Voice-Over Actors Hall of Fame to open at the historic Orinda
It has been well over a year since the California Independent Film Festival Association conceived the notion of crafting a special public live event that would recognize the true artistry of some of the great voice-over actors of the past. Whether from animated feature films, animated TV shows, or just cartoons, the work from these voice-over actors are indelible and should truly be recognized and appreciated. Despite these memorable characters these great artists have portrayed, they never seem to receive their due acknowledgment or appreciation that they should have.
With California Independent Film Festival (CAIFF) founder, Derek Zemrak, this situation will soon change, as he plans to open up a newly created Voice-Over Actors Hall of Fame in Orinda which will also have a museum exclusively dedicated to their art and craft and to the inducted artists themselves.
“As you may know voice acting requires extreme talent. Sadly, voice performers are often overlooked. As a result, I am starting the Voice-Over Actors Hall of Fame in the historic Orinda Theatre, located in East Bay of San Francisco, to preserve and educate individuals on the history of Voice-Over Talent.” Zemrak continues. “It is time to celebrate this beloved art form that has entertained so many over the years.”
The inaugural class includes Mel Blanc, Daws Butler, June Foray and Mae Questel. True pioneers in the industry. In addition, Legacy Characters, Ursula (Pat Carroll) and Living Legend Jim Cummings (Winnie the Pooh, Tigger) will be inducted.
Originally slated for May 16th and 17th of this year, but delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Zemrak and the organizers of the theater reset the new date to October 10th planned for their induction ceremony, and in conjunction will open the new Voice-Over Hall of Fame museum inside the historic Orinda theater, which is located in the San Francisco Bay Area.
The museum will include stunning plaques of the inductees with their bios. Plus a museum of memorabilia on display from their careers. One piece is a 1937 Productions cell from Mel Blanc’s first cartoon, Porky the Wrestler.
Here are the details of the event:
The Voice-Over Actors Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony held October 10th a 1PM to 3PM PST. The event will kick off with a Q &A with voice-over actors Bob Bergen (Porky Pig) and Debi Derryberry (Jimmy Neutron). The event can be seen streaming online at www.VOHOF.org, the Voice-Over Actors Hall of Fame Facebook page and the Orinda Theatre Facebook page.
Many national and local personalities have come onboard to support the Voice-Over Actors Hall of Fame including Emmy Winner, Rob Paulsen (Pinky and the Brain), Film Historian, Leonard Maltin, Noel Blanc (Mel’s son), Tara Strong (The Powerpuff Girls), Disney animator, Dave Woodman, and Film Critic, Jan Wahl.
With all of these “characters” participating in this event, animated or not; it’s sure to be an unforgettable and comical event not to be missed.
MEL BLANC: (May 30, 1908 – July 10, 1989) was an American voice actor and radio personality. After beginning his over-60-year career performing in radio, he became known for his work in animation as the voices of Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, and most of the other characters from the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies theatrical cartoons during the golden age of American animation.
DAWS BUTLER: (November 16, 1916 – May 18, 1988) was well-known through many Hanna Barbera cartoons, including Loopy De Loop, Wally Gator, Yogi Bear, Hokey Wolf, Elroy Jetson, Quick Draw McGraw, Baba Looey, Peter Potamus, Snagglepuss, and Huckleberry Hound.
JUNE FORAY: (September 18, 1917 – July 26, 2017) was an American voice actress who was best known as the voice of such animated characters as Rocky the Flying Squirrel, Nell Fenwick, Lucifer from Disney’s Cinderella, Cindy Lou Who, Jokey Smurf, Granny from the Warner Bros
MAE QUESTEL: (September 13, 1908 – January 4, 1998) was an American actress and voice actress best known for providing the voices for the animated characters Betty Boop and Olive Oyl from 1931.
JIM CUMMINGS: (born November 3, 1952) is an American voice actor and singer, who has appeared in almost 400 roles, including Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, and the Tasmanian Devil.
