Digital 3D

Digital 3D is a non-specific 3D standard in which films, television shows, and video games are presented and shot in digital 3D technology or later processed in digital post-production to add a 3D effect.

One of the first studios to use digital 3D was Walt Disney Pictures. In promoting their first CGI animated film Chicken Little, they trademarked the phrase Disney Digital 3-D and teamed up with RealD in order to present the film in 3D in the United States. A total of over 62 theaters in the US were retrofitted to use the RealD Cinema system. The 2008 animated feature Bolt was the first movie which was animated and rendered for digital 3D whereas Chicken Little had been converted after it was finished.[1] Even though some critics and fans were skeptical about digital 3D, it has gained in popularity. Now there are several competing digital 3D formats including Dolby 3D, XpanD 3D, Panavision 3D, MasterImage 3D and IMAX 3D. The first home video game console to be capable of 3D was the Sega Master System in which a limited number of titles were capable of delivering 3D.


A first wave of 3D film production began in 1952 with the release of Bwana Devil and continued until 1955, a period known as the golden era of 3D film. Polarized 3D glasses were used. It was among several gimmicks used by movie studios (such as Cinerama and Cinemascope) to compete with television. A further brief period of 3D movie production occurred in the early 1980s.

After announcing that Home on the Range would be their last hand drawn feature and in fear that Pixar would not re-sign for a new distribution deal, Disney went to work on Chicken Little. The RealD company suggested that Disney use their 3D system and after looking at test footage Disney decided to proceed. In 2005, Chicken Little was a success at the box office in both 2D and 3D screenings. Two more films followed in their classic feature animation - Meet the Robinsons and Bolt - along with several others. Since then many film studios have shot and released films in several digital 3D formats. In 2010, Avatar became the first feature film shot in digital 3D to win the Academy Award for Best Cinematography and was also the first feature film shot using 3D technology nominated for Best Picture.

2D to 3D conversion

In the case of 2D films that were generated from 3D models (as with CGI animated films), it is possible to return to the models to generate a 3D version.

For other 2D films, different techniques must be employed. For example, for the 3D re-release of the 1993 film The Nightmare Before Christmas, Walt Disney Pictures scanned each original frame and manipulated them to produce left-eye and right-eye versions. In 2011, Disney became the first studio to convert 2D hand-drawn animation to 3D with the 1994 film The Lion King, and the 1991 film Beauty and the Beast. Dozens of films have now been converted from 2D to 3D. There are several approaches used for 2D to 3D conversion, most notably depth-based methods.[2]


The standard for shooting live-action films in 3D involves using two cameras mounted so that their lenses are about as far apart from each other as the average pair of human eyes, recording two separate images for both the left eye and the right eye. In principle, two normal 2D cameras could be put side-to-side but this is problematic in many ways. The only real option is to invest in new stereoscopic cameras. Moreover, some cinematographic tricks that are simple with a 2D camera become impossible when filming in 3D. This means those otherwise cheap tricks need to be replaced by expensive CGI. for example Oz the Great and Powerful.[3]

In 2008, Journey to the Center of the Earth became the first live-action feature film to be shot with the earliest Fusion Camera System released in Digital 3D. This film was later followed with several other films shot in Live-action. The 2009 release of Avatar was shot in a 3D process that is based on how the human eye looks at an image. It was an improvement to a currently existing 3D camera system. Many 3D camera rigs still in use simply pair two cameras side by side, while newer rigs are paired with a beam splitter or both camera lens built into one unit. Digital Cinema cameras are not really required for 3D but are the predominant medium 99% of what is photographed. Film options include IMAX 3D and Cine 160.


CGI animated films can be rendered as stereoscopic 3D version by using two virtual cameras. Because the entire movie is basically a 3D model, it only takes twice the rendering time and a little effort to properly set up stereoscopic views.

In 2004 The Polar Express was the first stereoscopic 3D computer animated feature film. In November 2005, Walt Disney Studio Entertainment released Chicken Little in digital 3D format. The first 3D feature by DreamWorks Animation Monsters vs Aliens followed in 2009 and used a new digital rendering process called InTru3D which is a process developed by Intel to create more realistic 3D images despite the fact that they are animated. InTru3D is not a way that films are exhibited in theaters in 3D, the films created in this process are seen in either RealD 3D or IMAX 3D.

