Taiwanese movie director Ang Lee’s (李安) new film Gemini Man is so technologically advanced that no theater in Taiwan can play it in the form that the Oscar-winning director originally intended.
Normally, movies are shot at 24 frames per second (fps), but the two-time Oscar winner shot his latest work at 120 fps, giving the film extremely sharp and ultra-realistic visuals.
However, only one theater in the US — the TCL Chinese Theater in Los Angeles — has been able to use the full specifications to screen the film, which stars Will Smith.
The theater held the film’s world premiere on Oct. 6.
Lee’s last film, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk in 2016, was shot in 3D with 4K resolution at 120 fps. Back then, only five theaters globally were equipped to show it at its highest resolution and maximum frame rate, one of which was Vieshow Cinema in Taipei’s Q Square.
With Gemini Man scheduled to open in Taiwan on Wednesday next week, a Vieshow Cinema spokesperson said the chain no longer has the equipment it used three years ago to screen Billy Lynn, so the new film cannot be shown in its original form. Instead it is be shown in four formats: 2D/24 fps; 3D+/60 fps; IMAX 2D/24 fps; and IMAX 3D/60 fps.
Gemini Man tells the story of a middle-aged assassin, played by Smith, being pursued by a younger assassin, who he discovers is quite literally a younger version of himself.
The film uses motion capture technology that allows Smith’s performance as his younger self to be transferred into a completely digitally-rendered character.
Lee and Smith, as well as producers Jerry Bruckheimer and David Ellison, are scheduled to arrive in Taiwan on Sunday for a three-day promotional tour.
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