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Universal City, Calif., —Jul 17, 2001

Digital Cinema Evolves: Universal Pictures Hosts Special Digital Premiere Screening Of Jurassic Park

Universal's First Digital Release Features Cross-Industry Support & Kicks Off World's First Single-Server, Multi-Screen Presentations
Taking the evolving digital cinema industry the next step, Universal Pictures® this evening will host a special Digital Premiere screening at Loews Universal Studios Cinemas of Jurassic Park III® — the Studio's first major motion picture release in the digital cinema format. Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment hosted the World Premiere of Jurassic Park III Monday evening at the Universal Amphitheatre.

Tonight's Digital Premiere is the result of a standards-based, cross-industry effort including a group of technology and cinema industry leaders. The Grass Valley Group® provided the digital cinema server technology; Christie Digital Systems provided the DigiPro digital projectors; Sunset Digital handled the film-to-digital transfer of Jurassic Park III using Christie's DigiPro, and THX installed the digital master in the theater and is overseeing the sound and picture quality at each of the other theaters participating in the Universal digital cinema field trials.

Kicking off the digital engagement of Jurassic Park III at the Loews Universal Studios Cinemas, the first digital presentation at the theater, tonight's event will also initiate the industry's first multi-channel presentations of feature-length digital cinema content using a single server to transmit to two independent digital projectors. While previous digital presentations have featured multiple servers routing the same signals to different theaters, Jurassic Park III will play off of a single, multi-channel Grass Valley™ digital cinema server at different times to different screens on independent Christie DigiPro digital cinema projection systems.

"This is an industry first," said Jerry Pierce, Senior Vice President, Technologies for Universal Pictures. "This type of architecture is viewed as an essential component for widespread adoption of the system."

Driving for interoperability between digital cinema equipment manufacturers, all equipment used in the Jurassic Park III digital premiere supports MPEG+ constant quality compression based on the MPEG2 standard that offers very high-quality images and that can scale to varying bit rates and file sizes. This will mark the first time that MPEG, the preferred format for many consumer applications, including DVD, has been used for a major motion picture release.

Potentially lowering capital expenditures required for digital cinema, the Universal Studios digital premiere today also supports the emerging Digital Theatre Interim Mastering Format (DTIM), an interchange format which enables one digital master to be played on multiple projectors from different manufacturers and is suitable for digital cinema field trials. Designed to be supported within current post production system architectures, the DTIM sets the resolution of how images are captured off film, and ensures that proper color spaces are defined so that the final product is true to the original material.

"I believe that emerging digital cinema systems and technologies are beginning to show promise," said Pierce. "We also see the promise of the MPEG and DTIM standards, and innovative technology, such as single-server, multi-channel-based digital presentation."

Jurassic Park III continues the series that began with Jurassic Park and The Lost World: Jurassic Park. Directed by Joe Johnston and produced by Kathleen Kennedy and Larry Franco, the film stars Sam Neill, William H. Macy, Tea Léoni, Alessandro Nivola, Trevor Morgan and Michael Jeter. Steven Spielberg is the executive producer.

Christie Contacts:
Dave Paolini
Manager, Media and Public Relations
PH: +1 519-749-3127

Logo: Christie About Christie: Christie Digital Systems USA, Inc. is a global visual technologies company and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ushio, Inc., Japan, (JP:6925). Consistently setting the standards by being the first to market some of the world’s most advanced projectors and complete system displays, Christie is recognized as one of the most innovative visual technology companies in the world. From retail displays to Hollywood, mission critical command centers to classrooms and training simulators, Christie display solutions and projectors capture the attention of audiences around the world with dynamic and stunning images. Christie Directory page Christie Web Site About THX:
From the big screen to your screen, THX ignites your passion for exciting entertainment experiences. Founded by George Lucas and recognized by audiences around the globe, THX is synonymous with the design and certification of world-class cinemas, premium audio systems, HDTVs, and blockbuster movies and games. Products featuring THX defy convention and define quality in their class, whether in the cinema, home or on the road. 

THX Directory page About Grass Valley Group: Grass Valley™ brand products are part of the Digital Media Solutions strategic business unit of Thomson. Grass Valley Group Directory page About Loews Cineplex Entertainment: Loews Cineplex Entertainment Corporation ( is the third largest movie theatre chain in the world, with 200 theatres and 2,176 screens worldwide and is privately held by Bain Capital, The Carlyle Group and Spectrum Equity Investors. Loews maintains operations in the U.S., Mexico, South Korea and Spain. The company operates under the names of Loews Theatres, Cineplex Odeon, Star Theatres and Magic Johnson Theatres in the United States, as well as Cinemex in Mexico, Megabox in South Korea and Yelmo Cineplex in Spain. Loews Cineplex Entertainment Directory page About Universal Pictures: Universal Pictures is a division of Universal Studios. Universal Studios is a part of NBC Universal, one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience. Formed in May 2004 through the combining of NBC and Vivendi Universal Entertainment, NBC Universal owns and operates the No. 1 television network, the fastest-growing Spanish-language network, a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group, and world-renowned theme parks. NBC Universal is 80%-owned by General Electric, with 20% controlled by Vivendi Universal. Universal Pictures Directory page
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