Sony and Vue Entertainment have today announced a new milestone in live sports entertainment, as two of the 2014 FIFA World Cup™ matches will be streamed live to a UK cinema in stunning 4K(*1) . In a world first, Sony and Vue Cinemas will be working with technical partners Eutelsat, DSAT Cinema and IDC to deliver a FIFA World Cup™ quarter final match and the final in captivating Ultra High Definition on 4th and 13th July, at Vue’s state-of-the-art multiplex at Westfield, London.
Coinciding with rapidly growing consumer interest in 4K, the first ever 4K FIFA World Cup™ brings an entirely new viewing experience to the world of football and this screening is set to bring the action on the pitch to life like never before. The two matches will be streamed live via satellite from the iconic Estadio Jornalista Mario Filho (Maracana) stadium direct to the cinema, and are set to be the most visually spectacular live sports broadcasts to date.
Sony has partnered with IDC, Eutelsat and DSAT Cinema to deliver the live 4K screenings, with the companies working together to provide the satellite feed, signal decoding and 4K projection. DSAT Cinema will support with the commissioning and integration of the equipment, including network and receiver configuration. IDC will be providing the 4K UHD HEVC video decoder and professional satellite receiver that will be installed in the cinema, receiving the 4K satellite feed and delivering the video and audio signal to the Sony theatre projector and audio system respectively. Eutelsat will receive the signal from Brazil at its teleport near Paris, re-encode it in Ultra HD HEVC at 60 fps and retransmit it to the EUTELSAT 5 West A satellite for direct distribution to the cinema.
The footage at the screenings will be shown using Sony’s SRX-R320
4K digital cinema projection system. The system was designed to screen 2K, 4K and 3D images in the highest possible quality and ensure the best viewing experience available for cinema-goers. Vue cinemas across the UK are equipped with Sony’s 4K digital cinema projection technology.
“These live 4K screenings mean we’re able to bring an entirely new viewing experience to the world of football,” said David Bush, Head of Marketing and Business Development, Sony Professional Solutions Europe. “Sony is excited to be working with FIFA to capture three 2014 FIFA World Cup™ matches in 4K, making this one of the most significant milestones in sports production in recent years. Sony is providing all 4K cameras and other production technology for the FIFA World Cup™ broadcast production. We are also in the unique position of being able to offer not only production equipment but also 4K BRAVIA TVs
in consumers’ homes and 4K projectors in cinemas. The confirmation of these live transmissions to cinema represent another trail-blazing example of Sony’s end-to-end leadership in 4K.”
Bush continued: “These events build on Sony’s experience in 4K live production for other application areas. Earlier this year we collaborated with several technical partners to deliver the world’s first live 4K stream from a theatre into a cinema, working with the National Theatre to show War Horse live in ultra high definition at the Curzon cinema in Chelsea, London.”
Steve Knibbs, COO of Vue Entertainment commented: “At Vue we strive to embrace technological innovation in order to deliver the greatest possible experience for our customers. Having installed Sony’s 4K projectors across our UK cinemas, we’re absolutely thrilled that we’re able to underpin the next chapter in live sports entertainment by playing host to ultra high definition screenings of the greatest sporting competition in the world.”
FIFA TV is also producing the Official 2014 FIFA World Cup™ Film in 4K, which will include match footage from each of the three games captured in 4K, and is due to be distributed online by FIFA via 4K content distribution services after the 2014 FIFA World Cup™.
Though tickets will be limited, plans are currently being finalised by the companies involved to offer a few lucky fans the opportunity to attend one of the 4K cinema screenings. For fans not able to enjoy the screenings in the cinema, we’re also showing 2014 FIFA World Cup™ highlights in selected stores across Europe, giving you the chance to experience the thrill of football with match-winning 4K detail and sound on the BRAVIA X95 and X9.
As part of the FIFA TV broadcast production of the 2014 FIFA World Cup™ tournament, Sony is working with select firms to deliver three matches in 4K - including the quarter final match and the final itself. Sony is also responsible for the provision of all HD venue facilities in each of the 12 venues across Brazil, including systems integration (SI), equipment and staff.