PAT CARROLL: (born May 5, 1927) is an American actress and singer. She is known for voicing Ursula in The Little Mermaid as well as having a long acting career, including appearances in CBS’s The Danny Thomas Show, ABC’s Laverne & Shirley, NBC’s ER, other guest-starring and series-regular roles on American television as well as voice-acting in several cartoon series.
Spanning many generations, from the golden era of the early thirties to today’s modern day animated features, it seems fitting to celebrate the greatest voice-over actors and actresses who brought to life some of the most iconic and loveable animated cartoon characters and honor them into the iconic Orinda theater that is no stranger to history itself.
The museum will open to the public when the Orinda Theater opens to the public.
Donations can be made at https://www.orindamovies.com
That’s all folks.
Originally published at www.mlsentertainment.wordpress.com
I vividly remember my very first personal bout with allergies. I was sitting in a movie theater for the highly anticipated movie, “Topsy Turvy”, which was getting lots of buzz. Unfortunately at the time, I was also suffering from post nasal drip, which I had never experienced before. As I sat among the full capacity crowd, I was doing my best to suppress my cough to not disturb them, but failed. There were times that I was so disruptive that I imagined the crowd probably wanted to throw me out of the theater for disturbing them every time I had an abrupt cough attack. After the movie ended, I was never happier to leave the theater as I ran into the men’s room just to clear out my throat as though I was gagged. This was not symptoms of a simple flu or a cold, but sinus allergies, which I never thought I would ever get.
For the next twenty years, I have suffered annual seasonal allergies from the late part of April and lasting thru August. During this usual three to four month span, I was completely miserable and had very little energy. It affected my productivity at work as well as my physical mental state. I just wanted to be able to go through life without the usual runny nose, congestion, and exhaustion that came from allergies. For a few years, my allergies worsened and even resulted in me having a bronchial infection which needed anti-biotics for treatment, as I would be coughing 24/7 non-stop for six to eight weeks. Before they were OTC, I used to take medical prescriptions of claritin, allegra, flonase, and codeine every single day, as well as local honey, which I heard was a good way to fight allergies. I also heard about neti pots, but felt that would be too intrusive for me to take as the idea of blowing water out of my nose didn’t sound quite appealing to me.
Last year, I attended the Pepcom show in San Francisco at the end of May. Though, weakened by my seasonal allergies, I was still a trouper and attended the show. I randomly stumbled at the Tivic booth and asked about their new product, though my interest and focus is with personal entertainment technology. When I heard that the product was for allergy sufferers providing instant relief by just gliding the ClearUp across the face, I was very skeptical. I was given a five minute demo and for some reason, my allergies were gone for the evening… with just one treatment. It really surprised me that my allergies last summer didn’t return. It was as though a wizard waved a magic wand and removed my allergic symptoms .
The following January of this year, six months later, Tivic was present at CES Unveiled in Las Vegas. At the booth, I asked if I could obtain a review sample for myself that I could use so I can post a review online. Little did I realize, at that point, Tivic was garnering positive reviews and accolades everywhere. Tivic Health was named an CES 2020 Innovation Awards Honoree. In addition, Time magazine recently called Tivic’s ClearUp as one of the ten greatest inventions for 2019. It was also featured in “Last Gadget Standing” as one of the finalists.
As my allergies returned for the year in late April, I decided that I would go ahead and buy one for myself instead of paying the pharmaceutical companies for OTC products, such as flonase and benadryl, just because I didn’t want to keep injecting drugs into my body. As I started feeling the allergies worsen within the first week, luckily the product arrived at my doorstep during the first week in May, which was perfect timing.
After charging the Tivic ClearUp that just took a few hours, I started using it about four to five times a day for the first ten days or so, about once every four hours using the lowest of the three settings. There is no real strict schedule that is mandatory, which is great, since it’s one less thing you need to worry about. When symptoms arose, such as congestion or a runny nose, I used it on the spot and it would relieve those symptoms fairly quickly…within 30 minutes.
