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Star Wars Prequels Media Movies

Star Wars Digital Projection Theaters 468

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the wish-i-was-closer-to-them dept.
Zoreta writes "Wired Magazine lists the 19 digital projection theaters in the country where Attack of the Clones can be viewed as Lucas intended." Say what you will, I can't wait for AotC- digital projector or not. I just wish *blatant non subtle hinting* some kind soul could get me into an early showing in the Detroit/Ann Arbor area ;) And at least I have spiderman to tide me over. Sam Rami vs. George Lucas. Gonna be a fun summer.
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Star Wars Digital Projection Theaters

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  • by WinDoze (52234) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:33PM (#3430302)
    Only way to see a movie! Reserved seating, big leather seats, individual tables at each seat, and best of all, a FULL BAR (also meaning nobody under 21 allowed!)! Nothing like watching a flick with a martini while sitting in a nice leather chair. Check it out [moviewatcher.com]. I can never go to a "regular" theater again.
    • Geeeeez... that's like a pressbox in a sports stadium.

      I live about 10 minutes from the Springdale, OH theater, but they have nothing like that (and its only a couple years old).
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Thanks for posting, you bastard. Now you're gonna Slashdot the theater.
    • by Grape Shasta (176655) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:50PM (#3430453) Journal
      Well, personally I only really enjoy movies when I can get absorbed by them and forget everything but the show. The best part about theaters is that they are dark, devoid of distaction (ideally), and the screen fills your view. So actually, sitting in dim lighting with people walking around serving drinks sounds rather annoying. But that's just me.
      • They don't serve you in your seat once the movie starts. You can, however, get up and go out to the bar on your own. Best bet is to just order a couple drinks on the way in so you don't have to get up halfway through.
    • Damn! I was just about to lament having to go to Framingham from NH. I think you just convinced me, but only if they stock Capt. Morgan.
    • How much do they charge though? They don't seem to allow you to buy online...

      Twostep
    • Do you pay more for a ticket, or do they just expect to make it back from your bar tab?
    • How many of the theaters at Framingham are equipped with the digital projection equipment? The AMC site doesn't mention anything about the premium theaters having the digital equipment in particular.

      I imagine the reason that there aren't many theaters equipped is because it's pricey.

      So if Framingham only has one theater with the equipment, I'd wonder if they'd keep it for the premium one, meaning that the non-pricey ticket folks (and young under 21 whippersnappers) are relegated to seeing it in the same old boring format.

      Hmmm, part of me wants to cry out against elitism but the other part of me is strangely drawn to the martinis, wide seats and concierge.
    • The General Cinema is not the Premium Cinema. The PC is an add-on to the GC building. Though no doubt they will be showing it in the Premium, it's not the same and may not be the digital projection. On top of that, when I last went to the Premium Cinema, it wasn't reserved seating, it was just limited i.e. there are 100 seats instead of 300 (and yes, the seats are all leather).

      psxndc

    • Sounds like you need to start watching movies in the comfort of your own home. You may have heard of an invention called "video".
    • This is nothing special. I always just pick up a 40 on the way to the theater. Among the many benefits of this technique is that if you see the same movie twice (like, once with your family and once with your friends) you won't spoil the ending for yourself.
  • by meta-monkey (321000) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:34PM (#3430309) Journal
    I don't think Taco will be near so eager to see AotC when he realizes the full title is "Attack of the Clones of Jar-Jar Binks"
  • star theaters (Score:2, Informative)

    by spoonyfork (23307)

    Commander Taco, I could suggest contacting someone at Star Theaters. I'm sure you could get into some advanced screening with press credentials. Here's the URL:

    http://startheatres.moviefone.com/ [moviefone.com]

    I'd shoot for the Star Southfield -- stadium seating and THX r0x0rs.

    • THX (Score:3, Informative)

      by Zathrus (232140)
      As an aside, I believe any theater showing the Star Wars movies as a first run (e.g. - first 8 weeks of release) has to be THX certified.

      Which, of course, pads Lucas's pocket a bit more (THX certification costs $$$), but also "ensures" that you get the movie experience that the film maker expected.

