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[June 11, 2012]
Newly-named Dolby Theater unveiled with signage, audio-visual system
LOS ANGELES, Jun 11, 2012 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Oscars' renamed home Dolby Theater was revealed here Monday with a new signage and the installation of Dolby Atmos and Dolby 3D, Dolby Laboratories' most advanced and brand-new sound and sight system.
"Today, this is an emotional experience," said Kevin Yeaman, president and chief executive officer of Dolby Laboratories before the official unveiling ceremony at Hollywood & Highland Center.
"We are so excited to have this iconic theater of the Academy Awards, which is now also a worldwide showcase of our best technologies," he said.
The 180,000-square-foot (16,723 square meters), 3,400-seat Oscars' landmark, formerly known as Kodak Theater, is Dolby's first location in the world selected to offer Dolby Atmos, which brings audiences the most lifelike movie-going experience.
"For you, that means the reality is way more real than past," said David Gray, vice president of worldwide production services at Dolby. "It's time to sound again." For the first time, Dolby Atmos introduces a hybrid approach to mixing and directing sound as dynamic objects that envelop listeners, in combination with channels for playback.
With the ability to transmit up to 128 simultaneous and lossless audio inputs, and the ability to render from 5.1 all the way up to 64 discrete speaker feeds, Dolby Atmos introduces a completely new audio capability.
"Dolby Atmos is our most significant innovation in years and represents the future for entertainment sound in cinema," Yeaman said.
"We have leveraged our deep insights into how people hear and experience sound to empower filmmakers, studios, and exhibitors with new technology that transforms storytelling," he added.
The company said by June 22 this year, between 15 to 22 theaters in the United States would be upgraded with the Dolby's new audio platform. After that, Dolby will focus on installing Dolby Atmos at major theaters worldwide, including Europe, China, Japan, India and others next year.
Gray told Xinhua that it would cost an average of 25,000 to 30,000 U.S. dollars to upgrade one mid-sized theater with Dolby Atmos.
In addition to the new advanced audio system, the Dolby Theater features Dolby 3D, a state-of-the-art imaging solution providing audiences with a superior 3D experience, which delivers a great experience anywhere in the house.
On May 1, Dolby Laboratories announced a 20-year naming agreement with the theater owner CIM Group after beating out 10 other bidders for the naming rights.
"When the opportunities came up -- the Dolby Theater, we couldn't pass it out," Yeaman said.
In 2000, Kodak signed a 20-year contract for naming rights of the Hollywood theater. The deal was terminated as the century-old photography giant filed bankruptcy earlier this year.
Under the new contract, the Dolby Theater will host the Academy Awards through 2033. "We'll be here as long as the Oscars stay," said Yeaman.
Dolby Laboratories was founded by American Ray Dolby in London in 1965 and then moved back to the United States in 1975. Since the 1960s, Dolby Laboratories has been a leader in audio innovation.
From the cinema to the living room, Dolby has transformed the entertainment experience and is recognized as the standard for high-quality audio.
Today, Dolby technologies can be found in theaters, Blu-ray, video games, DVDs, mobile media, digital broadcast TV, digital cable, professional recording studios, and satellite systems.
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