Sunday, October 15, 2017
HELEN MIRREN TO RECEIVE 2018 CHAPLIN AWARD
45th ANNUAL CHAPLIN AWARD
MONDAY, APRIL 30, 2018
Academy Award–winning actor Helen Mirren will be honored at the 45th Chaplin Award Gala on Monday, April 30, 2018.
Mirren has bestowed upon the world a series of iconic performances on stage, screen and television in a career spanning more than fifty years. The annual event will be attended by a host of notable guests and presenters and will include movie and interview clips, culminating in the presentation of the Chaplin Award.
“Ever since her debut in Michael Powell’s Age of Consent in 1969, Helen Mirren has been lighting up screens with one finely crafted performance after another,” said Lesli Klainberg, the Executive Director of the Film Society of Lincoln Center. “From her Oscar-winning role in The Queen to her brilliant work in The Long Good Friday, The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover, The Madness of King George, Gosford Park, The Tempest, The Last Station, Red, Hitchcock, Woman in Gold, and Eye in the Sky, she has shown her exquisite range and proven her commitment to excellence and the art of cinema.
Mirren began acting with the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1967, and over the past five decades has become one of the most respected and recognizable figures in multiple media. In film, she is perhaps best known for The Queen, though she has appeared in more than sixty films, with notable recent titles including Trumbo and The Fate of the Furious.
Upcoming films include The Leisure Seeker, Winchester, and The Nutcracker and the Four Realms.
In television she is best known for her role as DCI Jane Tennison in Prime Suspect, her Emmy-winning performance in Elizabeth I, and Phil Spector, for which she won Best Actress at the SAG Awards.
On stage, she reprised her role as Queen Elizabeth II on the West End stage and on Broadway in The Audience to acclaimed reviews, winning both an Olivier Award and a Tony Award. Mirren was awarded the prestigious BAFTA Fellowship in 2014 for her outstanding career in film.
"- Opening Monologue - Helen Mirren -- she's a dame -- (By the way, did you see her in the orgy scene in Caligula?)
- Helen Mirren's Titties & Helen Mirren in her Dressing Room --"Her titties exist in a place beyond space & time." -- What SNL was made for!"
The Film Society’s Annual Gala began in 1972 when it honored Charlie Chaplin, who returned to the U.S. from exile to accept the commendation. Since then, the award has been renamed for Chaplin, and has been presented to many of the film industry’s most notable talents, including Alfred Hitchcock, Billy Wilder, Laurence Olivier, Federico Fellini, Elizabeth Taylor, Bette Davis, James Stewart, Robert Altman, Martin Scorsese, Diane Keaton, Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Sidney Poitier, Barbra Streisand, Robert Redford, Morgan Freeman, and, last year, Robert De Niro.
For information about attending the gala, contact the Filmlinc Patron’s Desk at email@example.com or call (212) 875-5668. For sponsorship opportunities, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call (212) 671-4559.
Monday, October 02, 2017
Review: LUCIDCAM -- 180VR CAMERA
The LucidCam is a terrific, convenient camera for VR still and video photography. It produces high quality, state-of-the-art, 180VR format videos and stills. For several reasons, discussed below, this may be the most consumer-friendly VR format.
It costs only $499, making it the least expensive high-quality camera for 3D VR photography. This could be the camera that brings VR camcording to a mass audience.
It uses a pair of fisheye lenses to photograph the front hemisphere in 3D. The camera has front facing stereo microphones.
It weighs only 8 ounces, and is small enough to fit in your pocket.
It shoots mp4 video at either 1920 x 1080 (1K per eye or 2K total), 3000 x 1500 (called 3K) or 3180 x 2160 (4K per eye for an 8K video, called 4K in the App). It shoots with a variable frame rate that averages about 25 to 30 frames per second. The camera also shoots still 3D photos at 2160 x 4320 whichever resolution is set in the App.
Since it is only capturing a hemisphere, the 8K mode is twice the resolution of a camera that is 8K for the entire 360x180 4Pi full sphere. (However, it will be a while before most people have a viewing headset capable of displaying this resolution.)
