National CineMedia Introduces AudioTrax

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Mon, 09/13/2010 - 20:00 -- Nick Dager

NCM Media Networks has developed a network of devices called AudioTrax to measure audio levels in its FirstLook pre-feature program. 
The patent-pending AudioTrax sound monitoring device has been designed by NCM engineers to ensure that the audio volume levels of NCM's FirstLook are true to the content's creative vision. The devices will provide sound level data in real-time throughout the day to NCM's Network Operations Center located in the company’s Denver headquarters allowing NCM’s staff to work directly with theatre corporate personnel to address any audio issues.
 We believe this is the first time that a national media network can measure not only if an ad is playing but also measure if the sound is right for our theatre patrons says Cliff Marks president of sales and marketing NCM Media Networks. AudioTrax adds yet another layer of accountability for NCM clients and theatre operators ensuring that we not only deliver high quality video images but also the powerful audio experience for which our big screens are known.” 
 With hundreds of AudioTrax devices already deployed in select major markets NCM will continue to install devices throughout 2010 and 2011 in nearly 6 000 select movie theatre auditoriums across the NCM Cinema Network primarily in theatres owned by AMC Entertainment Inc. Cinemark Holdings Inc. and Regal Entertainment Group. This initial deployment will provide NCM with the ability to take sample measurements of audio volume levels heard by over 50 percent of its audience nationwide. Because NCM’s AudioTrax only measures sound levels and does not distinguish or record audio content (such as dialogue or conversations) individual patron privacy and film copyrights will be protected.
 National CineMedia ,1961
SMPTE Fall Conference Focuses on Entire Digital Media Ecosystem,2010-09-14, The SMPTE 2010 Technical Conference and Expo and a special-pre-conference seminar will provide an opportunity to gain insights from industry leaders and experts about the latest research affective the communications media and entertainment industries – as well as technologies and tools for monetizing new opportunities across the entire digital media ecosystem.The conference is being held October 26-28.
  Staged at the Hollywood Renaissance Hotel and adjacent Mann Theatre in Hollywood California the gathering will feature three days of technical sessions a high-tech exhibition hall and an opportunity to network with hundreds of thought leaders from motion-picture studios broadcast and cable networks software companies production and post-production houses systems integrators manufacturers and display technology and distribution providers.   The special pre-conference seminar on October 25 will feature experts in digital technologies who will address specific production workflow challenges in multiple delivery and display environments pre-purposing content for the growing number of screens large and small and innovative new distribution approaches such as IP-based over-the-top TV. 
 Keynote speakers to date include Chris Carey executive vice president worldwide technical operations at Paramount Pictures on Tuesday for the industry luncheon which is sponsored by Paramount and Clyde D. Smith senior vice president global broadcast technology Turner Entertainment Networks on Thursday at the Fellows luncheon which is sponsored by Warner Bros. 
 SMPTE ,1964
XDC Rising Alternative Sign Deal for European Digital Distribution Services,2010-09-14,Digital cinema service company XDC has signed a cooperation agreement with Rising Alternative a pan-European alternative content distribution company to provide in Europe digital mastering and distribution logistical services for their alternative content programs. The agreement signed between XDC and Rising Alternative covers the technology cinema services required for the distribution of content in digital file format to digital screens installed in Europe. We are very proud to have been selected by Rising Alternative as its technology partner in continental Europe. This results from our successful track-record for three years with Emerging Pictures with over 35 digital titles processed by XDC digital content lab says Alexandre Weiser content services sales director XDC. We are used to serve a lot of cinemas all over Europe. Besides the digital mastering we also offer added-value services like extranet applications Network Operations Center services and a multilingual helpdesk available all the day and all the week. The collaboration with XDC Europe's leading provider of digital cinema technology services is a logical choice in expanding the digital cinema distribution of Rising Alternative's programmes. No other company has the experience and record of excellence in performance that XDC has demonstrated over the years says Giovanni Cozzi president of Rising Alternative. Fabrice Testa vice president sales and business development XDC says We know Giovanni and his team for a while and we are really happy to enhance our cooperation with them. Today alternative content programs have demonstrated that they can largely contribute to an expansion of the cinema revenues. For sure the superb content catalogue from Rising Alternative will offer amazing experiences on the big screen. ,1966
Band Pro Marvin Sign Exclusive Sales Agreement,2010-09-30, Band Pro Film & Digital has signed an exclusive sales agreement with Marvin Technologies to sell Marvin systems in the United States Germany Switzerland and Austria. Those systems are already being used in the field on an 80-day shoot for the Dutch miniseries Lijn 32 to automate the creation of backups LTO tape masters QuickTime proxies for offline editing and DVD dailies. This year we have been taking a good hard look at the direction our industry is going says Amnon Band president of Band Pro. With the growing use of data cameras like Red and SI-2K data management is becoming as important as the camera used to capture it. Marvin is a natural result of this transition and is perhaps the simplest most elegant solution available. Band Pro is positioned to lead this movement and Marvin is one of the products that will take us there.

