marți, 21 octombrie 2014

Technology facts from the history of cinematography

Technology facts from the history of cinematography

- the informations above were taken from the book ‘1001 Amazing Tech facts - trivia that gives you the edge’2004

The sci-fi flick Gog (1954), in which a nuclear 'brain' takes over a secret laboratory, was the first film to feature a computer as the main character in a movie.

The first videotaped material on a TV show was Douglas Edwards and the news, broadcast on CBS on November 30, 1956. In other words, the program became the first to use the new technology of videotape to time delay the broadcast (which originated in New York City) for the western United States.

In 1986, Steve Jobs purchased the computer graphics division of Lucas Films Ltd. for $10 million and established it as an independent company christened Pixar.

The world's first portable video recording system, the DV-2400 Video Rover, was launched by Sony in 1967. It filmed in B&W only and required a separate unit for playback.

The IMAX system has its roots in the EXPO '67 in Montreal. A small group of Canadian filmmakers and entrepreneurs - Graeme Ferguson, Roman Kroitor and Robert Kerr - decided to design a new system using a single, powerful projector, rather than the cumber some multiple projectors used at the time.The IMAX dome, then called the Omnimax, debuted a the Reuben H FleetSpace Theatre in San Diego, California in 1973. Disney released Fantasia 2000 in the IMAX film format with 6-channel digital sound on January 1, 2000.

In the late 1980s, Sony introduced their professional ProMavica MVC-5000. Mavica was short for ‘magnetic video cam’ and that's really what it was. It was a professional level digital camcorder that had the ability to take freeze-frame pictures and not a still digital camera.

In 1982, the use of computer-generated graphics in movies took a step forward with Disney's release of Tron.

The last starfighter, released in 1984 and directed by Nick Castle, was the first movie to do all special effects (except makeup) on a computer. All shots of spaceships and space were generated on a Cray computer. All of the special effects shots took just 8 hours to generate.

Established in 1988, MPEG (Moving Picture Experts Group) develops standards for digital video and digital audio compression. It operates under the auspices of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

In 1989, HDTV made its debut in Japan.

The first true digital camera for the consumer was introduced to the world in 1990. It was the Dycam Model I and it produced black and white photos at a resolution of 320 x 240 pixels. The camera was capable of storing 32 compressed images on 1MB of built-in RAM. The images could be downloaded, using a cable, to a PC or a Mac.

Dick Tracy, released June 15, 1990 was the first 35mm feature film distributed with a digital soundtrack by Cinema Digital Sound (CDS), developed by Eastman Kodak and Optical Radiation Corp.

In 1992, Sharp, in its quest to make filming easier, introduced the first colour LCD screen, so videographers could see the display on a screen, without having to squint through a viewfinder. Today, this is a standard feature on all camcorders.

In the stop-motion kind of animation, one must move each joint of each character for every frame, which means you need to stop the camera and move anything that is moving for every frame. The biggest drawback of this kind of animation is that it is very time consuming.The longest example of stop-motion animation was The nightmare before Christmas (1993), directed by Henry Selick. This movie lasted for 74 minutes, which required a total of 106,560 frames! Each of these had to be filmed individually. The characters in the movie were puppets made of foam rubber. Producing the entire movie required a total of 300 puppets for the 74 roles.

In 1993, Jurassic Park released on May 30 as the first film with DTS sound, developed by Terry Beard, founder of Digital Theatre Systems in Westalke Village, CA, partly owned by Steven Spielberg and Universal Pictures. This digital sound film format records 6 tracks on separate CD-ROM disks, synchronized by an optical time code track recorded on the film, co-existing with a backup optical soundtrack similar to Dolby Stereo.

In 1995, amidst great fanfare, Pixar Animation Studios and Disney released the first full-length computer-generated film, Toy Story .Toy Story director John Lasseter had won an academy award for a previous computer-generated short film, Tin Toy (1988).

DVD players were introduced in Japan in 1996 and later in the in 1997.

A special parallel-processing computer called 'Beowulf ' was used for the special effects in the multi-Oscar-winning movie Titanic (1997).

In 1998 The last broadcast, a film by Stefan Avalos and Lance Weiler, premiered as 'the first desktop feature film', produced and exhibited digitally, co-sponsored by Texas Instruments using its DLP digital cinema projector.

On August 6, 1998 the first HDTV set went on sale for $5,499 to the public in San Diego. It was a 56-inch Panasonic set that was developed at the company's research and development center in San Diego and manufactured in Tijuana. From March 6,1999 HBO began HDTV satellite movie broadcasts, starting with U.S. Marshals at 8 pm.

The DVD of the movie Matrix (1999) was the first to reach one million in sales.