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Atlantis to be Presented in CinemaScope Format

(May 28, 2001 - by On June 15, 2001, Disney will release Atlantis: The Lost Empire in a format known as "CinemaScope".

CinemaScope is not new to the animation industry. It was widely used in cartoon shorts (mostly MGM) starting in the mid-1950's. A sample of animated films that have used CinemaScope in the past include Lady and the Tramp, Anastasia, and A Bug's Life.

ScreenSound Australia gives the following definition of CinemaScope: "The anamorphic principle is as follows: a cylindrical lens over a normal spherical lens squeezes a 2X horizontal picture onto a standard 35mm frame. When projecting through a complimentary lens, this produces a wide picture ratio of 2.55 to 1. with 4-track magnetic sound, or 2.35 to 1 with optical sound. (The original CinemaScope used a ratio of 2.66 to 1)."

Too technical of a description? Try this one...

According to the Widescreen Museum, "CinemaScope is a completely engineered system for the practical presentation of wide screen pictures combined with true stereophonic sound and so designed as to provide the greatest approach to realism in motion picture story telling which has yet been achieved. This realism is possible because the CinemaScope scheme permits using lenses during the photography which gives the most natural perspective; the angles of view in the presentation of CinemaScope approach that to which we are accustomed in life and the effect of stereophonic sound is to assist in bringing the performance to the stage or area before the audience."

In short, CinemaScope compresses the image on film then stretches it out for the presentation in theaters. Audiences aren't likely to notice any differences when Atlantis is presented in CinemaScope format on June 15, unless watching the presentation on a curved screen.

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