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April 2004 Issue

Vol. 2, No. 4

3-D Review is your headquarters for information about new stereoscopic products from around the world.

3-D Review does not sell any of the products featured on our Web pages. You can order directly from the vendors using the links or addresses provided.

Hal Lifson's 1966!

Hal Lifson's 1966! cover artHal Lifson's 1966!, a personal view of the coolest year in pop culture history, is a must read If your were a child in the 1960's. This book also introduces today's audiences to the fun side of the 1960s and, especially for those of us who were there, brings back many memories of growing up. Although not in 3-D or about 3-D, the book's cover art uses a View-Master® reel design to depict 14 pop icon images from 1966.

Hal Lifson's 1966! is a nostalgic look at the creative toys, food, fashions, TV, movies, music that Lifson experienced while growing up in southern California. Lifson's childhood mirrors that of many children that grew up during this time when nearly every kid played basketball with the neighbors, kept a transistor radio under their pillow at night or pretended to be Batman.

In fact, Adam West, who portrayed the Caped Crusader, wrote it best in the foward to the book, "You'll enjoy reading Hal Lifson's perspective on one of the most engrossing and fun years of the twentieth century. Filled with rare photos and unique anecdotes, this book promises to take you on a terrific trip to Hal's favorite place."

Photos of Hal's personal collection of 1966 memorabilia fills the book. Editor's note: I was amazed at how many items featured in this book are also in my own personal collection. My guess is that Hal probably has much more in his collection than featured in the book, though.

Pull out those favorite old View-Master® reels at the same time you read this book and you'll be amazed at how many of the most popular View-Master® TV titles are tied to 1966.

  • The Munsters
  • The Addams Family
  • Star Trek
  • The Green Hornet
  • The Monkees
  • Batman
  • Lost in Space
  • The Time Tunnel
  • Family Affair
  • Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea
  • The Man from U.N.C.L.E.
  • Flipper
  • Daktari
  • The Beverly Hillbillies
  • Mission: Impossible
  • The Lucy Show
  • Dark Shadows

Hal Lifson is the former manager/publicist to some of the 1960s biggest icons like Adam West, Julie Newmar, Raquel Welch and Nancy Sinatra. Hal is currently radio oldies KRTH's "Retro Man" on Friday mornings where listeners call in to try to stump him with 60's trivia.

Hal Lifson's 1966! also has a companion CD (sold separately) with View-Master® reel artwork on the cover. ISBN # 1-56625-182-6. The 219-page softcover book, published by Bonus Books, is priced at $24.95. Find out more at www.hallifson.com.

Batman vs. Catwoman: Catfight Show and 3-D Ride at Six Flags, New Jersey

Batman vs. Catwoman: Catfight 3-DSix Flags Great Adventure and Wild Safari, America's largest regional theme park in Jackson, N.J., introduce a spectacular new action-adventure show, Batman vs. Catwoman: Catfight, a new 3-D simulator ride and major park enhancements to mark its 30th anniversary.

The only show of its kind, based on the DC Comics superhero Batman, Batman vs. Catwoman: Catfight features the Dynamic Duo, Batman and Robin, as they battle to save Gotham City from the evil clutches of Catwoman and The Joker in this all-new, high-voltage adventure.

Six Flags Great Adventure also launches a new 3-D simulator ride. Debuting April 3, this new ride will deliver a nonsensical, fast-paced adventure for all ages.

Honoring the parks' past 30 years and looking ahead to a vibrant future, Six Flags Great Adventure and Wild Safari undergo a multi-year refurbishment program beginning in 2004.

The theme park nearly doubles in size its private catering facility, and enhances all existing catering pavilions. Other theme park renovations include improvements to all 15 restroom locations, new landscaping, theming and a state-of-the-art sound system upgrade.

Last season's major new addition, Superman - Ultimate Flight, premieres a new gift store at the ride's exit. The park is also adding new high-tech games and attractions, shows and concerts.

At the Safari, guests can explore the newly designed Monkey Jungle and see two new, giant anteaters in the South American section. The Safari debuts a new educational program for schools, Safari Journeys in Learning, that features outreach, private bus tours and hands-on exhibits.

Six Flags Great Adventure and Wild Safari open April 3, 2004.

3-D Thursdays at The Film Forum in New York March 4 through April 8, 2004
Harold Lloyd's 3-D Nudes Extra Added Attraction on April 8 at 7:20 Show

The Film Forum 3-D Thursdays logoThe Film Forum, a non-profit cinema since 1970, is presenting brand new 35mm restorations of several classic Columbia feature and short 3-D films in the double-system 3-D format. The "3-D Thursdays" run from March 4 through April 5, 2004, at 209 West Houston Street in New York City.

