'Hobbit' Fans Complain Of Dizziness & Nausea

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey … one embargo to bind them.Middle-earth may have some perils of the stomach variety if Kiwi viewers are an indication of things to come. Early screenings of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey in New Zealand have left some movie-goers feeling nauseous.

The latest anticipated epic from Peter Jackson had its world premiere Down Under last week and has already begun attracting audiences to the film that was shot using high-speed 3-D technology. Some have complained that the high frame rate, which screens at 48 frames per second compared to the traditional 24 frames per second, has resulted in dizziness, nausea and even migraines for some fans, according to The New Zealand Herald.

['The Hobbit' At 48 FPS: A High Frame Rate Fiasco?]

Director Peter Jackson trumpeted the sped up frame rate at the premiere for bringing "enhanced clarity and smoothness."

"You have to hold your stomach down and let your eyes pop at first to adjust," tweeted one N.Z. fan.

Jackson received mixed reaction when he teased footage of the Hobbit at Comic-Con last Summer though it met with some complaints that it looked "too real."

"48 frames absolutely helps 3D because suddenly you're removing a substantial amount of the motion blur that you get at 24 . Your eyes get a much smoother experience," Jackson wrote on the Directors Guild of America website earlier this fall. "Frame rate is a very similar thing to CinemaScope. It’s a choice. It opens up another toolbox for filmmakers."

['The Hobbit' 3-D Early Review: Back Again, But Not Quite There]

This certainly won't be the first time a movie has caused audience squeamishness and discomfort. Avatar and Breaking Dawn caused some fans to complain of sickness and they certainly did not result in lower box office totals. Even more dramatic, the New York Film Festival debut of Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction back in 1994 famously caused one audience member to pass out (though it was rumored he had suffered a heart attack - later proven untrue) which caused an interruption in the screening until paramedics arrived to help. It eventually continued.

[Sources: ABC News, New Zealand Herald]

Read more on The Hobbit and Peter Jackson's 48 FPS.

Follow Brian Brooks on Twitter.
Follow Movieline on Twitter.