There were times when I would wake up in the middle of the night with my head stuffy and a nasal drip making me cough. That’s when I would reach for the Tivic for a five minute session and within five to ten minutes I would find myself sleeping peacefully again. In the past, I would get up and go to the kitchen to make green tea to mix it with lemon and honey, or perhaps eat raw garlic…anything to relieve my throat and stop it from coughing. However, that would take well over an hour and disrupt my sleep pattern. Not te case anymore.
I have been using ClearUp to relieve my allergies for about three weeks now, about three to five times a day. I am happy to report, I have not been using it for a few days, as my allergies have subsided after three weeks. The product had pretty much dissipated my allergies, though you can tell that some days I was a little more congested on certain days for the first week or two from the sound of my voice. This was the shortest allergy season I have ever had.
My regular lifestyles activities were never affected, as well, unlike the past twenty years taking allegra, flonase, and cough syrup. It freed me from using benadryl, which make me nod off and want to go to sleep. It also freed me from using flonase, which most people don’t know is a steroid, which is very unhealthy.
I also love it’s portability and the fact you can take it anywhere. It comes with a nice blue zippered pouch that has two compartments; one for the ClearUp and the other for the usb-c charger. The charge lasts quite awhile, as I have not even needed to charge the ClearUp for a second time yet.
So how does this work?
Besides being 100% drug-free with no chemical side effects and being FDA cleared and clinically proven, it is so simple to use. You just push a button, choose a level of how powerful the treatment you want and basically circle around from the bottom of your cheekbone toward the nose and below the brows in a “c” fashion around the face. If it vibrates, it has found a location spot to treat the area and applies microcurrent waves at a very low level electrical current to relieve sinus pain. Usually there are about seven to ten areas which need treatment and it takes a total of five minutes.
The Tivic ClearUp is designed to provide temporary relief of sinus pain associated with allergic rhinitis. For me, it seemed that it had gotten rid of my allergies, but once in awhile, my head might feel a little stuffed with my nose getting runny and I would go ahead to go in for a treatment. My allergies are seasonal, but it also helps all-year around allergy sufferers who suffer from sneezing, congestion, runny nose, watery eyes, itching of the nose or roof of the mouth, coughing and sinus pain.
This is a truly innovative product. This is a product that I truly believe in and testify that it is a game changer. It’s non-evasive and chemical free. If you want to control your allergies, you will not regret this purchase. It will help you live your life during the allergy season rather than suffering during it with OTC drugs that come with its unwanted side effects.
It’s 6pm on a Friday night in the East Bay at the historic landmark Orinda Theater, just 15 miles east of San Francisco. With its impressive luminous flashing neon lights on its marquee displaying a spectacular view to those who pass along Highway 24 at night, it gives pride and joy to the citizens of Orinda to have its city name in glittering lights, as not many intimate cities in the Bay Area can claim.
Outside, underneath the retro ceiling before the entrance doors of the theater, newly installed neon lights bounce off eye-popping colors onto the reflective glass cases that display the movie posters of Hollywood’s latest offerings; “Emma” “Onward”, and “Call of the Wild”. Cars full of movie going customers are coming from all different directions from the East Bay while the percolating sounds of the popcorn machine make noise non-stop in the lobby at the concession stand getting ready for the crowds.
You would think this would be a typical Friday movie night for this majestic theater, but it is quite the contrary. No movies are playing at any of its three auditoriums. Nor are there any customers inside the lobby that are normally filled with crowds waiting in line at the concession stand or hanging out at Cine Cuvée, mingling in groups at its attached wine bar.