The film schedule includes 3-D showings of Drums of Tahiti, Fort Ti, Gun Fury, Jesse James vs. the Daltons, The Mad Magician, Miss Sadie Thompson, The Nebraskan, Man in the Dark, Pardon My Backfire, Spooks and The Stranger Wore a Gun.

As an extra added attraction to the final 3-D program on April 8, the Film Forum presents a selection of movie legend Harold Lloyd's stunning 3-D photos from the 1950s. An avid amateur shutterbug, Lloyd was a leading pioneer in 3-D photography and one-time president of the Los Angeles Stereoscopic Society.

From the 1940s to the 1960s, he took almost 100,000 3-D photographs, including Hollywood stars like Roy Rogers, Jayne Mansfield and Marilyn Monroe, as well as hundreds of young women, most of them nude. A new collection of these photos by Lloyd, Hollywood Nudes in 3-D, will be published in October by Black Dog & Leventhal.

Greg Dinkins, director of the New York Stereoscopic Society, will present a selection of Lloyd's 3-D slides, both nudes and stars, during the intermission of the 7:20 screening of Miss Sadie Thompson on Thursday, April 8.

The Harold Lloyd Trust and Suzanne Lloyd, grand-daughter of Harold Lloyd, are making these slides available. Harold Lloyd™ is a trademark and service mark of The Harold Lloyd Trust.

National Stereoscopic Association National Convention to be held July 7 - 12, 2004, in Portland, Oregon

NSA 2004 logoThe Cascade Stereoscopic Club is thrilled to be hosting the 2004 National Stereoscopic Association National Convention in Portland, Oregon. Portland is a beautiful city, set in the pristine northwest. With so much natural beauty around, it is no wonder that CSC members are so excited about 3-D photography!

"The convention in 2004 is designed to allow more time to enjoy old friends, new acquaintances and the activities in a more relaxed atmosphere," said Diane Rulien, chair of the 2004 NSA Convention. "Our goal is for you to have fun and go away with great memories, new friends and a lot of film to develop and mount."

Planners are hoping that the scheduling will allow participants to see and do as much as they want without missing a thing. With this in mind, the official activities will begin on Wednesday, July 7, when the stereo theatre will open and workshops will begin. CSC is planning a social event on Tuesday evening for those who arrive early. Of course there will be room-hopping beginning Wednesday evening.

For more information, visit the CSC Web site has a special NSA 2004 Convention page where you can sign up for the convention online. The Web site has information about the hotel, Portland, registration and other forms, convention schedule, contacts, online forums, trade fair, auction, stereo theatre, workshop proposal, 3-D competition, advertising, tour information, exhibitions and displays, product competition and more.

Wonderfalls TV Series Features View-Master®-Like Scene Transitions

Wonderfalls Web page. Image copyrighted by Fox Broadcasting Company.Wonderfalls is a new Fox Broadcasting Company show airing Thursday night. Wonderfalls production is highly original and creative. Each scene is edited so it appears to be emitted from a View-Master®. The Fox Broadcasting Company Wonderfalls Web site even has animated View-Master®-like reel graphics.

Wonderfalls is the story of a woman who, with the help of an outside supernatural force, performs acts of kindness and helps strangers to improve their lives. Does this new show from Fox sound like Touched By an Angel? How about Joan of Arcadia? The difference between Jaye Tyler, Wonderfalls leading lady (Caroline Dhavernas) and angels with an affinity for physical contact or modern day martyrs is that Tyler doesn't want anything to do with the metaphysical or supernatural.

Tyler is an overeducated, underqualified woman stuck in a menial job as a cashier for a tourist shop at Niagara Falls. Not that she minds. In the pilot episode she remarks that her parents work hard and are still dissatisfied with their lives. Tyler figures she can be dissatisfied with her life by hardly working at all.

Her life changes when a wax lion suddenly advises her not to give a customer her change back. Shocked, Tyler attempts to ignore the lion and gives the customer her $5. Minutes later, the customer's purse is stolen. Tyler discovers that she can hear voices. Whether the voices are from God, Satan or who knows where, they all come from objects and knickknacks that are shaped like animals.

The monkey statue in her psychiatrist's office tells Tyler it loves her. A trio of synthetic representatives from the animal kingdom serenades Tyler with a throaty rendition of 99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall. Tyler discovers that if she does not follow the commands of her hallucinations, they will not stop talking, chatting and/or singing.

