Michael Bay, director of the upcoming Transformers: Dark of the Moon, is turning up the charm in his recent promotional campaigns, trying to convince crowds of viewers that, scouts honor, the film will take 3-D to a new level. Bay and Paramount Pictures have reason enough to be concerned, as profits for the 3D format have waned since James Cameron's 2009 Avatar, dropping from 85% of the domestic box-office total to 47% with recent disappointments such as Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.
Leading causes of public skepticism include studios producing sloppy 3D transfers to hop on the bandwagon, as well as the additional three (or five) dollar 3D-glasses cost tacked onto already expensive movie tickets. All of this is bad news for Bay and Co., as the robot franchise's third installment is its most expensive yet, with a reported budget of $195 million. But Bay's claims of "reinventing" the 3-D experience seem a little dubious when the only innovation he's specifically named is that, while using the same technology, he's opted for longer shots to maximize the effect of giant robots and debris hurtling at your face.