 Marvin supports the Red One Silicon Imaging SI-2K ARRI D21/Alexa Panasonic P2 Phantom and Weisscam HS-2 cameras. The system is housed in a 4U housing with a padded case and controlled through a simple browser GUI running on a laptop computer connected via ethernet.

 After entering the settings for a new project Marvin automates the rest of the process saving filmmakers countless hours of manual data wrangling and effectively eliminating the risk of human error. When removable media from the camera is attached to the system Marvin creates verified copies of every shot to its own internal RAID5 storage array. The system then generates multiple verified LTO copies of all of the shots from the day along with DVD dailies and QuickTime files for offline editing.

 Says Gerhard Baier managing director of Band Pro Munich “We are excited about adding Marvin to our product line-up. New technology demands new tools and Marvin is the data management solution that many Red owners and data camera-based productions have been waiting for.”

“We’re delighted to be working with the team at Band Pro to make Marvin available to filmmakers rental houses production companies and camera owners in Europe and the US ” said Adam Welsh general manager of Marvin Technologies. Band Pro Munich Marvin Technologies  
Third Bel-Air Film Festival runs from October 14-19,2010-09-30, The 2010 Bel-Air Film Festival now in its third year will take place from October 14-19 with screenings held at the UCLA James Bridges Theater. Each day of the festival will feature dedicated events including a Film Panel and Lounge Comedy Night British Night and an Indian Bollywood themed evening. The festival will be presenting 58 films including 35 world premieres and 12 Los Angeles premieres. 
  “I am thrilled and excited for the Third Annual Bel-Air Film Festival. Our Line-up of films are incredible and this is the best year yet ” Melody Storm president of Bel-Air Film Festival.

 A special Gala and showcase will honor Brian Austin Green with the Best Actor Award where he will introduce Los Angeles premier of his short film Turning Japanese. Mark Rydell will receive the Legendary Filmmaker Award presented by Katharine Kramer. Kathy Najimy best known as Peggy Hill from the cartoon series King of the Hill will be honored with the Best Actress Award and introduce the Los Angeles premiere of the documentary The Last Elephants in Thailand. The evening also includes a Los Angeles premiere for the documentary Katrina Cop In the Superdome. Tickets and festival passes can be purchased online at ,1971
Carmike Screenvision Extend Relationship,2010-09-30,Carmike Cinemas has extended its existing relationship with Screenvision for a 30-year term. In addition to its regular periodic payments throughout the term of the agreement Carmike will receive a cash payment of $30 million in January 2011. Carmike will also receive an approximately 20 percent ownership interest in the growth of Screenvision. We have been a business partner of Screenvision for over twenty years and we plan to be a partner for many more says David Passman president and CEO of Carmike. Adding an ownership interest to our already excellent business relationship is an exciting opportunity for Carmike's shareholders to benefit in the growth of Screenvision. In addition although still in its early stages we expect alternative content to play an increasingly important role in further enhancing capacity utilization of entertainment complexes and with its growing digital footprint and extensive distribution network we believe Screenvision continues to be the right partner for Carmike. Carmike is a technological innovator in the exhibition industry and our partnership has only become stronger with this agreement says Darryl Schaffer executive vice president exhibitor relations at Screenvision. The extended exhibition agreement is effective upon closing of Carmike's acquisition of the ownership interest in Screenvision which is expected to be this month. Carmike Cinemas Screenvision ,1974
Dickinson Theatres to Upgrade 25 Sites,2010-09-30, Dickinson Theatres will use its Cinedigm Phase 2 deployment financing to begin installing 250 digital cinema systems at 25 sites immediately. One half of the installations are anticipated to be complete in the next 12 months. Dickinson will celebrate its 90th anniversary in November 2010 with its first digital cinema screens up and running.  These newly transitioned screens will allow Dickinson to bring 3D movie extravaganzas live sports programming 3D concert films event programming and much more to the audiences it serves across ten states.