Video games

In June 1986, Sega released the Sega Master System, part of the third generation of gaming consoles. The system had a card slot that provided power to a single pair of LCD shutter glasses, allowing certain games to be viewed in 3D; however, only 8 3D-compatible games were ever released, and when the system was redesigned in 1990 in order to cut down on manufacturing costs, it lost the ability to support 3D. It was the first known electronic device released in North America to use LCD shutter glasses.

In July 1995, Nintendo released the Virtual Boy, built around a 3D viewer held closely to users' eyes, acting like a pair of goggles. Both left and right eye images were red, and put strain on players' eyes; the system was a failure and was discontinued the following year. In December 2008, several third party developers for the PlayStation 3 announced they would work toward bringing Stereoscopic 3D gaming to major gaming consoles using their own technology. In the coming months, both the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 will be capable of 3D imaging via 3D TV and system/hardware updates. On June 15, 2010 at the E3 Expo, Nintendo unveiled the Nintendo 3DS, the successor to the Nintendo DS series of handheld consoles. It is the first gaming console to allow 3D viewing without the need for 3D glasses or an equivalent.

Home media


After the unexpected box office success of Avatar and a record number of 20 3D films released in 2009, TV manufactures saw the demand for 3DTVs go up dramatically and went further into research and development. Samsung launched the first 3D TV in February 2010. Each TV manufacturer would make their own 3D glasses. Samsung released a 3D starter kit which included the purchase of 3 items with a discount at select retailers; the starter kit would include a Samsung model 3D TV, a Samsung brand 3D-capable Blu-ray3D player, and a box with two pairs of Samsung brand 3D glasses which included an exclusive 3D Blu-ray edition of Monsters vs. Aliens. Specifications for 3D also include the HDMI 1.4a standards. Some of these TVs can also convert 2D into 3D, but such features are limited as to how much depth can be generated. In June 2010 Panasonic announced Coraline and Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs as bonus 3D Blu-ray titles with the purchase of any of their 3DTVs. On June 22, 2010, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs became the first 3D Blu-ray title to be released without any requirements to buy any new electronic hardware but free copies of this title will be included in 3D entertainment packages by Sony. In 2010 the only option was active shutter glasses and in 2011, TV manufacturers notably LG and Vizio will offer passive circular polarized glasses in mid to late 2011 as well as Sony to offer glasses free technology for 3D content. In 2015 Samsung unveiled an 8K display with glasses free 3D making it the largest 3D TV and the highest resolution to date [4]

Home video

Several DVD and Blu-ray releases have already tried their hands at releasing the 3D versions of films by using an anaglyph format. One noted release prior to the advent of digital cinema is the 1982 film Friday the 13th: Part 3 in 3D, but other such films actually shot digitally like Coraline were released on DVD and Blu-ray. Both included 2D and 3D versions and both were packaged with pairs of 3D glasses. The Blu-ray Association ordered a new standard for presenting 3D content on Blu-ray that would also be backwards compatible with all 2D displays. In December 2009, it was announced that they had adopted the Multiview Video Codec, which would be playable in all Blu-ray disc players even if they could not generate a 3D image. The codec contains information that is readable on a 2D output plus additional information that can only be read on a 3D output and display. A future extension for 4K Blu-ray 3D is currently in development for the hevc codec [5]


In 2008, the BBC broadcast the world's first live sporting event in 3D, transmitting an England vs. Scotland rugby match to a London cinema.[6] On April 3, 2010, Sky TV broadcast a Chelsea vs. Manchester United match to around 1,000 pubs in the U.K.[7] ESPN 3D launched on June 11, 2010. On July 1, 2010, N3D became the world's first 24-hour 3D channel. 25 matches of in the 2010 FIFA World Cup soccer tournament were broadcast in 3D.[8]

