The age of digital movie theaters is dawning

Texas Instruments today
announced that its innovative Digital Light Processing(TM) (DLP(TM)) projector
technology has been selected as a participant in a truly ground-breaking event
which will provide a vital glimpse into the future of movie presentation.
TI’s DLP Cinema(TM) projector technology will be featured in a digital
electronic cinema demonstration of a new movie from Lucasfilm Ltd., Star Wars:
Episode 1–The Phantom Menace, in two locations beginning June 18, 1999. This
will be the first public demonstration of a full-length motion picture from a
major studio using digital electronic projectors in movie theatres to replace
the normal film projectors.

“This is both an enormous honor and a significant achievement for us,”
said Bob England, Senior Vice President and Manager of TI’s Digital Imaging
division. “It is an honor for us to be chosen by Lucasfilm to participate in
an entertainment event for which millions of people have been waiting for a
long time. It is a significant achievement because it demonstrates that we
are within reach of achieving our goal — that DLP Cinema technology
delivers an on-screen image which rivals and perhaps even surpasses film.”

“We have been working with the movie industry on the concept of digital
cinema for several years,” said Paul Breedlove, DLP Cinema Program Director
for TI’s Digital Imaging division. “The approach we’ve taken can best be
described as one of rapid prototyping and collaboration. To be selected to
participate in this enormously prestigious event indicates that we have made a
great deal of progress. Over the past few months, we’ve demonstrated to
small, select gatherings of industry insiders the sharp, stable, realistic
images of which DLP is capable — but the decision by Lucasfilm to sponsor
this digital electronic cinema demonstration will enable movie audiences to
see the future of movie presentation for themselves.”

Film has reigned supreme for movie presentation for the last hundred
years. However, Texas Instruments believes that DLP Cinema projector
technology will reinvent movie presentation for the next millennium.

Movie distributors have recurring issues with the physical distribution of
film; the high cost of film prints, the number of film prints needed,
reduction of piracy and cost effective management of distribution. Digital
technology provides potential answers to many of these issues through the use
of known encryption techniques and distribution via satellite or optical

Additionally, the challenge for today’s movie theatre owners is that the
movie-going experience is a memorable one — especially in the face of
increased competition from digital and high definition television. A key
advantage of using digital projection technology is not only the high quality
natural image, but that the last showing is as good as the first. Digital
technology will also allow movie theater owners to maximize their investment
by, for example, offering live screenings of major sporting events.

Texas Instruments believes that, as the only all-digital
projection/display technology currently in commercial production, DLP is the
“natural” projection technology in the digital future of cinema: the digital
fidelity and digital stability of DLP Cinema technology offers many advantages
to everyone involved with movies, from creators to audiences.

“We believe,” said Paul Breedlove, “that people will look back on this
digital electronic cinema demonstration as the event that started the
transition to digital electronic projection in theatres. Of course, there is
still a significant amount of systems level work to be done as we move from a
demonstration such as this to actually seeing digital cinema become an
everyday reality — but it’s certainly conceivable that within two to three
years there could be hundreds of DLP Cinema projectors in place, and perhaps
thousands within three to five years.”

Today, TI supplies DLP subsystems to more than twenty-five of the world’s
top projector manufacturers, who then design, manufacture and market DLP-based
projectors. Over the past three years, DLP-based projectors have consistently
won some of the audio-visual industry’s most prestigious awards, including, in
June 1998, an Emmy Award from the American Academy of Television Arts &
Sciences. Since shipments began in early 1996, TI has delivered over 130,000
DLP subsystems to its customers. There are now over fifty DLP-based products
in the marketplace.

At the heart of TI’s DLP Cinema projector technology is an optical
semiconductor chip that has an array of 1,300,000 (SXGA) mirrors. These tiny
mirrors operate as optical switches to create a high resolution, full color

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