      If, for instance, there's an issue with a THX certified movie in a THX certified theater, you can call 1-800-PHONE-THX to lodge a complaint. THX claims that they investigate every such complaint.
  • Money money (Score:2, Insightful)

    by DenOfEarth (162699)
    I wonder how much this is gonna keep the ticket prices going up...
  • by crow (16139) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:35PM (#3430318) Homepage Journal
    I saw the digital projection of The Phantom Menace in New Jersey, and was impressed. The picture was absolutely perfect. I'm not certain I would have noticed the difference if I hadn't been told, but ever since I've noticed film glitches in other movies--little flecks on a frame or dammage due to having been played too many times.

    So this time it's 16 instead of 2. Hopefully in a few years it will become standard.
    • I watched TPM in the LA area when it was released. I came in being a film snob sure that digital would never replace a reel.

      I left wondering when the theatres would get around to making this standard. The picture quality was as good or better then 35mm, and the lack of artifacts in the projection was great.
    • You hadn't noticed those before? Yikes. Films are really quite messy when you pay attention to them. It's what comes when you have to print and duplicate thousands of reels. Individual quality suffers.
      • Oh, I had noticed the defects in film before, but I hadn't ever thought to watch for them. Now that I know there is an alternative, every glitch grates.

        It's like watching VHS. I used to not think about how horrible the quality is. Now that I normally watch everyting on ReplayTV or DVD, the fuzziness of VHS is intollerable.
    • by antdude (79039)
      I saw it in Burbank, CA. I couldn't believe how many stars in space. Wow. :)

    • by sharkey (16670) on Monday April 29, 2002 @03:46PM (#3431064)
      The picture was absolutely perfect.

      Jar-Jar doesn't show up on a digital projector?
  • by Walker (96239) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:38PM (#3430344)

    I wonder about this, seeing as I have been quite unimpressed by digital cable. True, the picture is extremely clear when it is working perfectly. However, it is not very fault tolerant. A bad analog signal might give me a little snow; I can still enjoy the program. Even a slightly bad digital signal causes massive pixelation; when that happens you cannot make out anything on the screen at all. The Moral: digital is better when it works, but worse when it does not.

    • by Michael O-P (31524) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:45PM (#3430417) Journal
      Yes, it is absolutely that much better. You bring up good observations, but TI and the other company that does digital projection knew they needed to match film and that viewers wouldn't tolerate pixelation. When I get poor picture quality on my Dish, it's because of the compression and decompression of the digital signal. Sure Dish Network can cram 500 channels on their satellites, but picture quality suffers. Same with digital cable.

      With digital "film" projection, there isn't the same level of compression/decompression. They have as much bandwidth as they need since it's feeding off of a hard drive rather than over cables or through the air.
      • It looks nice, but's not as high resolution as you would think.

        A colleague of mine told me a surprising story a couple of years ago, right before Ep. 1 came out. She worked on a project to develop a 6-megapixel CCD chip for cinematic cameras. Her employer apparently embarked on this, and actually cut silicon, before consulting with studios. Once they did, they were shocked to learn that most cinematic cameras use only 1.3 megapixel (1280x1024) -- the studios discovered that audiences didn't react well to too much resolution. Viewers complain the pictures look "too perfect." In post production, the filmmakers actually have to add noise to make the image look more natural.

        The CCD folks tried hard to sell the hi-res chip with advantages like better aliasing performance, better Modulation Transfer Function, better interpolation capability to mask bad pixels, less sensitivity to fixed pattern noise, etc... but apparently it is still cheaper to fix all those digital artifacts in software during post production rather than start with a higher resolution image. The real showstopper, though, was storage. A 4x increase in storage size for the raw master affected the cost of all their equipment...

        Maybe one day audiences will come to expect ultra-sharp, zero noise moving pictures, but right now, many of us operate our 19"+ monitors at higher resolutions than what they'll project SW:AoTC in.

      • There are several perople that are rallying against digital projection. Roger Ebert, Martin Scorsese and Steven Spielberg to name a few. These are people who have a vast amount of experience in this field. Ebert, for one, has been the most vocal about his distaste for digital projection: claiming that it yields muted colors and compression artifacts.

        No doubt it's better than DVD quality, but there definitely some compression going on. To match the quality of 35mm print, you need something like a 5 megapixel camera. For 1/1.85 aspect ratio projection you're talking about a 3,000 x 1600 pixel image. Is the resolution on DLP that good? On the DLP website [dlp.com] I couldn't get any hard numbers for what the resolution will be for digital projection (there's alot of info there, so be my guest). Even with DVD compression levels you're gonna have to put this thing on a 100gig hard drive, and the compression is quite noticable to film buffs (admittedly, I can only tell with poorely encoded dvd's).

