LAS VEGAS — Lucasfilm and Industrial Light & Magic have selected postproduction firm Prime Focus to handle the 2D-to-3D conversion of Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace, which is slated for theatrical release on Feb. 10.
The announcement was made Tuesday, confirming what for many months has been a poorly kept secret.
“It was incredibly important to me that we have the technology, the resources and the time to do this right,” George Lucas said in a statement. “I’m very happy with the results I’ve been seeing on Episode I.”
Prime Focus’ proprietary View-D 2D-to-3D process is being used to convert the film. The process was first used in early 2010 to convert Clash of the Titans. More recently, it was employed on The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader.
The conversion of the Star Wars film is being completed under the supervision of
Academy Award winner John Knoll, the visual effects supervisor for ILM.
“Getting really good results from stereo conversion requires a lot of attention to detail, and it is imperative that you take the time to get it right – and that’s just what we’re doing,” Knoll said. “We’re taking a different approach than you might expect. George’s vision has been to add dimension to the film in subtle ways. This isn’t a novelty conversion, with things jumping out at the audience; our goal has been to enhance the classic Star Wars theatrical experience, utilizing the latest cinematic tools and techniques.”
The process will be led at Prime Focus’ Hollywood office, and Prime Focus artists in Los Angeles, London and Mumbai are delivering shots via the company’s digital infrastructure.
Lucas is scheduled to speak Wednesday at CinemaCon during a panel that also will include James Cameron, Jeffrey Katzenberg and Chris Meledandri.