MOVIE NIGHT IN
Tonight’s event is called “Movie Night In”, an ingenious promotion posted on social media from the theater’s Facebook page, where for a mere $20, customers can get a large bag of fresh popcorn, a box of “official” movie theater red vines, and either a bottle of quality wine or four beers that are normally sold at the theater and wine bar. Best of all, customers need only drive up to the curb where theater owner, Derek Zemrak, would personally deliver their orders straight to their car, just like a the old carhop waiters did in the the 60’s. The promotion is in response to the “shelter in place” order by the county that forced all movie theaters to close its doors in mid-March around the country due to the COVID-19, more commonly known as corona-virus.
Of course, with the “Movie Night In” promotion, customers still needed to provide their own entertainment at home. Despite this, it seems just bringing a few goodies from the local movie theater can certainly make the evening more enjoyable, even if the participants are just stationed in front of the TV right in their own living room on a La-Z-Boy sofa or recliner.
Unfortunately, with the building’s high astronomical rent and utilities due each month, Zemrak was forced to close the theater and lay off his entire staff.” At least they can get unemployment…you can’t make money on zero revenue”, Zemrak noted.
Though “Movie Night In” generates a very small fraction of income, it has now become a regular Friday night ritual for some of the patrons. Some customers have gotten used to the idea. Still every little bit helps. “Not too many people realize how expensive it is to operate and rent a movie theater. People see the movie theater and don’t even think anything about how expensive it is to operate”, Zemrak said.
“We just need to sell a thousand $25 gift cards and we’ll be fine”.
TO STREAM OR NOT TO STREAM– THAT IS THE QUESTION
Ironically, the movies that had to immediately cease playing at the theater at the time of the “shelter in place” order came into effect are now streaming on VOD (video on demand). While not all of the theaters were forced to shutdown in the country before the federal government stepped in at the time, NBC Universal announced that its own movie studio Universal Pictures and specialty label Focus Features would be releasing their films in theaters and on-demand simultaneously. This was the path taken by the studios to help salvage their box office gross for their current lineup of their theatrical releases if all theaters were forced to close, which it did.
Instead of watching “Emma”, “Onward”, and “Call of the Wild” in movie theaters, moviegoers can now only watch them only on VOD . It seems as streaming services, such as Disney Plus, VUDU and Amazon Prime, overnight has made the “home movie going experience” much more exclusive to the audience as they “shelter in place”.
In addition, NBC Universal is planning to launch a brand new upcoming streaming service called Peacock in mid July. This will make it much easier for Universal to release theatrical movies and stream it at the same time, if they ever decide to. They could completely eliminate or reduce the “theatrical window”, which is typically 72 to 76 days for most movies before it reaches home video or VOD. Nonetheless, the ease of home viewing could continue to be destructive for movie theaters, big or small, struggling to stay afloat in an age of shrinking theatrical window dates, let alone the dreaded, coronavirus. If movie studios decide to follow Universal’s suit, then all movie theaters will be in peril; the movie theater chains, like AMC and Cinemark, as well as the small independent theaters, like the Orinda.
“If you look at the business model that’s the way to go… there’s no question, go streaming…but it’s not the right thing to do to movie theaters”, Zemrak explains. “I would have never expected Universal to be the first studio to do that”.
“If Disney, Universal and Paramount decide to go streaming at the same time… the general population are going to stay home”, Zemrak said.
“The chain theaters are in more jeopardy than independent theaters because independent theaters show art films, foreign films – stuff that you can’t see…so if Disney decides to go streaming the same day the theatrical release is..”, Zemrak continued, “….you have a better shot with the independent and foreign films than the blockbusters.”
“It’s going to be really interesting in the next three months to see really what happens when the theaters reopen – how studios are going to say we’re going on streaming – if that’s the case corporate theaters like AMC and Cinemark – they’re screwed, whereas we can we can survive because we have art films.”