        Besides, there are alot of things that influence the quality of the cinema experience. Hardly any theatres use the correct brightness for their projectors. Furthermore, the jump to 50mm or 75mm film would have an astounding leap in quality. You could double the framerate, but you'd also double the number of film canisters (I worked at a theater during high school, those suckers can get pretty big and heavy).
    • Digital cable is bad because cable companies seem to be trying to use it as a way to squeeze more channels into their datastream. "Ooh! This fancy MPEG can compress Discovery Science down to 9600 bps! Then we can add the All-Curling Network. Whaddya think, boss?"

      At least Comcast in Montgomery County, Maryland has been going down this dark path; their digital channels exhibit far worse quality than the analog ones (which are already pretty horrid).

      As for bad signals causing severe glitching, I don't think that will apply in digital projection. Since the source of the signal (Hard disk? How do studios distribute digital movies? anyone?) is in the same room with the display device, there isn't likely to be glitching.

      Justin
    • Actually, digital cable has significantly lower resolution than analog cable. Even when it's working perfectly, it doesn't look as good as analog. The moral: digital != better.
      • Actually, digital cable has significantly lower resolution than analog cable. Even when it's working perfectly, it doesn't look as good as analog.

        That REALLY depends on which channels you're talking about, which cable company you have, etc. I've got TimeWarner digital cable in central Florida. I've got all the movie channels, the works. Even the HD channels (NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX, WB, PBS, HBO, and Showtime).

        The ESPN digital channel looks like shit. However the main HBO and Showtime digital channels look much better than when I compare them to the HBO and Showtime analog channels at my friend's house.

        My guess is HBO and similar digital channels pay more money to Time Warner for better compression (or perhaps the way HBO transfers the feed to Time Warner comes into play). HBO is owned by AOL Time Warner, so that may even come into play.

        My point is, the statement that digital channels have less resolution than analog channels is pure bullshit. SOME digital channels look worse than their analog counterpart, some look better.

        And of course, the HD channels are superb.
    • Hmm.. I hadn't thought about it that way.. This may mean that digital TV is going to be the death knell of 'OK reception in the rural areas'. It'll be fine for the cities near antennas, but I'd never be able to recieve things like broadcasts from Vancouver Island in the City of Vancouver.

      Reception is bad enough in analog. With digital, I expect that all I'd see would be 400 really large pixels floating across the screen and the sounds of a Vogon enunciator.

    • Digital cable is not broadcasting digital video signals (HDTV). Digital cable is currently used to compress analog video into smaller pieces so that they can put more channels in the same bandwidth However, once you receive the information in your digital cable box and send it to your TV, it is identical resolution/quality to an analog signal. In fact, it *is* an analog signal. The only way to get a digital video/audio signal into your TV is if you have an HDTV with a HD tuner.

      HD (high definition digital) cable has just recently been announced, and is only available in very select markets (Philidelphia right now, and WashingtonDC/Baltimore later this year for Comcast).
      • Whoa, hold your horses there. HDTV is NOT simply "broadcasting digital signals". HDTV is a standard (in the US) that encompasses many aspects of digital media including the format of the content, the specs for displays, the format for transmission, etc. HDTV does not necessarily imply digital (though it does here in the states, but not so in countries such as Japan which use(d) an analog standard). The resolution of a digital signal is not necessarily the same as the analog representation, since in the case of most digital cable systems and digital satallite (e.g. DirecTV), they use the MPEG1 standard which has a fixed resolution.
        Also, HDTV signals are actually available in a great many regions, esp in large markets. Now the amount of content is fairly small, but it is there (e.g. CBS broadcasts in HDTV in many markets now).
    • If your only alternative is to watch a print that was dragged through the mud, walked on, cut and pasted back together a few times then yes digital projection is better. If you actually have a good theater by you that is able to properly handle the film (long shot these days) then it is a toss up which I would give to film since there is no pixelization which is noticeable if you sit too close.

      I haven't seen a digital projection since TPM so it may have improved since then.
    • Not according to critic Roger Ebert. I heard him on KQED (San Francisco) recently, and he thought digital was inferior, even for digitally-created films.

