'Potter' producers discuss 3-D magic of 'Hallows'

By KAREN BUTLER  |  July 16, 2011 at 3:01 PM
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NEW YORK, July 16 (UPI) -- The producers of the two-part "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" saga say they didn't want to release the films in 3-D unless it truly enhanced the experience for moviegoers.

Based on the final book in J.K. Rowling's blockbuster series of fantasy novels, "Hallows" was split into two movies, the first of which was released in traditional 2-D and IMAX formats last fall, while the second hit theaters Friday in 2-D, 3-D and IMAX.

"We were a little unsure about 3-D when we first discussed it," producer David Barron told United Press International at a recent news conference in New York.

"We discussed it for 'Deathly Hallows: Part I' and, indeed, made an attempt to deliver that film in 3-D and I think partly because of lack of time and partly because of our inexperience in working with 3-D, the infrastructure didn't really exist in the time-frame we had to allow us to convert it into 3-D," Barron explained.

"And the [Warner Bros.] studio, when we told them, there was a sharp intake of breath and I'm sure a few tears, but they backed us because they didn't want to release 'Deathly Hallows: Part I' in a way none of us were happy with. And [director] David Yates, he was probably more keen on 3-D than we were. He always felt there was a way to use it in a really inclusive way to actually pull the audience into the story. And to that end, we've mainly taken steps back from the screen not forward. There are a few times when we have wands and things flying towards us, but, in the main, we tried to make the world bigger and deeper and more inclusive."

"And quite discreet," added producer David Heyman.

"I think the choice David Yates made was to be discreet and not to overwhelm the audience with, 'Oh, wow!' And I think he used it in an expressive way, too. Every once in a while, it was quite stylized, so, for example, the scene when Harry [played by Daniel Radcliffe] goes to the forest and meets Voldemort, [played by Ralph Fiennes] that scene is quite heightened, it's quite an operatic scene and David [Yates] wanted to be more expressive with it, but in other scenes it's very subtle," Heyman said.

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