NATO Thanks Universal for Tower Heist Decision

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Fri, 10/14/2011 - 20:00 -- Nick Dager

In response to Universal’s decision to cancel its planned release of Tower Heist to the home on video on demand just three weeks after its theatrical debut National Association of Theatre Owners president and CEO John Fithian said “NATO would like to thank Universal for responding to various theater owners' concerns and cancelling the PVOD test it was contemplating.” “They have been engaged with individual exhibitors on this test and while it was something that many theater owners could not ultimately support the open and collaborative nature of the dialogue is appreciated. NATO recognizes that studios need to find new models and opportunities in the home market and looks forward to distributors and exhibitors working together for their mutual benefit. ,2813
National Geographic Cinema Ventures Wins Four Awards at Jackson Hole,2011-10-15,Flying Monsters 3D a film produced by Atlantic Productions in association with Sky 3D and distributed by National Geographic Cinema Ventures took home the honors for Best 3D Film at this year’s Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival. The Last Lions a feature-length documentary produced and distributed by NGCV and directed by National Geographic Explorers-in-Residence Dereck and Beverly Joubert received awards for Best Theatrical Film Best Music and Best Editing. “It’s an honor to have been recognized by Jackson Hole for these two films ” says Lisa Truitt president of NGCV. “We and the filmmakers are thrilled that the judges appreciated the amazing sensation of flying through the prehistoric forest with the pterosaurs in Flying Monsters 3D. We agree: Both The Last Lions and Flying Monsters 3D are unforgettable and hopefully audiences around the world will agree.” In Flying Monsters 3D which has opened in giant-screen theatres around the United States world-renowned naturalist Sir David Attenborough immerses audiences in a prehistoric world to witness the story of pterosaurs. The Last Lions was released in February and follows the life of an ostracized lioness and her cubs as they fight to survive — overcoming raging wildfires marauding male lions intent on killing any cubs not of their lineage and an aggressive and competing pride of lionesses. ,2814
Paramount First to Provide Online Screeners for Awards Season,2011-10-15,Paramount Pictures has teamed with Deluxe Entertainment Services Group to provide online screeners for the 2011-2012 awards season making it the first major studio to stream its awards films online. The studio will present its awards contenders including Rango Super 8 and Like Crazy and potentially additional titles later this season via Deluxe's proprietary platform. The Visual Effects Society was the first recipient of the online screeners. The Deluxe platform allows Paramount to securely stream films backed by unique watermarking of the content tied to the individual recipients with DVD quality picture and a controlled window of availability. Content can be played back on a variety of PC and Mac devices including the iPad and iPad2 as well as home entertainment systems with compatible HDMI cable connection. We are excited to present these films for online streaming and are hopeful that this will be a quality experience allowing us to offer more opportunities for our filmmaker partners to reach appreciative viewers says Paramount's president of domestic marketing & distribution Megan Colligan. We are delighted Paramount chose Deluxe's digital screener platform. By continually expanding and customizing our services we are able to best support the rapidly changing needs of our entertainment industry clients says Michael Alvarez president Deluxe Media Management. As the leading technology artists in the entertainment industry we at VES are pleased that Paramount thought to come to us first to inaugurate this process says VES executive director Eric Roth. Deluxe Entertainment Services Group ,2815
Post Haste Sound Expands With Video Editing and Encoding Services,2011-10-15,Post Haste Sound Los Angeles has expanded its services to offer video editing mastering encoding quality control and more from a new video suite. The demand for services to support digital delivery and after-market opportunities has truly exploded says Post Haste co-founder Allan Falk. We make it easy for any production to come in and take care of all of their audio video mastering encoding and quality control in one place. And we've made it a very inviting creative and client-friendly place. Post Haste's new high-end video suite is equipped with Apple Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premiere Pro along with graphics and titling capabilities. Its staff provides quality control of both HD tape sources and HD/SD files in any format. Encoding and transcoding of SD and HD using latest in streaming and mezzanine file creation software supports video on demand and broadcast deliveries for tapeless workflow. Post Haste is also assisting its clients with video dubbing cross-conversions and down-conversions. The facility has a multitude of video formats including HDCamSR and HDD5 as well as older video formats. With its new video services Post Haste now offers clients comprehensive creative picture editing and mastering services that are fully integrated with the company's renowned mixing ADR Foley re-mastering audio restoration editing and digital migration services for features and television. 20th Century Fox Television recently tapped Post Haste's new video services and multi-format sourcing capabilities for the re-mastering of all six seasons of its standout series The Wonder Years for which Post Haste also provided extensive music replacement services. Post Haste ,2816
Screenvision Reaches New Agreement with Before The Movie,2011-10-15, Screenvision has reached a new agreement with Before The Movie a local cinema advertising company based in Vacaville California that represents three exhibitors within California Nevada Colorado and Idaho. The exhibitors include: Brenden Theatres Cinema West and Santa Rosa Entertainment Group. Before The Movie handles 33 locations representing 329 screens which includes 25 screens in the Los Angeles area 116 screens in the San Francisco area and 84 screens in the Sacramento area. Additional markets are Las Vegas Fresno Palm Springs and Eureka.  
