"What's better, a great 2D movie, or the worst 3D movie?"

That question was posed by Stephen Colbert to DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg on last night's Colbert Report, and while it is a joke, it is also a very fair thing to ask a Hollywood exec right now. Especially the exec who's been promoting 3D like crazy for many years, before it was even trendy, let alone an industry standard, and who early on ordered all his studio's movies to be made and released in 3D forever. Even in this interview he spouts the usual claim that 3D is "probably the greatest innovation that's happened for the movie theaters and for moviegoers since color" (by the way, color movies have technically existed since the beginning of cinema, but you know what he means).

When Colbert brings up Clash of the Titans ("the lowest end of 3D technology," he notes), Katzenberg acknowledges that it's been very successful in worldwide ticket sales, so even if he wishes to recognize its poor quality he has to first respect its worth in a business sense. Plus, the guy is retro-fitting the first three Shrek movies, so he can't completely dismiss the idea of upgrading for the sake of exploiting the format and the market.

Another jab at the DWA head is aimed at the studio's latest, How to Train Your Dragon (which is only referred to as "Dragons"). Colbert references the somewhat reaching comparisons to Avatar by asking if the movie includes ponytail sex. Far more vital is the next question regarding the minority of moviegoers who can't physically appreciate or enjoy 3D. Unfortunately Katzenberg is cut off before being able to address the common complaint from the visually challenged.

Coming back to the issue of releasing "terrible stuff" that's easily justified by the 3D spectacle, we're having a bit of uncertainty at the Cinematical office over whether or not Colbert is dissing DWA's Monsters vs. Aliens -- for which Colbert voiced a character -- in the statement "you would never do that, 'cause you're the maker of Monsters vs. Aliens." Is he genuinely tipping his hat in order to celebrate his personal involvement or is he playfully biting the hand that fed?

Check out the interview below:


The Colbert Report Mon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Jeffrey Katzenberg
www.colbertnation.com
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