Sony has announced that the fourth installment in the popular supernatural-action franchise “Underworld Awakening” will be released in IMAX 3D on January 20th 2012. The latest chapter in the “Underworld” saga marks the return of Kate Beckinsale in the title role of Selene and is the first of the series to be filmed in 3D and released in IMAX.

“‘Underworld’ is one of Screen Gems’ most important franchises, so it’s important to us to present the movie as its fans want to see it: on the IMAX screen,” said Rory Bruer, president of Worldwide Distribution for Sony Pictures Releasing.

“The ‘Underworld’ franchise has established a dedicated fan following and we think ‘Underworld Awakening’ will serve as a terrific kick off to our robust 2012 film slate,” said Greg Foster, Chairman and President of IMAX Filmed Entertainment.

The IMAX release of Underworld Awakening will be digitally re-mastered into the image and sound quality of “The IMAX 3D Experience” with proprietary IMAX DMR (Digital Re-mastering) technology. The crystal-clear images coupled with IMAX’s customized theatre geometry and powerful digital audio create a unique environment that will make audiences feel as if they are in the movie.

This honestly comes at no surprise as studios realize the value in releasing films in 3D. But as a consumer I’ve pretty much moved passed the novelty and as much as I adore my Selene, I don’t think shelling out an extra $10 is going to improve my enjoyment of the film. I love you Selene, but not that much!

“Underworld: Awakening” is set to be released on January 20, 2012. The film also stars Charles Dance, Michael Ealy, India Eisley, Stephen Rea, Sandrine Holt, Kris Holden-Ried, Richard Cetrone, Theo James and Robert Lawrenson.