 Screenvision will have exclusive national selling rights at all BeforeTheMovie represented locations. Screenvision’s inventory will total five minutes all exhibited within the last seven minutes of the preshow.
“The agreement with Before The Movie expands our footprint in key markets on the West Coast ” says Darryl Schaffer executive vice president operations and exhibitor relations Screenvision. “We are delighted to provide engaging advertising to BeforeTheMovie exhibitor partners.” “We are thrilled about our strategic collaboration with Screenvision ” says Corey Tocchini president and CEO of Before The Movie. “They are the perfect partner to provide an additional revenue stream to our exhibitors. This partnership allows Before The Movie to offer exhibitor partners the best of both worlds strong local advertising and exclusive BTM content along with national advertising thereby increasing the payout to the exhibitor while maintaining a strong local and community presence it’s a win win win.” Before The Movie ,2817
Slasher Films to Start Production on Nothing to Fear,2011-10-15, New horror company Slasher Films which was recently launched by Academy-Award winning producer Michael Williams and Rob Eric (Session 9 The Fog of War) and iconic rocker Slash (Guns N’ Roses Velvet Revolver) has announced that its first film Nothing to Fear will begin principal photography late October in Louisiana. Director Anthony Leonardi III is making his feature debut.   “Our mission at Slasher Films has been to create genre films that defy the genre stereotypes ” says Slash. 
Nothing to Fear is about a family whose journey towards a better life in a small town is savagely derailed by a charismatic but emotionally conflicted man of the cloth. The story is based on the actual town of Stull Kansas which is surrounded by Internet folklore proclaiming the town to be one of the seven gateways to Hell. Upload Films is executive producing and co-financing alongside new film investment company Midlife Crisis Productions.   
 Shaun Redick and Ray Mansfield of Movie Package Company negotiated the financing for the project and will executive produce.  CAA which is representing Slasher Films is helping package the movie and will represent North American rights.  CAA represents filmmaker Anthony Leonardi III and Thomas Haden Church.  Jackie Eckhouse of Sloss Eckhouse LawCo is handling negotiations on behalf of Slasher Films.   ,2818
Digital Effects Pioneer Scott Ross to Deliver SMPTE Keynote Address,2011-10-15,Digital media and visual effects pioneer Scott Ross will deliver the keynote address at the Society of Motion Picture & Television Engineers’ 2011 Annual Technical Conference & Exposition in Hollywood. Ross whose production teams won multiple Academy Awards for visual effects and founded and ran one of Hollywood’s premier digital production studios will discuss the current state of 2D-to-3D conversion as well as address the combined impact of globalization and technology trends on visual effects and the vital role of standards in this dynamic area of movie production. His keynote takes place October 25th at the Hollywood Renaissance hotel and conference complex. Ross is a founder and former CEO of Digital Domain and served as the general manager of George Lucas’ Industrial Light & Magic and as senior vice president of LucasArts Inc. He currently works as a professional consultant and producer and serves on the boards of multiple technology and entertainment companies. “Scott Ross saw the future of digital effects early on and is uniquely qualified to explain the motion-imaging research science standards and business models required for its thriving future ” says SMPTE president Pete Ludé. “We are thrilled to have him address our conference attendees.” The pioneering work in entertainment and technology of Ross spans three decades. Under his leadership Industrial Light and Magic won five Academy Awards for Best Visual Effects. LucasFilm was reorganized in 1991 as LucasArts Entertainment Group and Ross was named as its senior vice president. In 1993 Ross founded along with James Cameron and Stan Winston Digital Domain one of the largest digital production studios in the motion picture and advertising industries. Under his leadership as CEO the company won two Academy Awards including its first Oscar in 1997 for the groundbreaking visual effects in Titanic – as well as four Scientific and Technical Achievement Academy Awards for its proprietary software. Ross successfully sold the company to director Michael Bay and a group of private investors in 2006. The importance of visual effects to move studio revenue and industry employment is significant: the top 20 films of all time which comprise 35-45 percent of overall box office returns all relied heavily upon visual effects according to Ross. “Effects and world-class imagery will continue to be box-office drivers worldwide ” says Ross. “So it’s critical for the livelihood of everyone involved along the production chain to fully understand the impact of dynamic globalization and technology trends particularly on effects. SMPTE understands that standards can help accelerate industry growth as well as ensure U.S. competitiveness amid these trends – and that the next generation of digital tools will require the fusion of motion science and the creative vision of great storytellers.” SMPTE ,2819
