Directed by Michel Gondry, “The Green Hornet” revolves around Britt Reid (Rogen), the son of LA’s most prominent and respected media magnate and perfectly happy to maintain a directionless existence on the party scene – until his father (Wilkinson) mysteriously dies, leaving Britt his vast media empire. Striking an unlikely friendship with one of his father’s more industrious and inventive employees, Kato (Chou), they see their chance to do something meaningful for the first time in their lives: fight crime. To get close to the criminals, they come up with the perfect cover: they’ll pose as criminals themselves. Protecting the law by breaking it, Britt becomes the vigilante The Green Hornet as he and Kato hit the streets.
“The Green Hornet” is presented in 3D, a decision that fits perfectly into the story that Gondry is telling, including the way he filmed it. “Michel is a revolutionary,” producer Neal Moritz says. “You know, he’s the guy who invented ‘Matrix time’ – he did it in a Smirnoff commercial years before they used the same technique in `The Matrix.’ Michel uses every tool, every trick of the camera, CGI, everything, to tell the story. And 3D is just another innovative tool that allows filmmakers to tell their stories in a new way. So of course Michel was interested in releasing the movie in 3D, and using the depth and scope of the film in this dramatic new way.”
Grant Anderson and Rob Engle were the supervising stereographers charged with adapting Michel’s vision for 3D presentation. According to Engle, the fact that much of the movie was shot in 2D and then enhanced with 3D allowed Gondry more control over the final image – and as a result truly allowed him to play with the 3D space in his unique Gondry way. “What conversion allows us to do is to manipulate the three-dimensional space in a way that you can’t do with traditional photography,” says Engle. “Shooting in 3D, what you see is what you get. But the way we did it, it actually opens up the door to using 3D in a creative way and manipulating 3D in unexpected ways. I think that’s what really excites Michel. For example, in certain places, he’s taking elements of one shot, and at the cut, he will carry over elements – bits of glass or a weapon – to the next shot. In that way, there’s a sense of continuity of 3D space that you wouldn’t have naturally with 3D photography.”
What is more, the final decision to release the film in 3D came shortly after completion of principal photography, giving Gondry the ability to design many of the effects sequences with 3D in mind.
“Michel is a visionary,” says Engle. “He’s constantly coming up with unique and creative ways to use the film medium. I think 3D adds a new and exciting weapon to his filmmaking arsenal.”
In fact, Gondry prepared an early presentation when he first met with Moritz and Rogen: his vision for the film’s action sequences, which he calls Kato-Vision. “Michel brought in something that he had made at home, which basically showed a fight scene between two guys, and it was one of the things that got us really excited about doing the movie with him,” says Moritz. “Within the same frame, you saw two people fighting at different speeds. Michel is a guy who knows how to revolutionize what you see on film.”
Rogen puts it succinctly: “When I go to see a movie, I want to see something I’ve never seen before – and if there’s a dude who’s come up with a lot of stuff I’ve never seen before, it’s Gondry.”
Opening soon across the Philippines, “The Green Hornet” is distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International.
Watch the trailer here: