One of the reasons why James Cameron’s Avatar comfortably became the highest-grossing movie in history was because virtually all of the ticket sales came with the additional charge for watching it in 3D. After all, there was no point visiting Pandora in two dimensions when the filmmaker had spent over a decade painstakingly developing the technology to make his epic sci-fi the most immersive experience possible.
Naturally, Hollywood saw the numbers, and decided that everything post-Avatar would be subjected to a rushed post-conversion. Analysts believe Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland surprised everyone and eared over a billion dollars because it was the first major 3D blockbuster to follow in Avatar‘s wake, while Louis Letterier’s Clash of the Titans also experienced a healthy bump in takings.
Of course, Leterrier originally wanted his remake of the 1981 cult favorite to be shot in native 3D, but he was turned down by Warner Bros., who thought it would be too expensive. Inevitably, once Avatar was released, the studio changed their mind, and less than three months before it was due to premiere, Clash of the Titans was given a hasty post-conversion.
Needless to say, the results were grim, and several years later, the director even admitted in his own words that the 3D was horrible and just a gimmick designed to steal from the audience. Still, Clash of the Titans managed to earn $493 million globally despite being widely panned, thanks largely to the added dimension’s surcharge. Over a decade later, and the fantasy movie now finds itself proving popular on HBO Max having been added to the library recently, and there’s admittedly some escapist entertainment to be found in it thanks largely to a star-studded cast that are clearly enjoying themselves.