The problem is the animals do not simply tell her to help people. They use her as a vessel to set things in motion that will eventually lead to happy endings.

In the pilot, what starts off as an attempt to return the stolen purse to the customer ends with her setting up the neighborhood UPS man with a nurse. The reason the UPS man was in the hospital? Tyler had set up a date between the delivery man and her own lesbian sister. Due to a mishap involving an allergy to peanuts, the delivery man is put in the hospital where he meets the new love of his life - his nurse. Meanwhile, Tyler's sister finds love of her own in the UPS man's ex-wife. Twisting plots that begin in one spot and end in a way few people would predict help drive the nature of the show. Each episode is a puzzle with audience members attempting to piece together the larger picture.

What saves the show from becoming preachy is the biting sense of humor in the script. Clever dialogue and bizarre situation pieces are reminiscent of early Tim Burton films. Each show hosts a cache of bizarre actors.

Tyler's family attempts to help their wayward member, but they are ultimately clueless.

The acting is all highly watchable. Dhavernas' performance as Tyler is a joy to watch. Imagine an adult version of MTV's Daria and you will have Tyler, swimming through life on the back of a giant life preserver constructed of sarcasm and cynicism.

Wonderfalls is a clever show with great potential. Expect future shows to continue in the fashion as Tyler, righting wrongs, protesting all the way. Hopefully, the larger mystery of the voices that torment Tyler will slowly be revealed as the series progresses. As long as the writing stays as top notch as it currently is and the actors and funky editing style continue to evolve and grow, Wonderfalls may easily become Fox's best new show.

Consumer Electronics Show 2004 holds 3-D seminar

On Friday, Jan. 9, attendees of the 2004 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas had the opportunity to go to a one hour seminar about emerging new 3-D display technologies. Going Deep: 3-D Displays featured a discussion about the 3-D technologies that will soon radically alter the way we watch the burgeoning multimedia universe.

One of them is a retinal-scanning display from startup Microvision Inc., which paints extremely high-resolution images directly onto your retina as you look through an optical assembly akin to a digital-camera viewfinder. Meanwhile, Sharp is perfecting a 3-D display technology that does not require the user to wear anaglyphic glasses. Sharp's technology could start popping up in the next year in everything from cell phones and PDAs to computer monitors.

Finally, a revolutionary new technology from LightSpace Technology Inc. creates actual "solid" images in a portable-television-sized cube, allowing viewers to see all sides and angles of an image, as though it were simply encased in a glass box. The surfaces of the images can be solid, textured, translucent, or "wire-frame.

The panel includes moderator Harry Goldstein, Senior Editor of IEEE Spectrum, Alan Sullivan, President and CEO, LightSpace Technologies, Inc., Ian Matthew, 3-D Business Development Manager, Sharp Systems of America , and Stephen Willey, President, Microvision.

Playtone and IMAX® 3-D Space Film Lifts Off Into Production
Tom Hanks Presents Magnificent Desolation, an IMAX® 3-D Film Celebrating Man Walking On The Moon For Release In 2005

PlayTone LogoIMAX® Corporation in association with Tom Hanks' and Gary Goetzman's Playtone announced that the newest IMAX® 3-D space film, Magnificent Desolation, will be sponsored by the renowned aerospace company, Lockheed Martin. The highly anticipated film, which will be shot in giant 15/70 format using IMAX® 3-D cameras, will allow moviegoers to experience walking on the moon alongside the extraordinary voyagers who have stepped upon its surface.

Tom Hanks commented, "We went to the Moon. Everyone knows that. We, by proxy in the form of the Apollo astronauts, flew up into the sky, sailed to the Moon and landed on Luna Firma. What we know too little of is what we did while we were there. Magnificent Desolation takes the audience to the surface of the Moon, to the Ocean of Storms, the Fra Mauro Highlands and the Taurus Littrow Valley, as well as Sea of Tranquility as only IMAX can. Exploring the Moon was humankind's most incredible roadtrip. Our film will bring along anyone who wants to take that giant leap for themselves."

"We believe Magnificent Desolation holds the potential to be extremely successful given the exciting subject matter and Tom Hanks' passion and creative vision. The film will be designed by Playtone and IMAX® to play at both commercial and institutional IMAX® theatres for many years," said IMAX® Co-CEOs and Co-Chairmen Richard L. Gelfond and Bradley J. Wechsler. "We are thrilled to partner once again with Lockheed Martin, which together with NASA and IMAX® have created one of the highest grossing large format film franchises, featuring space films that have cumulatively grossed more than $350 million."