It has a fixed, rechargeable battery. Photos and videos can be stored in the 24 GB internal memory or in a removable micro SD card.
The LucidCam can connect with Wi-Fi to a smartphone App. The App is used to select the resolution. It can also select whether the camera records with an equirectangular layout or a fisheye layout.
The camera also live streams the video (only the 2K mode, currently) to the smartphone. The App also allows updating the firmware, and provides a window into the battery status and the file storage. It can also be used to share the videos and photos.
The camera has a mini USB port, a mini HDMI port and a slot for a micro SD card of up to 32 MB. (It is probably a good idea to use a fast card: 80 MB/second or faster.) Content on the camera’s internal memory can be copied to a computer with the USB port, and content on the microSD card by putting the micro SD card in the adapter and placing that in the SD card slot of the computer.
The controls for shooting with the camera are very simple: there is a switch on top of the camera to turn on video or stills, and a button to take a still picture or start and stop a video.
I’ve dropped it and it still runs, so it seems pretty sturdy. It is a good idea to keep the camera covered when not being used, and to protect the lenses from dirt and scratches.
At 8K, the quality of the images is better than the current ability of consumer VR display devices to show them; so the videos will hold up well as the display technology continues to improve over time.
Processing and showing the videos is not hard, and we’ll discuss that below, along with shooting suggestions. This is a simple, convenient, solution for shooting state-of-the-art VR videos and photos. And it’s also currently the least expensive 3D VR camera.
SHOT WITH THE LUCIDCAM
+THE 180VR FORMAT
The LucidCam shoots the front hemisphere (180 x 180) in 3D, producing what are called 180VR videos. It shoots 180 degrees (half a panorama) horizontally and 180 degrees (from straight up to straight down) vertically.
By contrast, a 360 video (2D or 3D) shoots in all directions, all 360 degrees horizontally. A “360 video” will sometimes cut off the top or bottom of the view (or both) and show less than 180 degrees vertically. A full-spherical video that shoots the entire sphere surrounding the camera can also be called a 4Pi video because the surface area of a sphere is A=4πr^2 and 4π is called the solid angle of the surface of the sphere.
While, of course, it does not show everything around the camera, a hemispheric front facing video camera (like the LucidCam) has certain advantages over a full spherical camera.
First, it points directly at the subject of the image. When shooting 360 videos, one of the questions is where to let the main subject(s) be located: (Always in front? Wandering around? Popping up in back? Does the viewer freely discover action anywhere it might be in the circle, even behind the user; or is the user guided by audio or video cues to follow the action of the story?) These new questions about 360 videos and locating the subject are not necessary in 180VR.
Secondly, a full spherical camera with lenses pointing in all directions can be intimidating for subjects, or just passersby, who feel like they are swept up in someone else’s picture. Front facing alleviates some privacy concerns, and even some copyright issues (where a 360 camera can inadvertently pick up copyrighted images that are to the side or back of the camera).
Third, the fact that the image is limited makes it easier to apply some of the traditional camera techniques of cutting (even zooming! – although the LucidCam can only zoom through post-production editing software -- the LucidCam has a fixed F/2.2 aperture -- or by moving the camera closer or further from the subject, the VR180 format may also permit other methods of “zooming” including cutting to shots filmed with other cameras.)
The 3D 180VR image is immersive and realistic. Even though the format does not include the entire panorama, a seated user turning their head still sees a 3D scene covering their entire field of view (FOV), so it is still realistic and immersive.
Many people who view the video on YouTube or other sites may not be using a VR headset. When the video is being viewed in 2D (rather than in a 3D headset), if the main subject of the action being photographed is basically in front of the camera, then 180VR format generally looks better in 2D than the 360 video format.
Of course, if some of the important subject matter can be anywhere, front or back, then the 360 video format is necessary. If you need to shoot full spherical 3D videos, three LucidCam cameras can be connected in a triangular, six-lens rig that can be used to make 3D 360 full spherical VR videos. (I have not tried this option.)
The LucidCam is a first-generation product and it does have some problems. These are mostly annoyances that can be dealt with. Moreover, even with the current hardware, the supporting software is continually changing and improving.
