Stereoscopic Imaging (3-D)
Some people believe that the final great filmmaking innovation is the advent of stereoscopic imaging, which you may know better as 3-D. Stereoscopy, the allusion of a three-dimensional picture, has been around since 1838. The first "golden age" of 3-D took place between 1950 and 1960, with movies like Albert Hitchcock's "Dial M for Murder." The technology and screening techniques were too limiting at the time, though, and it wouldn't be until the early 1970s that 3-D really took hold.
Cardboard glasses for movies like "Jaws 3-D" and "Friday the 13th Part 3" did a decent job, but 3-D was still more of a passing novelty than a filmmaking revolution. The mid 1980s marked the beginning of the true stereoscopic revolution with the release of "Transitions," an IMAX 3-D film shown at a Canadian technology expo in 1986. Breakthroughs in screening technology and the cameras used to shoot in 3-D have spawned a boom in big-budget stereoscopic films. James Cameron's "Avatar" was the first mainstream film to jar the world's consciousness by thrusting the audience into a CGI world.
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The HowStuffWorks podcast The Soundtrack Show looks at the movie life of the 13th century Latin hymn 'Dies Irae.'