Consumer Electronics Show, January 7, 1999
J<B>anuary 7, 11am</B><BR>Using a new 61" ProScan HDTV, Thomson Consumer Electronics demonstrated a high-definition DVD that uses Divx technology to decode the fully encrypted digital signal coming from a special ProScan Divx-compatible DVD player. According to Thomson's Larry Pesce, "The beauty of our high-definition process is that the HD signal is never sent unencrypted to the display device."
First HDTV Broadcast of 1999
1999 started off in fine detail for the thousands of early adopters who have picked up a high-definition television. January 1, the 110th Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California, was broadcast to digital-television viewers for the first time in full 1920x1080 HDTV. Tribune Broadcasting's <A HREF="http://www.ktla.com/">KTLA-DT</A> transmitted this year's parade in hi-def using a <A HREF="http://www.nmtv.com/">National Mobile Television</A> (NMT) remote broadcast truck, known as the HD-2.
Runco to announce 200-disc DVD changer at CES
We knew it <i>had</i> to happen---it was merely a matter of who and when. Sony or Pioneer seemed likely candidates to first blaze the multi-DVD trail, maybe with a five-disc changer to ease us into the concept, but high-end video-projection company Runco has gotten a jump on both of those giants.
The Full Monty May Go All the Way
It's extremely rare for low-budget foreign films to catch on with American audiences. Most that are lucky enough to get distribution in the States spend a few poorly attended weeks in the art houses, then quietly disappear. <I>The Full Monty</I>, a British film about a group of unemployed Sheffield steel workers putting together a "Chippendales"-type revue, has done just the opposite.
Japanese Director Juzo Itami Commits Suicide
The Associated Press reported Dec. 22 that Japanese film director Juzo Itami died after jumping from the top of an eight-storey building that housed his office. Itami was director of the international hit film <I>Tampopo</I>.
Smooth Sailing for Top-Grossing Titanic
Director James Cameron's <I>Titanic</I> is not only afloat but appears to be eminently seaworthy. The epic disaster drama's three-hour-and15-minute length is apparently no drawback for film fans, who packed theaters to the tune of a $51.9 million gross in the first week following the film's release, according to Exhibitor Relations Company, which tracks box-office results.
Japanese Film Star Toshiro Mifune Dead at 77
Movie fans the world over are mourning the passing of Toshiro Mifune, Japan's greatest film actor. Mifune died December 24 at a hospital in Mitaka, Japan, not far from his home in Tokyo. The cause of death was an unspecified "organ failure." Mifune was 77.
Studio Chief Dawn Steel Loses Battle with Cancer
Dawn Steel, widely regarded as one of the most powerful women in Hollywood, died Saturday at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles, succumbing to brain cancer at the age of 51.
The final quartet of prescient home-theater ponderings has arrived
Fahrenheit 451 Lights Up on DVD
O<I>skar Werner, Julie Christie, Cyril Cusack, Anton Diffring, Jeremy Spenser, Alex Scott. Directed by François Truffaut. Aspect ratio: 1.85:1 (widescreen). Dolby Digital (mono). 112 minutes. 1966. Universal ID4231. Not rated. $24.99.</I>