Sony Envysion Form Theatre Surveillance Venture,2011-10-15,Sony's Security Systems Division and Envysion are teaming to provide video-based business intelligence services to movie theatres. This joint venture combines Sony's surveillance cameras and video analytics with Envysion's MVaaS technology to deliver instant and actionable business insights to a theatre's loss prevention operations marketing and human resources groups without straining the IT department or network. Envysion integrates video from Sony's cameras with an organization's business systems such as point of sale. This gives theatre operators the unfiltered visual context behind every transaction and customer interaction. Armed with this information users in every department of a cinema can identify new ways to improve theatre-level operating procedures marketing promotions employee training loss prevention investigations and other operating processes which can in turn lead to profit maximization. This transforms video surveillance from a niche security application into a strategic management tool that can contribute to improvement of a theatre's bottom line. The movie theatre industry is a perfect fit for this technology application says Mark Collett general manager Sony Security Systems Division. Our expertise as a pioneer in 4K digital cinema projection technology combined with our more than 20 years in the video surveillance industry makes this joint solution with Envysion a natural extension of Sony's digital cinema offerings and can also be tailored to other applications. This solution can help movie theatres leverage powerful video-based intelligence across the entire organization to gain a complete understanding of theatre-level issues impacting the bottom line says Gary Johns senior vice president of Sony's Digital Cinema Solutions Group. As a result what were once expenditures for security video become a valuable investment in a strategic business initiative. We are excited to announce our first joint solution with Sony says Matt Steinfort president and CEO of Envysion. This initiative will accelerate our ability to help the theatre industry achieve demonstrable profit impact similar to that realized by other Envysion customers such as Cinemark USA and Chipotle Mexican Grill. Our easy-to-use scalable MVaaS solution makes video a cross functional tool that empowers every user to drive improvements in his or her area of responsibility. Theatre managers can increase gross sales by ensuring an accurate mix of full price and discount tickets loss prevention teams can cut down on the cost of concessions sold by reducing shrink and HR can increase productivity by identifying employees with common traits including excessive ticket voids or above average transaction times which indicate the need for additional training. Envysion Sony Digital Cinema Solutions ,2820
Spacenet Mexico Launches Satellite Network,2011-10-15,VT iDirect has announced that Spacenet Communications Services de Mexico has launched an iDirect Evolution satellite network to distribute live HD content and digital movies to cinema complexes throughout Mexican cities. The network will provide connectivity from Spacenet Mexico's teleport where live content is down linked produced and then immediately redistributed to cinema complexes across the country. Spacenet Mexico purchased and installed an iDirect series 15100 universal satellite hub at its Mexico City-based teleport which complements its existing tier III+ teleport in Puebla. iDirect is a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology. Spacenet Mexico's Evolution network is designed to satisfy growing customer demand for an affordable broadband system for cinema and content distribution across Mexico and Latin America. To help attract new audiences and offer existing audiences more variety exhibitors in the region are looking to turn their cinemas into multi-arts venues that offer a range of live and recorded events. In addition to broadcasting movies Spacenet Mexico can use its network for opera sporting events and other HD content. The provider's first such transmission took place in May when it successfully broadcasted a live prime time Las Vegas boxing match in HD over the iDirect satellite network to 20 cinema complexes throughout Mexico. Expanding the content that is broadcast to cinemas beyond movies has proven to be an important revenue opportunity for exhibitors helping them gain new customers and grow their businesses. To support HD content and live programming needs it was critical for Spacenet Mexico to build a highly reliable and cost effective infrastructure for digital distribution. We chose iDirect for that reason and after initial broadcasts we are very pleased with the Evolution platform's capabilities says Joaquin Patron managing director Spacenet Mexico. For supporting heavy bandwidth applications such as HD video it's critical to have an efficient system to handle the steady traffic volume. Quality and reliability are also key especially when live content is being multicast to 20 cinemas each with hundreds of viewers. Evolution ensures that Spacenet Mexico can effectively meet its customers' needs while also expanding its services to new markets says Rob Kilroy regional vice president sales Americas iDirect. iDirect Spacenet Mexico VT Systems ,2821
SR Entertainment Group Installs 65 more Barco DLP Cinema Projectors,2011-10-15, SR Entertainment Group has installed Barco DLP digital cinema projectors on 65 screens in rapid succession completing all installations in just five days in sites across California. The latest series of installations is part of a long-term VPF agreement with Cinedigm comprising 81 total screens located throughout California. SR Entertainment selected Barco as its digital cinema projector provider in July 2010 beginning with a novel theatre concept at its Blue Oaks Cinema in Rocklin. This site holds the distinction of being one of the first theatres in the world to feature non-mezzanine auditoriums utilizing projector lift systems and remote controls to reduce construction costs and simplify operation.  

