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'Star Wars 3D' -- and every other 3-D movie on the planet -- coming within the next year

March 3, 2011 |  5:53 pm

Fox today announced that the first installment in its "Star Wars 3D" re-release series is indeed coming in 2012 -- and rather early in the year, in fact.

A converted version of George Lucas' "Star Wars: Episode 1 The Phantom Menace" will come out in just about 11 months, on Feb. 10. Interestingly, the Natalie Portman-Ewan McGregor space opera will open against another film that could appeal to the same adventure-oriented audience, Ryan Reynolds' and Denzel Washington's "Safe House."

There are still few details on what the new release will contain (Lucas, incidentally, hopes to open a converted "Star Wars" film each year), although given all the DVD extras we've seen for the franchise over the years, we could probably expect some additions here that go beyond a new axis.

The early-year release of "Phantom Menace" should give it plenty of room before that other 1990s tentpole comes back in 3-D, James Cameron's "Titanic." (That movie isn't expected to come out until April 2012.)

Of course, that doesn't mean there won't be some 3-D overload before we even get to February.

A quick look at the release calendar shows a whopping 15 3-D releases already dated for the August-December period alone, movies as different as "Conan the Barbarian," "Fright Night" and "Adventures of Tintin." In fact, between now and Thanksgiving, no more than two weeks will go by without a new 3-D movie opening. Come February, the question may be whether viewers will want to see not only more "Star Wars" but more 3-D.

--Steven Zeitchik



Is 'Star Wars 3D' a good idea?

'Star Wars' and 'Titanic' 3-D -- How much is too much?

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Photo: Ewan McGregor and Liam Neeson in "Star Wars: Episode 1 The Phantom Menace." Credit: 20th Century Fox