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Reuben H. Fleet Science Center to open newly renovated Space Theater

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Written by: Reuben H. Fleet Science Center
Date: November 24, 2008

Space Theater is set to re-open December 13 with WLD OCEAN, VAN GOGH, and ANIMALOPOLIS.

  

Category: Press Releases

SAN DIEGO, Calif., Nov. 24, 2008 – After three and a half months of extensive renovations and technology upgrades, the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center plans to reopen its Space Theater on Saturday, December 13, 2008, with three new IMAX films showing daily on the 76-foot tilted dome screen. Audiences will witness an astonishing underwater phenomenon in WILD OCEAN, discover the inspiration behind the canvas in VAN GOGH: Brush with Genius, and delight to a whimsical world of amazing animals in ANIMALOPOLIS.

Visitors to the newly-renovated Space Theater -- which functions both as an IMAX Dome Theater and a planetarium -- will enjoy dramatically improved sights, sounds and experiences. Large-format films will burst off the screen with unprecedented color and contrast, thanks to the installation of the world's first NanoSeam™ Dome in an IMAX Theater. Manufactured by Spitz, Inc. and offering the smoothest, most uniform dome surface available, the new NanoSeam screen appears completely seamless under projection. Additionally, a new lens on the IMAX projector transmits more light and produces greater clarity across the entire image field.

From symphonic scores to dinosaur roars, improved audio quality inside the Space Theater will send chills down spines with the installation of a new 16,000-watt digital surround sound system. New seats and carpeting will enhance visitors' comfort and enjoyment of IMAX film presentations inside the theater.

Produced by Giant Screen Films, WILD OCEAN is an explosive, symphonic film about man and nature that captures one of the world's greatest spectacles. Each year a massive feeding frenzy takes place in the oceans off South Africa as billions of fish migrate up the KwaZulu-Natal Wild Coast. Breaching whales, frenzied sharks, herding dolphins, and diving gannets compete in an epic underwater struggle for survival. While the migration has provided a food source for both marine life and the people living along the African shores, global warming and overfishing have threatened the very existence of this unique phenomenon. However, South African business, government and local people have joined forces in an attempt to protect this delicate and interconnected ecosystem. By pursuing sustainable fishing practices, they work together to preserve one of the most incredible migrations and feeding frenzies on the planet. WILD OCEAN recently received the Giant Screen Cinema Association's prestigious Achievement Awards for Best Original Score and Best Sound Design.

The second film to open in the Fleet's renovated Space Theater is VAN GOGH: Brush with Genius. Audiences will plunge into the heart of Vincent van Gogh's paintings and take a journey through the surprisingly short period of the artist's career, during which he completed more than 900 paintings. VAN GOGH follows in the artist's footsteps, traveling from the Netherlands to Auvers-sur-Oise then passing through Arles, Saint-Rémy and Paris. Discover the fantastic colors and distinctive brushwork of a genius. From the dazzling yellow of the cornfields to the deep blue of the sky, the entire palette of one of our most flamboyant painters explodes to light up the giant screen.

ANIMALOPOLIS is the third new IMAX film that will premiere at the Fleet Science Center on December 13, taking younger audiences on a whimsical voyage into the magical world of animals. With 12 hilarious segments, each featuring a different animal, ANIMALOPOLIS will appeal to young children as well as the young at heart. Whether going nose to nose with hippos as they graze upon nature's massive salad bar, or eye to eye with dancing bears and sea lions turning somersaults, we are reminded that nature provides us with humor and wonder everywhere. ANIMALOPOLIS takes a lighthearted and imaginary look at a variety of animals including cheetahs that race like a Ferrari, bears that run their own fishing school, an operatic lion, and many more.

The Space Theater renovation is a major component of the Fleet Science Center's $20 million capital campaign, "Creating Possibilities, Inspiring Tomorrow," which is also providing invaluable financial support for expanded education programs and facilities, new hands-on science exhibitions and greater long-term financial security by strengthening the organization's endowment.

The current round of theater renovation projects -- including the NanoSeam Dome, new sound system and IMAX upgrades—represent only the first of three phases. From 2009 to 2010, Phase II will involve the selection and installation of a state-of-the-art, full-dome digital projection system to augment the existing IMAX projector. This technology will take the Fleet Science Center's planetarium shows to a new level, with incredibly realistic simulations of the cosmos and high-definition video productions that explore science, entertain with music visualizations and delight with children's programs.

Also set to begin in the near future, Phase III will bring a digital production studio to the Fleet, which will develop educational and entertaining full-dome video productions that take Space Theater audiences on extraordinary immersive journeys into a human cell, an atomic nucleus or virtually any environment imaginable.

The Reuben H. Fleet Science Center ("the Fleet") is home to Southern California's only IMAX® Dome Theater and 100+ hands-on science exhibits for all ages. Watch immersive giant-screen films in the newly-renovated Space Theater, featuring the world's first NanoSeam Dome screen in an IMAX Theater. Experience seven galleries of fun, interactive exhibits, including major traveling exhibitions. A 23-passenger Motion Simulator Ride thrills visitors with journeys into exciting realms. Enjoy sandwiches, salads and healthy treats in Galileo's Café. Find unique educational toys and games, books, IMAX DVDs and more in the North Star Science Store. Located at 1875 El Prado, two blocks south of the San Diego Zoo on Park Blvd, the Fleet Science Center is a non-profit organization dedicated to furthering the public understanding and enjoyment of science and technology. For information regarding current admission prices, please call (619) 238-1233 or visit our Web site at www.rhfleet.org.

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