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Baylor high-definition film premieres

Nov. 12, 1999

By ERIKA SNOBERGER

Contributor

Homecoming 1999 brings Baylor students, faculty and alumni an unprecedented opportunity to take 'A Most Significant Journey.'

At 6, 8 and 10 tonight, Baylor's first high-definition film, 'A Most Significant Journey,' premieres in Jones Hall in the Glennis McCrary Music Building.

For the past 14 months, Baylor administrators, professors and students worked to compile more than 80 hours of digital video clips of traditions, events and activities in and around Baylor.

A special screening of the film took place at 8 p.m. Thursday. President Robert B. Sloan Jr. honored the film's director, producer, writer and production crew among others. Members of the Baylor Board of Regents, faculty and students attended the preview, and many reacted favorably to the film.

'It made me want to go back to school again,' said university business manager Ken Simons.

Fred Cameron, chairman of regents, considers the film a valuable recruitment tool.

'I can't imagine a prospective student seeing that [film] and not getting excited about Baylor,' Cameron said.

'A Most Significant Journey' chronicles Baylor's past and its vision for the future.

Larry Brumley, director of public relations, approached President Robert B. Sloan Jr. two years ago with the idea to produce a high-definition film about Baylor.

'I had the idea of doing this film and then taking it around the country and having Baylor events in the cities with the highest concentration of alumni, prospective students and donors,' Brumley said.

Brumley's vision for 'A Most Significant Journey' was to create an exceptional representation of Baylor through its academic, social and emotional settings.

'We didn't need another brochure. We didn't need another magazine or annual report. We needed something that was very out of the ordinary to engage our constituents in what's going on at Baylor,' he said.

The original plan was to create the production with regular 16mm film; however, Brumley said he was soon approached by Dr. Corey Carbonara, associate vice president for technology management, who introduced the possibility of producing the film in high-definition.

High-definition television consists of wide-view, digital images able to be projected onto large screens with full resolution. In addition, HDTV employs digital sound comparable to CD-quality sound.

Brumley said Baylor's decision to make a HDTV production 'just made sense.'

Baylor has been involved in HDTV research for the past 10 years and is one of only three institutions of higher education, along with MIT and Florida Atlantic University, to be represented on the Advanced Television Systems Committee, a national body that sets standards for HDTV.

Baylor taught its first course on HDTV in 1990 and started research on the medium in the late 80s, said Dr. Michael Korpi, professor of communication studies.

Kristen Cox, the film's producer and a Baylor alumna, said the use of HDTV illustrates Baylor's long-term presence on the cutting edge of technology.

'When I was a student, we did things [with HDTV] that students at MIT weren't