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DEADPOOL 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Demo Event

deadpool 4kA week after the release of Deadpool on Blu-ray (review) and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, I was invited by 20th Century Fox to attend a demo event at the Fox Innovation Lab that would help explain the process of delivering what is currently the best possible home viewing experience for new releases. The result was an interesting look at another side of the hit superhero film, which allowed for a better appreciation in all that goes into crafting the film in its life both before and after its theatrical release.

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The official description of the event was as follows:

DEADPOOL is Fox’s best performing Digital HD title ever and one of the year’s highest grossing films. Timed with DEADPOOl’s release on Blu-ray and DVD, Twentieth Century Fox is hosting a 4K Ultra High Definition with High Dynamic Range demo at the Fox Innovation Lab. Director Tim Miller and the film’s colorist Tim Stipan will host the briefing and will be available to answer any questions.

Upon sitting down for the event, myself and a small set of other writers and producers were able to watch an extended look at Deadpool, featuring key scenes that could help show the differences in varying formats. The presentation was setup with two identical curved 4K Ultra HD televisions next to each other, with a Samsung 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray player displaying the scenes on Blu-ray and 4K UHD Blu-ray at the same time. Even while in a paused state, before the presentation began, you could already see the difference.

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As stated above, Miller and Stipan were on hand to provide plenty of information about this process, which I found to be quite interesting. Given both the advantages available, given today’s technology, and the limitations due to both time and money, hearing Stipan explain the process for providing digital color correction to both the theatrical cut of the film and its various home releases was quite informative.

Some with a good handle on this sort of knowledge may already be aware, but an interesting aspect came in regards to how the film was shot and what that meant for its 4K transfer. Deadpool was originally shot at 3K with the Arri Alexa XT Plus, meaning the 4K transfer was actually an up-conversion. Given the lower budget of the film (compared to other superhero spectacles) and the use of large-scale action and completely CG characters, among other things, that could put pressure on someone like Stipan. His job requires him to go through the entire feature and make sure the image doesn’t look horribly fake.

While some have commented on Colossus, for example, and just how well he looks in the film, which is largely grounded in reality (save for mutant abilities), it is not beyond belief that he would be singled out for his appearance. With this demo, one could argue that his role in the film is actually better on a visual level, given just how much more clearly you can see the detail work that went into blending him in fairly seamlessly with the rest of the reality around him, let alone the detail present in his creation.

You could argue the same for other elements as well. While the film even pokes fun at it having a CG character, less attention may be paid to the production design of the film as a whole. Some may just be happy enjoying the film for its humor, action and irreverence, but those really invested in the filmmaking technique get a clear picture in regards to the look of key details such as Deadpool’s red costume, action elements such as explosions and flames and the look of the sky, which Miller and Stipan were both most excited to point out.

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While it is great to see facial textures enhanced (“Make sure you have a good wig guy,” Miller stated, when talking about advice he received), it is something like the sky, which may not be something too many think about, but likely does add to the experience. A subconscious thought of how inconsistent the film could be has the chance of taking one out of the film, were they to be watching the sky shift constantly, due to a lack of thought concerning the backgrounds seen throughout the film. Because of the efforts made by Stipan, you actually do get a film that put a lot of thought into how to really show a consistent look that is also clear and quite impressive in its own way.

There was also some talk of what kind of work goes into minor elements of a home release, such as formatting the menus, the logo and whatever extras may need that additional touch. We did not get a chance to discuss these aspects in too much detail, but given how much is packed onto these discs, it seems clear that Fox was really game to collaborate with Miller, Stipan and the filmmaking team in an effort to deliver a really solid 4K package.

This is all encouraging to know, as Why So Blu certainly champions these physical copies for obvious reasons. We are working hard to not only assess the audio/video quality of Blu-rays on a daily basis but support the evolution of the medium as well. Digital copies may be convenient (especially as they begin to incorporate special features), but having a physical disc that manages to pack so much information on it in an effort to display the clearest possible image will always be more impressive.

For those with a 4K UHD player, Deadpool is now available to own and can be ordered below. Anyone who is still on the fence can take note of not only the concept of a disc that features video four times clearer than Blu-ray but also the clear amount of effort that goes into formatting a film like Deadpool for these discs, let alone the restorations of older films taking place. For the sake of seeing an impressively clear picture for a film designed to look as good as it can, it’s a good thing to consider.

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Writer/Reviewer, Film Lover, Podcaster, Video Game Player, Comic Book Reader, Disc Golfer & a Lefty. There are too many films, TV, books, etc. for me to list as favorites, but I can assure that the amount film knowledge within my noggin is ridiculous, though I am always open to learning more. You can follow me on Twitter @AaronsPS4, see what else I am up to at TheCodeIsZeek.com & check out my podcast, Out Now with Aaron and Abe, on iTunes.

1 Response to “DEADPOOL 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Demo Event”


  1. Brian White

    It looks like WGC plays a huge factor in these screenshot comparisons.