Fortunately, while Disney is sure to net a solid return on their 3D investment, Pixar’s 3D conversion process is much more involved than typical “post-conversions” (the Pixar 3D team likens it more to “recreation”) – resulting in an experience that is absolutely enhanced by the added depth. Unlike film conversions, Pixar can actually revisit the original digital Finding Nemo files and, as they convert each scene into 3D, are able to manually address glitches or areas of discomfort that might occur as a result of moving the images from a 2D to 3D plane. In some cases the 3D team even fixed problems that slipped through the cracks the first time the film was released – details that will no doubt be the subject of a special feature on the inevitable 3D Blu-ray.
Anyone who is immediately put off by the idea of the conversion team fiddling with the original movie can rest easy – the changes represent only minor cosmetic alterations (removing elements that might be distracting in a 3D foreground) or addressing oversights that slipped through in the original version (fixing a stationary shadow that didn’t move after a character exited the shot). The film doesn’t contain any new scenes, extended takes, or new easter eggs – it’s the same Finding Nemo, except optimized for 3D viewing.
In general, the Pixar conversion approach is in line with 3D guru James Cameron – who keeps the audience’s emotional focus at the screen and enhances the experience with subtle elements positioned in the foreground or background. Prioritizing immersion over gimmicky projectiles, might be underwhelming for audience members who routinely “test” 3D by removing their glasses (a very limited measure in the first place) but the colorful and vibrant Finding Nemo setting should provide discerning moviegoers with plenty of fan-favorite moments that are successfully enhanced by the added dimension. On their own, few of the scenes are likely to offer outright memorable 3D visual set pieces (this is still a post-conversion); however, as an overall experience, viewers should notice a stronger association with the underwater environment as well as a number of shots that are especially striking this round – thanks to the added dimension (i.e. the Jellyfish forest and East Australian Current).