 We have been looking forward to working with Cinedigm on our digital cinema program and are excited to be moving forward says John Hartley president and CEO of Dickinson Theatres. Not only do they provide the best transitional services but their leadership bringing high quality alternative content and live 2D and 3D events to theatres confirms that we'll be bringing the best to our audiences.  

 We are delighted to reaffirm our partnership with Dickinson Theatres says Chuck Goldwater president Cinedigm Media Services Group.  They bring a personal touch to their dedication to their customers combined with an excellence in operations that has earned them an outstanding reputation in the markets they serve.  With digital cinema they will extend that dedication even further with a greater variety of exciting programming options for their customers. Cinedigm ,1975
Deluxe EchoStar Announce Joint Venture,2010-09-30,Deluxe Digital Cinema and EchoStar Satellite Services have announced the formation of Deluxe/EchoStar a joint venture to build an advanced digital cinema satellite distribution network targeting delivery to digitally equipped theaters in the U.S. and Canada. EchoStar Satellite Services has developed a strong partnership with Deluxe one built on a common foundation of superior service and innovative thinking says Dean Olmstead president of EchoStar Satellite Services. Deluxe/EchoStar marks the next evolution in theatrical distribution and exhibition and gives distributors and movie theaters confidence in partnering with a proven digital cinema network. We began testing sites around the country with EchoStar about a year ago to determine how best to develop the network says Cyril Drabinsky president and CEO Deluxe Entertainment Services Group. The results confirmed that delivering feature films through our satellite network would provide optimum quality and reliability for our customers and present an open platform for easily accommodating a variety of digital delivery services. Deluxe Entertainment Services Group EchoStar Satellite Services ,1977
Facing the Storm Premieres at Kansas Film Festival,2010-09-30,The world premiere of Facing the Storm: the Story of the American Bison will be held at the Kansas International Film Festival on October 2. The film is an ITVS/Montana PBS co-production. Facing the Storm is the account of our tempestuous relationship with the iconic symbol of wild America.  It explores the visionary quest to protect and restore bison and details the inextricable relationship of the Plains Indians with the animal. The film also recounts the harrowing near destruction of the species in the late nineteenth century – from an estimated 30 million bison to a mere 23 animals by 1885. It graphically exposes the annual slaughter of bison outside of Yellowstone National Park where the largest genetically pure herd remains in semi-captivity. Finally the film explores the epic vision and monumental obstacles to restore bison to immense tracts of the Great Plains. This involves a dramatic transformation of how we understand the Great Plains - from a utilitarian world view to a fully-functional ecosystem that combines a lost culture with modern ecological science and contemporary economies and includes the full range of original species that have been largely vanquished from the region.    High Plains Films ,1980
IFTA Names New Officers,2010-09-30, The Independent Film & Television Alliance has announced its new executive committee and board of directors. The elections were held as part of the IFTA’s annual members meeting. 
The seven-member executive committee is headed by IFTA chairman Lloyd Kaufman (Troma Entertainment) who was re-elected last September and is serving the second year in his term.   Newly elected executive committee members are Richard Guardian (Lightning Entertainment) vice chairperson; Avi Lerner (Nu Image) vice chairperson/finance; Mark Lindsay (Arclight Films) vice chairperson; and Elisabeth Costa de Beauregard Rose (Lakeshore Entertainment) chairperson/IFTA export alliance.

