News Stories



I’ve been taking a look lately at some of the best 3D demo material, and have another offering. Worthy of your attention is The Ultimate Wave: Tahiti 3D, an IMAX movie that has made the rounds of theaters, DVD and Blu-ray 3D and is also showing frequently on DirectTVs 3Net channel. …

The 40 minute documentary is pretty breathtaking in 3D. The effects aren’t subtle, and several times objects cross the screen boundary and hover in your living room. Some of the computer graphics demonstrating wave formation are particularly intense. …

Having said all that, The Ultimate Wave is a really spectacular experience in 3D and I wouldn’t hesitate to haul it out if I wanted to show off my 3D system. You can find the 3D Blu-ray online for about $15 or catch it on DirecTV where it seems to show up almost every other day.

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Apple patent pitch hints at 3D imaging on iPhone, iPad


Apple’s iPhone and iPad cameras aren’t necessarily the best options on the market, but the Cupertino, Calif.-based company might be changing that in the coming years.

Patently Apple yesterday found an Apple patent application describing a way in which cameras in iOS-based devices would snap 3D images. According to the blog, which tracks all Apple patents and applications, the technology would utilize “depth-detection sensors,” like radar and lidar, and use the latest and greatest luminance sensors to recreate an image’s color as accurately as possible. By the time the picture is taken, it’ll deliver a full 3D image.

The fact that Apple is thinking about 3D implementation on the iPhone and iPad isn’t necessarily a surprise, given the importance the third dimension has taken on across the industry. At this point, it’s hard to find a television that doesn’t come with 3D support. And across the mobile space, more and more companies are starting to integrate 3D features.  …

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Data & Analytics Project

The Storytelling Cipher: Mapping Precise Story and Character Mechanics to Box Office Returns

Our Data & Analytics Project held “The Storytelling Cipher: Mapping Stories & Characters to Box Office Revenue” Tuesday, December 6, 2016 at the USC School of Cinematic Arts.

This study leverages the Dramatic taxonomy of film narrative to infer which scene-level character and story attributes generate more box office returns, by genre. We are extending this study to ads and movie trailers.

The project researchers used machine learning to map 70+ story attributes for 300 films to their box office returns to extract which story mechanics or character features in film generated the most revenue. This was the first time granular story and character mechanics have been used to predict box office returns, which opens up many avenues to make more data-driven creative and development decisions throughout the industry.

What’s a good story? The question has been hanging without a scientific answer since the dawn of man. It seems that a story’s lack of clear mathematical structure and universal taxonomy would relegate such classification of stories to the qualitative – and highly subjective- empire of critics and … people.

Until now.

The event presented results from the research, discussed applications for the development and creative process, and outlined next steps.

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