In the summer of reboots (this summer really has a lot of titles), it's refreshing to see Disney and Pixar honoring their classic films by adding a third dimension. Following the success of the 3D-remastered Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King, Pixar has jumped into the shallow-depth pool of 3D re-releasing. Coming later this year, movie fans will get to ride the EAC and venture into a few closets with the release of Finding Nemo 3D and Monsters Inc. 3D, though the wait for Monsters will be a bit shorter. Rather than dropping in mid-January, the eye-popping release will be in December, just in time for the feeding frenzy that is holiday movies.
The recently announced change could work one of two ways for Disney/Pixar. On the one hand, there is a huge audience for films around the holidays, especially children. Spirits are high and the weather is cold, so naturally people flock to warm theatres to have their hearts warmed as well. On the dimmer side of the coin, the holiday movie market can be cut-throat. There will be a gaggle of films for Monsters Inc. 3D to contend with. There's Judd Apatow's This is 40 and Tom Hooper's Les Miserables, not to mention The Hobbit, all dropping around the same time. It's a dog eat dog world and everyone is wearing a Gaga-style meat dress. Despite none of those except maybe The Hobbit being as family friendly as Pixar's 2001 gem, that's stiff competition.
I think Disney has a solid business strategy; re-releasing their cherished films at a 3D ticket price is pretty much pure profit. Pixar is getting in on that, but with sequels based on the two films they added 3D to could be a perfect way to generate buzz with a new audience who may be too young to know Monsters Inc. and Finding Nemo. With Finding Nemo 3D coming September 14th and now Monsters Inc. 3D dropping on December 19th, in addition to Monsters University releasing in the summer of 2013, this is looking like the year of Hollywood's top 3D animators busting into (and out of) 3D film making.