], a family film about the last days in the life of a young boy suffering from leukaemia. Launched on a 26-print run, the film is boosted by the popularity of its star Michèle Laroque, and the enthusiastic reception of Schmitt’s previous work, Odette Toulemonde [trailer].
Finally, BFD is backing the release of Mia Hansen Love’s highly subtle second film The Father of My Children [trailer, film focus], in the hope it will impress audiences as much as it has done the press.
(Translated from French)