September 2013

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1939's Wizard of OZ gets 3-D Treatment

Wizard of OZ 3-D deluxe Blu-ray set from Amazon.

Wizard of OZ 3-D Blu-ray back cover art.

To celebrate the 75th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz, Warner Bros. has launched a comprehensive, cross-divisional campaign encompassing theatrical, home entertainment and consumer products.

The three Warner Bros. divisions, IMAX® Corporation and the TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX will host the Sept. 15 world premiere of the film’s first-ever IMAX® 3-D release at the grand opening of the new TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX, the largest IMAX auditorium in the world and the first IMAX theatre in Hollywood. Formerly known as Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, the facility was the site of the film’s original Hollywood premiere in 1939. An exclusive one-week IMAX® engagement at the new theatre and in more than 300 IMAX theatres across North America follows, beginning Sept. 20. To wrap it all up, the Toronto International Film Festival will show The Wizard of Oz in IMAX® 3-D on Sept. 15 at the Scotiabank IMAX Theatre in Toronto.

Following the IMAX® theatrical release from Warner Bros. Pictures, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will debut on Oct. 1 a limited and numbered The Wizard of Oz' 75th Anniversary Collector’s Edition, which will consist of a five-disc set including Blu-ray™, Blu-ray 3-D™, DVD and UltraViolet™ versions of the film. It will be packed with extras, including documentaries, memorabilia and collectibles.

Hours of extra content including

  • Sing-a-long feature with the film.
  • Complete Magic Cloak of Oz silent shorts (60 min).
  • All-New Feature Length Documentary The Making of the Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
  • The Dreamer of Oz TV Special (101 min).
  • Munchkins at the Hollywood Walk of Fame Featurette (20 min).
  • Patchwork Girl of Oz (60 min).
  • Six hour MGM Documentary When the Lion Roars (exclusive to Blu-Ray).
    ...and more

Exclusive Promotional Items

  • 52 page Hardcover Photo Book.
  • Ruby Slippers Sparkle Globe.
  • Collectible Diploma, Heart and Courage Award Pin Set by The Noble Collection.
  • Journal.
  • Frameable Map of Oz.

Amazon exclusive Promotional Item

  • 4GB Wicked Witch of the East flash drive.

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Gretchen Gruber observes View-Master® 75th anniversary and birthplace at Oregon Caves National Monument

View-Master 75th anniversary at Oregon Caves ad.

On Aug. 24, 2013, Gretchen Gruber, went to the Oregon Caves National Monument, but the Portland resident anticipated an emotional experience when she toured the southern Oregon icon.

Her father, William Gruber, invented the View-Master®. "It took a serendipitous meeting at the caves in late summer 1938 to start the ball rolling," she said. Gruber, 63, had never been to the caves,. “But that’s where View-Master® all started."

At 11 a.m., to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the unique invention, Gretchen Gruber visited the caves with her husband, Mark Wogsland, and told the story of how a chance meeting led to the creation of the View-Master®.

“My father and mother, Norma, went there on their second honeymoon and it was their very first trip to the caves," said Gruber, one of three siblings. A mechanical and optical engineer, he was also working on a couple of inventions including a special device to produce three-dimensional pictures. "He was carrying two Kodak Bantam cameras mounted two eye-widths apart on an aluminum tripod while visiting the caves," his daughter noted.

Gretchen Gruber, who has written a book about her father, said “At the end of the tour was a tourist attraction called the ‘Wishing Stone. My mother rubbed it and wished something would happen with William’s invention. About 10 minutes later, Harold Graves, president of Sawyers Inc., an Oregon postcard manufacturing company based in Portland saw Gruber's camera rig and started talking. The conversation continued late into the night as they roughed out plans about how to put Gruber’s invention into production.

“It was an instant success when it was introduced at the 1939 New York World’s Fair," she said.

A plaque commemorating the meeting is planned to be erected sometime in 2014.

View-Master Oregon Caves National Monument packet art.

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Help me Obi-Wan Kenobi...Has Skype Developed Live 3-D Holograms in a Lab?

