October 20, 2010
| by Robert Archer
With the technologies driving 3D television rapidly maturing, most questions surrounding the long-range prospects of 3D in the home involve the availability of content.
A newly announced alliance between Sony Corporation, Discovery Communications and the IMAX could be the impetus the bridges the transition of 3D home video from niche technology to full mainstream status.
The joint collaboration will produce a series of 3D programs that will air on a soon-to-launch network, which is set to debut in 2011. “Today’s announcement represents the first step in our commitment to provide viewers with immersive, entertaining programming as we build the most extensive library of original and exclusive 3D content available anywhere,” says Tom Cosgrove, president and CEO of the Sony, Discovery and IMAX joint venture.
“As we work toward launch, we are focused on bringing together a diverse slate of high-quality 3D offerings from both our strategic partners, as well as premier production companies from around the globe.”
During the announcement of the partnership, the three companies also outlined some of programs and network destinations of its newly created, exclusive 3D content:
Explore the strangest places on earth; entire cities now completely devoid of all humanity. This series of one-hour programs sheds light on why people have abandoned the places they once called home and what happens after they leave.
Africa in 3D
From Gannet Island and its 100,000 seabirds of the same name sharing one giant rock, the 60,000 flamingos at Kamfers Dam, the Luangwa River and its 30,000 hippos and more, this series of one-hour programs captures the richness and diversity of the world’s second-largest continent.
China’s beauty is little seen, often hidden and always surprising. This hour-long series studies the thronging cities, epic vistas and spiritual heartlands of this huge and mysterious nation in stunning 3D.
Jewels of the World
This hour-long series gives viewers unprecedented access to UNESCO’s ‘World Heritage’ sites where the planet’s natural and cultural gems are catalogued and protected. Some of the sites the series will look at include the historic sanctuary of Machu Picchu, Peru; the Temple of Angkor Wat in Cambodia; and the Grand Canyon National Park in the United States.
Attack of the Giant Jellyfish (U.S. exclusive Discovery)
This hour-long program explores the myths and realities behind the global explosion of deadly jellyfish, including the giant Nomura, whose strength and size makes them capable of capsizing boats and wreaking havoc on the high seas.
The Haunted (U.S. exclusive Discovery)
Using infrared cameras and sensitive recording devices, a paranormal team investigates true, chilling and terrifying stories of animals and their owners who are experiencing the unexplainable.
Into the Deep 3D (U.S. exclusive IMAX)
This IMAX special takes audiences on a spectacular three-dimensional exploration of the undersea world. Using the IMAX 3D camera in its underwater housing for the first time, this film captures unique marine life and magnificent underwater vistas.
Magnificent Desolation: Walking on the Moon 3D (U.S. exclusive IMAX)
Through the magic of IMAX 3D, narrator Tom Hanks takes viewers to the lunar surface to walk alongside the 12 extraordinary astronauts who have been there to experience what they saw, heard, felt, thought and did.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (U.S. Exclusive Sony)
Inspired by a children’s book of the same name, this animated 3D feature follows inventor Flint Lockwood and a brainy weathergirl as they attempt to discover why the rain in their small town has stopped and food is falling in its place.
Monster House (U.S. exclusive Sony)
A suburban home has become physically animated by a vengeful human soul looking to stir up trouble from beyond the grave, and it’s up to three adventurous kids from the neighborhood to do battle with the structural golem in this comically frightful tale.
Bob is a dedicated audiophile who has been writing about A/V for Electronic House sister publication CE Pro since 2000.