The frame rate for the LucidCam videos is variable; different portions of the video may have different frame rates – this allows for the maximum flexibility in real time recording. However, Premiere Pro (and the current version of the LucidCam YouTube Converter), require a fixed frame rate in order to preserve the syncing of the audio to the video. The raw video can be processed with “Handbrake” to yield a fixed frame rate, but this outputs only 2160 x 1080 videos, even if the original video was 8K. FFMPEG or other converters may be able to convert variable to fixed frame rate for the 8K videos without losing resolution. (It should be noted that 8K resolutions is beyond the display capability of most VR display devices today.)
It sometimes requires several tries (or practice) to get the Wi-Fi connection established between the camera and the smartphone. Additionally, the button for starting Wi-Fi is very close to the shutter control. It is easy to shoot several random pictures or turn the video on by accident while trying to just press the Wi-Fi button.
The indicator lights are hard to see when shooting in broad daylight. It is sometimes necessary to cup your hands around the lights to block the sunlight in order to determine the status. Using the smartphone can sometimes avoid the need for looking at the lights. However, sometimes it is difficult to handle both the camera and the smart phone at the same time.
Holding the camera
Because the camera is small and captures the full hemisphere, fingers holding the camera can easily be captured in the image, (and a stray finger on just one side really trashes the 3D effect). It is necessary either to be very careful hand holding the camera, or use a selfie stick extending backwards from the camera so it is not in the image, or use a tripod.
LucidCam is quite good at providing personal support at email@example.com[*]. But it would be helpful to have a LucidCam forum to discuss “everything about LucidCam”, to have LucidCam staff providing and logging answers to questions as they arise, so many support questions will be already answered online, plus having other LucidCam users to help out and network with. More online tutorials will be helpful too. (We have some on the way from QPORIT, as well.)
Using the LucidCam is very easy. Turn on the camera to Picture or Video, press the shutter button for stills or to turn video on and off. Copy the result to the computer or the smartphone. A little processing, and you can share it.
It is not a good idea to let the camera wobble, or move randomly. Also, set it level to the horizon.
Be careful: avoid ledges and cliffs, cars, tripping hazards, and biting hazards (insects or bigger animals). Also, avoid copyright infringement; and get releases (when you need them) before you shoot.
For best results, keep your fingers out of the way: use a selfie stick or tripod to support the camera.
Speak clearly and naturally but reasonably loudly; make sure unwanted sounds (airplanes, music in the background, other people talking) are soft.
Often, keeping the camera at eye level with the subject is the ideal placement. With a single subject, keeping the camera at roughly an arm’s length works well. Since the camera has a fisheye lens, objects get much smaller very quickly as they get further away. (A herd of deer, for example, at the other end of a field may look like squirrels with short tails.)
Moderately long takes – longer than you would use with a standard movie camera – are recommended. Letting the user settle into experiencing the scene at their own pace helps the LucidCam provide the user the feeling of immersion and presence, the two most extraordinary aspects of Virtual Reality video.
Among the many fabulous uses of the camera are: recording life’s memories, and making creative fiction and non-fiction movies (which become more real and alive by using the exciting, realistic, and immersive presence of 3D images and a very wide field of view). Experiment with new applications!
Enjoy the LucidCam!
LUCIDCAM ON FACEBOOK
LUCIDCAM APP ON GOOGLE PLAYSTORE
[*] These links seem to be functioning as this article is being prepared for publication. The state of change and of hacking being what it is these days, everything online is subject to change or to hacking. Links are provided “as is”, with no guarantees. Treat every link with care and a protection plan.
Friday, September 29, 2017
NYXR - the New York eXtended Reality Meetup
We're planning the first meetup. It will include an overview of the interconnected world of XR, and a look in particular at cinematic XR, including XR camera reviews. More info soon.
Monday, September 04, 2017
Preview: HIFF 25 - THE 2017 HAMPTONS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
Sales start tomorrow, Tuesday Sep 5, 2017 for the Hamptons International Film Festival!
