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AUDIO VIDEO NEWS

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Barry Willis Posted: Aug 01, 1999 0 comments

Astute observers have long predicted that the computer industry would beat consumer-electronics manufacturers to the finish line in the race for affordable high-definition television. That prediction could prove correct, if a recent press release from Austin,Texas- based <A HREF="http://www.hdtv.net/">TeVCA Technologies</A> is to be trusted.

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Jon Iverson Posted: Aug 01, 1999 0 comments

Last week, the <A HREF="http://www.homepna.org">Home Phoneline Networking Alliance</A> (HomePNA) announced that new technology proposed earlier in March by <A HREF="http://www.lucent.com">Lucent</A> and Epigram (now a subsidiary of <A HREF="http://www.broadcom.com">Broadcom</A>) is now the basis for the 2.0 standard for 10 Megabit/second home networking technology.

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Barry Willis Posted: Aug 01, 1999 0 comments

Despite high-definition television's official debut last year, it still has virtually no audience&mdash;the equipment needed to receive it is still too expensive for all but the wealthiest early adopters. No audience means no ad revenue, and in the world of commercial broadcasting, no ad revenue means no budget for program development.

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Posted: Aug 01, 1999 0 comments

Five hundred channels of television will soon be available to <A HREF="http://www.echostar.com/">EchoStar</A>'s DISH Network subscribers. On July 19, EchoStar chairman Charlie Ergen demonstrated DISH 500, a pizza-sized dish antenna capable of receiving signals from satellites in two locations. The demo took place at the <A HREF="http://www.sbca.org/">Satellite Broadcasting and Communications Association</A>'s national exposition in Las Vegas.

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Posted: Jul 25, 1999 0 comments

We've all seen the TV commercials: KFC's Colonel Sanders, Taco Bell's little sad-eyed Chihuahua, and a warrior princess from Pizza Hut fighting hordes of robot invaders from George Lucas' <I>The Phantom Menace</I>. But the blitzkrieg of clever <I>Star Wars</I>-theme ads for Tricom Global Restaurants, released just prior to the film's debut, has fallen flat. A marketing deal Tricom signed with <A HREF="http://www.lucasfilm.com/">Lucasfilm</A> has proven "surprisingly ineffective at driving sales," according to the company's chairman and CEO, Andrall E. Pearson.

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Wes Phillips Posted: Jul 25, 1999 0 comments

M<I>uhammad Ali, George Foreman, James Brown, B.B. King, Norman Mailer, George Plimpton, Spike Lee, The Crusaders, The Spinners. Directed by Leon Gast. Aspect ratio: 16:9 enhanced widescreen, 1.33:1 pan&scan. Dolby Digital. 94 minutes. 1997. PolyGram 440 045 847-2. Rated PG. $29.99.</I>

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Posted: Jul 25, 1999 0 comments

Last week, <A HREF="http://www.variety.com/"><I>Variety</I></A> reported that, in celebration of its 75th anniversary, MGM intends to re-release several James Bond classics spanning the last 37 years. The company says it will release 19 of its Bond films as special editions on DVD and VHS in three installments beginning on October 19 of this year, culminating with the DVD release of the newest Bond film, <I>The World is Not Enough</I>, by the end of 2000. The new film, staring Pierce Brosnan as Bond once again, is slated to hit theaters November 19, 1999, in time for the holiday season.

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Barry Willis Posted: Jul 25, 1999 0 comments

Television broadcasters could soon legally own and operate multiple stations within one market, under regulations being considered by the <A HREF="http://www.fcc.gov/">Federal Communications Commission</A>. At present, FCC rules allow only one station per owner per market (a market being defined as a geographical area within transmitter range). The proposed changes were submitted for review by the FCC's Mass Media Bureau to the commissioners on Monday, July 19.

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Barry Willis Posted: Jul 25, 1999 0 comments

Stanley Kubrick's last film, <I>Eyes Wide Shut</I>, is too risqu&#233; for tender American sensibilities. Apparently, that is the position of executives at <A HREF="http://www.warnerbros.com/">Warner Bros.</A>, who contrived to have digitally generated human figures inserted into an orgy scene in the controversial adult drama starring Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman.

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Lawrence B. Johnson Posted: Jul 18, 1999 0 comments

B<I>urt Lancaster, Paul Scofield, Jeanne Moreau. Directed by John Frankenheimer. Aspect ratio: 1.37:1 (black & white). Dolby Digital monaural. 133 minutes. 1964. MGM 907539. Not rated. $19.98.</I>

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Barry Willis Posted: Jul 18, 1999 0 comments

After 20 years, one of the entertainment industry's most enduring management teams is calling it quits. On July 15, Robert A. Daly and Terry Semel, co-chairmen and co-CEOs of Warner Bros. film studio and Warner Bros. Music, informed <A HREF="http://www.pathfinder.com/corp/">Time Warner</A> chief Gerald Levin that they would not renew their employment contracts. The two said they wish to explore other opportunities as "entertainment entrepreneurs."

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Posted: Jul 18, 1999 0 comments

The <A HREF="http://www.dvb.org/">Digital Video Broadcasting Project</A> has adopted Dolby Digital as its multichannel audio standard. The DVB Project is a consortium of more than 240 organizations in over 30 countries devoted to establishing worldwide standards for digital broadcasting. Members include broadcasters, manufacturers, network operators, and regulatory committees. The announcement was made July 6, 1999, by San Francisco-based <A HREF="http://www.dolby.com/">Dolby Labs</A>.

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Posted: Jul 18, 1999 0 comments

Last week, telecommunications provider <A HREF="http://www.sbc.com">SBC Communications</A> and <A HREF="http://www.directv.com">DirecTV</A> announced a marketing and distribution agreement that will allow SBC to make digital satellite television service available to its 18 million Southwestern Bell, Nevada Bell, and Pacific Bell residential customers. Specific details of the SBC/DirecTV service will be announced later.

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Posted: Jul 18, 1999 0 comments

Austin Powers, the swinging secret agent, is too risqu&eacute; for Malaysians, censors in that country have decided. The International Man of Mystery's latest comic misadventure, <I>The Spy Who Shagged Me</I>, is too full of sexual innuendoes for the conservative Muslim nation. The ban applies not only to the theatrical release, but to videotapes, discs, and TV broadcasts as well.

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Jon Iverson Posted: Jul 18, 1999 0 comments

Last week, online video retailer <A HREF="http://Videoflicks.com/">Videoflicks.com</A> announced that it has opened Videoflicks.com Auctions "to help people find, discover, buy&mdash;and now sell&mdash;virtually any video online." The company says that its customers are able to bid immediately in more than eight categories of "rare and unusual" videos.

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