Continuing in the second year of their two-year terms are Pierre David (Imagination Worldwide) as vice chairperson and Brad Kembel (Summit Entertainment) as vice chairperson/secretary.  
 Elected to new terms on the board of directors are Steve Bickel (Orpheum Communications); Nicolas Chartier (Voltage Pictures); Mark Damon (Foresight Unlimited); Clay Epstein (The Little Film Company); Kim Fox (Inferno Entertainment); Tatyana Joffe (IM Global); Tony Kandah (Hollywood Wizard); Brian O'Shea (Affinity International); Wendy Reeds (Lionsgate); Mimi Steinbauer (Hyde Park International); and Lisa Wilson (GK Films). 

 Continuing in their board positions are: Paul Hertzberg (Cinetel Films); Jay Joyce (Artist View Entertainment); Nicole Mackey (Fortissimo Films UK); Almira Malyshev (Screen Media Ventures); Bobby Meyers (Meyers Film Entertainment); Charlotte Mickie (Entertainment One); Barbara Mudge (Worldwide Film Entertainment); Michael Ryan (Sequence Films); and Adam Wright (Vision Films). 
Kirk D'Amico (Myriad Pictures) and Brad Krevoy (Motion Picture Corporation of America) will serve as alternates for the 2010-2011 term.
 Kaufman says “This outstanding cross-section of international film and television leaders will provide invaluable guidance and expertise over the coming year. The Association is very fortunate.”