As an independent movie theater owner at the Orinda, Zemrak is also responsible for its film programming, as well as musical and special events. With so many movie theater chains around the area, he prefers to concentrate not so much on obtaining big Hollywood blockbusters for the theater, but the non-mainstream gems that mature audiences will resonate with. One such film was “Parasite”, which was one of Zemrak’s prime choices that he selected to play at the theater immediately after it had won the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Film in early January and before the Oscar nominations were announced. At that time, it was not a wide release film and played a record run for 12 straight weeks at the theater and turned into an unexpected blockbuster due to the Oscar buzz and year-end awards it received, including winning “Best Picture” at the Academy Awards, the first foreign film to ever accomplish this, which Zemrak rightly predicted after the nominations were even announced and even putting his reputation on live radio.
Just like there is an audience for seeing films on the big screen, there is also an avid audience for watching movies at home. Unfortunately, the more streaming movie studios do, it becomes more and more destructive for movie theaters. It becomes a balancing act when it comes to satisfying both the studios and theaters.
“I’ve been talking to all of the independent film distributors because they’re doing things with movie theaters, to say “stream your things online and we’ll give you 40% of the take!”, Zemrak added. “That sounds good but here you have a brick and mortar building and the sub studios are saying we’ll give you money to go streaming. It’s opposite of what your base product is…but if all the major studios are going to go online and stream…movie theaters are dead.”
GENERATION GAP – BABY BOOMERS VS GEN X & Y
Zemrak also noted another major obstacle for movie theaters: the generation gap between the older and younger audiences. Whereas baby boomers want the big screen experience, the younger “i-phone mp3” generation of movie goers are content to watch the latest movies on their mobile device and be done with it. It’s about instant gratification.
“So it’s like you have this crossroad of people… this complete divide of people who say I’m passionate about supporting a theater”, Zemrak continues. “If I’m passionate about supporting a theater, I’m going to support an independent theater. I’m not gonna go the Regal, the IMAX or the Luxe. I’m going to go to an independent theater because that’s what I remember. I remember going to these movie theaters that are special whereas the younger generation have no connection whatsoever to a movie theater.”
“It’s not about the Cinemark with the recliners and the comfort of the room, it’s what I want to reminisce about when I used to go to the movie theater. It was something special – like the Roxy, the Castro, the Orinda Theater. I can go and feel something from my past and go to see a movie. That’s what it’s about…but the other generations – the Generation X and the Generation Z (millennials). – they’re not going to go to the movies. They watch it on their tablets, on their iPhones, and watch it at home.”
HOPE AFTER POST CORONAVIRUS
As “Movie Night In” comes to a close for the evening, Zemrak was pleasantly surprised at the number of incoming online orders for movie gift cards. In these difficult times for small businesses, there is still a glimmer of hope and encouragement from local supporters who actually care, but unfortunately, COVID-19 will still lead the economy into a recession for the majority of businesses, at least in the short term.
Once the pandemic is over however, theater owners will have a difficult time to entice moviegoers to return, especially with the older crowd who are highly susceptible to the COVID-19 virus. Perhaps, the social distancing of six feet from another may still need to be enforced for awhile and the addition of a Hazmat suit until we discover a new vaccine for COVID-19 and will become the new norm. If this were the case, Zemrak believes it would completely eliminate the need for reserved seating, but given the alternative, I believe people will strongly prefer being six feet apart than being six feet under.
Regardless of the outcome, there are lots of moviegoers who absolutely can’t wait to leave their homes and rush into movie theaters. They want the option of being able to dream and escape to the movies when needed. If they can’t do that, it might as well be the end of Western Civilization, as we know it.
However, it’s the major Hollywood studios, like Disney, that would really like to see the dreaded COVID-19 to come to an end immediately. Disney’s lineup for 2020, like most movie studios, has a string of global blockbusters for the entire year and has recently announced an upcoming June 6th release date with “Mulan” which was originally postponed from March due to the pandemic. With the newly revised June 6th release date and the ever increasing number of COVID-19 cases around the world, it may seem overly optimistic by the studio…but when you wish upon a star – your dreams come true.
