So much emphasis has been placed lately on how films look, whether they are being projected in 2D, 3D or IMAX. But when’s the last time audiences walked out of a theater raving about how a film sounds?
That might change thanks to the introduction of Dolby Atmos, a brand new technology that – according to its official Web site – delivers "a more natural and realistic soundfield, transporting [viewers] into the story with a lifelike sensory experience."
Audio professionals from the movie industry who worked hard to perfect the concept of Dolby Atmos talk of immersing audiences in the moviegoing experience. Now, that experience is coming to light.
Earlier this week, at the Los Angeles premiere of Disney and Pixar’s new adventure Brave, Dolby Atmos was introduced at the newly-named Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. Brave director Mark Andrews, upon hearing his film mixed in the new format, said to The Hollywood Reporter, "It’s more 3D than 3D images."
"It puts you in the space," he said of the technology, which was first used on Brave as a test. "This links the sound with the environment. … You feel like you’re in a castle, a narrow hallway or a grand hall or a chamber room."
THR says the Brave audio mix was handled by seven-time Oscar winning sound designer and re-recording mixer Gary Rydstrom at Skywalker Sound, which is already Atmos ready. This appears to be the wave of the future … and it’s coming to you.
Fourteen theaters have implemented the Dolby Atmos to their auditoriums in time for Brave to screen this weekend. So if you are lucky enough to see Pixar’s latest in any of the following theaters, you’ll be able to enjoy the immersive experience: AMC BarryWoods 24, Kansas City; AMC Burbank 16; AMC Century City 15; AMC Downtown Disney 24, Lake Buena Vista, Fla.; AMC Garden State 16, Paramus, N.J.; AMC Van Ness 14, San Francisco; ArcLight Sherman Oaks; Brenden Theatres at the Palms, Las Vegas; Centry at Pacific Commons and XD; West Plano, Texas; SilverCity-Yonge Eglington Cinemas, Toronto; Cinetopia Vancouver Hall 23, Vancouver; the El Capitan Theatre; and Kerasotes ShowPlace ICON at Roosevelt Collection, Chicago.
Expect more theaters to adopt the format in the coming months. It’s hard to determine until you’ve heard it, but for now, are you excited that movies are being mixed to better pull you in to the viewing experience? And would you prefer a film with Dolby Atmos over 3D (and the glasses that are required to go with that experience)? Let us know your thoughts.