 The Independent Film & Television Alliance ,1981
Kodak Back in Digital Cinema with Laser Technology,2010-09-30,A year or so after apparently abandoning its efforts in the digital cinema market Eastman Kodak Company has developed laser projection technology that the company says delivers both 2D and bright 3D images within today's stringent technical standards for digital motion picture presentation. Kodak is currently demonstrating a prototype projector. So far reaction has been tremendous says Les Moore Kodak's chief operating officer for digital cinema. In addition to producing a wide range of colors the Kodak laser projection technology offers wide dynamic range deep blacks and a bright 3D image display. I think people see this technology as a potential game-changer for digital projection. According to Moore the technology is a key ingredient to potential improvements in digital cinema picture quality for future moviegoers. This technology offers the potential for a reduction in total cost of ownership through a cost-conscious design combined with the efficiencies gained through using laser illumination systems including lower energy consumption and the anticipated long lifetime of lasers. Kodak is currently in discussions with potential licensing partners. Kodak continues to be a leader in the entertainment industry says Kim Snyder president entertainment imaging Kodak. We're driving revolutionary improvements in digital cinema projection technology that can significantly improve the theatrical experience for the moviegoer – especially in 3D – the range of available tones and colors for the creative community and the cost of ownership for the exhibitor. ,1983
Laser Light Engines Secures Funding Names Bob Lambert to Board,2010-09-30, Laser Light Engines has closed in $13 million in financing from returning investors Braemar Energy Ventures and Harris & Harris Group and from current strategic partner Imax. LLE will use the funds to accelerate expansion of its product development engineering and marketing organizations. The company will also develop a custom version of its laser engine for use in Imax digital projection systems. The explosion of 3D and digital cinema worldwide has projector manufacturers and ultimately exhibitors looking at our high-brightness light source to replace traditional Xenon arc lamps and solve the brightness issues associated with 3D presentation says Doug Darrow CEO Laser Light Engines. We will continue growing our business with the current round of financing now closed and look to add to our list of strategic and equity partners that include industry leaders such as Braemar Harris & Harris and Imax. In related news Laser Light Engines has named Bob Lambert to its board of directors.  Lambert served as a senior executive of The Walt Disney Company for 25 years. “Bob Lambert is a seasoned industry veteran and one of the most knowledgeable experts in 3D digital cinema technology and the overall entertainment industry—all of which will play an integral role in our growing company’s future success ” says Darrow. “Bob will be instrumental in helping LLE continue zeroing in on the entertainment industry market opportunities available through our market leading ultra-high brightness laser light source.”
 Lambert was a founder and served as chairman of DCI LLC the six-studio digital cinema consortium that has successfully pioneered the transition of more than 10 000 theatres from film to digital worldwide.  In his role as a digital cinema industry leader he served as a co-author of Understanding Digital Cinema a comprehensive resource on all aspects of finishing distributing and displaying film digitally.
Laser Light Engines has created a technology breakthrough for digital cinema and the entertainment industry Lambert says.  I'm looking forward to help the company deliver an environmentally friendly illumination innovation that will improve the quality of movie presentation and drive continued differentiation of the theatrical experience. The patented LLE system produces red green and blue primaries from the same laser. The company says its technology eliminates the speckle artifact from all three primary colors. Part of the Imax experience is to ensure the best picture quality possible on our largest screens said Brian Bonnick executive vice president of technology Imax. Laser Light Engines' technology will not only enable the highest brightness large format digital 3D presentation in the world but also drive additional image quality advances. ,1984
Library of Congress Discovers Lost British TV Treasures 
 ,2010-09-30, The British gave Americans the Beatles James Bond and Shakespeare. The Library of Congress is returning the favor by repatriating a treasure trove of TV programs that represent Britain’s golden age of television. Considered lost for more than 40 years the programs include footage of some of the biggest names in entertainment including Sean Connery Maggie Smith John Gielgud Robert Shaw David Hemmings and Susannah York. In an unprecedented collaboration between the Library of Congress and British Film Institute the two largest archives of film and television in the world more than 68 rare recordings from 1957 to 1969 will be returned to the United Kingdom. This marks the Library’s first-ever repatriation of television programs to another country and the largest such repatriation in history.   These programs represent a key period in British television. 

The vintage television programs were discovered in the Library’s National Educational Television Collection. NET was the forerunner of the Public Broadcasting Service which donated its film and video holdings to the Library via flagship station WNET/Thirteen in New York. For many years NET imported a host of British teleplays and comedies which were included in more than 20 000 reels donated to the Library.

In the archival world television repatriations are exceedingly rare ” says Mike Mashon head of the Library’s Moving Image Section. “We’re delighted to make high-quality preservation copies of these programs at the Library of Congress Packard Campus for Audio Visual Conservation and share them with the BFI and the British public. In the meantime we’ll keep looking for more lost shows.”

 “The BFI’s Missing Believed Wiped campaign to recover the lost treasures of British television history has been going for 17 years now but this is by far the largest and most significant collection of programs we have found both in terms of the quality and the vintage of the titles concerned ” says BFI senior curator Steve Bryant. “We are very grateful to WNET-TV for having the foresight to donate them to the Library of Congress to the Library for preserving them and now making them available.”

 Many of the programs reflect adaptations of literary classics including works by Shakespeare Ibsen and Chekhov.  Highlights include Sean Connery and Dorothy Tutin in a rare BBC production of Colombe (1960) by Jean Anouilh; Maggie Smith and Robert Stephens in Much Ado About Nothing stage-directed by Franco Zeffirelli (1967); Leonard Rossiter and John Le Mesurier in Dr. Knock (1966); and Rudolph Cartier’s drama about Rembrandt (1969).   The earliest production among the programs was Ibsen’s The Wild Duck in 1957.  The roster of recovered dramas also includes episodes of The Wednesday Play Thursday Theatre and Play of the Month.