      This has nothing to do with the delivery quality, which is your problem with cable, but with color and resolution.
    • I wonder about this, seeing as I have been quite unimpressed by digital cable.

      Digital cable is a sham.

      Digital Cable = Digitally Compressed Analog TV

      The only thing that this does is reduce bandwidth requirements and increase the amount of time needed to flip between channels. If you want to see real digital TV, then go check out a *real* HDTV display (most of the displays are just analog TV, not digital). For the ultimate, get a Dish Network HDTV receiver. They offer the best picture quality (IMHO).

      Cheetos!
  • Digital Projection (Score:3, Interesting)

    by delphin42 (556929) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:39PM (#3430348) Homepage
    How is it that a theater in Arizona and one in Kansas get a digital projector before many of the much larger markets? Anyone from either of these towns have any information on these theaters?
    • Peoria, AZ, in metro Phoenix. Yeah, tiny little town, that Phoenix.

    • You do realize that a lot of people live around those two right? Just because the names don't ring a bell for you doesn't mean there aren't a couple million people within an hours drive of each.

      Granted, there are a few large cities unrepresented.
    • Olathe is a burb of Kansas City and is not far at all from KU and KSU. Also, a drive from Wichita is not totally out of the question (see my post). Thus, the market is there. I guess you just found a person who was willing to invest. Bill Warren is the Wichita, KS movie goon and he runs most of the theatres here in town and is a pure cock-sucker. He underpays his workers and over-charges on the tickets. Anyways, he got a grant from the city to build a new theatre and on the grant application it promised revolutionary new digital projection and sound that would draw people to see big block busters to THAT theatre, aposed to others. Guess what never happened...
    • Well, as for the one in Kansas, the world headquarters of AMC Theaters is less than 25 miles from the theater in Olathe, KS.
  • by nesneros (214571) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:39PM (#3430356) Homepage
    Last I heard, the "digital theaters" were working on micromirror arrays, which are great little devices (I spent about a year in college trying to build a microscope with some), except when their pixels get stuck, which although not as frequent as, say, the blue screen of death, is frequent enough to warrant a problem for a theater running the camera for 80+ hours per week. Then again, my last experience with them was 3.5 years ago, so TI and others may have improved the performance significantly since then.
    • Yes, pixels still get stuck. Although at the moment I bet you can call TI, tell them you have a stuck pixel, and they'll send out a new DMD and someone to install it. Why? Because they want this to take off, and it's worth the short-period loss for the long-term gain.

      But consider, you're talking about one stuck pixel out of 4 million. Compare that noise to the amount of hair, dust, etc. that's in an analog film reel everytime you watch a movie. And that's not even considering the eliptical "splotch" in the upper right corner that indicates a reel change. No more reels in digital - it's all fed directly off a HD array.

      The other thing that's amusing about this is black level. Talk to a home theater buff about the importance of black level - it's one of the only reasons that CRT projectors are still popular in high end home theater. The black level of 35 mm film really deeply sucks. The black levels with a DMD projector are actually better than film (and DMD is significantly worse than CRT in home theater, although the gap is closing).
      • You can get those micromirrors in projection TVs too, it's called 'DLP'. I was really impressed when I looked at a DLP display at a specialty store. Still very expensive though ($10k or so)

        Btw, I've seen the term 'contrast ratio' used in the specs of projectors/TVs. AFAIK, LCD projectors often have a contrast ration of 200 or so, the better ones have up to 400. I think DLP has more than that.

  • Two Words (Score:2, Funny)

    by ruvreve (216004)
    ROAD TRIP!
    • ROAD TRIP


      You bet. The one in Sprindale Ohio is 30 minutes from my house. I'll wait a couple of days for the nerd contingent to dissapate a bit, and then we're there.

  • by Michael O-P (31524) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:40PM (#3430362) Journal
    I saw Episode I digitally projected at the AMC Burbank North 6, and it was magnificent. You don't realize the difference while you're watching unless you really think about it. It's after the movie that you realize there wasn't a single error or marking on the "print".

    It's odd that this theater was chosen for digital projection, as there are 2 other AMCs (Media Center 14, and Media Center 8) within walking distance to this one. The North 6 is the least crowded, and the theaters aren't huge. This is a great place to catch movies that you know are released digitally. Went to see Toy Story 2 there, didn't plan to see it digitally, but that's how they were showing it. Animation in particular is much more vivid in this format.

