When he appeared with the first footage from Pacific Rim at Comic Con this past summer, director Guillermo del Toro insisted that the film would not be converted to 3D. He cited issues with presenting the proper scale of the giant monsters and robots that populate the film as a primary reason for resistance.

But then, last week, word came down that the movie would be post-converted to 3D after all, which elicted some groans from interested fans. So what gives? Did Warner Bros. force the issue and leave del Toro little choice, or was there more to it? After the break, we’ve got the director’s explanation for the change, which sounds like it is a little from column A, and a little from column B.

Del Toro told STYD that he had four key bullet points he hoped WB would accept before he fully agreed to convert Pacific Rim to 3D:

What happened was, in the weeks and months following Comic-Con, what I asked from the studio was to agree to four points that I wanted to do. The more the ILM shots arrived, the more I realized that there were only a few shots that would miniaturize. I asked the studio, number one, that we would not hyper-stereo-lize the thing. That we would not force 3D on the beauty shots. That we would keep the giant dimensions. They agreed. Number two, they agreed to something very unusual. Normally a conversion takes a few weeks. I asked to start it immediately so we could take the full 40 weeks to do the conversion. As an example, ‘Titanic’ took about 50 weeks to convert.

The final thing that I asked that they agreed to, which was amazing, was that I asked them to give me an extra budget, which is considerable, to actually have ILM composite the shots that are CG native 3D. We’re not giving elements. ILM is giving the composite in 3D from the get-go. That’s a huge, huge element. Now I’m going to be involved in supervising it. What can I tell you? I changed my mind. I’m not running for office. I can do a Romney.

That last factor, that ILM is delivering native 3D effects elements, is a big deal, and combined with GDT’s insistence that the film won’t be pushed into excessive stereo spectacle, the situation sounds better than it might have been. Not being much of a fan of 3D I can’t say I’m thrilled about the development, but since there’s nothing to be done about it I’ll just wait to see more footage, and hope that the conversion is done well.

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