Here are some preview notes on some of the events, films, and people to expect at the festival…
Alison Chernick's ITZHAK
Andy Serkis’ BREATHE
11/8/16, curated and produced by Jeff Deutchman, which is directed by over 40 filmmakers and captures footage from across the country documenting Election Day.
Coodie Simmons and Chike Ozah’s THE FIRST TO DO IT, recounting the life of Earl Lloyd, the first African American to play in the NBA, which features interviews with NBA players Carmelo Anthony and Kawhi Leonard, and is executive produced by Anthony, Leonard, Tony Parker, Michael Finley & P.J. Tucker.
Ben & Orson Cummings’ KILLER BEES, a story that follows the local Bridgehampton High School basketball team and their community as they try to defend their state championship title, produced by Shaquille O'Neal and executive produced by Larry Gagosian.
Tiffany Bartok’s LARGER THAN LIFE: THE KEVYN AUCOIN STORY, profiling the professional and personal life of iconic makeup artist Kevyn Aucoin, featuring interviews with Christy Turlington, Naomi Campbell, Kate Moss and more.
Onur Tukel’s THE MISOGYNISTS, a narrative following the tales of characters coming and going from a hotel room on the night of the 2016 general election, starring Dylan Baker.
Brendan & Emmett Malloy’s THE TRIBES OF PALOS VERDES, a coming-of-age drama centering around the lives of a family who move to affluent LA suburb Palos Verdes, starring Jennifer Garner, Justin Kirk, Elisabeth Rohm, Goran Višnjić, teenage Maika Monro, and Joely Fisher.
Josh Klausner’s WANDERLAND, which was filmed on the East End, telling the story of a character escaping his isolated life only to find himself lost on a surreal, all-night musical odyssey of misadventures, starring Tate Ellington, Dree Hemingway, Ronald Guttman, Harris Yulin & Tara Summers.
Rob Reiner’s LBJ, with Woody Harrelson.
Vincent Gagliostro’s AFTER LOUIE, with Alan Cumming.
Alexandre Moors’ THE YELLOW BIRDS, with Toni Collette, as well as Jennifer
Aniston, Tye Sheridan, and Alden Ehrenreich.
Ai Weiwei’s HUMAN FLOW, a documentary on the worldwide migrant crisis.
Ruben Östlund’s THE SQUARE, with Elizabeth Moss and Claes Bang.
The US premiere of Atsuko Hirayanagi’s OH LUCY!
JULIE ANDREWS LIFE ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
ITZHAK – THE OPENING NIGHT FILM
VARIETY’S 10 ACTORS TO WATCH
AND… FOR A SAMPLE OF WHAT IT WAS LIKE AT HIFF’s IN YEARS PAST…
HIFF 2010 WITH PARTY PIX AND RED CARPET SNAPSHOTS
VARIETY - 10 ACTORS TO WATCH 2017
OCT 5-9 2017
The Hamptons International Film Festival (HIFF) has long been honoring young talent at special events during the Festival.
For many years, along with inviting great American actors such as Kate and Mara Rooney, and Emmy Rossum, they partnered with European Film Promotions (EFP), and had some of the leading young European actors, such as Alicia Vikander from Sweden, come to HIFF,. More recently, they have partnered with Variety to bring honorees of Variety’s 10 Actors to Watch to HIFF.
Here’s Academy Award winner Brie Larsen, one of Variety’s honorees in 2013, at HIFF a few years ago. (In 3D – best to watch with Daydream! Or Cardboard!)
Video by QPORIT
Last year Mahershala Ali (of Moonlight, House of Cards, and Hidden Figures) was one of the honorees who came to HIFF.
at HIFF 2016
Video from Variety
Here is Variety’s selection of the 10 actors to watch for 2017, some of whom are likely to visit the Hamptons and participate in a special panel discussion (usually on Saturday) and other events at HIFF.
We’ve included some of their current and future credits, and links to their IMDB info.
“Call Me By Your Name,”
Untitled Woody Allen project in 2018
“Hostiles” with Christian Bale
“Lady Bird” with Saorise Ronan.
