Wednesday, December 03, 2008

The Polar Express Human Robot

As advertising for the last season of The Polar Express at the IMax theater at the Indiana State Museum, we've got an actor doing promos for the show a few times a week during the lunch hour in the Artsgarden. He's really good; in character as The Conductor he moves in robotic stop motion, and he's a lot of fun to watch. Also entertaining, watching people notice him, then try to figure out if he's human or animatronic. This is cool for two reasons. First, it's a testament to the actor's ability. And second, it says a lot about modern effects technology. People actually assume that there's a possibility that a complex dynamically-balancing robot is being used for marketing purposes, and they're not too far from being right.

And, I'm trying to come up with a different "conductor" pun every time he does a promo at the Artsgarden. For his first two shows I've got "he's a good conductor -- a real live wire!" and "I hear he's considering a partial retirement; he'll be a semiconductor." I'm not sharing these with the IMax people; I don't want to be That Guy That Thinks He's Funny....

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