See also


  1. ^ Official Disney Production Notes,
  2. ^ 2D to 3D Conversions by Scott Squires
  3. ^ "Why 3D Will Fail… Again". June 9, 2012.
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ [2]
  6. ^ "BBC News Report". BBC. 2009-12-03. Retrieved 2011-06-16.
  7. ^ "The Drum news report". The Drum. 2010-04-03. Retrieved 2011-06-16.
  8. ^ "World Cup games to be filmed in 3D". BBC. December 3, 2009.
3D Entertainment

3D Entertainment Film Holdings is a producer and distributor of 3D films for IMAX and digital 3D theatrical exhibition through its divisions 3D Entertainment Films, which produces films, and 3D Entertainment Distribution, which handles theatrical sales and marketing.The company has offices in London, Los Angeles, and Paris.

3D printing marketplace

A 3D printing marketplace is a website where users buy, sell and freely share digital 3D printable files for use on 3D printers. 3D printing marketplaces have emerged with the fast-growing segment of consumer 3D printers. Currently, the existing 3D printing marketplaces are handful and their business model is still not profitable.

3D scanning

3D scanning is the process of analyzing a real-world object or environment to collect data on its shape and possibly its appearance (e.g. colour). The collected data can then be used to construct digital 3D models.

A 3D scanner can be based on many different technologies, each with its own limitations, advantages and costs. Many limitations in the kind of objects that can be digitised are still present. for example, optical technology may encounter many difficulties with shiny, reflective or transparent objects. For example, industrial computed tomography scanning and structured-light 3D scanners can be used to construct digital 3D models, without destructive testing.

Collected 3D data is useful for a wide variety of applications. These devices are used extensively by the entertainment industry in the production of movies and video games, including virtual reality. Other common applications of this technology include augmented reality, motion capture, gesture recognition, industrial design, orthotics and prosthetics, reverse engineering and prototyping, quality control/inspection and the digitization of cultural artifacts.

3ality Technica

3ality Technica, formerly 3ality Digital, is a Burbank, California based company specializing in high-definition, live-action stereoscopic digital 3D. The company develops production systems, image processing software and other technologies that enable the creation, post-production and distribution of live-action 3D entertainment.

A Christmas Carol (2009 film)

A Christmas Carol is a 2009 American 3D computer animated motion-capture dark fantasy film written, co-produced, and directed by Robert Zemeckis. It is an adaptation of Charles Dickens's 1843 story of the same name and stars Jim Carrey in a multitude of roles, including Ebenezer Scrooge as a young, middle-aged, and old man, and the three ghosts who haunt Scrooge. The film also features supporting roles voiced by Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, Bob Hoskins, Robin Wright, and Cary Elwes.

The film was released in Disney Digital 3D and IMAX 3D on November 3, 2009, by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It received its world premiere in London, coinciding with the switching-on of the annual Oxford Street and Regent Street Christmas lights, which in 2009 had a Dickens theme. The film received mixed reviews from critics, who praised its visuals and the performances of Carrey and Oldman, but criticized its dark tone. It earned $325.3 million on a $175–200 million budget. The film was produced through the process of motion capture, a technique Zemeckis used in his previous films The Polar Express (2004) and Beowulf (2007).It is Disney's third film retelling of A Christmas Carol, following 1983's Mickey's Christmas Carol and 1992's The Muppet Christmas Carol.

Caribbean Cinemas

Caribbean Cinemas is a chain of movie theaters in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. It is the only major chain in Puerto Rico following CineVista's bankruptcy. The chain has expanded into Dominican Republic, St. Thomas, St. Croix, St. Maarten, St. Kitts, St. Lucia, Antigua, Aruba, Trinidad and Tobago and Guadeloupe.

Disney Digital 3-D

Disney Digital 3-D is a brand name used by The Walt Disney Company to describe three-dimensional films made and released by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures mostly under the Walt Disney Pictures label and shown exclusively using digital projection.

Disney Digital 3-D in itself is not a presentation or a production format or technology, but rather purely a marketing concept. Films advertised as Disney Digital 3-D come from a number of sources, film, digital camera as well as animation software, and can be presented using any digital 3D technology, including RealD 3D, Dolby 3D, XpanD 3D and MasterImage 3D. There is no specific handling involved.

