With “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” just weeks away, director Peter Jackson responded to criticism of 48 frames per second.

“I’m fascinated by reactions,” he told the room full of journalists from across the country. “I’m tending to see that anyone under the age of 20 or so doesn’t really care and thinks it looks cool, not that they understand it but they often just say that 3D looks really cool. I think 3D at 24 frames is interesting, but it’s the 48 that actually allows 3D to almost achieve the potential that it can achieve because it’s less eye strain and you have a sharper picture which creates more of the 3-dimensional world.”

He also had this to say:

“The big thing to realize is that it’s not an attempt to change the film industry,” Jackson said. “It’s another choice. The projectors that can run at 48 frames can run at 24 frames – it doesn’t have to be one thing or another. You can shoot a movie at 24 frames and have sequences at 48 or 60 frames within the body of the film. You can still do all the shutter-angle and strobing effects. It doesn’t necessarily change how films are going to be made. It’s just another choice that filmmakers have got and for me, it gives that sense of reality that I love in cinema.”

Jackson may not think he’s trying to change the industry, but I bet Hollywood will have something else to say. Much in the same way studios are trying to force 3D down our throats, I wouldn’t be surprised if 48 FPS is pushed as the new standard.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

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