It seems a number of factors will play a role in limiting the release of Peter Jackson’s high-frame rate cut of The Hobbit. This version of the film will feature a full forty-eight frames per second, that’s twice the number of frames you’re used to seeing in theaters. While that sounds amazing, some of the footage shown at CinemaCon actually seemed a bit too realistic for many fans in attendance. That initial negative reaction, combined with the fact that many theaters may be lacking the technology to display the higher frame-rate, has caused the studio to consider limiting its release.
In fact, according to Variety, it may not even appear in some major citites. On the bright side, some reports are stating that the higher frame-rate actually looks a lot better now that they’ve had more time to work on the film in post. I’m sure that if it tests well, high frame-rate cuts of its sequels will likely see a wider release, and by the time those films release, theaters will have had plenty of time to upgrade their equipment.