Alexander Payne’s “Downsizing,” opposite Matt Damon.
“The Only Living Boy In New York”
Tony winner in “Hamilton,”
“Wonder” opposite Julia Roberts and Jacob Tremblay
“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
Producer on the upcoming ABC series “The Mayor.”
Bollywood films “Fukrey” and “Khamoshiyan,”
Fazal stars opposite Judi Dench in the upcoming Stephen Frears film “Victoria & Abdul.”
“Widows” from director Steve McQueen.
Terrorizes Colin Farrell and Nicole Kidman in “The Killing of a Sacred Deer.”
“Patti Cake$” and the upcoming
“White Girl Problems.”
Oscar buzz as co-writer and star of “The Big Sick.”
GRACE VAN PATTEN
Noam Baumbach’s Cannes hit “The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)”
“Under the Silver Lake” with Andrew Garfield.
Variety’s 10 Actors to Watch will be featured in the Oct 3, 2017 issue of Variety
HAMPTONS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
EFP – SHOOTING STARS
Thursday, August 31, 2017
HIFF 25 OPENS WITH “ITZHAK” (HB ITZHAK!)
Itzhak Perlman, born today, 72 years ago on Aug 31, 1945 (Happy Birthday, Itzhak!) is one of the great violinists of all time. He has played and recorded exceptional performances of the violin repertoire masterworks with the great orchestras and greatest chamber musicians of our time.
He is currently planning a performance tour this fall (see below for dates and venues).
It is most appropriate that this film is premiering at HIFF, for Itzhak has long been a resident of the Hamptons and, together with his wife Toby, has established one of the principal music programs for young musicians on Shelter Island.
Photo by Eric Roffman - QPORIT
ITZHAK PERLMAN - WIKIPEDIA
ITZHAK PERLMAN - IMDB
PERLMAN MUSIC PROGRAM
ITZHAK PERLMAN FALL 2017 TOUR
ITZHAK - IMDB
Alison Chernick is a filmmaker, with documentary films on artists Jeff Koons and Roy Lichtenstein, filmmaker Pedro Almodovar, artist/filmmaker Julian Schnabel, ... And many other films of many different types. Her films have been seen at the Tribeca and Berlin film festivals.
ALISON CHERNICK - IMDB
THURNAUER SCHOOL OF MUSIC
Thursday, August 24, 2017
TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE SUN
PHOTO BY ERIC ROFFMAN
Saturday, August 12, 2017
Teaser Preview: READY PLAYER ONE
Ready Player One is among the pre-eminent Virtual Reality teaser novels.
Here are some details about the film, now in production from Steven Spielberg:
Novel - Ernest Cline
Director - Steven Spielberg
Screenplay - Zak Penn, Ernest Cline
Hannah John-Kamen - F'Nale Zandor
Mark Rylance - James Donovan Halliday
T.J. Miller - i-R0k
Ben Mendelsohn - Nolan Sorrento
Tye Sheridan - Wade Owen Watts / Parzival
Simon Pegg - Ogden Morrow
Olivia Cooke - Samantha Evelyn Cook / Art3mis
Lena Waithe - Aech
Philip Zhao - Shoto
Win Morisaki - Daito
FULL CREDITS - IMDB
WIKIPEDIA - THE NOVEL
WIKIPEDIA - THE FILM
First week of #ReadyPlayerOne finished.
Surreal. It went to 11. Thanks for writing your book @erniecline and the assist in Oology
6:01 PM - 1 Jul 2016
Labels: Ernest Cline, F'Nale Zandor, Hannah John-Kamen, Mark Rylance, Olivia Cooke, Ready Player One, Samantha Evelyn Cook/Art3mis, Simon Pegg, Steven Spielberg, T.J. Miller, Tye Sheridan, Wade Owen Watts/Parzival
Thursday, August 10, 2017
HIFF 2017 (25TH ANNIVERSARY!) HONORS JULIE ANDREWS
The 25th annual Hamptons International Film Festival (HIFF 25) will take place over Columbus Day Weekend, October 5 - 9, 2017.