    End rambling.
  • digital projection (Score:5, Informative)

    by yellowjacket03 (470997) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:40PM (#3430366)
    I saw Mission to Mars projected digitally at AMC 30 in Olathe, KS. The picture was so good that I could see the makeup that Gary Sinise was wearing. But it was very distracting to see hime wearing some kind of rouge on his cheeks and some sort of shiny lip gloss. Movie makers need to be mindful of this sort of thing. Also Mission to Mars was one of the shittiest movies ever. That never helps.
  • by darkonc (47285) <stephen_samuel@@@bcgreen...com> on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:41PM (#3430371) Homepage Journal
    Great: Between the DMCA and digital broadcast, this means that when todays movies finally make it into the public domain (sometime around 2250, the way things are going), there won't be a legal copy in existence for anybody to use.

    Not that I've got anything against digital theatres (presuming that they've got the quality up near what film provides) -- I just don't like the idea of the digital information blackhole that it looks like the media industry is attempting to create for our descendents.

    • Silly person, thanks to the Act, the copyright extension will be extended to 500+ years by then. Content produced in the last 50 years will never enter the public domain.
      • damnit...stupid me forgot about the angled brackets...that should have been:

        Silly person, thanks to the [Fill in dead Senator or Rep here] Act, the copyright extension will be extended to 500+ years by then. Content produced in the last 50 years will never enter the public domain.
  • I've been trying to figure out where it'll be playing here in Canada. I have a feeling the Paramount here in Toronto at John & Queen has a digital screen. Can anybody confirm this? I hope it does as that's the best screen within walking distance for me.

    I don't watch much TV, so maybe I'm out of touch, but I've been surprised by the lack of advertising considering it's out in 2.5 weeks. I haven't seen anything in the paper saying where it'll be playing.
  • by crow (16139) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:47PM (#3430428) Homepage Journal
    Of course, the problem is the cost of upgrading. The studios want the theaters to absorb the entire cost, but the theaters say that the studios will save money with digital distribution, so they should cover a good portion of the cost.

    Considering that the studios already claim enough of the ticket sales that the concessions are all that are keeping the theaters in business, I don't expect to see digital projection as the standard anytime soon.
  • DLP enabled Theaters (Score:5, Informative)

    by eples (239989) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:48PM (#3430433)

    Here's a list of DLP-enabled Theatres from Texas Instruments [dlp.com], includes at least 6 theatres not listed in the Wired article, plus links to the theatres' websites.

    DLP = Digital Light Processing [dlp.com] and is supposedly better than Plasma/LCD. 4 Million+ mirrors in this sucker less than a micron apart each.

  • AMC Pleasure Island 24 Lake Buena Vista, Florida (which is at Walt Disney World in Orlando)
    . . . and I didn't think anything good could ever come from living near Walt Disney World. With the student discount the evening admission is only $5!
  • SIX out of 19 are in California. Some states don't have a single one, but we get SIX. God, I love this state.

  • I am there! Okay, so the drive up from wichita for a movie is kind of "re-damn-diculous" but Ill go catch some lame weekday show that no one will be at. I will probably see it opening weekend here in Wichita and then drive up w/in the next week or two (cant wait too long cause they may/may not pull it from digital, and that would suck dickitydick).

    I will be very bummed if it is no different from the regular ol projector that Ill be seeing it at here in town.
  • Digital gurus can't send in "The Clones" [yahoo.com] Article from Variety that appeared back in February.
  • by foobar104 (206452) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:52PM (#3430468) Journal
    I saw both Toy Story 2 and Monsters, Inc. on the DLP at the Cinemark Legacy in Plano. Three things really blew me away.

    First, it's bright! When the green "the following preview has been approved..." slate goes up, the sheer amount of light coming back off that screen is just amazing.

    The next thing that surprised me is the noise: there isn't any. You don't notice the sound of the projector (that "tuh-tuh-tuh-tuh" sound of the gate opening and closing) until it's gone. When the house lights go down before the movie starts, it's completely silent in the theater, which is pretty cool.

    Finally, there's no flicker. That's another thing you don't notice until it's gone. Despite the fact that the image is being shown to you at 24 frames per second, there's either no refresh effect in the DLP at all, or so little that your eye doesn't see it. A traditional screen, lit by a film projector, goes dark 48 times per second, and your eye picks up on that. A DLP screen doesn't. I guess that also contributes to the overall brightness; you're getting something like a third more lumens to the screen just because you're not closing a gate twice per frame.

