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09/03/2015

Four National Theatre Productions To Be Screened In 4K

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Four National Theatre Live stage productions are to be screened in 4K UHD this year, as part of a new initiative between Sony Digital Cinema, the UK's National Theatre and Vue Entertainment International.

The move is part of Event Cinema, a Sony initiative bringing UHD experiences to movie theatres equipped with Sony's 4K Digital Cinema projection.

Throughout 2015, audiences at Vue Cinemas throughout the UK will be treated to four shows captured with Sony cameras at 4K resolution, with four times the detail of ordinary Full HD television broadcasts. Vue customers at 83 sites in the UK will be able to enjoy the productions projected in 4K.

The first in the new partnership is the National Theatre's production of David Hare's Behind the Beautiful Forevers, based on the book by Katherine Boo, directed by Rufus Norris and starring Meera Syal. Captured in 4K using Sony F55s, the performance will be distributed to Vue Cinemas as a 4K DCP (Digital Cinema Package).

National Theatre Live, Sony and Vue Entertainment International will bring further technical innovations to audiences over the course of the 12-month agreement, including live 4K capture and transmission of future productions.

"National Theatre Live continually aims to push the boundaries and ensure we're at the cutting edge," said Emma Keith, Producer of National Theatre Live. "By partnering with Sony and Vue Entertainment International and enabling our audiences to experience our broadcasts in 4K Ultra High Definition we're ensuring the best quality experience."

The move follows the broadcast last February of 'War Horse' live from the New London Theatre to cinemas across the world. The performance was captured using Sony F55s and projected using a Sony 4K projector. The recording was subsequently made available as a 4K DCP, allowing 4K enabled cinemas to also show encore screenings. 36 Vue Cinemas in the UK screened the theatrical production on Sony 4K projectors throughout March 2014. In total, the broadcast attracted an audience of almost 400,000 people around the world.

"At Vue we're constantly innovating with new ways to bring customers experiences that stand out from the ordinary," said Kevin Styles, UK & Ireland MD, Vue Entertainment International. "Event Cinema is an incredibly important facet of our offering that's attracting brand-new audiences to cinemas. Our auditoriums are the perfect environment to enjoy world-class artistic and cultural events in comfort – and naturally projected in Sony 4K for the finest picture quality."

"If there's a medium that's naturally suited to the immersive detail and realism of 4K, it's got to be live theatre," says David McIntosh, Vice President, Sony Digital Cinema 4K Solutions for Europe and the Americas.

"Cinema Projection in 4K, delivers the best possible image quality which enhances the event cinema experience so that the performance can be enjoyed whether you are in the live theatre or watching in a cinema. We're hugely excited to be working with both the National Theatre and Vue Entertainment International on this project that promises to redefine the boundaries of event cinema with extraordinary new viewing experiences."

Photo: 'War Horse' was broadcast in 4K last year, from the New London Theatre to 400,000 people across the globe.

(JP/CD)
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