The Future of Film?


If you think about it, the evolution of theatre and the evolution of movies, although separated by centuries of development, have followed similar paths. Can we predict the possible future of film by the evolution of live theatre? Acting styles change, but the stage itself – the area where the actors perform – has been fairly consistent: a raised stage with a “proscenium” framing the performance.


What does that have to do with the possible evolution of motion pictures?  The proscenium stage, with few exceptions, is the basic format for live performances.  The development of the camera created another medium for performance, the “Moving Picture”.  Motion pictures are essentially theatrical performances on a larger stage, with the camera playing the role of a live audience and the screen being the proscenium that frames the action. In both live and film performances, you view the action from essentially the same perspective.


In the 1940s, a new form of staging was developed, called “Theatre in the Round”.  The stage was no longer at one end of the theatre with the audience watching from the other end; now the stage was in the center and the audience surrounded the stage and actors. This made performances more intimate and lifelike. It was like being in a stadium or arena — thus the term “Arena theater”.


So what has that to do with the movies of the future? Future movies could not be just “3D moving pictures” like today; but actual three dimensional hologram projections; as if we were viewing a real event with people with real shape, perspective and depth. The word hologram comes from the Greek :  holos (meaning “whole”) and  gramma (meaning “message”.) No need for special glasses either; we would just “be there”– adding a whole new meaning to the term “Cinéma Vérité”.


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