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Old 11-29-2008, 10:05 PM   #1
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Default NFL in 3-D

Coming at You! NFL Looks at 3-D
By SARAH MCBRIDE

With sports fans still getting used to their high-definition television sets, the National Football League is already thinking ahead to the next potential upgrade: 3-D.

Next week, a game between the San Diego Chargers and the Oakland Raiders will be broadcast live in 3-D to theaters in Los Angeles, New York and Boston. It is a preliminary step on what is likely a long road to any regular 3-D broadcasts of football games.

The idea is a "proof of concept," says Howard Katz, NFL senior vice president of broadcasting and media operations. "We want to demonstrate this and let people get excited about it and see what the future holds."

The several hundred guests at the three participating theaters Dec. 4 will include representatives from the NFL's broadcasting partners and from consumer-electronics companies. The event will be closed to the general public. Burbank, Calif.-based 3ality Digital LLC will shoot the game with special cameras and transmit it to a satellite. Thomson SA's Technicolor Digital Cinema is providing the satellite services and digital downlink to each theater, and Real D 3D Inc. will power the display in the theaters.



In the 2004 Super Bowl, 3ality tested its ability to film football in 3-D.

This isn't the first time the NFL has participated in a 3-D experiment. In 2004, a predecessor company to 3ality filmed the Super Bowl between the New England Patriots and the Carolina Panthers. When Sandy Climan, 3ality's chief executive officer, shows the footage, "people crouch down to catch the ball," he says. "It's as if the ball is coming into your arms."

Technology has advanced considerably since then, and now makes live transmission possible. Boxing in 3-D, Mr. Climan says, particularly "raises your blood pressure."

Real D, which has rolled out 3-D systems in 1,500 theaters around the world, has long advocated the transmission of live events to theaters in 3-D. "We look forward to giving fans of live events the opportunity to feel like they're in the front row," says Michael Lewis, Real D's CEO.

Some live events, including opera broadcasts and circus performances, already pop up on screens at theaters across the country.

Next week's demonstration will also include television displays, to show what might one day be available in homes. While 3-D television sets are already available in stores, mainly for the handful of DVDs available in 3-D, the industry is still working on technical standards for 3-D.

That process raises the possibility that 3-D TV sets purchased today might not be compatible with programs aired in a few years' time. Just as in theaters, home viewers must wear special 3-D glasses.

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Old 11-29-2008, 10:12 PM   #2
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Default Re: NFL in 3-D

Wow sounds sweet
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Old 11-29-2008, 10:19 PM   #3
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Default Re: NFL in 3-D

I wonder if it is going to be like Jaws-3D.. ;)
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Old 12-01-2008, 08:02 AM   #4
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Default Re: NFL in 3-D

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hapa View Post
Wow sounds sweet
and initially expensive as all get out.

Let's see where this is going:

1) Can barely afford season tickets
2) Can't afford Super Bowl tickets
3) It's only a matter of time before I can't afford the NFL at all
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Old 12-03-2008, 01:38 PM   #5
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Default Re: NFL in 3-D

Sounds awesome and all, but like truck said, It'll probably be too expensive for the common fan.

The NFL is really trying hard it's damndest to become a corporate sport. Our Steelers are a dying breed.
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Old 12-05-2008, 01:16 AM   #6
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Default Re: NFL in 3-D

So let me get this straight, it is gonna be like Frank Miller's NFL?...COOL!
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Old 12-05-2008, 08:15 AM   #7
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Default Re: NFL in 3-D

Thursday, December 4, 2008
Theatergoers enjoy 3-D NFL show, but problems remain to be worked out
Associated Press

LOS ANGELES -- The first NFL game broadcast to theaters live in 3-D fumbled, then recovered Thursday night.

Two satellite glitches blacked out the broadcast to theaters in Boston, New York and Los Angeles in the first half of the game between the Oakland Raiders and the San Diego Chargers.

And on a few occasions, a quick camera movement or a refocusing -- and one ill-advised dissolve -- had viewers pulling off their polarized lenses.

But the Los Angeles audience was mostly forgiving, in awe of a spectacle that had depth and in some instances gave the feeling of being on the field, especially for the opening coin toss.

"It's amazing," said Chad Ahrendt, a 35-year-old writer from Los Angeles who attended the screening in Hollywood. "Technically they obviously have a little ways to go, but once they work out all the kinks, it's definitely the new era of television."

John Modell, 48, co-founder of 3ality Digital LLC, the Burbank-based company that put on the show for the NFL, said the demonstration was a good learning experience, and that team owners viewing in New York and Boston had told him they were pleased.

"They're all knocked out," he said.

The NFL has not decided what to do with the technology, but the team owners' broadcasting committee will meet sometime before March to discuss it.

Howard Katz, the senior vice president of the NFL's broadcasting and media operations, has said the NFL is for now committed to free, over-the-air broadcasts if and when they adopt 3-D technology. Only about 2 percent of the nation's TV sets are equipped to handle 3-D broadcasts.

Fox Sports plans to broadcast college football's BCS National Championship game to 150 digital movie theaters in 3-D in January.

On Thursday, some systems at a Salt Lake City location had to be rebooted to restart the satellite feed and some camera crews performed pans that ended up leaving the viewers a bit cross-eyed, Modell said.

"Well, this is a test," he said. "It's a learning experience for the director and for the camera people how to shoot."

Some scenes clearly captured the benefits of 3-D broadcasts, however, such as an interception by Chargers linebacker Stephen Cooper as players crisscrossed the field, and a long touchdown catch by San Diego's Vincent Jackson with the arc of the ball caught on camera all the way.

Viewers were encouraged to text in their reaction to the viewing.

One of the first comments, according to the commentators: "More cheerleaders."

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