Two New Cinema Developments Worth Keeping an Eye on

China tries live streaming comments from audience members. Think it's a good idea? Photo credit: CCTV News

China tries live streaming comments from audience members. Think it’s a good idea? Photo Credit: CCTV News

Of course, there are many differences between watching a movie and experiencing live entertainment, but that doesn’t mean the two industries can’t learn from each other — or that it’s not worthwhile to pay attention to what the other is doing.

A few new innovations have popped up in the film world recently that caught our eye. First, in China, theaters are experimenting with streaming live comments from audiences onto the screen. The reception has been lukewarm at best (see the full report over at psfk.com), but it will be interesting to see how audience involvement and immediate feedback evolves over time.

Another is the “Escape” theater configuration rolling out to screens across the country. Instead of using one screen to show a movie, the Escape system has two screens on either side of the main one to give audiences more of a panoramic view. If audiences start to love it, maybe live performances will continue to spread out as well? We’ve certainly seen this with immersive theater, but it could be something even more traditional productions explore.

Do you think there’s a future in live commenting or panoramic viewing in theater?

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