Christopher Nolan on the “Operatic” IMAX of The Dark Knight Rises

“[T]he operatic quality of ‘The Dark Knight’ and ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ felt very well suited to IMAX’s larger canvas,” says Nolan. “So it’s different depending on what film you want to do… We didn’t shoot IMAX for ‘Inception’ because we were trying to portray the reality of dreams rather than their extraordinary nature, so we used a handheld camera and shot it in a more spontaneous way.”

The full effect of the 65mm will be evident on July 20th when Nolan’s final Batman film opens and shows off the international locations employed during production.

“For ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ we were on Wall Street with a thousand extras,” he continues, “and you can see everybody’s face in the frame. In some ways, I feel it takes me back almost to the silent film era, when they had those huge cameras. Trying to do things in more of a tableau fashion, it changes the way I direct a film, it changes the way I block the camera movement because of the size of the thing. The resulting image has so much power that you don’t need to cut in the same way, you can frame the shot slightly differently, you wind up with a slightly different feel.”

As big a fan as he is of the larger film format, Nolan makes no attempts to hide his distaste for 3D in cinema.

“3D is a misnomer,” he laments. “Films are 3-D. The whole point of photography is that it’s three-dimensional. The thing with stereoscopic imaging is it gives each audience member an individual perspective. It’s well suited to video games and other immersive technologies, but if you’re looking for an audience experience, stereoscopic is hard to embrace.”

Starring Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Anne Hathaway, Tom Hardy, Gary Oldman, Marion Cotillard, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Morgan Freeman, The Dark Knight Rises features a script by both Christopher Nolan and his brother, Jonathan Nolan.