Francis Ford Coppola is turning big-screen movies into a live experience.
The filmmaker showed an audience at the Comic-Con fan convention portions of his upcoming creepy tale Twixt, a film whose cinema release he hopes to precede by a national tour in which Coppola will oversee a different version each night.
He says digital technology allows him to add scenes, lengthen or shorten sequences, shuffle the action around, alter music and make other tweaks depending on how that night's audience is responding to the film.
"If the audience is in the mood to go off on a little bit of a tangent, then you'd be able to go off on a tangent, but if the audience seems to want to cut to the chase, you could cut to the chase," Coppola said in an interview after his presentation.
Filmmakers often have the experience in test screenings where they sense viewers' interest lagging and the "audience is not so into it, so you go, 'Oh, I wish the good part would come sooner, I wish the good part would come sooner'," Coppola said. "With this, you can do that."
Twixt stars Val Kilmer as a writer on a book tour in a strange town where he's caught up in the mystery of savage killings and has ghostly encounters with a young girl (Elle Fanning) and the spectre of Edgar Allan Poe (Ben Chaplin).
The film also will include a blend of 2D and 3D. Viewers of Twixt will see an on-screen cue letting them know they should put on their glasses for a 3D scene in the heart of the film and a 3D finale, Coppola said.