If anyone knows how to put people back into movie theaters, it’s magical world of Disney.
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of General Motors, Mary T. Barra, gave a keynote onstage at the Moscone Center in San Francisco at the 2020 RSA Conference addressing the future of GM’s autonomous vehicles, as well as the company’s ongoing cybersecurity challenges they will face within the rapidly growing autonomous technology.
When automobiles were produced on mass scale over a hundred years ago, Barra explained, they had re-shaped our physical environment and gave us freedom. If you were around during the bleak thirties growing up during the Great Depression or living in the Dust Bowl, you probably wouldn’t have thought that this could be possible.
However, over the years, the automobile has also given us unintended consequences, as well: crashes, pollution, and too many hours of our lives driving our cars. One stat that really stands out is that according to the World Health Organization, more than 1.3 million people die each year in traffic accidents across the globe, and according to the NHTSA – National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 94 percent of crashes are caused by human error.
“Advanced technologies such as all-electric autonomous vehicles are poised to alleviate these challenges. More importantly, in contrast with today’s data age, autonomous vehicle’s (AV’s) will continue to improve people’s lives.”, Barra remarked.
As cybersecurity becomes ever so important with each and every new device, perhaps its biggest challenge is to defend cyber attacks against autonomous vehicles since people’s physical lives will continually be at stake. We’re not just talking about the typical hacker trying to take total control of your computer at home, such as in ransomware, but a more of a terrorist hacker that not only will be compromising your data from your vehicle, but also possibly endangering all the passengers in your vehicle.
“There are virtually no industries today that are not vulnerable to cyber-attacks and the auto industry is no exception. We are bringing to market technologies and features that are radically changing what vehicles can do for people and to improve their lives. At the same time customers are bringing more devices into the vehicle and expecting seamless integration.Part of our job is to ensure that our customers and their data are always safe secure and private. Privacy is an extension of security that we fiercely protect.”
Barra mentioned AUTO-ISAC, (Information Sharing and Analysis Center), which provides automakers collectively, including GM, to create and share best practices for the entire industry as opposed to individual automakers defending themselves alone. The industry acts as a united front to collaborate and share best practices rather than invest cybersecurity as competitive advantage for each automaker.
“Collectively, we incorporate strong security measures into every phase of the vehicle development process and is this group knows all too well the threat landscape is continually evolving with sophisticated attacks specifically designed to circumvent even the most robust defense systems. Our enterprise defense strategy has to be integrated and multilayered because when a cyber criminal only needs to be affected once, we must get it right 100% of the time.”
ZERO CRASHES, ZERO EMISSIONS AND ZERO CONGESTION
By 2039, General Motors’ vision is to create a world with zero crashes, to save lives; zero emissions, so future generations can inherit a healthier planet; and zero congestion, so customers get back a precious commodity—time. Technology is a key enabler to achieving this vision by developing connected, electrified and autonomous vehicles that will help us get there.
“It’s not a pipe dream. We know it’s achievable.”…for our customers it means providing the safest product and the strongest cybersecurity possible will also giving them greater convenience better accessibility and all while doing it at it affordable cost.”
“Technology is a key enabler to achieving this vision by developing connected, electrified and autonomous vehicles that will help us get there….before consumers invest their trust in us, they want to be assured that AV’s will operate safely and securely every time without being hacked by outside forces.”
“We have nearly 500 men and women including penetration engineers, cryptologists, mathematicians, data analysts, program managers and true hackers. We’re developing in depth defense modern touring in detection and incident response capabilities that we continually test, rework and refine”.
A critical cyber breach involving any one AV car company will be an incident that affects everyone in this space. It could severely undermine the consumer confidence in this type of mobility and even delay the industry’s ability to share these benefits with customers and society.
GM acquired Cruise in 2016, a self-driving car company headquartered in San Francisco, where they have been test driving through one of the most challenging cities to drive autonomously. Since their acquisition, GM has allowed them to remain responsible for both technology and commercialization, giving Cruise independence in order to avoid the pitfalls common when technology startup is acquired by a big corporation.
