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Immersive Cinema: Post-Coronavirus, Future of Cinema Industry

Immersive Cinema: Post-Coronavirus, Future of Cinema Industry

Immersive Cinema differentiates itself from traditional by creating an illusory environment with the help of immersive audio and sidewall projections. It breaks the fourth wall, which redefines and enhances your 3d experience. You still watch the movie on the main screen, but the immersive experience adds up to a fantastic effect on the side walls. It not only feels more interactive but in your peripheral vision makes you feel like a part of the movie. For now, all the cinemas are strictly closed around Australia, with some of them planning to reopen soon. Critics give the high sign, that the latest emerging technologies like immersive Cinema with 8D surround audio will help cinemas reach for the start of post-lockdown.

Immersive Cinema Post Coronavirus Future of Cinema Industry

There are still no signs of ending lockdown throughout Australia, and the cinemas are in a precarious condition. However, some big shots in the cinema industry are planning to reopen with the only certainty of reduced capacities. According to the new rule, only one person per four square-meter will be allowed. It means that the commercial viability regarding cinemas is still sitting on the fence for now.

It is not easy to give people confidence and comfort as the social distancing carries so much weight. New technologies and tools can play a crucial role for big players in the cinema industry to attract and facilitate people with compelling offers. Gone are the days when 3D was the most wanted feature that cinemagoers sought. Now the immersive cinema experience is becoming trendy, and one of a few claims about 3D that still holds water is the “Sumptuous 3D Experience”. As per James Cameron’s claim, you are not ready for that one-of-a-kind experience.

As the new technology like new generation, audio, and sidewall projections are rising, more and more cinema operators are investing humongous amounts of money in entertaining their watchers. Because the 8K video chip is still emerging, cinema operators are not rushing for it. That’s why new projectors that many cinemas are installing prefer tried and true 4K video chip, which is handier.

PSNC studio

Content is the Ultimate King

It is a well-known fact that no matter how advanced the media and technology is the last aspect is the content, As the PSNC’s (Poznan Supercomputing and Networking centre) new head Maciej Glowaik says “the content is the king.” PSNC is also a partner of the EU-funded project, which is committed to bringing the new tools and technology for immersive media next generation.

Many experts think that the 3D trend is slowly dying from the cinemas, and the remains of it are only confined to the big spectacle and blockbuster movies. If it is eventually going to happen, then the next generation, immersive Cinema, is undoubtedly the next big thing. Come rain or shine, it will make its way throughout the Australian cinema industry, and it seems that COVID-19 can work as a turning point.

New Experiences and Technologies Impending

The Cannes Festival which has been happening in Cannes, France since 1946, is cancelled for 2020 due to the outbreak of COVID-19. If it had happened as scheduled from 12th to 23rd of May, it would have been an excellent opportunity to get a clearer picture of the future of immersive Cinema. The European Commission initiated the framework program by Horizon 2020 with several research organisations and manufacturers. The five years of collaborative work and efforts regarding immersive Cinema under the umbrella of this program were to be showcased at the Cannes Festival.

The main features of this next-generation immersive media are as follows:

  • High-Resolution Video
  • User Interaction
  • Ultra-wide Vision Field
  • Spatial Sound

Now the partners and manufacturers involved in this program are taking alternative ways to publish and present their latest findings. Even without their representations, it was apparent and evident that they have done a lot of innovative work to push the limits for immersive media next generation. According to the latest words directly coming from Maciej Glowaik, all of the five working partners in the Horizon 2020 program collectively worked primarily for the following features:

  • 8K Videos
  • Video coding
  • Laser Scanning
  • 3D Imaging

Maciej Glowaik added that not only have they collaborated with artists with interactive streaming, but they also brought the very first 8K screening in Cannes with experimental content.


Future of Cinemas

The Horizon 2020 team considers the next generation and the latest technology jump in the immersive media. It will define the future trends of cinemas. Cécile Dumas is a project officer at Marché du Film, which is one of the Immersify team members, and it is also a business part of the Cannes Film Festival. According to her, the immersive cinema experience is one of the most compelling reasons to visit cinemas. She adds that not only the immersive cinema experience, many venues will also be experimenting with VR content, which is by far the most interactive media experience.

The Immersive partners have also mentioned in their conversations and interviews that they are also working on 12K, 16K, 360 degrees immersive videos, next-generation VR, and ambisonics format surround sound.

Australia is in the Game

Just like the other major parts of the world, the immersive cinema experience has already been started in a few big cinemas in Australia. There is already a debate that it will take over, and it is the future of all the theatre experience.

Hoyts Cinemas expereince

With that said, it seems that the future of immersive media is very bright and full of surprises. Moreover, even in these days of lockdown, the cinema operators in Australia are not leaning back, such as HOYTS Cinemas equipped with seats having reclining motion.

As new video technology is on the way, the Hoyts Cinemas in Australia provide an amazing immersive experience with the collaboration of D-BOX technologies. The news about the VR experience in Hoyts Cinemas has been circulating on the internet for a long time. It’s just a matter of a little time before the lockdown lifts up, and the next generation of Immersive Media is unleashed.

Latest Trends to Come in Immersive Technologies

Roland Haring is the technical director of Ars Electronica Futurelab, which is yet another member of the Immersify team. He says that in all the immersive technologies, the most prominent problem or hurdle that we have is the single-user approach or at most for a very few people. According to him, the Immersify team is trying to provide collective experience to multiple groups of 50 to 100 people where they can interact with each other limitlessly. Ars Electronica Futurelab has already made an installation called “Deep Space 8 Environment,” which has a 6x9m wall, a 16x9m floor, 3D animations, laser tracking, and 8K resolution. You can also watch a movie called “Ready Player On” for better understanding.

Final Words

If the COVID-19 outbreak had not happened, the development and the progress for the renewal of infrastructure in the cinema industry contained a very high probability. Now the experts suggest that when the financial cycle of Australia restarts, the cinemas will reopen come rain or shine. However, it is going to be a very uncertain and unbalanced decade economically beyond anyone’s expectations. For that matter, it is now expected that not only the big cinema players but also the small cinema operators will invest more in the next generation of sidewall projections and immersive audio systems to keep the cycle running.


Written by The Original PC Doctor on 29/6/2020.

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