UPDATE: Warner Bros. has stepped in to defend "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" against the recent reports that all the newfangled technology and filmmaking techniques in Peter Jackson's new Middle-earth epic will make you hurl.
The studio has issued the following statement, according to Deadline:
"We have been screening the full-length HFR 3D presentation of THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY extensively and feedback has been extremely positive, with none of thousands who have seen the film projected in this format expressing any of the issues described by two anonymous sources in media reports. We share the filmmakers' belief that by offering filmgoers the additional choice of HFR 3D, alongside traditional viewing formats, they have an opportunity to be part of a groundbreaking advancement in the moviegoing experience and we look forward to having audiences everywhere share in this new way of storytelling."
Ha. Do you think WB is now wishing they didn't let Jackson go with the whole 48 FPS thing? Anyway, tame those stomachs, people.
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For nearly ten years, fans of Peter Jackson's "Lord of the Rings" trilogy have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of his mind-blowing adaptation of author J.R.R. Tolkien's beloved fantasy novel "The Hobbit." But now that "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" has finally screened for select advance audiences, some viewers are reporting that they had to take their own unexpected journey after watching it — to the bathroom to throw up.
Man, everybody's a critic.
So what exactly is the problem with "The Hobbit?" Well, it's not the acting or the directing or the story or any of those things that usually get people up in arms over a movie; all of those, it seems, are just as badass as you've been expecting. No, the problem here seems to be the way the movie was filmed, as Jackson's decision to use a special new camera that shoots at 48 frames per second instead of the normal 24 frames per second has resulted in a picture so crystal clear that it is giving some viewers vertigo. Or worse.
"In close-ups the picture strobes," one viewer said according to The Week. "I left loving the movie but feeling sick." Another film goer reported even more side effects, saying "My eyes cannot take everything in, it's dizzying. Now I have a migraine."
Before you start chugging Pepto Bismol, though, there is some good news for those "Hobbit" fans worried about maintaining their eyes, brains and stomachs: The 48 fps technology is so new, most theaters don't actually have the right projectors to screen it, meaning there will be plenty of places you can watch it the old fashioned way instead.
No barf bags required.
Originally published on Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2012 at 6:24 p.m.