3-D Journey Makes Studios Nervous

For a remake of a 49-year-old movie based upon a 144-year-old book, the movie industry is looking at upcoming Brendan Fraser flick Journey To The Center Of The Earth as a sign of things to come. Why, you may wonder? Well, it's got something to do with another retro technology as well as Disney's tween popstar Hannah Montana.

The movie, released on July 11th, is being seen by many as a test for just how well live-action 3-D movies will do with the summer blockbuster audience:

Live-action 3-D pics are considered risky to start with, and producing them carries extra cost. Although they can still be unspooled on 2D screens, 3-D is more problematic for [DVD and video]... "It's sort of a tricky proposition right now to make live action 3-D movies because you have to make sure it works on both formats," acknowledges New Line topper Toby Emmerich. "We think it does."

The movie will play on 800 3-D screens nationally (many of them owned by co-producer Walden Media's boss, Philip Anschutz), and the people behind the movie are hopeful that it can at least equal the record of the last major 3-D live action success: Disney's Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert (You may mock, but it made $65.3 million in limited release last year in the US alone. That's about $20 million more than Speed Racer). If it fails at the box office, expect minor panic from all of the other 3-D movies currently in production (including James Cameron's Avatar, Tim Burton's live-action remake of Alice In Wonderland and the fourth installment of the Final Destination franchise).

Will viewers make 'Journey' in 3-D?" [Variety]