IMAX! Digital Projection! Cool!

I am not going to see Superman Returns until this Sunday, July 2nd. I will be seeing it at the IMAX theater, located beside the Exploris museum in Raleigh, NC with my family and my mom and dad. 20 minutes of this bad boy will be shown in 3-D! There is a terrific article in today’s USA Today.

I’d much rather see a movie at the IMAX than anywhere else. The IMAX theater is home to the only 3D IMAX theatre in North Carolina. It has a screen five stories high with 44 speakers of surround sound! Yes, the price of a ticket averages to what two matinee tickets at a regular movie theater would cost, but the experience is worth it. I’ve seen Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Poseidon, and The Polar Express at the IMAX. The Polar Express was presented in 3-D. I’ve got to tell you, IMAX 3-D is out of this world! It felt like I was actually in the movie. The best 3-D effects ever! I bet seeing Superman Returns in IMAX 3-D is going to be breath taking!

The movie industry as a whole is suffering from ticket sales. The only way for the industry to survive is to provide the movie going audience something they do not have at home. A lot of folks do not go the movies anymore because they can rent a DVD and watch it at home on their High Definition television with surround sound. Poo! I think these same people, many of whom probably have not seen a movie present in the IMAX format, would find an IMAX movie really cool and would immediately say after experiencing one, “I want to see that again!”

Some theater chains understand that they need to change. One theater chain in Greensboro is changing by adopting digital projection. Next to IMAX, digital projection is the next best thing. Carmike Cinemas, the third largest US movie theatre chain, became the first to announce it is switching over to digital projection. The move is expected to pave the way for a new generation of high-quality, high-tech movies. Carmike signed an agreement with Access Integrated Technologies to install up to 2,300 digital cinema projection systems in Carmike’s cinemas across the United States. What does this mean? Well, there will no longer be those huge movie reels that have to be loaded onto a projector. Movies will be digitally sent to a theater by satellite.Access Integrated Technologies is providing the technology to download the movies. In addition, Texas Instruments is providing, at least in Greensboro, the DLP (Digital Light Processing) technology to show the movies. I saw the movie Over the Hedge presented digitally at the Carmike. I liked it. The images were crystal clear and there were no stray hairs or dust shadows you would sometimes see in a regular movie. Really nice!

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