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Ang Lee: Theatres should come up with something you cannot experience at home

While endorsing the theatrical experience, Ang Lee added that filmmakers and theatres must offer viewers something they cannot get in television.

By: Entertainment Desk | New Delhi |
January 21, 2021 3:49:16 pm
Ang LeeAng Lee endorses the theatrical experience. (Photo: AP Photo/Chiang Ying-ying, File)

Ang Lee, director of acclaimed movies like Life of Pi and Brokeback Mountain, has endorsed the theatrical experience. But he also said that due to the sheer convenience of the television medium, filmmakers have to create something that cannot be experienced at home.

While speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Lee said, “I believe we always need [the movie theater]. It’s our church, our temple. It’s a ceremony. It’s in our nature, the congregation. But now television’s so convenient. You have to come up with something you cannot experience at home. Not only the crowd, not only the size, but the ceremonial effect. It has to upgrade.”

Due to the coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent lockdown last year, nearly every film theatre was shut down to halt the spread of the disease. Theatres, already suffering under the onslaught of streaming services, had to bear huge losses. Many films that were earlier going to be released instead debuted on OTT.

Lee added, “I think the next step, logically, is the immersiveness which you cannot do with a TV screen. But how do you get [audiences] to participate, rather than just viewing? How do you engage? That’s something we should work on to get them to the theater.”

Lee should know something about immersiveness. His Life of Pi is still considered to be one of the best 3D movies ever made. Based on Yann Martel’s Booker Prize-winning novel of the same name, it recreated stunning life-like animal models that wowed the world.

Ang Lee’s last directorial project was Will Smith-starrer sci-fi thriller Gemini Man.

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