Filmmaker Doug Trumbull is creating a 21st Century movie theater experience

Douglas Trumbull in his studio. He will receive a special Oscar for his work. Credit Joseph Heck
Douglas Trumbull in his studio. Credit Joseph Heck

Filmmaker Douglas Trumbull is creating a movie-theatre experience fit for the 21st century, MIT Technology Review reports.

Trumbull’s product is called Magi, which integrates virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) to create an unparalleled immersive movie experience. This service would breathe new life into moviegoing in an era of stagnating cinema attendance, and simultaneously propel consumer appetite for AR technology.

Trumbull knows a lot about quality filmmaking and designing visual effects. He directed the sci-fi cult classics “Brainstorm” and and “Silent Running,” his first Hollywood job was designing visual effects for “2001: A Space Odyssey,” before going on to do the visual effects for “Blade Runner,” and “Closer Encounters of the Third Kind,” “Star Trek: The Motion Picture,” and “Tree of Life.”

Now, he’s extending his talents to transform the viewing experience beyond the film screen and into the theatre. Here’s is a summary of his exciting invention – called Magi:

An integrated process. Magi is just as much a product as a process across film recording, picture projection, and theatre design that combines to create new levels of film immersion for movie audiences.

Recording and projection. To begin, Magi captures images 3D and 4K HD resolution. These images are in turn displayed at up to 120 frames per second – five times the usual projection rate.
Optimized Magi theaters. Trumbull has developed a “Magi Pod” theater because only half of theaters worldwide are capable of playing films at Magi specifications.

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