Ang Lee creates history by shooting in 120fps using Christie Mirage projectors

Two Christie Mirage 4KLHs were used for the shooting of Ang Lee’s latest film, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk; it was announced at a recent screening.

The nine-minute clip was shown at this year’s IBC Big Screen Experience and was screened at 120 fps and in 4K 3D.

Usually found in theme parks, casinos, museums and other public venues, the Mirage projectors can project up to 60,000 per head and up to 120,000 lumens when paired with a dual 6P configuration. At the screening, the projector combined Mirage’s processing bandwidth and the Christie Freedom laser illumination system to stream at 72,000-lumen brightness. The primary benefit of the Christie Freedom laser system is that the lasers can be separate from the projector and can be stackable and scalable.

Ang Lee, famous for his films Brokeback Mountain and Life of Pi, is well known for his embracing of new technology. Life of Pi was shown in 3D, one of the first films to be screened in that format. The latest film pushed the barriers again by being shot in 120fps 4K. “At 120 frames per second your eyes get greedy,” he explained.

Lee, speaking at the event, stated that the production decided to make the film in 120fps as the high frame rate (HFR) removes a lot of the limitations producers find with 24fps 3D. By shooting in 120fps 4K, Ang Lee explained that they could in effect “see everything.”

In particular, concerning the clarity and realism, Ang Lee revealed that he relished seeing the honesty and vividness of the actors. “Most precious to me were the faces. The film language has to change. I didn’t have much choice (filming) but to stick close to Billy Lynn. You feel how they feel, see the thoughts in their eyes,” he said.

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