‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ IMAX Video Illustrates Why Bigger Is Better

     December 11, 2015


Amongst the many, many, many elements of Star Wars: The Force Awakens that have been harped on in the run-up to the film’s imminent release, it’s use of IMAX has not been particularly stressed. That all (arguably) ends today, as a featurette video about the use of the camera and format in the upcoming sequel has been released, with J.J. Abrams talking about why the big-screen format was used in certain desert scenes. Cast members Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Gwendoline Christie, Oscar Isaac, and Harrison Ford also toss in their two cents about the importance of the immersive quality of IMAX and why it helps make The Force Awakens all the more special. Check out the video right below:

Having seen at least two of Abrams’ previous films in IMAX, I can attest that the man knows what he’s doing when it comes to orchestrating grand action that fills the screen and makes smart, efficient use of the space given. Star Trek Into Darkness looked ten times better on the IMAX, and there’s already a sense that the bigger, familiar images and scenes in Star Wars: The Force Awakens will benefit tremendously from the size of IMAX. Unfortunately, the film itself is being retrofitted to an aspect ratio that isn’t in total IMAX but rather a mid-level between normal theater size and IMAX 70mm, so there will be some loss in the format’s power.

That being said, there’s a pretty strong sense that Abrams and the cast are a bit on autopilot when talking about this stuff, reiterating certain key words that they probably had to go over several times with Disney’s marketing/PR teams. There’s no real detail in how they feel about the format or, for that matter, their experiences of using the format, which would not have really been a hassle to include. Abrams has especial experience with the format and the cameras, so it makes the whole thing feel a bit condescending. Of course, what they say is still totally true, as the IMAX experience will no doubt make the whirling wonder of Finn, Rey, Poe, and the rest of the heroes’ fight against Kylo Ren, Hux, and the dark side all the more hypnotic.

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Image via Lucasfilm


Image via Lucasfilm

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