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1953-54 Theatre Catalog, 11th Edition, Page 241 (205)

1953-54 Theatre Catalog, 11th Edition
1953-54 Theatre Catalog
1953-54 Theatre Catalog, 11th Edition, Page 241
Page 241

1953-54 Theatre Catalog, 11th Edition, Page 241

ls CinemaScope The Answer

Closeup Look at the New Curved Wide Screen Process With an Explanation of the Anamorphic Device by Its Inventor

In the midst of the early confusion created by three-dimensional and panoramic screen developments, 20th Century-Fox made a dramatic announcement that startled the entire industry. The news was that this giant of the film industry was placing all its resources and production plans behind a wide screen process known as CinemaScope.

Following president Spyros P. Skouras" and production chief Darryl F. Zanuckls decision to go all out for the life-like curved screen process with stereophonic sound, the studio also announced that everything would be done to make CinemaScope pictures available to theatres in the Fall of 1953, and started shooting its $4,000,000 production ftThe Robef' in Technicolor using the new process.

A series of demonstrations held in key cities throughout the country convinced many skeptics of the practicality and impact of CinemaScope. Presently thousands of theatres are in the process of equipping to show this type of film.

Anamorphic Device

CinemaScope is a simple, fairly inexpensive color film device which simulates third-dimension to the extent that objects and actors seem to be part of the audience, while its stereophonic sound, which is an integral part of the system, imparts additional life-like quality as it moves across the screen with the action. CinemaScope requires only one camera for filming, and one machine for projection on the screen.

Of great importance to the viewer, there is no distortion of images from


BRIEF: The (IinemaScope wide screen system . . . with stereophonic sound . . . has created a great deal of interest in the industry . . . This system . . . which was invented by French Professor Henri Chretien . . . is based on, an anamorphic lens which compresses a large picture on the ordinary 35mm. film . . . and restores it to its original shape when shown through a compensating lens placed on the projector.

lWany enthusiastic exhibitors . . . who have seen demonstrations believe that CinemaScope will set the standard for the future . . . This article discusses the systemis operation . equipment

. and its promises and problems . . . There is also a technical explanation. of the lens prepared by the inventor . . . which should make fascinating reading [or those who wish to find out exactly what makes CinemaScope work.

any seat in a theatreefront, middle, side or rear-making one seat in a theatre as good as another.

In order to show CinemaScope no changes are required to be made on the projectors, or in projection procedures, other than installing the special anamorphic lens, which is the heart of the entire system.

Invented by Frenchman Henri Chretien, honorary professor at the Sorbonne and the Paris Optical Institute, the anamorphic lens restores to its proper proportions an image previously distorted, thus making possible the compression

onto 35mm film of wide angle scenes. When the film is projected through a companion lens, the distorted image assumes its former shape, as a trick mirror reflection in a carnival fun house would straighten itself out if placed before a mirror with compensating distortions. In effect, the lens makes a 35 millimeter camera and a 35 millimeter projector do the work of machines three times as big. Projected onto the wide, curved screen, it creates an illusion of three-dimension, although it is by no means a true stereoscopic picture.


The only extra equipment needed in CinemaScope filming is the special lens attached to a regulation camera, while one or two extra microphones pick up the moving sound. In projection a compensating lens is attached to an orthodox projector, converting images back to normal.

The stereophonic sound system can use a multiplicity of sound tracks wired to speakers placed behind the screen and in the theatre to correspond to the sound emanating from the person or location on or off screen. Although the price is starting to drop, at this time, the stereophonic sound equipment represents the major expense.

A screen especially developed by 20th Century-Fox for CinemaScope, and known as the Miracle Mirror, is said to be the best one on which to present

A SCENE FROM "The Robe," indicating the size of the screen that is to be used for the showing ol pictures using the new CinemuScope process.
1953-54 Theatre Catalog, 11th Edition, Page 241