The Hamptons International Film Festival will honor Oscar®-winning actress Julie Andrews with a Lifetime Achievement Award as part of the festival’s 25th anniversary.
Well known for her defining roles on stage in “My Fair Lady” and “Camelot,” and her classic screen performances in “Mary Poppins” and “The Sound of Music,” the multi-talented and award-winning actress is a Kennedy Center Honoree (2001), a Disney Legend inductee and the recipient of the SAG Lifetime Achievement Award. She is a bestselling author of over 30 children’s books as well as the first installment of her autobiography, “Home: A Memoir of My Early Years” (2008) and is now working on the companion sequel.
Ms. Andrews just completed directing a hugely successful revival of “My Fair Lady” which is currently touring though Australia, and is the co-creator and star of “Julie’s Greenroom,” a newly released series on Netflix which teaches young children about the theater and the arts.
HIFF and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will co-present a special screening of “Victor Victoria” on Saturday, October 7th in East Hampton. The film, which stars Ms. Andrews, won the Oscar for Original Song Score and Its Adaptation -or- Adaptation Score. Ms. Andrews will participate in a post screening conversation with Alec Baldwin and a special award presentation with special guests.
Wednesday, August 09, 2017
Preview: OC4 - OCULUS DEVELOPERS CONFERENCE
Here's a preview from Oculus of the next developer's conference: October 11-12, 2017 (San-Jose):
- Building for a Global VR Audience
The top things to know about making your content successful for a global audience, including insights on user habits in specific regions. This lightning talk will dedicate 15 minutes to mobile and 15 minutes to PC.
Featuring Dan Morris, Head of Store
- From New Project to Social VR in 30 minutes
Social interactions are some of the most compelling and exciting experiences in VR. This workshop will show you how to leverage existing tools in the Oculus PC, Platform, and Avatar SDKs to get a social VR testbed up and running in Unity in no time.
Featuring John Bartkiw, Head of Platform, Development Engineering
- John Carmack’s App Critiques
In this annual, off-the-cuff live presentation, Carmack provides unfiltered feedback on everything from design to performance as the app is simultaneously streamed for the audience.
Featuring John Carmack, Chief Technology Officer
- Making Content Discoverable: Explore, Events, Search, and More
What’s Oculus doing to make developer content discoverable? This presentation will provide an overview of Explore, Search, Events, and all the tools we use to match people to content they’ll like and get your app to the right audience.
Featuring Shirley Ai, Product Manager and Christina Womack, Product Manager
- Mixed Reality Capture on Rift
We’ll demo how to use the Rift SDK’s new mixed reality capture support, which includes a tracked camera, proper in-game lighting, and more. We’ll also walk you through how to add mixed reality capture to your Unity, UE4, or native app.
Featuring Sim Dietrich, Rift Mixed Reality Tech Lead; Brian Sharp, Lead, Oculus Medium; andXiang Wei, Software Engineer
- VR Esports: The Future of Competitive Gaming
With its ability to revolutionize esports, VR could represent the final apex of gaming and spectatorship. Leaders from across the industry will discuss VR’s role in the industry and its effect on games, players, and fans—today and in the future.
Featuring Christopher McKelvy, Partnerships and Head of Esports
- What’s Working in Mobile Games
An industry vet with a career spanning Activision, PlayStation, and Kixeye, Oculus Producer Rade Stojsavljevic will be joined by speakers from Turtle Rock and Coatsink to provide an in-depth look at the state of mobile VR gaming.
Featuring Rade Stojsavljevic, Producer
For the second year in a row, we’ll celebrate industry progress across the gender divide at our Women in VR Happy Hour. Join us for a festive evening of community building with refreshments and DJ entertainment.
On the show floor, be sure to visit the Oculus Medium Gallery near the registration desk, where you can view digital sculpts made in VR and the 3D printed results. You can even get hands-on yourself with a Medium demo, or check out the mixed reality booth to watch professional artists do speed sculpts and character design.
Visit oculusconnect.com for details on applications and registration, travel, and accommodations, and stay tuned for more updates including new speakers, special guests, and exclusive events in the coming weeks.