In addition, GM re-engineered their vehicle development process to include cyber security from the earliest stages of vehicle design with multiple layers of protection to defend the vehicle and its systems. GM will also introduce the first vehicle models with our new vehicle intelligent platform (VIP) this year, which supports new EV technologies, active safety systems, over the air updates, 5G networks and enhanced cyber security protections.
Barra acknowledged the critical need for cybersecurity jobs that would need to jump from 1.8 million to 4 million by 2022, and emphasized that women and minorities continue to be severely under represented in the engineering fields.
With GM’s outreach, they have encouraged nearly 300,000 young students and teachers across the US, to pursue such rewarding careers. Two years ago, working with the Society of Automotive Engineers, GM introduced a new interactive student cybersecurity challenge and curriculum teaching them how digital information is transferred and protected in their every day lives as well with opportunities in STEM careers in mobility.
This is why it’s important for the automotive industry to work together to secure a strong enterprise-wide cybersecurity posture and why STEM education and careers will be even more critical in the coming years.
“If we want to cultivate young people to be part of our future we need to invest in theirs.”, Barra explained, as she came to a close with her keynote.
“It’s a crucial time for the auto industry but it’s also an incredibly exciting time.”
Just like a futuristic vision of the 1939 World’s Fair, it will be a fascinating ride for all of us to see how the AV revolution will unfold.
Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water, a new wave of amazing generation of TV’s have been washed ashore in Las Vegas at the CES 2020 (Consumer Electronics Show) from the biggest global TV manufacturers. Despite the fact that the majority of consumers still don’t own a 4K UHD-TV set, TV manufacturers rolled out their 8K TV’s at CES 2020. LG Electronics, Samsung Electronics, Sony, and even TLC had their 8K sets featured prominently on display at their booths and press conferences.
Improvements in TV display technology over the past several years have been rapidly accelerating as fast as never before. It was only five years ago when 4K UHD-TV’s first became available to consumers. After being accustomed to watching standard HDTV’s over the years and that fact that there was hardly any 4K content to play or stream, the mass majority of the public was reluctant to adopt to it initially.
Now more than a third of all households who own a HDTV have a 4K HDTV with the number expected to jump to 50% this year. Initially thought of as a niche market, 4K UHD-TV’s have finally been embraced by the mainstream and is expected soon to be the new future-proof TV standard.
Walking through the floors at CES, it doesn’t take much of a genius to realize that the next generation of TV’s that only used to be only envisioned in futuristic science fiction movies are just stunning, gorgeous, and jaw-dropping technical marvels to gaze at.
What’s truly amazing is that the manufacturers all use different display technology ranging from MicroLED, Mini-LED, QLED, and OLED. With the latest breakthroughs in display technology demonstrated at CES 2020, the TV’s of the future were what dreams are made of that were made into reality.
However, dreams like this don’t come cheap, but if you have at least a spare $60,000 to a few hundred thousand dollars to spend, here is your dream come true.
LG ELECTRONICS – ROLLIN’ ROLLIN’ ROLLIN
Two years ago at CES, LG Electronics, the pioneer of OLED-TV introduced a prototype of the OLED W, (The “W” stands for “Wallpaper”). It was truly an amazing and ground breaking revolutionary technology that was able to keep the pure picture quality of OLED technology with the darkest blacks and brightest whites within its micro thin bezel frame just 2.57mm thick.
LG Electronics expanded their OLED R line, which was briefly introduced last year at CES 2019. (The “R” stands for “Rollable”). Think of these as a portable “UHD-TV in a box” in which the screen rolls up from a long rectangular cabinet that also serves as it’s own soundbar. When in use, the display rolls up through motorization and rolls back down when not in use. It’s like an all-in one projector and screen all rolled into one.