    Oh, and in case you're wondering why there's a DLP cinema in Plano, TX, I think it's because this theater is right across the street from the TI facility where they invented DLP. At least that's the story.
    • by srvivn21 (410280) on Monday April 29, 2002 @03:14PM (#3430667)
      Call me picky...

      The "tuh-tuh-tuh-tuh" sound you hear is likely not a gate opening and closing. The light flicker is done using (effectively) a fan blade. The sound is the rollers moving the film across the apperture. The film has to stop over the appature (so you don't get a blurry frame). This stop-and-go is what makes most of the projector noise.

      If I misunderstood what you were referring to as a "gate", I appologize.

      As to the flicker, that is most often attributable to a nearly worn out Xenon bulb. The older they get, the less even their light output is.

      Personally, I can't wait for the end of film. I'm no longer a projectionist though. ;o)
    • GO DFW... w00t!

      JOhn
  • I just wish *blatant non subtle hinting* some kind soul could get me into an early showing in the Detroit/Ann Arbor area ;)

    Back in the day of Star Trek IV, a friend got me into an early screening, and it was just me and him. The experience was not all that great. I guess my problem is that movies are more of a group thing for me. The Phantom Menace was a blast to see in a big group, while STIV was relatively boring with just me and that guy (sorry Tag if you are reading this...). The biggest problem is that those early screenings, it is usually just two tickets, you and the friend that got them. SciFi is something best experienced en masse.
  • by antdude (79039) on Monday April 29, 2002 @02:58PM (#3430524) Homepage Journal
    Right here [dlp.com]. It is world-wide. I am not sure how often the list is updated. I believe Wired's list is more updated for this movie.

  • by Stiletto (12066) on Monday April 29, 2002 @03:05PM (#3430594)
    When he began shooting Star Wars Episode II in an all-digital format, George Lucas imagined that Attack of the Clones could screen in 2,000 digital-projection theaters nationwide.

    Because "Digital Is Always Better(TM)", right?
  • I recently became an usher at a local theatre, I was really excited because I get free tickets for movies. My boss just told me that every cool movie this summer (spiderman, AoTC, etc) is what is called "no passes" where the film company will not allow the theatres to give out free passes to employees for like 60 days. I am still pissed. Atleast Thursday I get to go to the screening with just employees, which kicks arse!
  • by selan (234261) on Monday April 29, 2002 @03:09PM (#3430622) Journal
    The Senator [senator.com] is the best place to see it in Baltimore. This is a very cool independent theater that has survived since the 40s. There is only one screen so you get to see the movie in a huge hall together with 800 other screaming fans. The owner is a cool guy whose's a big Star Wars fan and gets up on stage to personally introduce each showing. It's a great experience.
    • True, the Senator is an excellent venue for any film, but it isn't as independant as I wish it were. Movie industry BS still abounds. They have been locked out of running certain films (Lord of the Rings, for example, altho they did run it later on for a brief time) because a GCC theatre in Towson (outside Baltimore city) was running it. Its practically the last screen left in Baltimore, which is a shame, but having camped out for all the special editions and ep1 I can tell you its a great experience.

      Anyway, the digital theatres might be great image quality, but NOTHING beat a good old-fashion 70mm film in a place like the Senator.
  • by AKAJack (31058) on Monday April 29, 2002 @03:10PM (#3430638)
    ...download it?

    You get to see the movie framed by a camcorder, learn a foreign language, and make a political statement all at the same time.

    What else could be so much fun?
  • by tswinzig (210999) on Monday April 29, 2002 @03:19PM (#3430735) Journal
    Surcharge for buying my ticket four weeks early: 75 cents

    A ticket to see Star Wars II at the Pleasure Island AMC: $8

    Having to fight every /. geek in Florida for a place in line at the only digital theatre around: PRICELESS!

  • Although it might seem odd that, at the moment, only 19 theaters support digital projection, if the whole industry is going to eventually move that way, it will facilitate the transition by having such a large film behind it. Also, DVD production and other digital media formats will be much eaier to provide content for. The will be no film transfers involved, and it will be simpler for them to produce alternate edits for poor suckers like me.

