360° Coverage : Paramount's 'Noah' To Go 3D, But Not In America

10 Updates

Paramount's 'Noah' To Go 3D, But Not In America

Feb 6 2014, 3:44pm CST | by

Well, this is one solution. It’s no secret that domestic audiences are generally disinterested in 3D conversions, give or take special occasions such as Gravity. And it’s also no secret that 3D...

Filed under: news

 
 
 

25 weeks ago

Paramount's 'Noah' To Go 3D, But Not In America

Feb 6 2014, 3:44pm CST | by

Well, this is one solution. It’s no secret that domestic audiences are generally disinterested in 3D conversions, give or take special occasions such as Gravity. And it’s also no secret that 3D conversions can sometimes mean the difference between a box office disappointment and a box office hit in overseas markets. Paramount Pictures has come upon what arguably should have been the obvious solution. On March 28th, 2014 they will release the Russell Crowe/Jennifer Connelly biblical epic Noah in America and the UK in traditional 2D. But they are releasing the Darren Aronofsky picture in 65 overseas markets in 3D, including IMAX 3D in 32 of those markets.

The picture has already cost $125 million to produce, and Paramount is all-too-willing to spend another $10m to pay for said conversion. And really this is a no brainer. 3D may be waning a bit in America (with many theaters splitting 2D and 3D showings of the same movie on a single screen), but it’s still a massive profit center in overseas markets. As you all remember, Paramount delayed G.I. Joe: Retribution nearly a full year purely to convert the film to 3D. The result was a moderate improvement in worldwide box office ($375m vs. $300m) even though the 3D-converted film made less domestically ($122m vs. $150m) than the 2D Rise of Cobra. And while they presumably wouldn’t have been blockbusters regardless, The Lone Ranger and After Earth surely did harm to themselves on the international market by going out strictly 2D.

Via the arbitrary price bump, the fact that 3D films get better theaters overseas, and the fact that some films play overseas only in 3D, or the fact that foreign audiences may not have turned the page on 3D quite yet, the 3D conversion remains a potent tool in the quest for overseas dominance. As such, Paramount’s decision to go 3D for foreign distribution is somewhat brilliant. They don’t have to face the inevitable complaints from film critics about what will surely be a lightning-fast conversion, and they can place Noah in the same playing field as the likes of Pacific Rim and The Life Of Pi. That Fox grosser is surely the template Paramount is looking at. The Ang Lee fable earned $125 million domestic, a terrific sum for a mediation on faith with long stretches of silence. But it pulled in a stunning $484m overseas, for a $609m worldwide cume.

Paramount’s Noah is arguably a genuinely risky project, as it has to balance the line between appealing to general moviegoers and not angering the overtly religious who can poison the word-of-mouth pool among the religiously-inclined infrequent moviegoers that showed up for The Passion of the Christ ten years ago (no, I’m not saying this will come anywhere near that film’s $371m domestic gross). The film is a $125m epic starring a questionable box office draw (Russell Crowe) and “names” that nonetheless don’t equal box office (Jennifer Connelly, Anthony Hopkins, and Emma Watson) that isn’t based on a comic book or popular young-adult novel. From a financial standpoint, it is almost irresponsible not to position such a film in the best possible fashion to make a killing overseas.

This is a perfect “have your cake and eat it too” scenario. Yes, audiences in those 65 markets who don’t like 3D get screwed, but that’s been how it goes for the last few years anyway. So here’s the fun question: Does Paramount’s decision not to convert Noah to 3D in America mean that they have basically written off the film’s box office potential in domestic theaters, to the point where they know that the big bucks are coming from markets like Russia and South America? Every year we get closer and closer to the point where America is just another territory, where even seemingly American films seem tailor-made to succeed outside of our shores.

Is Paramount doing American (and British, French, and Australian) audiences a favor, or are they implying those seemingly big markets don’t matter as much as the likes of Russia (and possibly China)? To be fair, they may be insulting Russians and the like by saying that domestic markets can appreciate story and character while other overseas audiences just want the big wave. But I digress. We’ve seen smaller genre entries (A Good Day To Die HardHansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters) which didn’t exactly break out in America but more-than-made-up for it overseas. And we’ve seen would-be blockbusters (Pacific RimVoyage of the Dawn Treader) that somewhat underwhelmed in America but blew up overseas.

What we haven’t seen is a big-scale blockbuster that bombed in America but killed overseas. No American film that has failed to top $100 million domestic has ever topped $400m worldwide. I’m not saying that Noah will flop in America or that it will score overseas. All respective combinations are possible. At least as much as releasing major tent poles overseas weeks before domestic distribution (how is Robocop, my Taiwanese readers?) or sticking Chinese story and character elements into the likes of Iron Man 3 and (allegedly) Transformers: Age Of Extinction, this feels like both a brilliant compromise regarding the whole 2D/3D debate and another acknowledgement that American audiences aren’t remotely as important as they were even five years ago.

This may not mean anything in the long run. A 3D conversion for overseas distribution is still the smart financial play for Paramount and for Noah. And, for the record, there is nothing quantitatively wrong with America perhaps no longer being an exceptionalist movie going territory. But we’ll see if it’s a sign of things to come. Your turn to sign off. What do you think of the last minute 3D conversion?  Which version would you see if you had a choice?