Dot crawl

Dot crawl is the popular name for a visual defect of color analog video standards when signals are transmitted as composite video, as in terrestrial broadcast television. It consists of animated checkerboard patterns which appear along horizontal color transitions (vertical edges). It results from intermodulation or crosstalk between chrominance and luminance components of the signal, which are imperfectly multiplexed in the frequency domain.

This takes two forms: chroma interference in luma (chroma being interpreted as luma), and luma interference in chroma.

Dot crawl is most visible when the chrominance is transmitted with a high bandwidth, so that its spectrum reaches well into the band of frequencies used by the luminance signal in the composite video signal. This causes high-frequency chrominance detail at color transitions to be interpreted as luminance detail.

Some (mostly older) video game consoles and computers use nonstandard color burst phases and may produce dot crawl quite different from that seen in broadcast NTSC or PAL.

The opposite problem, luminance interference in chroma, is the appearance of a colored noise in image areas with high levels of detail. This results from high-frequency luminance detail crossing into the frequencies used by the chrominance channel and producing false coloration, known as color bleed. Bleed can also make narrowly spaced text difficult to read. Some computers, such as the Apple II, utilized this to generate color.

Dot crawl has long been recognized as a problem by professionals since the creation of composite video, but was first widely noticed by the general public with the advent of Laserdiscs.

Dot crawl can be greatly reduced by using a good comb filter in the receiver to separate the encoded chrominance signal from the luminance signal. When the NTSC standard was adopted in the 1950s, TV engineers realized that it should theoretically be possible to design a filter to properly separate the luminance and chroma signals. However, the vacuum tube-based electronics of the time did not permit any cost-effective method of implementing a comb filter. Thus, the early color TVs used only notch filters, which cut the luminance off at 3.5 MHz. This effectively reduced the luminance bandwidth (normally 4 MHz) to that of the chroma, causing considerable color bleed. By the 1970s, TVs had begun using solid-state electronics and the first comb filters appeared. However, they were expensive and only high-end models used them, while most color sets continued to use notch filters.

By the 1990s, a further development took place with the advent of three-line digital ("3D") comb filters. This type of filter uses a computer to analyze the NTSC signal three scan lines at a time and determine the best place to put the chroma and luminance. During this period, digital filters became standard in high-end TVs while the older analog filter began appearing in cheaper models (although notch filters were still widely used).

However, no comb filter can totally eliminate NTSC artifacts and the only complete solutions to dot crawl are not to use NTSC or PAL composite video, maintaining the signals separately by using S-Video or component video connections instead, or encoding the chrominance signal differently as in SECAM or any modern digital video standard as long as the source video has never been processed using any video system vulnerable to dot crawl.

Monochrome film recordings of color television programs may exhibit dot crawl, and starting in 2008 it has been used to recover the original color information in a process called color recovery.

List of 3D films (2005 onwards)

This is an incomplete list of 3D films from 2005 onwards. The tables can be sorted by clicking the arrow icons in the column headers.

MZ Pictures

MZ Pictures is a specialized film and TV production company based incorporated in 2009 in Shanghai, China,whose precursor is the MZ Film Workshop founded by Mi Zi, who has been involved in the production of numerous award-winning documentaries, feature films, commercials, TV series and stage plays.

A digital 3D animation feature, The Ping Pong Rabbit is in preproduction.

A co-production project, Sweetheart Chocolate, took off at the end of 2009 and is in preproduction now. It will be filmed in both Hokkaido, Japan, and Shanghai, China. The core production team is from both Japan and China, and the lead roles will be playing by the stars from Japan, China, and Korea.

MasterImage 3D

MasterImage 3D is a company that develops stereoscopic 3D systems for theaters, and auto-stereoscopic 3D displays for mobile devices.

