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Dolphins & Whales Principal Photog Complete


Written by: 3D Entertainment
Date: August 29, 2007

It's a wrap for the final installment in the company's unique ocean-themed 3D film trilogy.


Category: Press Releases

3D Entertainment Completes Principal Photography on Dolphins &Whales 3D: Tribes of the Ocean Premiering February 2008 at IMAX® 3D Theatres

It's a wrap for the final installment in the company's unique ocean-themed 3D film trilogy.

London (United Kingdom), August 29, 2007 / PRNEWSWIRE / -- 3D Entertainment Ltd. is pleased to announce the successful completion of principal photography on its upcoming feature, DOLPHINS & WHALES 3D: TRIBES OF THE OCEAN. This new breathtaking documentary will make its US debut on IMAX 3D screens in February 2008 before expanding into Europe and will be released in collaboration with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and its North American office, RONA, based in Washington D.C.

"We are thrilled that audiences will, for the very first time in 3D at IMAX theatres, join in a once-in-a-lifetime diving experience that will bring them face-to-face with great and small cetaceans such as humpback whales, sperm whales, right whales, orcas, porpoises, bottlenose and spotted dolphins," said the film's producer and chairman of 3D Entertainment, Francois Mantello. "Thanks to the powerful IMAX 3D theatre medium, viewers will get so close to the creatures they will virtually touch them and ultimately become part of these surviving ocean tribes."

"We are delighted to once again join our friends at 3D Entertainment on this new edutainment film, which serves as a wonderful extension of the 'Year of the Dolphin' (YoD) campaign developed in collaboration with the Convention on Migratory Species (UNEP/CMS), TUI and the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society. Both aim to raise public awareness of cetaceans, the threats they face and actions that could aid their conservation in the wild," said Brennan Van Dyke, UNEP Regional Director in Washington D.C. "Despite years of protection, experts agree that cetaceans continue to be threatened at an alarming rate. Many are already considered endangered or vulnerable due to the deterioration of their environment over the last decades."

Dolphins & Whales 3D is currently in post-production and will be completed by late November. Principal photography began in June 2004 in Polynesia and an extensive three years were required to capture the necessary footage. Filming consisted of no fewer than 12 expeditions and 600 hours underwater at some of the remotest locations on Earth, including off the Pacific Ocean atolls of Moorea and Rurutu, Vava’u island of the Kingdom of Tonga, Pico Island in the Azores archipelago, the Valdez Peninsula in Argentina, Sapphire Coast of Australia, Bay of Islands in New Zealand and Canada's Hudson Bay.

"Although each encounter with these wild creatures was truly magical and highly emotional, Dolphins & Whales 3D marks one of the most challenging and epic productions we have ever taken on as filmmakers," explains the film’s director, Jean-Jacques Mantello. "We had to set up two crews to work in parallel and they often faced daunting sea conditions while filming. But locating the pods at a time when their populations are dwindling was undisputedly the greatest obstacle to overcome. The result, however, is simply spectacular. We have exceptional footage of cetaceans shown as they really are in their daily lives: interacting socially, communicating through their highly complex system of sound, playing, feeding, breeding, migrating and perpetually fighting for their survival."

Added Director of Photography Gavin McKinney, "Without a doubt, it has been the most demanding experience of my professional life. Whales and dolphins ultimately provide you with a lesson in humility, as it is they, not us, who decide if they are to be filmed or not. These intelligent mammals usually swim away when coming upon an unknown presence; you need to make yourself 'accepted' and this can take a while, but we were lucky enough to be helped by the calves and their curiosity for the 3D camera rig. You cannot help feel very small and insignificant when you encounter these giants, some of which are the size of a school bus."

Dolphins & Whales 3D is directed by Jean-Jacques Mantello and produced by Francois Mantello. The director of photography is Gavin McKinney with additional cinematography by Rob Torelli. Herve Prigent served as production manager. The score was composed and arranged by Christophe Jacquelin. The narration is currently being written by a team of international scientists led by Dr. Elisabeth Mantello and David Chocron. Dolphins & Whales 3D is distributed worldwide by 3D Entertainment's distribution unit in association with UNEP.

3D Entertainment's distribution unit will support the release of Dolphins & Whales 3D with innovative marketing materials, including a comprehensive and interactive website and educational materials as well as merchandising and promotional tools.

The official trailer for Dolphins & Whales 3D will premiere at the CN IMAX Theatre in Vancouver on Sunday, September 23rd, during the Giant Screen Cinema Association's Annual Conference and Trade Show, and will be available on the film's teaser website at or shortly thereafter.

Dolphins & Whales 3D marks the final chapter in a unique trilogy of ocean-themed documentaries. The first installment in the series, Ocean Wonderland 3D, which sheds light on the crucial function of the endangered coral reef system, was released in February 2003. Sharks 3D, presented by Jean-Michel Cousteau, followed two years later and offers audiences an astonishing up-close encounter with these wild and endangered animals. Both films continue to play at IMAX theatres and have proven immensely popular with audiences around the world, grossing a combined USD 52.5 million at the box office.

3D ENTERTAINMENT LTD. is a fully-integrated, independent British company specializing in the production, distribution and marketing of unique and innovative ocean conservation-themed 3D films for the worldwide network of IMAX ® theatres. Our mission is to immerse audiences in unique 3D experiences that inspire and educate. The company enjoys strategic alliances with McKinney Underwater Productions, Mantello Films, Celco Inc. and Studio Helios XVI. More information on the company can be found at

UNEP is the designated authority of the United Nations system in environmental issues at the global and regional level. Its mandate is to coordinate the development of environmental policy consensus by keeping the global environment under review and bringing emerging issues to the attention of governments and the international community for action. RONA is the UNEP Regional Office for North America, and is based in Washington D.C.

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