"Not every screen in this country can show films in 3D and beyond that, it's about market saturation," notes Hollywood.com box office analyst Paul Dergarabedian. "Do people get burned out on it? Is it too much 3D?"
In fact, 3D films have seen their opening week box office numbers decline as a percentage of their overall ticket sales.
"Avatar" set the standard with 71 percent of its tickets for the 3D version, but more recently "Toy Story 3" saw 60 percent, "The Last Airbender" 56 percent and another box office hit "Despicable Me" sold just 45 percent of its tickets in 3D.
This from The Telegraph a few days ago:
...with up to $7.50 (£5) extra being charged per ticket - there are signs that 3D may not, after all, be the panacea for falling ticket sales.
The proportion of cinema-goers who opt to see new films in their 3D versions has fallen steadily over recent months, with more opting instead to watch them in the traditional - and cheaper - format.
Way back in March Dergarabedian said:
The story is still being written, but looks like Dergarabedian may have been right -- or -- the decline in ticket sales could be in response to the increased price and recent films with technically poor 3D rendition, like 'Clash of the Titans'. People paid (way) more, got headaches from watching a bad picture, and felt burned. So, they opted for traditional 2D next time out.
The next generation of 3D flicks, like 'Thor' and 'Captain America', could feature the best 3D imagery yet and might get audiences fired up again, willing to pay extra for the premium experience.
I'm encouraged by this entry at Hero Complex:
Thor" will be the first Marvel film in 3-D. The second will be "Captain America: The First Avenger" due July 22, 2011. The director of that film, Joe Johnston, has experience with stories of the fantastic (his credits include "Jurassic Park 3" and "The Wolfman"), but he said he was also skeptical of 3-D after seeing some recent films make missteps.
"I think it tends to be overused and can be a little bit gimmicky," said Johnston, who began shooting last week in London but will travel to San Diego for Marvel's Comic-Con panel. "A lot of people are using 3-D now because they feel have they have to ... that will come and go and the pictures that deserve to be in 3-D will continue to be. When it's done bad, it can make you carsick."
...He said he's a firm believer, though, in the conversion approach if done right and he's enthused to move forward. "It's a new challenge and it's exciting," Johnston said.