Source: Forbes Business

 
Update
10

7 weeks ago

RM47mil KWSG contributions still unclaimed

Jun 9 2014 7:54am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: About RM47 million of contributions in the Teachers Provident Fund (KWSG) still remain unclaimed, the D ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
9

7 weeks ago

Gold shop lost almost RM1mil

Jun 9 2014 3:50am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KANGAR: A gold shop owner lost almost RM1 million after after the safe on in his shop was broken into by robbers ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
8

7 weeks ago

Motion to debate MAS losses in Dewan Rakyat rejected

Jun 9 2014 3:39am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: AN emergency motion to debate the losses incurred by Malaysia Airlines last year, amounting to RM1.2 billion was rejected by the Dewan R ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
7

7 weeks ago

MH370 Tragedy: Hisham: RM27.6 mil spent on 1st phase of SAR

Jun 9 2014 2:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia spent some RM27.6 million in its first phase of the search operations for missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370, said Acting Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Hisham ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
6

7 weeks ago

9.1m litres of diesel seized in a month

Jun 8 2014 1:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: The Domestic Trade, Cooperatives, and Consumerism ministry has seized some 9.1 million litres of diesel and property worth RM58 million since mounting ‘Operasi Diesel Selatan’ in the southern states last month. ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
5

8 weeks ago

Girl, 9, awarded RM2.78m compensation for medical negligence

Jun 6 2014 4:56am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: A nine-year-old girl who suffered brain damage during her birth at a government hospital was awarded over RM2.78 million in comp ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
4

8 weeks ago

Malaysia's total trade in April up 12pc

Jun 5 2014 11:52pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's total trade in April 2014 rose by 12 per cent from a year ago to RM123.86 billion due to growing trading activities, International Trade and Industr ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
3

8 weeks ago

Works Ministry to spend RM20m for upgrading works at 50 accident black spots

Jun 4 2014 11:35pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

JOHOR BARU: The Works Ministry will implement upgrading works at 50 accident prone locations in the country that have been identified this year inv ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
2

8 weeks ago

Najib launches loan scheme for Ramadan traders

Jun 4 2014 10:24pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today launches RM45 million Ramadan ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
1

8 weeks ago

Residents bring up objection against Kidex to Suhakam

Jun 4 2014 4:49am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PETALING JAYA: A group of 20 Petaling Jaya residents held a meeting with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) over their objection against the proposed RM2.2 billion Kinrara Damansara S ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Delegates to be screened for Ebola at US-Africa summit
Washington, Aug 2 (IANS) US President Barack Obama has ordered compulsory screening of all the African delegates arriving in Washington for a summit for Ebola virus symptoms.
 
 
Man builds spaceship in his kid's bedroom!
New York, Aug 2 (IANS) Have you ever thought of building a spacecraft for your kid? Learn from this man who gifted his four-year-old son a NASA spaceship simulator - right in his bedroom!
 
 
WTO fails to reach trade facilitation agreement
Geneva, Aug 2 (IANS) Negotiations at the World Trade Organisation(WTO) has failed to agree on the implementation of the trade facilitation agreement as the deadline of July 31 passed.
 
 
Liberia reports new Ebola cases
Lagos, Aug 1 (IANS) The Liberian government has reported new Ebola cases as of July 28.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Heavy rain claims five lives in Karachi
Islamabad, Aug 2 (IANS) At least five people were killed Saturday in separate incidents in Karachi as heavy rains hit the city. A man in Metroville died as a wall collapsed on him, Dawn online reported. A woman and...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
UN continues to seek truce in Gaza
United Nations, Aug 2 (IANS) The UN continues to seek a halt to the Gaza violence despite the breakdown of a 72-hour humanitarian ceasefire. "The ceasefire seems to have lasted for maybe 90 minutes this morning, a...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Delegates to be screened for Ebola at US-Africa summit
Washington, Aug 2 (IANS) US President Barack Obama has ordered compulsory screening of all the African delegates arriving in Washington for a summit for Ebola virus symptoms. The issue of Ebola "is something that we...
Read more on Business Balla
 
Man builds spaceship in his kid's bedroom!
New York, Aug 2 (IANS) Have you ever thought of building a spacecraft for your kid? Learn from this man who gifted his four-year-old son a NASA spaceship simulator - right in his bedroom! The spaceship has controls,...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Pakistan summons Afghan envoy over border attacks
Islamabad, Aug 2 (IANS) Pakistan has summoned Afghanistan's charge d'affaires over another cross-border attack by terrorists, officials said. Pakistan's foreign ministry said a soldier was killed during "a sniper...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Apple Prepared To Layoff 200 Beats Employees
The $3 billion Beats acquisition by Apple was certainly one of the most high profile purchases that the company has ever made. There have been over 25 other acquisitions in the past year, but nothing that matched this...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Man Steals $300,000+ From Apple
Complex cyber attacks have become more and more common as years go by, but there is still a group of people who are having success with much more low-tech scams. That was the case with a man who recently obtained over $...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Apple Launches Content Delivery Network
Apple is responsible for delivering a great deal of data to consumers, although they have traditionally relied on third party groups to handle the process. According to Frost & Sullivan, Apple has already worked out...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Dunga denies Brazil blacklist
Rio de Janeiro, Aug 2 (IANS) Brazil coach Dunga has denied suggestions that striker Fred and goalkeeper Julio Cesar have been placed on a blacklist after the team's ignominious World Cup exit last month. Speaking...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Lampard set for Manchester City loan
Washington, Aug 2 (IANS) Former Premier League side Chelsea star Frank Lampard will play for Manchester City under a loan deal from his new Major League Soccer Team New York City FC, media reports said. Lampard, who...
Read more on Sport Balla