  • by chill (34294) on Monday April 29, 2002 @03:28PM (#3430865) Journal
    Yes, they cost ungodly sums of money, but don't be fooled. Lucas isn't pushing DLP because of the great resolution. He is pushing it because a major release (3,000+ screens) means $33 - $35 MILLION in duplication costs.

    Digital distribution cuts that to a fraction. Add to that the ability to check dailies in Hollywood via an optical link -- so the execs don't have to get dirty on site, and you have a winner.
  • but star wars interests me only as it pertains to my status as a geek. I'm far more interested in seeing Spider-Man than episode 2. Spider-Man I intend to see on day 1. Episode 2 I'll wait to see until someone tells me something good about it. A Jar Jar death scene would be nice.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Screw digital. Lucas had 70mm prints for the initial releases of SW ep. 4-6. Where are they now? Have quality standards dropped this much since 1977? (DLP may come close to 35mm, but will not touch the quality of 70mm for many years to come)
  • by MadFarmAnimalz (460972) on Monday April 29, 2002 @03:39PM (#3430979) Homepage
    Hmm.

    Say what you will, I can't wait for AotC- digital projector or not. I just wish *blatant non subtle hinting* some kind soul could get me into an early showing in the Detroit/Ann Arbor area ;)

    I'm really not sure how that fits in with this, a post from taco earlier today. For the lazy:

    just the same as I no longer have any interest in seeing the upcoming Star Wars movie [slashdot.org]

    This is one fickle editor to be sure... PSST! Taco, gotcha :-)

    • Re:the fickle editor (Score:3, Informative)

      by theCURE (551589)
      Offtopic but actually, the post you linked to is not from the real "CmdrTaco", it's from "CmdrTaco (editor)" so technically speaking, taco wants to and always wanted to see it. The other guy who must like taco a lot doesn't want to see it. However, you state that your post is "For the lazy:" and i'm lazy so i'll just pretend you really got him...

      ps. for future reference, look at the User #
    • by ehintz (10572) on Monday April 29, 2002 @04:18PM (#3431369) Homepage
      I rather expect "CmdrTaco (editor)" is not the same as "CmdrTaco". I also rather doubt that Tacos user # is 564483. But most glaringly, that post was reasonably well written, with no painful grammatical errors, which almost certainly eliminates Taco from the field of persons who could conceivably have written it...
  • Go here [missingleftsocks.com].
  • by NanoGator (522640) on Monday April 29, 2002 @04:24PM (#3431419) Homepage Journal
    Personally, I hope digital projectors do take over. One potential improvement they can make is in frame rate. Sometimes, if I'm close enough to the screen, strobing is visible at 24fps. Particularly in animated movies where the screen scrolls without blurring, I can see a double image as it pans by. IMAX theaters are aware of this and have film that can run as high as 60fps. Unfortunately, for film that's pretty expensive.

    But in the digital world, 60 fps is feasible (or will be before too long.) Even if the resolution's a little lower, the improvement in frame rate'd easily make up for it.
  • JAGGIES!! (Score:3, Informative)

    by peter303 (12292) on Monday April 29, 2002 @04:45PM (#3431584)
    Digital projection of digitized analog movie sometimes has problems. I saw a movie about white water rafting that disturbed me. The white water spray was fractal, and kept flickering on the screen. Another problem movie was the DVD version of 2001: A Space Odyssey (seen at MIT, of all places). Some of the model details flickered, especially the craters on the moon.

    I suspect an "all the way through" digital processing shot with digital camera, post-processing digital and projection digital would have fewer of these problems. Second, proper spatial filtering to reduce jaggies helps. Third, a director who understands the limitations of digital would film scenes that reduce these problems.

    I look forward to seeing Lucas's results.
  • by acoustix (123925) on Monday April 29, 2002 @05:52PM (#3432118) Homepage
    You're the reason, George, why there aren't more digital screens today. You demand 80% of the box for your movies and even a cut of the concessions! (which by the way is unheard of).

    Theatre companies don't make as much money off of your movies as you think they do (especially since you take 80%). So where are these theatres supposed to get money from to buy these $100,000-$500,000 digital projectors? Most theatres have a hard enough time trying to pay employess, advertising, and performing maintnance on the theatres without you asking these theaters to do costly upgrades.

    Besides, when would the theatres use the digital projectors? Once every 3 years when you release a movie?

    Maybe Lucas should open his own Theatre Company and realize that money for upgrades is hard to come by.

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