Has Skype developed 3-D video-call technology that could lead to have a realistic physical body-double in a remote meeting with the ability to look around the room, turn to a colleague and have a side conversation? Apparently they have looked at 3-D screens and capture in a lab but the capture devices are not there yet for real world applications. Multiple cameras will need to be positioned correctly on a computer and accompanying projection technology to make it work.

Microsoft's corporate vice-president for Skype, Mark Gillett, told the BBC, "We've done work in the labs looking at the capability of 3-D screens and 3-D capture. We've seen a lot of progress in screens and a lot of people now buy TVs and computer monitors capable of delivering a 3-D image. We have it in the lab, we know how to make it work and we're looking at the ecosystem of devices and their capability to support it in order to make a decision when we might think about bringing something like that to market."

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Metallica Through the Never 3-D movie makes its U.S. Premiere on Sept. 17, 2013

Scene from Metallica Through the Never 3-D.

The members of legendary rock group Metallica are set to appear and unveil a new 3-D film at the Rafael Film Center Sept. 17 as part of a kick-off event for the 36th Mill Valley Film Festival.

James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett and Robert Trujillo will attend the U.S. Premiere of their new 3-D feature film Metallica Through the Never, which combines live footage from the band's arena performances with an adventure story following Trip, a young roadie sent on an urgent mission during Metallica’s live set in front of a sold-out arena.

North America theatres will debut the film on Sept. 27 exclusively one in more than 300 IMAX theaters and expands to additional theatres on Oct. 4.

A screening of the film will be followed by an onstage interview and Q&A with all four Metallica members at the Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center located at 1118 Fourth Street in San Rafael, California.

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It Came From Outer Space 3-D hits the silver screen again

It Came From Outer Space lobby card image.

Patrons at specialty theatres across the United States seem to have a blast watching classic 1950s 3-D movies on the silver screen. That opportunity came to the Shandaken Theatrical Society in Phonecia, New York, on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013 when It Came From Outer Space was projected in 3-D!

The 1953 classic directed by Jack Arnold stars Richard Carlson, Barbara Rush and Charles Drake. The movie tells the tale of alien invaders descending upon a peaceful desert community and taking over the minds and bodies of the residents. Only a brave photographer can save them.

This was the second time the Society held a 3-D night. Last year, The Creature from the Black Lagoon was presented to a thrilled audience.

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Meta 1 uses Kickstarter to Raise Money for Production of 3-D Augmented Reality Interface

Meta 1 headset.

Remember those 3-D interfaces in films like Iron Man, Avatar and Minority Report? Developers are working to make it a reality. The Meta 1 Developer Kit has the power to finally deliver a natural interface between the virtual world and reality. It's creators recently used Kickstarter to raise $194,000 to start production of the hardware.

Meta 1 developers are integrating customized hardware components and building a robust SDK (software development kit). Meta 1 is the most advanced and affordable interface for augmented reality and they want every developer to have the opportunity to create the apps of the future to help support the platform.

Partnerships, investment and timing have allowed Meta 1 to deliver this hardware/software kit to developers for $750. Some of the possibilities include allowing 3-D filmmakers the ability to move a rock, tree or other element with the movement of their hand, creating a virtual vase with your hands, or having a shooting match with your friends using virtual rayguns. The toy industry will love it if they can make it affordable as the technology advances and apps are developed for the hardware.

Meta 1 predicts the end of using flat computers is just around the corner by opening up the virtual world and meshing it with the real world.

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DDD wins Two Awards from International 3-D Society

DDD logoDDD Group announced its Yabazam® and TriDef® 3-D Mobile apps each won a prestigious 3-D Product of the Year award from the International 3-D and Advanced Imaging Society.

The Society is the industry trade organization for content creators and professionals whose mission is to develop the arts and technologies of 3-D, advanced imaging and its innovators. The Best 3-D Products of 2013 award is given to outstanding new 3-D products in the marketplace that are driving the industry forward. The Society's 3-D Technology and New Products Awards will be held Sept. 18 at Paramount Studios in Hollywood.

The Yabazam 3-D app is a free download for Samsung and LG 3D TVs, which account for more than 40 percent of the 3-D TV market. In July 2013, the app was also introduced to the Google Play store for Android™ 3-D tablets. It streams free 3-D movie trailers and offers more than 80 titles for viewing with a monthly subscription in the U.S. and on a per title rental basis in 16 additional countries. Earlier this month the Yabazam app topped 1 million 3-D streams.

