I couldn’t be more pumped to see Ang Lee‘s Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk (TriStar, 11.11) this evening at 6pm. Mine eyes will feast on the clearest, sharpest, most eye-poppy 3D film ever projected in the history of mainstream cinema — intense, extra-clear, super-real. And yet, it’s been said, very calming because this is how everything looks to anyone with half-decent eyesight. And it’s all at 120 frames per second, start to finish.
Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk director Ang Lee at Essex House — Friday, 10.14, 10:35 am.
This isn’t The Hobbit, I was told. This is reality, immersive…no fantasy, no special lighting, no makeup on the actors. Your sense of being there will take over and either you’ll go with it or you won’t. But the ultimate state, Lee hopes, is that you’ll “make love to it and then again, over and over and over.” And that the film, in turn, will make love to you. And then, like with any good orgy, you’ll get lost in the back and forth.
All this was explained this morning by Ang Lee, producer Marc Platt and New York Film Festival director Kent Jones at a Billy Lynn press breakfast at the Essex House. The film will screen twice tonight in the highest, sharpest, most needle-precise format ever — 3D, 120 — at the AMC Lincoln Square at 6 and 9 pm.
I’m especially excited about Ang’s intention to project Billy Lynn tonight with light levels that will be way beyond the industry 3D norm — 30 foot lamberts, he says. Most 3D films are shown at 3 foot lamberts, he said. (What he actually meant, I suspect, is that the light levels are diminished to 3 as you’re watching the film through 3D glasses.)
Billy Lynn will also be shown Los Angeles later this month within the super-duper 120 fps/3D format, but most U.S. theatres — i.e., all but two — will show it at slightly lesser or lower levels — 60 fps, 48 fps or 24 fps, and some delivering just plain old 2D. Almost no theatres are equipped to deliver the ultimate experience that viewers will see tonight, but them’s the breaks.
Jones speculated after the press conference that within five years, what we’ll be seeing tonight will be mainstream.
It’s 12:30 pm now. I’ll about to leave for the Elle screening at the Walter Reade in a few minutes, and then the press conferences. And then a two and 1/2 hour break and then
Billy Lynn producer Marc Platt, director Ang Lee, NYFF director Kent Jones inside Essex House dining room at the start of this morning’s press event.