How on earth did they do that? Danny Boyle turned the audience into a huge human video screen -World heaps praise on Opening Ceremony
Posted on July 28th, 2012

Courtesy The Times

The Olympics opening ceremony has been hailed as a “whimsical, riotous and very British” triumph by viewers from around the world, who heaped praise on director Danny Boyle’s tribute to Britain.

A billion people are estimated to have tuned in to watch the £27 million spectacular, while thousands of others travelled to the UK to witness the official start of the sporting celebration in person.

The three-and-a-half-hour show appeared to be an instant hit with many, with its British sense of humour and vibrant soundtrack celebrated by viewers from other countries who flooded social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook with praise over the ceremony.

The New York Times described it as “a five-ring opening circus, weirdy and unabashedly British”, the Washington Post called it a “rock-and-roll Olympics”, while the Australian Broadcasting Corporation labelled it a “whimsical, riotous and very British spectacle”.

The Queen’s cameo appearance was a particular highlight for the non-British audience as she took part in a comical segment filmed in Buckingham Palace with Daniel Craig, before seemingly parachuting into the Olympic Stadium with the James Bond star.

News Limited said it had ensured London would always be remembered as “the Olympics when the Queen and James Bond jumped out of a helicopter”.

“It could well have been the most astonishing moment in modern Olympic history,” a News Limited reporter wrote. “Records will always be broken, athletes will come and go, but we’ll never see anything like that again.”

Los Angeles Times sports reporter Bill Plaschke tweeted: “James Bond and Queen Elizabeth II “ƒ”¹…”parachute’ into the stadium, then kids in pyjamas sing the national anthem… works for me.”

British broadcaster Piers Morgan was also a fan, tweeting: “Oh. My. God! The Queen meets James Bond! THAT, Mr Boyle, was pure genius.”

Fashion designer Henry Holland was equally impressed, tweeting: “NEVER been more obsessed with The Queen! Such a legend!!”

 

The canvas extended to encapsulate the people yesterday, as Danny Boyle turned the audience into a huge multi-million-pound human video screen.

A total of 637,191 lights were installed in tablets on more than 70,000 seats. As the Queen arrived at the stadium, they flashed red, white and blue, before unravelling one of the highest-resolution Union Jacks ever seen.

The technology was also used to re-create a moment of Olympic history, by sending Jesse Owens around the stadium on his gold-medal-winning 100m sprint at the 1936 Berlin Games. Original footage was too grainy to use on such a scale, so an actor was hired to run with the same style and gait as Owens.

Another image, depicting the birth of the internet, began in the centre of the stage and shot outwards into the audience. At various points spectators were encouraged to pluck the detached, paddle-shaped tablets from between their seats, and brandish them aloft.

A British team of 40 from the company Crystal CG installed the panels over the past two months. They are connected to a central computer system by 197 miles of cable. The result was 126m images that had five times the resolution of high-definition television. The images had to be calibrated to allow for the curve of the stadium.

Will Case, the creative director at Crystal, said: “The audience literally became part of the action . . . This will transform the way event content is presented in future, becoming a more immersive experience.”

The pixel tablets were one of the most costly elements of the £27 million ceremony and, apart from the cauldron lighter, the part that officials were most keen to keep under wraps.

 

5 Responses to “How on earth did they do that? Danny Boyle turned the audience into a huge human video screen -World heaps praise on Opening Ceremony”

  1. Sri Rohana Says:

    Good Luck London Olympic games. At least few weeks’ western media will dilute little bit racism and Anglo American white supremacy due to Olympics. At this moment most citizen’s of the world can enjoy London Olympics. But soon the Olympics were over then again western media will restart their as usual racism and white supremacy bull shits.
    But we should not forget that same Anglo Americans boycotted and sabotaged Moscow Olympics. And they tried their best to sabotage Beijing Olympics with the Tibet issue. Not to forget that at this moment U.K is invaded Iraq and Afghanistan and this is a good reason to boycott London Olympics. Not only in Olympics even so-called Common Wealth Games in New Delhi, British and their colonial media cousins of Australia, New Zealand and Canada remarked very ugly comments on Indian organizers and western media men crawled inside the toilets with their cameras to find cockroaches. This is a proven low standard of western media.
    We should not compare economically poor British standards with colourful Beijing Olympics. But at the end of the day most said that London Olympic Opening ceremony is boring and way behind Beijing’s remarkable opening ceremony.

  2. David Appuhami Says:

    Sri Rohana,
    I am a Londoner of Sinhala origin. Please note that only the Anglo American white supremacists criticise the opening ceremony as too leftists and showing too much of London ethnic mixture.

    But we, Londoners really appreciate the way Danny Boyle created it with correct mixture of hosting country’s history from a nation of farmers to the industrial revolution, history of cultural and ethnic mixture, the creation of the National Health Service and on to the internet which we all are proud of. So Sri Rohana Please don’t walk into the white supremacists propaganda machinery. Beijing created 100 million dollars worth of visual effects, but London spent only $27 million to recreate and represent the history and culture of the hosting nation.

    As the Times said “IT HAD everything: thunderous music, dancing beds, cycling doves and a first-time actress who stole the show. We had been promised magical moments and we got them by the bucketload. The outstanding one came when the Queen appeared in her first acting role and uttered the immortal words, “Good evening, Mr Bond”, to Daniel Craig in a scene filmed at Buckingham Palace.
    Boyle must have known he was on to a winner with the Queen, but none of the rest of the remarkable ceremony was a foregone conclusion. Far from it. In a 3½-hour show, Boyle used 7,500 performers plus geese, carthorses, sheep, cows, helicopters, searchlights, film sequences blending into live shows, stadium lights, a water wheel, 3D effects, speedboats, an orchestra and a 1m-watt sound system to generate an unforgettable spectacle.
    Did his gamble pay off?
    The simple answer is yes. London really had done it.
    Sally Bercow, wife of John, the Commons Speaker, demanded a knighthood for Boyle; David Walliams, the comedian, tweeted “James Bond and Her Majesty the Queen=best thing I have ever seen”, while Kylie Minogue declared the whole spectacle “amaaaaaazing”.
    Rob Brydon, the comedian, tweeted: “Well, this is beyond brilliant. Very proud!” and Phillip Schofield, the broadcaster, wrote: “Right here, right now, this is an epic night.”
    Paula Radcliffe, the marathon runner, perhaps came closest to the essence of it all when she tweeted: “Nobody does it like Britain — nobody.”
    The Italians agreed. “There is no other place on earth which can stage the story of a fairytale with a real queen,” said Concita De Gregorio in La Repubblica.
    Yesterday, as people began heading to the Olympic events, the talk on the buses, trains and in the stands was of a new sense of national pride after the ceremony”.

  3. Dham Says:

    David ,
    Wait and see. Zionists are planning mass exodus according to Alex Jones.

  4. Sri Rohana Says:

    David, thanks for your comment. Appreciate your view. Tell me how you feel as a British if other countries boycott London Olympics as British did to Moscow Olympics. How you feel as a British if any country or many countries tried to sabotage London Olympics as British tried for Beijing Olympics on Tibet issue. How are you going to justify British boycott Olympics and sabotage Olympic when it is organized by their rival nations. British fallas should follow “treat others the way you like to be treated”
    Are you going to justify white supremacy idea of “whites are right and always right and west is best?”

  5. Geeth Says:

    Well, I think i also agree with the Italians…“There is no other place on earth which can stage the story of a fairytale with a real queen,” LOL!!! Ha! Ha!!

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