“Barco has done a wonderful job for us. We have been so pleased with their attentiveness to our needs at every level. The equipment works very efficiently and with their operator training we haven't had to worry about any down time ” says Dan Tocchini president and CEO of SR Entertainment. “They even introduced us to Larry Jacobson who built our Blue Oaks 16 without a mezzanine and other innovations with Barco projectors specifically in mind which has drawn curious exhibitors from around the world. In only a few months it's become an icon in the industry.” 

 The Barco installations include the full complement of digital cinema solutions including LMS servers automation and 3D. The deployment includes a wide range of Barco's fully DCI-compliant 2K and 4K projectors with Barco also providing turnkey installation services ongoing maintenance and proactive NOC monitoring. 

 “SR Entertainment is one of our most forward-thinking and creative customers. SR's selection of Barco clearly reflects a larger desire to future-proof their investment ” says Terri Westhafer director of business development for Barco's digital cinema division. “They have been receptive to new ideas designed to optimize their digital deployment partnering with us to develop our onsite manager training which is conducted right at their theater locations. We look forward to a long and happy relationship with them as their progress continues.” ,2822
MTI Film Selects T-Vips Video Gateways for Remote Color Correction and Daily Screening
,2011-10-15, MTI Film has selected a video transport system from T-Vips to facilitate remote collaboration of the 2012 revamp of TV's iconic Dallas series. Featuring old and new generations of the Ewing dynasty at Southfork Ranch the TNT show is also updating its post-production methods to enable real-time transport of show dailies between its Dallas studio and MTI's color correction facilities in Los Angeles. 
  Larry Chernoff CEO and founder of MTI believes that the inherent flexibility and cost-effectiveness of transmitting media over IP networks will soon be standard for post-production. He says For this show the producers want to screen and approve dailies in Dallas using our Remote Control Dailies system. They also want highly accurate color correction using our staff colorists in Los Angeles. It’s critical for our business model that MTI leverages its talent for more than one production at a time. So much production is now being done outside Hollywood we feel that remote image correction and dailies processing is the most efficient solution. 
 Chernoff predicts that as his customers begin to appreciate the benefits and ease of this approach the use of video delivery over IP for creative collaboration will skyrocket.
On the recommendation of its systems integrator Mercator Digital MTI purchased T-VIPS’ JPEG2000 Video Gateways. These compact 1RU models utilize JPEG2000 compression for robust transmission of HDTV (and SD) signals over Gigabit Ethernet with 10-bit video resolution at bitrates from 50Mbps to 200Mbps. T-Vips’ Video Gateways deliver visually lossless HD video with frame-by-frame encoding minimal latency flexible forward error correction error concealment ancillary data support and built-in redundancy while allowing user-friendly configuration as encoder or decoder. 

MTI’s new IP-based transport solution also represents a highly cost-effective option ensuring a more efficient workflow and reduced operating costs. Chernoff says We’ll devote roughly 50Mbps in each direction for the color correction on this project. The quality of the video provided by the T-Vips’ Gateway at this relatively low bandwidth was a major attraction for us. 
 Regardless of their location MTI clients can now review and discuss dailies in real time without waiting for tape delivery or file transfers. Each collaborator enjoys the same high quality accurate color reproduction at the same time just as if they were sitting side by side in the screening room. Using affordable IP-based networks the creative team can make key decisions without delay increasing productivity and reducing production costs. In addition to remote screening and approvals in the post-production workflow T-Vips Video Gateways are ideal for applications in professional broadcast contribution of live sports and events studio-to-studio media exchange remote production and in-house signal distribution. 
 Janne Morstol COO of T-Vips says It's our mission to equip our customers with the intelligent tools they need to move high-quality video efficiently around the globe. T-Vips dedicated to creating innovative technology that shrinks the distance between designers colorists producers and directors for a genuinely collaborative creative workflow.”