Monday, July 24, 2017

Universal Orlando Announces New Generation of Thrill Ride Coming in 2019 to Harry Potter Wizarding World

The Universal Orlando Blog announced today that a new generation of thrill ride is coming to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade at Universal’s Islands of Adventure in 2019! They didn't tell everything about the new ride just yet, but here’s what they share:
- This all-new thrill ride will take you deeper into J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World, where you will encounter some of your favorite characters and creatures. It’ll be unlike anything we’ve ever done before and it will be fun for the entire family.
- The new attraction will be one of the most highly-themed coaster experiences we’ve created. It will combine a new level of storytelling with an action-packed adventure…and a few surprises along the way.
- Our award-winning Universal Creative team is once again collaborating with Warner Bros. and the production design team from the Harry Potter films to bring this new coaster experience to life.
- This ride is going to redefine the category and transport you to thrilling places, drawing you into even more exciting adventures within the wizarding world. It’s going to be the perfect addition to Hogsmeade.
- We’re permanently closing Dragon Challenge on September 5 to make way for this all-new ride. The last day of operation will be Monday, September 4.

More details will be released in the future. In the meantime, make sure you come out and take your last ride on Dragon Challenge before it closes.

Picture: copyright Universal

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Only in Japan : Discover Azuma, the First Hologram Communication Robot

Azuma is a cheerful young girl about twenty centimeters tall, with long blue hair, living under a glass bell. Lying near the sofa in the living room or on the night table, she welcomes her owner's bachelor with a big smile when he comes home from work, then turns on the lights and informs him of the weather tomorrow. When her darling is not there, she sends him text messages to remind her that she thinks about him and is languishing.

This kind of Tinkerbell is called Azuma Hikari, and it is a character in the manga style: diaphanous skin, interminable legs, huge eyes and childish voice. She is the first occupant of the Gatebox, the magic box launched in December 2016 by Japanese company Vinclu. Once activated, the translucent bubble, placed on a black base, lights up and Azuma appears inside, like a hologram, it's the first "Hologram Communication Robot", as they call her.

Azuma lives her life inside the transparent globe. She sleeps, ishes her teeth, takes a cup of tea sitting in an armchair, but rises as soon as her "master", as named on the site of the apparatus, solicits her. Equipped with a camera and a microphone, she recognizes him, distinguishes his movements, understands a few words and interacts with him, like virtual assistants like Siri.

If Azuma is, for the moment, less elaborate than robots, she has a considerable advantage: a body, untouchable but visible, animated, and she possess the adorable and fluid voice of the characters of Japanese cartoons. A body that gives fantasy, an animated creature to which one can attach oneself. "We are trying to make these characters naturally part of our daily lives and spend quiet moments with us," explains its designers. Azuma is "a presence".

In a video of demonstration, she is seen under her dome, tiny and smiling, sitting next to her young master watching television. It looks like a couple would be lazing on a Sunday night. "It is a comforting character for those who live alone," says Vinclu's website, which defines this virtual girlfriend as gentle, considerate and playful. One understands the goal: this little fairy of the house is supposed to fight the loneliness in a country where the number of singles grows. With Azuma, promises the company, "you will finally want to go home early."

Just created, its Artificial Intelligence (AI) currently only includes Japanese, and the Gatebox is only available in Japan and the United States. Only 300 copies have been sold to date - at the price of 298,000 yen (2,400 euros). Will this virtual girl become the miniature companion of men alone?

But how does it works? Is it really a hologram? Well, not really, it is actually a projection on a glass plate and it uses the old and very famous "Pepper Ghost effect", the same one that WDI Imagineers use in Disney's Haunted Mansion since 50 years! But it works great, apparently as you'll see on the videos below!

Awesome Trailer for Steven Spielberg's New Movie "Ready Player One"

An absolutely awesome trailer for Steven Spielberg's new movie "Ready Player One" was shown yesterday at San Diego ComicCon!

""When the creator of an MMO called the Oasis dies, he releases a video in which he challenges all Oasis users to find his Easter Egg, which will give the finder his fortune. Wade Watts finds the first clue and starts a race for the Egg."

Spielberg also said that the Iron Giant is playing a major role in the movie - you'll see him briefly in the trailer below -  which is great news!  Ready Player One will be released next March.

New Trailer and Poster for Thor Ragnarok !

A new trailer and poster was released at San Diego ComicCon yesterday for the awaited Thor Ragnarok, here they are!

Marvel has also released a new poster for Black Panther, and with the Thor Ragnarok poster below, these are the posters that were given out to the fans who attended the Marvel panel at Comic-Con yesterday. Marvel also screened some cool new footage from Black Panther but they said it would not be released online.

During the Marvel panel Kevin Feige revealed new details about Captain Marvel - including the concept art of Brie Larson as Captain Marvel below - and he announced that the film would be set in the early 1990s, and Feige also confirmed that Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury would be back and as the story is set in the 90s... he'll have both of his eyes!

Also, The Skrulls will be in the movie! The Skrulls are a villainous alien race with shape-shifting abilities and they are hell bent on invading Earth and engaged in a prolonged war with the extraterrestrial Kree. Check out the concept art with them below!

 Pictures and video: copyright Marvel

Friday, July 21, 2017

Michael Powell 1940 The Thief of Bagdad, The Film Who Inspired Disney's Aladdin - Full Movie

In an article posted yesterday by City Pages titled "5 times Disney was questionably 'inspired' by other films" we learn that, among the films who inspired Disney's animated films, one of them, Aladdin, was greatly inspired by Michael Powell's 1940 legendary film "The Thief of Bagdad". Although Disney's Aladdin story is a mix between the Aladdin tale and The Thief of Bagdad there is no doubt that Disney's animators found a LOT of their inspiration in this GORGEOUS 1940 version of The Thief of Bagdad, including the main villain named Jafar, like in Aladdin.

Directed by Michael Powell, one of the greatest British film directors of all time and produced by Alexander Korda the film was at his time a major Hollywood production, and all in it is stunning: the production sets are huge and gorgeous, the Technicolor colors are unbelievably beautiful, the whole movie is Hollywood golden era at its best AND there is the fantastic music of Miklos Rosza!

Anyone who have not seen before and discover The Thief of Bagdad is a lucky man as it's rare to see a movie with so much fantasy and innocence and beauty all along. Lucky you, i've found the full movie for you ( all in english language even if the main title at the start is in German ) and in Full HD! Watch it full screen and enjoy this wonder!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

WDI Video Reveal the Incredible Animatronic head structure of Pandora Navi Shaman Audio-Animatronic

During yesterday's TechCrunch Sessions Robotics event in Boston was released a WDI video showing the Animatronic head structure of the Navi Shaman Audio-Animatronic in the Pandora Navi River boat ride. And, as expected, when you take of her mask, you discover some "incredible, beautifully complex array of robotics lays beneath"...

Video: copyright Disney

Sunday, July 16, 2017

FULL Updated Fantasmic! Show at Disneyland With New Scenes And New special Effects !

The new updated Fantasmic! show started at Disneyland last night with new scenes and new special effects, and here it is, the FULL Updated Fantasmic! Show filmed in 4K by The DIS. The  new scenes are: Aladdin Flying Carpet, Tangled and Pirates of the Caribbean.

Video: copyright SoCal Attractions 360