Academy Debuts Interactive Virtual Oscar Sidewalk Display in NYC
by Daniel Haim
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has launched an interactive Oscar-themed sidewalk display at 1333 Broadway in New York City. The expansive window display in midtown Manhattan features nine linked 46-inch LCD screens that literally envelop passers-by in a virtual “red carpet experience.” As people walk past the eight-foot high wall of LCD screens, specially designed sensors react to their motion, triggering a flurry of virtual flashing paparazzi cameras and spotlights. Completing their sidewalk “celebrity experience,” pedestrians will receive an on-screen invitation to tune in and watch the 83rd Academy Awards® presentation on ABC Sunday, February 27.
The virtual Oscar sidewalk display also features two unique digital photo stations, located on either side of the LCD wall, where people can pose for photos while “holding” a virtual Oscar statuette. Once they digitally “accept” their Oscar, a virtual keyboard appears on the touchscreen, utilizing the same capacitive technology as the iPad and iPhone, allowing them to e-mail their customized photo to either themselves or to friends and family, sharing their moment of stardom.
“Our theme for this year’s Academy Awards presentation is ‘You’re Invited,’ and we have tried to extend that idea across as many platforms as possible,” said Janet Weiss, director of marketing for the Academy. “We’re excited that this innovative, interactive experience gives our fans a fun new way to engage with and share in the Oscars®.”
“Through this immersive display, everyone has the chance to connect with the Academy Awards and send the proof to their friends and family,” said Chris Beauchamp, CEO of Monster Media, responsible for the development and installation of the digital experience. “And who hasn’t dreamed of holding an Oscar? Well, now they can!”
The display at 1333 Broadway is the first of two opportunities for movie lovers in New York to experience the Oscars firsthand. On Wednesday, February 23, the Academy will open its popular “Meet the Oscars” exhibition in Vanderbilt Hall at Grand Central Terminal. “Meet the Oscars – Grand Central” will be open daily through Oscar Sunday, February 27, and will afford the public the opportunity to hold a real Oscar statuette.
Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2010 will be presented on Sunday, February 27, 2011, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center®, and televised live on the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 200 countries worldwide.