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Col’s ‘Monster’ 3-D plan

Real D will provide technology for digitally-equipped exhibs

It’s time to try on those 3-D glasses again.

Columbia performance-capture toon “Monster House” will be released in digital 3-D on some 100 screens nationwide day-and-date with its regular 2-D release on July 21, 2006.

Real D will provide the 3-D projection technology for theaters already using digital projectors, including custom silver screens and disposable polarized glasses.

“Monster House,” from ImageMovers and Amblin, uses the same Sony Pictures Imageworks motion-capture technology employed on last year’s “The Polar Express.”

Feature follows three kids who must battle a house determined to eat every trick-or-treater on Halloween.

Such industry heavyweights as “Polar Express” helmer Robert Zemeckis, George Lucas, James Cameron and Peter Jackson have lined up behind 3-D projection.

Advocates for 3-D argue that with home theater systems and HDTV gaining popularity, exhibs must take steps to make going to a theater a better experience than watching movies at home, and 3-D is one way to do that.

“Polar Express” found much of its audience due to enthusiastic reaction to its Imax 3-D version. Standard 2-D release got mixed reviews and opened with a solid but unspectacular $23 million.

Pic finished with $284 million worldwide, including $163 million domestic.

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