This is something I drew towards the end of the day when a student asked what the difference was between real and fake IMAX. I asked him how much time he had and then jumped into IMAX evangelist mode.
Counter-clockwise from the top-left, we have the aspect ratios and relative size and shape differences betwee old NTSC TV or the Academy standard, HDTV, Academy flat widescreen, anamorphic scope widescreen, and IMAX. The inner lines of the HD drawing are indicating the letterboxing of an anamorphic scope movie being played on an HDTV. The line and arrows of the anamorphic drawing are trying to explain how the lens is involved in “unsqueezing” an anamorphic image when it is projected. I kind of gave up on explaining that because it didn’t matter that much today.
But the real joy was trying to portray just how impressive a true IMAX screen is, especially because I got to draw it as the same width as the 2.4:1 image. The little boxes at the bottom of that image and the rectangle near the top are portraying the scene from The Dark Knight when the police convoy first turns onto the road. I was showing how the burning fire truck was actually visible very early on in the shot on IMAX, while the image had to pan up in the 2.4:1 version (or even the 1.78:1 that we got on blu-ray for those IMAX scenes). And the three circles are supposed to be the heads of the guys in the jeep during the opening scene of The Dark Knight Rises. I was trying to show them that Nolan and Pfister shot the IMAX scenes in such a way that they would be immersive but with non-essential stuff way at the top and bottom (for the eventual home-video release).
And the little squares to the right are trying to portray the relative size difference between 35mm film and 70mm. Here’s a good image that does a better job:
I had a lot of fun doing this, and I may have convinced them to hate digital projection as well.
I had a great time with my actual classes today as well, talking about phobias. I wasn’t happy about some of the other stuff at work today, but I will count the day as a relative success.