Warner Brothers Cancels 3-D Release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1

With the release of the first part of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows now just over a month away, Warner Brothers have made a pretty shocking announcement with regards to the 3-D release of the film: there won’t be one. At a time when it is basically just expected that every major blockbuster will be released in 3-D, they have decided to give up on the 2-D to 3-D post-production conversion. The quality was simply not living up to their supposedly high standards and they have run out of time to fix it. The movie will be released in standard 2-D prints and it will still play in IMAX theatres, however, a press release confirmed that the studio “will not have a completed 3D version of the film within our release date window.” I guess this is cause for celebration?

Director David Yates said that this is further proof of the WB’s commitment to quality, but let’s not forget this is the same studio that got slammed for a poor 3-D transfer of Clash of the Titans earlier in the year. It would appear that they didn’t want to risk the negative attention that a crappy 3-D release could bring, although with a Harry Potter movie, could a little bad buzz really make much of a difference? They would still make a lot more money from the higher ticket prices either way. My guess is that the 3-D conversion was literally incomplete and hopelessly behind schedule, leaving them with no other choice but to drop it. There’s been no word on what this might mean for the 3-D release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, however.

Are you disappointed that there won’t be a 3-D release of the next Harry Potter flick? Did Warner Brothers make the right decision or should they have pushed back the release date in order to accommodate it? Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 hits theatres on Friday. Nov. 19th.



  • It’ll hurt the numbers but this is simply BRILLIANT news.

  • Possum Hunter

    3D is nothing more than a gimmick that comes and goes and will again. I saw Avatar in 3D because everyone raved about it but to be honest I preferred the look of it on Blu-Ray in 2D. I avoided the Clash of the Titans 3D release opting for the 2D version and was glad I did from what I’ve heard. Hopefully this will mark the beginning of the end for the 3D phase, at least for a decade or two.

  • Aaron

    I’m reading that Part 2 is still planned to be released in 3D.

  • Film Ape

    This is fantastic news

  • Paul P

    I actually wasn’t going to see this at IMAX because it was only playing in 3D. Now I’ll definitely be there!!

  • rjdelight

    Is that image from Deathly Hallows or one of the other Potter flicks?

  • It’s from Deathly Hallows.

  • Rahul

    This is bullshit

    Warner Bros has been the top studio for three years in a row with #1 rank – 2010, 2009, 2008
    A franchise like Harry Potter will give WB in excess of 10 billion by the end (including merchandise sales).

    If they really wanted to, they can easily hire more people and get the damn 3D conversion done. They took like two or three weeks to do the 3D conversion for Clash of the Titans but they have over a month now and they should’ve started long back as they said filming for part 1 is done and it is in post-production. What the hell were they doing.

    Stupid Warner, playing with HP. I wish Disney owned the HP franchise
    I never liked HP after the first three movies, I am just watching it to not miss the continuity.

    Stupid things Warner Bros did:
    – Changed the best director(Changed more than two directors actually)
    – Delayed a release date (after showing ads and trailers) for HP6 by several months saying openly that they will get more money if they release in summer time (which is not true as some HP movies made more in Chirtmas time)
    – Split the last movie into two parts, saying they won’t have enough time to tell the story. (Truth is, they just want more money)
    – Now they cancel their plan of release Part 1 of 2, in 3D (again after showing ads and trailers) (saving about $10 million on 3D conversion costs)

  • Greg

    “If they really wanted to, they can easily hire more people and get the damn 3D conversion done”

    I’m fairly certain it’s not that easy. This is one of the funniest posts I’ve read in a long time.

  • artfrankmiami

    If it wasn’t shot in 3D, they shouldn’t remaster it as such. I remember seeing Superman Returns in IMAX and thought they had shot the 3D in IMAX 3D, but I understand that was also a conversion. That explains why Peta Wilson’s head was horrible distended in the plane sequence. It’s easier today to film in 3D, why not just do it?

    As for the Avatar comment, I saw Avatar first in 2D and then in 3D. I got motion sick in the 2D, so the 3D was more spectacular. It was shot in 3D, so their is a reason to see in 3D. But for the premium, I prefere regular IMAX. The second Batman film had several important sequences in IMAX (truck flip especially) and the detail was amazing.

  • Ever since I saw the trailer and saw how darkly lit it is and washed out the colour is – almost monochrome – I realised it could surely never work in 3D.
    Brightly coloured flicks work best, espcially CGI cartoons. Having said that, I watched Toy Story 3 when it came out, and having really liked it, I don’t actually remember the 3D at all.
    I think HP through the glasses would be even more dingy and unwatchable than the trailer suggested, and would have suffered the same complaints that Clash and the Bender film got.
    I don’t believe a big corporation are unable to time scale the process successfully, but more likely were not happy with the results.

  • Sven

    Now it would be cool if they pulled a Tarantino and actually put all the fighting crap and wand pointing in the first part and then let Harry have long conversations with Voldemort and company throughout the second one.

    Still don’t care either way.

  • MykaelJ

    I think WB is missing out on something here. They could have taken Harry’s glasses and made them into 3d glasses and sold them. Im not a marketing guy, but Im sure there are millions of kids that would have gotten their parents to buy them. Just a thought I had….

  • A. Wharton

    this… is fantastic news. thank god.