I’ve been writing a lot about what I’d like to see available for 3D TV: movies, television series, sporting events. I haven’t talked much about animated features, although that is one medium which seems to lend itself well to the technology. The first movie shot directly for 3D was 2009’s Monsters vs. Aliens. It was a fun movie, though not particularly deep. (Although that brilliant Dr. Cockroach, voiced by Hugh Laurie was awfully cute.) One of the things that the movie managed really well, was its judicious use of 3D. The effects were natural, not overdone; those things rendered in 3D made sense to be in 3D.
Recently, I’ve wondered, however, which animated movies I’d like to see adapted for 3D. I think very high on my list would be the Disney classics, already visually stunning even viewed in standard definition: Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Fantasia. The artistry of these films gives such depth to each frame; the intensity of each story would only be enhanced by the judicious use of 3D elements.
I can imagine being placed virtually within the landscapes of Bambi, the palace ballrooms of Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella, the work-gang of the Seven Dwarves as they joyfully go off to mine for jewels. The 3D treatment, I imagine, would render Snow White’s evil queen all the more terrifying, and Mickey’s Sorcerer’s Apprentice dream in Fantasia more nightmarish, but how amazing they would be rendered in Blu-ray 3D, immersing us very personally within the action and intimacy of each film. And can you imagine the being brought directly into Fantasia's Pastoral sequence? Having seen Fantasia at the IMAX, I believe if they do it right, 3D technology would enhance where appropriate and not used at all when it would be overkill. (Hey, we're dreaming here, right?)
But the Disney film I’d most like to see in 3D is the more recent Beauty and the Beast. The movie came out when my daughter was a very little girl. And besides the great songs and magic of the story, I really recall the magnificent visuals. The animators constructed remarkable “sets” that seemed to possess an endless depth, which came through even on our old technology VHS transfer.