Futurecast Cinema: You are the Star!

Space Child Adventure Grand Odyssey, an animated film showing at the Aichi Expo 2005, has a very special star -- you! Visitors to the Mitsui-Toshiba Pavilion get a high resolution digital full-face scan; these faces are edited into that performance of the "film" in real-time.

Every person who enters the theater gets a role; a Toshiba supercomputer inserts the necessary information and presents the one-time-only film.

At a recent showing reported on in the TimesOnline, a grandmother in the second row was surprised to discover that her screen persona was a space commando, barking out orders to a squadron that comprised her daughter-in-law and a young couple in the fourth row.

Similar technology can be found in John Brunner's Stand on Zanzibar and Neil Stephenson's The Diamond Age (thanks to an alert reader!). See science fiction inventions from Brunner and Stephenson.

And there are plenty of precursors. In his 1953 novel Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury refers to a spot-wavex converter, which "caused [the] televised image, in the area immediately about [the] lips, to mouth the vowels and consonants beautifully." This allows everyone to participate.

Real people in real-life (and real-time) situations are the stars in the interactive video column from William Gibson's 1999 novel All Tomorrow's Parties. Everyone who walks into a Lucky Dragon convenience store sees video patched in from all of the other store cameras from all over the world.

What's next for cinema? The unique movie that your family appeared in is available for purchase in the lobby after the film, with outtakes, blooper reel, director commentary, "cast" interviews, and so forth. Talk about straight to video...

Read more about Go to the cinema and star in the film you're about to see and the Space Child Adventure Grand Odyssey (Mitsui-Toshiba Pavillion) website. See the extremely cool Grand Odyssey preview video. If you are interested in other interactive "mass" media, see Interactive Billboards Use SMS.


(Images from Futurecast System - Mitsui-Toshiba Pavillion)

(This Science Fiction in the News story used with permission from Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction.)