New Picture House

The New Picture House (often called the NPH for short) is an independent cinema located in St Andrews, Scotland, which was first opened in 1930. It contains three cinema screens, the largest of which contains a row of special "VIP" seats consisting of electronic black recliners and has both a ground level and balcony seating area. There is also a lounge area available for rental by members of the public, with the option to view a licensed DVD digitally projected at a canvas screen.The cinema screens are equipped with traditional film projectors and a digital projector, the Christie CP-2000 Digital Projector. As of June 2010, the cinema is equipped with digital 3D projectors in all of its screens.

PMD Technologies

PMD Technologies AG (stylised as pmdtechnologies) is a developer of CMOS semiconductor 3D time-of-flight (ToF) components and a provider of engineering support in the field of digital 3D imaging. The company is named after the Photonic Mixer Device (PMD) technology used in its products to detect 3D data in real time. The corporate headquarters of the company is located in Siegen, Germany.

RealD 3D

RealD 3D is a digital stereoscopic projection technology made and sold by RealD. It is currently the most widely used technology for watching 3D films in theaters (cinemas). Worldwide, RealD 3D is installed in more than 26,500 auditoriums by approximately 1,200 exhibitors in 72 countries as of June 2015.

Shark Night

Shark Night (advertised as Shark Night 3D) is a 2011 American horror film directed by David R. Ellis and written by Will Hayes and Jesse Studenberg. It stars Sara Paxton, Katharine McPhee, Alyssa Diaz, Dustin Milligan, and Joel David Moore. The film, which was negatively received by critics and grossed $40 million worldwide, was released in Real D 3D and Digital 3D. This is Ellis' final film before his death.


In sewing, shirring is two or more rows of gathers that are used to decorate parts of garments, usually the sleeves, bodice or yoke. The term is also sometimes used to refer to the pleats seen in stage curtains.

In the construction of digital 3D clothing shirring can be accomplished by applying a Displacement map or Normal map when rendering the digital clothing models in a render engine.

U2 3D

U2 3D is a 2007 American-produced 3D concert film featuring rock band U2 performing during the Vertigo Tour in 2006. The film contains performances of 14 songs, including tracks from How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb (2004), the album supported by the tour. The concert footage includes political and social statements made during the shows. It is the band's second feature film, following their 1988 rockumentary Rattle and Hum. Among several cinematic firsts, U2 3D was the first live-action digital 3D film.

The project was created to experiment with a new type of 3D film technology pioneered by producer Steve Schklair. After considering shooting American football games in 3D, Schklair's company 3ality Digital decided to create a concert film with U2. The band were hesitant to participate, but agreed to the project mainly as a technological experiment rather than a profit-making venture. Although set in Buenos Aires, U2 3D was shot at seven concerts across Latin America, and two in Australia. The film's complex setup involved shooting with up to 18 3D cameras simultaneously and capturing the footage digitally.

After a premiering out of competition at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival, U2 3D showed at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival and had its limited theatrical release in late January 2008, followed by its wide release the following month. The film was distributed by National Geographic Entertainment and was only released in IMAX 3D and digital 3D theaters. It peaked at number 19 at the United States box office, and earned over $26 million worldwide, ranking as one of the highest-grossing concert films. It received widely positive reviews, with critics praising the 3D technology and innovation. U2 3D won several awards, and its reception convinced some of the creators that the project marked a paradigm shift in filmmaking.

Working for Peanuts

Working for Peanuts is a 1953 animated short produced by Walt Disney. It is notable for being one of their first shorts filmed in 3D (the first being Adventures in Music: Melody, which was released several months before). The tagline of the film is "Walt Disney's Donald Duck & Chip 'N Dale in their first laugh riot in 3-Dimension."

In 2006, it was remastered for digital 3D purposes and rereleased in 2007 along with the Disney Digital 3-D version of the Walt Disney Animation Studios film Meet the Robinsons.

Working for Peanuts was also showcased a number of times at the Disney theme parks and was used as a teaser 3D cartoon at Walt Disney Worlds Magic Kingdom, which showcased a 3D movie, Magic Journeys, that was sponsored by Kodak.

The title "Working for Peanuts", which is a common expression to indicate earning low wages, is used to allude to the development in the story related to the elephant's peanuts.

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