"For nearly 20 years, Lockheed Martin has teamed with IMAX® and NASA to produce films with the goal of educating and inspiring young and old about the wonders of math, science and technology through the prism of space," said Dennis Boxx, Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications, Lockheed Martin Corporation. "And through our newly formed partnership with IMAX®, NASA and now the creative team headed by Tom Hanks, a new generation will be enticed by the excitement and drama the astronauts of the Apollo program brought into our homes as they dared to dream of space and set foot on the lunar surface."

"NASA is proud to collaborate with Playtone, as well as continue our successful relationships with IMAX® and Lockheed Martin," said Glenn Mahone, Assistant Administrator for Public Affairs at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "Tom Hanks' enthusiasm for exploration is clearly evident in his previous productions that chronicle NASA's remarkable history, and we believe Magnificent Desolation is a wonderful opportunity to capture the interest and curiosity of the next generation of explorers."

Magnificent Desolation, to be produced by Hanks and Goetzman of Playtone and by IMAX®, will detail the life-changing experience of the 12 men who walked on the moon by showcasing what these men saw, heard, felt, thought and did while on the lunar surface. The 45-minute IMAX® 3-D feature documentary will be directed by Mark Cowen, Emmy Award nominee for the documentary film We Stand Alone Together: The Men Of Easy Company (a.k.a. Band of Brothers), and supervised by Greg Foster, President of Filmed Entertainment, IMAX® Corporation. Cowen is also producing, along with Mark Herzog. Magnificent Desolation will break new ground with never before seen photographs, CGI renditions of the lunar landscape and previously unreleased NASA footage. The film's content will be based on "The Lunar Surface Journals," a massive archival database compiled over the last decade by Dr. Eric Jones, which chronicles the moon walks as recounted by the astronauts. The film will be brought to life in both IMAX® and IMAX® 3-D on screens up to eight stories tall with 12,000 watts of pure digital surround sound for exclusive release to IMAX® theatres in 2005.

Magnificent Desolation is a continuation of IMAX's space film legacy and its unique production partnership with Lockheed Martin and NASA. IMAX® space films have been seen by more than 85 million people and played in more than 15 languages worldwide. The most recent collaboration between Lockheed Martin, NASA and IMAX® was the extremely successful release of Space Station, an IMAX® 3-D film released in April 2002, which has grossed nearly $70 million in box office and continues to play in theatres worldwide.

Eastman Kodak Announces Plans to Introduce a new 3-D Display without needing to wear Special Glasses

Kodak logoKodak's Stereoscopic Imaging Display, currently in prototype, could be used in technologies ranging from video games to molecular and chemical modeling. The company is looking for technology partners and early-stage customers. It aims to license the product for integration into third-party products and systems.

This is the first initiative from the company's new Ventures Group. Kodak, long a mainstay of the traditional film photography industry, is trying to reshape itself as a provider of digital imaging technology.

To get its 3-D effect, the display makes use of a wide field of view and virtual images from two high-resolution liquid crystal display screens, Kodak said. The desktop device has a field of view that measures 45 degrees by 36 degrees and a 1,280-by-1,024-pixel resolution.

"Unlike other 3-D imaging systems, which rely on a barrier screen placed over an existing monitor, the Kodak display is an entirely new concept," said Lawrence Henderson, vice president of Kodak Ventures Group.

Last year, several high-technology companies, including Sony and Sanyo, unveiled a consortium to create technical and safety standards for 3-D displays, desktops, laptops and cell phones. Sharp at the time was already selling a cell phone with a 3-D screen in Japan and showing off a notebook that could play a 3-D version of the video game "Quake."

The aptly named 3-D Consortium was founded by a group of five Japanese manufacturers that have started to develop technology for screens where two-dimensional images stand out like holograms. The consortium had been discussed in the past but until now had not been formally fleshed out.

"We're definitely looking at larger form factors," said Greg Nakagawa, senior vice president of Sharp Systems of America. "This year might be a good time" for larger devices.

The consortium will look at a variety of issues. One of the first subcommittees will examine establishing methods for tweaking software applications so that they can take advantage of 3-D screens. Hardware input-output specifications will be the subject of another subcommittee.

Health and safety will also be a concern, Nakagawa added. Three-dimensional monitors consist of two TFT panels separated by a parallax barrier. Each eye receives a slightly different image, which creates the illusion of depth.

While objects in the background do not pose problems, viewing objects in the foreground can cause the eyes to shift back and forth rapidly. "As you get closer and closer, there is more eye strain," Nakagawa said. Other companies participating in the consortium include Microsoft, Kodak and Olympus.

