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April 11, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Relegated to the novelty of “ride films” synchronized with motion simulator seats, Showscan, Douglas Trumbull’s crystal-clear 60-frame-per-second process that studios long ago rejected as too expensive, may finally be employed for a feature film production. Trumbull, who created the special effects for such features as 2001: A Space Odyssey, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and Blade Runner, told the Digital Cinema Summit at the NAB conference in Las Vegas on Sunday that he is currently completing the screenplay for a new Showscan movie that will be produced by his production company, Magnetar Productions. Although the original ShowScan process employed 70mm film, Trumbull has adapted it for digital cinema. With the process, a feature, he observed, could use any number of frame rates, depending on the action in front of the camera. “We are now at a time when we can have any film texture we want. But it’s not an either-or situation,” he said. Trumbull noted that only last week James Cameron said that he plans to shoot his upcoming Avatar sequels at 60 frames per second. And, he revealed, “Peter Jackson wants to do The Hobbit in 60.”