Movie theaters have transformed over the past five decades from glitzy palaces displaying larger-than-life images to banal mall destinations with digital projection. But what will the movie theater of the future be like — and how will we experience projected images decades from now? In a guest post from Tribeca Film’s “Future of Film” blog, filmmaker and visual artist Andrei Severny imagines the movie theater of the future in which “cinema will quite literally start to merge and replace real life.” It’s a thrilling and terrifying idea. Read some of his thoughts below:
gradually move away from looking at a rectangle of light in a dark room and
evolve into large-scale public attractions becoming urban theme parks, where
cinema is only part of the experience. However, the most immersive forms of
cinema will play individually at one’s wish outside of both theaters and
displays. There will be a merging of gaming and movies. First, through
technologies emerging today – flexible screens, motion controls, haptic – or
tactile – technology, smart glasses, virtual and augmented reality. The merging
of real and projected worlds will produce a seamless experience – a complete illusion of being part of a film. We may reach a moment when the real world will
businesses will have stories, characters, sequences and scenes attached to them
when one visits, all stored as potential experiences designed to increase one’s
relationship to the place. Every location or object will contain massive
amounts of recorded information ready for playback….
A truly dramatic
change will come once scientists discover a way to manipulate senses directly
through the brain. That is when cinema will quite literally start to merge and
replace real life. In the new, enhanced reality people will visit other
planets, venture deep into the oceans and inside volcanoes, or travel in time,
all from wherever they happen to be. Software and sometimes robots will explore
the unreachable physical world instead of people to collect real-time data and
feed human senses. One will be able to choose between real-life exploration or
a fictional quest with chosen characters. Since memories will be recorded, one
would be able to include anyone they have ever encountered, including favorite
celebrities or fictional heroes.
The border between
reality and fiction will fade and some people will live most of their lives in a
profoundly manipulated world. People’s thoughts, experiences and behavior will
lie in the hands of those in charge of the software. Marketing and politics are
likely to pollute the system, but laws of enhanced reality voted on by the
majority via the internet will come to the rescue. Humans will face challenging
questions of identity. As always, there will be renegades who will try to stay “unplugged.” However, the disadvantages of opting out will overcome most.
Read Severny’s full story here.