Launched in 2009 as the first online portal to offer high definition 3-D movies for PC users, Yabazam was designed to overcome the lack of 3-D content available to viewers and the lack of distribution available to 3-D content creators. The app was launched in 2012 and has been downloaded 470,000 times and now exceeds 2,000 user sessions per day.

The TriDef 3-D Mobile app is a comprehensive 3-D content solution for glasses-free 3-D smartphones and tablets. It automatically converts videos, photos and games from 2-D to 3-D, providing unlimited 3-D entertainment. More than 60 of the latest popular Android mobile games are supported, including Angry Birds, Blood and Glory and Cordy. It also enables access to the library of original 3-D programming available from Yabazam.

Chris Yewdall, Chief Executive of DDD, said, "We are honored to receive this prestigious award and for our achievements to be recognized by the Society. The success of our Yabazam and TriDef 3-D Mobile apps proves there is a healthy consumer demand for 3-D programming. Importantly, our over-the-top delivery bypasses the challenges faced by traditional broadcasters in delivering 3-D content to the home."

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One Direction: This is Us 3-D Movie Hits Theatres

One Direction This is Us poster art.

One Direction's feature-film debut 3-D documentary One Direction: This Is Us follows Harry, Louis, Liam, Niall and Zayn backstage, at home and on the road, and comes to the conclusion that the five lads are pretty nice.

"These boys are so charming and so fantastic, I challenge you to go to the movie and not like them after the film is done," said director Morgan Spurlock. "Part of the reason they've been so incredibly successful with their fans is that they are so incredibly grounded and normal, and that's what comes off in the movie. You see five guys who are the same five guys they were three years ago."

The five teenagers auditioned individually for TV talent show The X Factor, three years ago. Producer and judge Simon Cowell had the idea of putting them together as a boy band. They didn't win the competition, but did go on to top the charts and win young hearts around the world with their cheeky personalities and ever-so-slightly edgy pop.

Part concert movie, part behind-the-scenes documentary, This Is Us follows One Direction on the road, from London to Tokyo to Mexico City. It shows the group up close, personal and in 3-D.

Spurlock was given access to the band members' families as well as to the band members themselves at home, in hotel rooms, in stadiums and on tour buses.

Spurlock was drawn to the movie by the chance to experience the closest thing to what Beatlemania was in the 1960s. "They are chased by hordes of fans everywhere they go. There were 5,000 people camped outside the hotel in Mexico City. It was incredible to see."

"Because so much is happening to us you kind of just lose it all," said band member Louis Tomlinson. "It's great just to sit back and watch it back and remember and relive those moments."

Band mate Liam Payne said making the film had been "nerve-racking." But the lives of the five young men have become so surreal that the experience of being filmed offstage and even in bed was almost normal. "It was really strange having the cameras around, but at the same time it didn't make that much difference," said Harry Styles. "It was kind of just getting on with your day while having someone in your way when you're trying to get out the door."

One Direction: This Is Us opened in Britain Aug. 29 and in the United States Aug. 30.

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World 3-D Film Expo III is Sept. 6 through 15 in Hollywood

3-D is coming poster.The World 3-D Film Expo III is scheduled for Sept. 6 through 15 at Grauman's Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood. Here is the line up of 3-D films on the schedule.

Sept. 6 - Friday
7 p.m. HONDO -1953, Batjac Prod., 83 min.
9:30 p.m. HOUSE OF WAX -1953, Warner Bros., 90 min.

Sept. 7 - Saturday
11 a.m. THE MAZE - 1953, Allied Artists (Paramount), 80 min.
1:15 p.m. BWANA DEVIL - 1952, U.A., 79 min.
4:30 p.m. EUROPEAN 3-D CINEMA 1935-1953 - Lecture and 3-D Clip Show
7:15 p.m. CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON -1954, Universal, 79 min
9:45 p.m. JAWS 3-D -1983, Universal, 99 min.

