'Super 8' In IMAX: Will you be seeing J.J. Abrams' retro sci-fi opus on the big screen or REALLY BIG screen?

 Super 8 — which has become something of an obsession here at EW.com, as our recent bevy of posts on the film can attest — opens throughout the day on 325 screens in North America as part of a sneak preview push organized by Paramount Pictures and Twitter. The slate of showings is also a big deal for IMAX, which is hosting the majority of these previews: Never before has the exhibitor effectively opened a movie on this many of its locations. “We have been talking for some time the notion about having a release window this early,” says Greg Foster, chairman and president of Filmed Entertainment at IMAX. “This is new territory for us. We have opened a couple movies in a handful of countries — Russia, France, Mexico — two or three days early, but no more than 15 theaters. This is the first time we’ve done it domestically on this level.” 

Foster says 239 IMAX screens are participating in today’s unofficial soft open. It was originally announced that 240 theaters would be involved, but Foster says one screen was already booked to a private party.

Of course, there’s an implied irony involved with a movie named after low-fi filmmaking tech partnering with a brand name synonymous with state-of-the-art movie exhibition. However, while Abrams did not shoot Super 8 with IMAX cameras or in 3-D, Foster considers the Star Trek helmer part of a growing trend of movie directors who design and produce their films with IMAX in mind. In fact, about 30 minutes of the forthcoming Abrams-produced Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol (directed by The Incredibles‘ Brad Bird) was shot with IMAX cameras. Foster — who sees the preview program as a test for other programs like it — believes that titular irony aside, Super-8 is a perfect fit for IMAX. “Every movie has its own unique DNA. And this movie — between the type of movie it is, who made it, who it was made for, how it was made — has all the ingredients of an IMAX movie.”

For those of you planning to see Super 8 this weekend, what will be: IMAX or no IMAX?

Follow Jeff Jensen on Twitter: @EWDocJensen

Read more:
‘Super 8′ teaming with Twitter for Thursday sneak preview push
This Week’s Cover: J.J. Abrams and Steven Spielberg talk ‘Super 8′
EW’s ‘Super 8′ review
‘Super 8′: Red Carpet and After-Party Pics!

Comments (15 total) Add your comment
  • Amy

    I’m not going to see it in IMAX, though that would be cool. There isn’t a real IMAX screen near where I live (there’s one in the theater I usually go to, but it doesn’t look any different from a normal screen), and the difference in price just doesn’t make it worth it. Either way, I’m psyched!

  • commentor

    Real IMAX screens are few and far between. Got sucked into seeing an IMAX-lite movie, won’t do it again.

    • Big Walt

      Me too, it was soo disappointing. I’d like to find a “real” IMAX to see one on.


    Monster footage has been “leaked.” It shows VERY little, though.

  • terry

    Saw it in Imax – totally worth it.

  • Jacob

    Saw it in IMAX today. The screen wasn’t a “real” IMAX screen, but I don’t go for the screen; I go for the sound.

    Movie was great, BTDubs.

  • Michelle

    Saw it today in IMAX and will most likely see it again in IMAX. A giant Kyle Chandler? Me likey. Also, the film rocked my socks!

  • jGunn

    The fact is unless the film is shot entirely with IMAX camera – you do not get the full IMAX experience – as the film does not fit the screen fully and leaves a good deal of the screen blank in the top and buttom areas. If you are going to pay top dollar for the IMAX experience – look for “Shot in IMAX” logo on the posters. Otherwise, you might as well just see the film elsewhere and pay a little less.

  • arben

    I just have a hard time spending the extra money, so “no”.

  • Norma Doles

    Saw it last night in Imax…Loved it!

  • CW

    I attended one of the early IMAX screening and it was worth the surcharge. I would much rather pay extra for IMAX than 3D.

  • SN

    After seeing the Dark Knight in full IMAX grandeur, Super 8 was a let down…with the exception of the sound.

  • Ramthrax

    Come on guys, get your eyes tested!

    I wasted money watching Super 8 at my local IMAX which boasts the ‘biggest screen in Britain’!

    Super 8 and ALL other films are not even filmed using IMAX cameras. Some movies are ‘enhanced for IMAX screens in post production. Only those short documentaries are filmed completely using IMAX technology. Films like The Dark Night and Transformers 3 had a small number of scenes filmed using IMAX cameras.

    Super 8 at the IMAX was a grainy low quality experience. And the movie sucked! It’s pretty much Cloverfield and ET’s love-child!

    I shall not bother to waste money watching regular movies at an IMAX Theater ever again!

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