This year, they have created yet another revolutionary product which may even disrupt the need for movie projectors and movie screens in the future, just like how digital cameras eliminated the need for film cameras.
The latest version of the new LG OLED R line prototypes were shown, which is the exact reversal of the first model. Rather than being put on a flat surface, like a table, the cabinet/soundbar could be mounted upside down from the top of the ceiling like a mounted movie screen. If you want to watch, with a press of a button, the screen will roll down from the ceiling and roll back up when you are done. Even with this compact feature, you still get the best OLED quality with absolutely no loss in picture quality.
Luckily for consumers, they should be available this year. However, the price isn’t going to be cheap. Rumors are that the TV will be starting at $60,000.00.
THE 292″ WALL TV BY SAMSUNG
For those who want to buy a TV and make it a permanent fixture in their living space, you can buy “The Wall” TV by Samsung. Available in sizes from 75 inches up to 292 inches, it’s the biggest TV display you can buy today, and the only set on the market to offer. There are two versions of the wall; one at 146″ and the other at 292″.
Samsung’s microLED technology, which uses super-fine LEDs instead of OLED or traditional LED delivers many of the benefits you’ll find in OLED, including perfect blacks and eye-popping colors, but the set also boasts 1,600 nits of brightness, which is brighter than today’s OLED sets. More importantly, unlike OLED, MicroLED promises zero burn-in issues.
ALL N ALL IT’S JUST ANOTHER BRICK IN THE WALL...
The 146-inch size might seem random, but it’s actually just tall enough to be able to cover most home walls from the floor to the ceiling. Because The Wall is made up of borderless tiles, the modular design allows additional tiles to be added, making this even-bigger version of The Wall possible. Of course, if you live in a castle, you can double or triple that measurement, or just make it custom made. Size does not matter…if you have a deep wallet.
Just like Lego blocks can be built on each other, Samsung has the capability of building it’s displays on top of each other without any bezels showing. No borders or boundaries; just pure continuous gorgeous displays. Looking up close, I did not see any irregularities and the image looked seamless. In fact, it can blend into your living space, such as a white wall display that looks like a white wall when not in use.
When not in use, even though it wasn’t designed to turn off, “The Wall”, can blend in as part of your living space. You can make it part of the wall or you can change it into artwork or even a masterpiece painting by a world renowned painter, such as Renoir. The main point is that it doesn’t look like one massive giant TV that is showing up as an eyesore that domesticated wives are accustomed to with home theater type husbands. The wife will be much happier for it.
However, Samsung hasn’t put a price tag on this, but considering the 98″ Class Q900 QLED Smart 8K UHD TV is tagged at $59,999.99, you will probably need to take out a second mortage on your home for the 292″ model, if you have to own one.
Always thought of as the pioneering innovator of TV’s, Sony Electronics had surprised everyone at this years CES press conference by literally changing gears and announcing they are going into the electric car business by introducing their Vision S electric car prototype.
Surprisingly there was hardly any news concerning the TV side of Sony’s business except that they would be selling smaller sized OLED TV’s as little as 48″, which there is a definite need for in the marketplace. This is good news for consumers as OLED prices have come down to earth in price, thanks to the mass adoption demand for them, as well as the growing competition with LG and other brands from China who have announced they are selling in the US in the new year. Vizio plans to come out with their first OLED TV, as well as an OLED line from Phillips, Konka and Skyworth.
In the meantime at their booth, Sony displayed their latest flagship X1 Master Series, featuring the 8K Sony 98″ X1 which has already been selling at retailers listing for a mere $70,000.00. They also had the smaller 85″ line on display which retails at a more reasonable $13,000.00.
Obviously, very few of us can afford this new technology right now, but the real point here is that we have reached this point in technology and that it’s here with us to stay.
One day when they figure out how to mass produce these MicroLED TV’s, we all may be able to afford a Wall-TV in our home without having to take out a second mortgage.