Curve Doubles Viewing Angle of 3-D Displays

Although three-dimensional screens have been around in different forms for decades, they generally have downsides. Some types require glasses, and those that don't usually cannot be viewed from much more than a 15-degree angle or are fairly dim.

Researchers from Seoul National University in Korea have showed that using curved lenses doubles the viewing angle of three-dimensional integral imaging systems without sacrificing brightness.

The technique could eventually be used for three-dimensional billboards and three-dimensional television, according to the researchers.

Integrated imaging systems project sections of images through an array of lenses. The sections are combined, or integrated, at a point in front of the display to produce a 3-D image. These displays have a limited viewing angle because the image sections must be wider the farther they are from the center of the display, and can be only so wide before they overlap.

The researchers' prototype uses a lens array that is curved rather than flat. This increase is the viewing angle because the lenses are angle around the viewer, which helps keep the image sections proportional.

There is some work to be done before the method is ready for prime time, however, according to the researchers. In order to present an image free of gaps between image sections, the screen must be slightly curved as well. Technologies like plastic electronics and electronic paper are poised to deliver flexible screens.

The technique could be used in applications like three-dimensional advertising displays within two to four years. Three-dimensional television systems are at least a decade away, according to the researchers. The work appeared in the Feb. 9, 2004 issue of Optics Express.

View-Master® 3-D Pictures Used at Point-of-Purchase (1953)
This classic View-Master® story from the 1950s is courtesy of www.paintbynumberz.com

View-Master® Paint by Numbers Display(Toys and Novelties Magazine - September 1953) --- The B. F. Besman Company, western distributors of Craftmaster and Masterpiece oil painting sets, has introduced a unique View-Master display which shows in full color, third dimension, the complete selling story on "Painting By the Numbers." The point-of-purchase display is electronic and enables customers to see how simple and enjoyable it is to paint a beautiful picture in oils the first time they try. The unit is light, compact and simple to operate. With a flick of the finger, the prospective customer pulls down a lever and can immediatley change from one scene to another. The dramatic realism of 3-dimensions and full-color Kodachrome film puts the viewer right smack into the scene being viewed. The Besman Company is offering the presentation to their retailers and jobbers, and dealers are invited to write for complete information.

The display's introduction at the Do It Yourself Show in Los Angeles recently, proved to be an overwhelming success. It was estimated that as many as 80 per cent of the people visiting the Craftmaster exhibit went up to the display and gave themselves a preview of America's most fascinating hobby.

"Now that the three-dimensional rage is sweeping the country with films from all of the major Hollywood movie studios, more and more commercial concerns are taking advantage of the medium of 3-D pictures and are having us make up stereo kits showing their products, services, installations, and manufacturing operations," according to Sidney Brawer, president of Tri-Ads Company, Hollywood, producers of the View-Master pictures and displays.

"3-D seems to put a certain quality of "merchandising magic" into any sales presentation, which makes it very popular with distributors, dealers, and their sales organizations," says Mr. Brawer.

Waldsmith 3-D Auction to be held May 1, 2004 Update icon

Steroe Views book coverA 3-D Auction being held as part of the 3-D Stereoscopic Weekend is starting at 7 a.m. on May 1, 2004 at the Holiday Inn Fairlawn/Akron, Ohio. John Waldsmith, the collector's auctioneer, will hold an auction of stereoscopic photographica, stereoviews, stereo cameras, Tru-Vue, View-Master® and stereo cameras and equipment. A preview of the auction starts at 6 a.m.

Some of the highlights of the auction include scarce Gold Center Foil View-Master® reels, Civil War stereo view cards and more. The auction will accept telephone bids until April 30 and e-mail bids until 6 a.m. eastern time on May 1.

A full color catalog is available for $4 by mail or $2 at the auction site.

3-D Review Online Magazine Wins Godzilla Planet Award

3-D Review Online Magazine logoThe staff of 3-D Review Online Magazine is proud to announce they were recently notified that the Web site is the first recipient of the Godzilla Planet Award. 3-D Review Online Magazine won the award for its October 2003 Halloween Issue. The issue featured several stories about 3-D related Godzilla movie projects. "The 3-D information and photos featured in 3-D Review Online Magazine were fascinating," according to Godzilla Planet Web master Jason Hanson. The staff and management of 3-D Review Online Magazine appreciate this honor.

3-D Review Online Magazine received the first ever Godzilla Planet Award in February 2004 in recognition of 3-D related stories about Godzilla movies featured in the October 2003 issue.

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