Sept. 8 - Sunday
11 a.m. 3-D ANIMATION SHOW - 90 minutes
2 p.m. ROBINSON CRUSOE (ROBINZON KRUZO) - 1946, 71 min.
4:45 p.m. MISS SADIE THOMPSON - 1953, Columbia, 91 min.
7 p.m. DIAL M FOR MURDER - 1954, Warner Bros., 105 min.
9:30 p.m. 3-D TRIBUTE TO CHRIS CONDON, DAN SYMMES and RAY ZONE Featuring: THE STEWARDESSES, 1969, Sherpix, 69 min.

Sept 9 - Monday
7 p.m. PHANTOM OF THE RUE MORGUE -1954, Warner Bros., 83 min.
9:30 p.m. JIVARO - 1954, Paramount, 92 min.

Sept 10 - Tuesday
7 p.m. THE GLASS WEB - 1953, Universal, 81 min.
9:45 p.m. DANGEROUS MISSION - 1954, RKO, 75 min.

Sept 11- Wednesday
11 a.m. GORILLA AT LARGE - 1954, 20th Century Fox, 84 min.
1:15 p.m. DIAMOND WIZARD - 1954, U.A., 83 min
4:15 p.m. TAZA, SON OF COCHISE - 1954, Universal, 79 min
6:30 p.m. KISS ME KATE - 1953, MGM/Warner Bros., 109 min.
9:45 p.m. THE FRENCH LINE - 1954, RKO, 102 min.

Sept 12 - Thursday
7 p.m. INFERNO - 1953, 20th Century Fox, 83 min. Film Noir In 3-D Night!
9:30 p.m. I, THE JURY - 1953, U.A., 87 min. Film Noir In 3-D Night!

Sept. 13 - Friday
3:30 p.m. WINGS OF THE HAWK - 1953, Universal, 81 min.
7 p.m. IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE - 1953, Universal, 81 min.
9:45 p.m. THE MAD MAGICIAN - 1954, Columbia, 72 min.

Sept. 14 - Saturday
3:30 p.m. ROBOT MONSTER - 1953, Astor, 66 min.
6 p.m. DRAGONFLY SQUADRON - 1954, Allied Artists, 82 min.
9 p.m. REVENGE OF THE CREATURE - 1955, Universal, 82 min.

Sept. 15 - Sunday
10:30 a.m. SANGAREE - 1953, Paramount, 94 min.
1:15 p.m. THOSE REDHEADS FROM SEATTLE - 1953, Paramount, 90 min.
4:30 p.m. SECOND CHANCE - 1953, RKO, 82 min.
6:45 p.m. MONEY FROM HOME - 1953, Paramount, 100 min.
9:45 p.m. CEASE FIRE - 1953, Paramount, 75 min.

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William B. Gruber View-Master® Facebook page

William B. Gruber photo.

The William B. Gruber View-Master® Facebook page is maintained by Gretchen Gruber Harmon, William B. Gruber' s youngest child.

Gruber invented the View-Master® 75 years ago, back in 1938. A biography of William written by Gretchen will be published in the near future.

Visit the Facebook page to see interesting historical photos and hob-knob with other View-Master® fans.

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Auction Results  

Devil's Gate Bridge stereoview.

A stereoview showing the Devil's Gate Bridge near Ogden, Utah sold for $535 with two bids. The 1869 vintage stereoview of a fabulous railroad scene was taken by William Henry Jackson when he was still based in Omaha, Nebraska with his rare and illustrated Jackson Bros. back- label titled, "Scenery of the Union Pacific RR" .This is view # 164 titled Devil's Gate Bridge. The image shows an outstanding close-up of the Union Pacific Railroad locomotive #122 and crew on the newly completed bridge in the Wasatch Range.

1907 Boulder, Colorado fire stereoviews.

Six stereoviews of the 1907 Boulder, Colorado fire sold for $316.11 with seven bids. Stereographer Ed Tangen documented the Aug. 10, 1907 fire in the stereoviews included in this sale numbered 246, 247, 248, 249, 250 and 252.

Four WWI stereoviews.

Four World War I stereoviews sold for $335 with one bid. We don't know why these four views brought that much money. Anyone have any ideas if these any of views are that rare?

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