For months, Warner Bros. had been advertising a cinema release in both 2D and 3D for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One, but as the premiere approached, the stereo-optic alternative was taken off the table.
At the time, they said:
Despite everyone’s best efforts, we were unable to convert the film in its entirety and meet the highest standards of quality.
Essentially, they were saying, they ran out of time.
Time they’ve now had, and the dimensionalisation process has now been completed, so the film can be released on Blu-ray. But, of course, there’s a catch.
The film is to be bundled with Sony 3D equipment and not, yet, receive a standalone release. There have been many, many “exclusive packages” like this, and you still can’t get a copy of Avatar in 3D unless you buy it in-pack with some Panasonic kit.*
But Hallows Part One is the first feature film to receive its premiere as part of an in-pack exclusive. This one didn’t even play in cinemas.
According to Sony:
Sony announced today that beginning November 11, with the purchase of select Sony 3D products, consumers will receive the “Harry Potter 3D Experience” with a Blu-ray 3D™ of the Warner Bros. blockbusters Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows™ Part 1 andHarry Potter and the Deathly Hallows™ Part 2.
This exclusive “Harry Potter 3D Experience” will be available to consumers who purchase Sony’s BDP-S780 Blu-ray Disc player with 3D or BDV-E580 Blu-ray 3D home theater system. Additionally, the same Harry Potter 3D titles will be bundled with two pairs of Sony active 3D glasses, TDG-BR250/DBL, as a “3D starter kit.”
So the bare minimum you’ve got to spring for is a couple of pairs of active glasses. I’d be very surprised to see that pack come in at under $150 or £150, and it could be significantly more.
I’m still surprised the film didn’t get a theatrical outing first. Surely that’s a bit of bad wringing on the part of Warner’s Potter draining teams?
*Or use eBay for a second hand copy.