Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History Celebrates the Star-Spangled Banner Bicentennial

2014 Also Marks National Museum of American History’s 50th Anniversary and Centennial of Its First Ladies Exhibition

The Star Spangled Banner, the flag that inspired the national anthem, on display at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History.  (PRNewsFoto/Smithsonian's National Museum of American History)

The Star Spangled Banner, the flag that inspired the national anthem, on display at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. (PRNewsFoto/Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History)

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History will commemorate several major milestones in 2014: the 200th anniversary of the Star-Spangled Banner, the country’s most famous flag, and the moment when it signified the survival of the young nation in 1814; the centennial of the First Ladies exhibition at the Smithsonian; and the museum’s 50th birthday.

When the museum opened its doors to the public Jan. 23, 1964, as the National Museum of History and Technology, the Flag Hall and the First Ladies Hall were among the first 10 original galleries on view. The Star-Spangled Banner remains at the center of what is now the National Museum of American History, and the First Ladies exhibition continues to be among the most popular with the museum’s 5 million annual visitors.

The museum’s keystone celebration will take place on Flag Day, Saturday, June 14, when the Smithsonian invites Americans around the globe to join Raise It Up! in a worldwide commemoration of the flag and the anthem. Raise it Up! Anthem for America will be a call to millions of Americans to participate in singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” simultaneously, led by a celebrity artist on the National Mall, steps from the original flag that flew over Fort McHenry in 1814. Details will be announced this spring. For more information, the public may visit

The National Museum of American History is proud to be the home of the iconic Star-Spangled Banner, the flag that inspired Francis Scott Key in 1814 to write passionate lyrics after the relentless but ultimately unsuccessful British bombardment of Baltimore’s Fort McHenry,” said John Gray, director of the National Museum of American History. “His song became our national anthem in 1931. Both the anthem and the banner are the most recognized symbols of our country and this year, the flag will serve as a lens through which we will present exhibitions, programs and special events to allow our visitors to examine American identity and to celebrate our shared culture.

Between June 14 and July 6, the Maryland Historical Society will loan Key’s original manuscript of the “Star-Spangled Banner” lyrics to the museum for a special short-term display, reuniting it for the first time with the flag Key saw at the “dawn’s early light.”

The museum will mark its 50th anniversary with special exhibitions and programs throughout the year. Selected highlights are:

Michelle Obama’s Second Inaugural Gown: “The First Ladies” Exhibition
Jan. 14–Jan. 19, 2015
As a special one-year loan from the White House, the museum will display First Lady Michelle Obama‘s second inaugural gown, designed by Jason Wu and worn to the January 2013 inaugural balls. The ruby-colored chiffon gown, on loan from the White House, will temporarily replace Michelle Obama’s first inaugural gown.

Camilla’s Purse
Jan. 24–May 4
Holocaust survivor Camilla Gottlieb’s ordinary life in Vienna was upended into crisis, imprisonment and ultimately to a new life in the United States. Discovered by Gottlieb’s family after her 1964 death, her purse contained letters and papers tracing her trials and triumphs from captivity in the Theresienstadt concentration camp to eventual reunion with her daughter. Objects include the purse, Gottlieb’s 1884 birth certificate and her suitcase with the identification tag carried during her journey.

The Early Sixties: American Science
April 25–Dec. 14
The early 1960s saw rapid innovations in American science, medicine and computing. Discoveries made in the laboratory reshaped the American experience. This display, with objects circa 1964, showcases how the museum encouraged such change by making its visitors better aware of past scientific accomplishments.

The Early Sixties: American Culture
April 25–Dec. 14
This display celebrates the early ’60s as the background for the opening of the museum. That period of American culture straddled a time of dominant traditions and social norms with developing broad-based countercultural and reactionary expressions in response to demands for individual and community freedoms in areas of arts economics, politics and environmental and civil rights issues.

The Quest for a Modern Museum: Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the National Museum of American History
May 16–Sept. 7
This exhibition will document the origins of the National Museum of American History (originally the Museum of History and Technology from 1964-80) and consider what those beginnings mean for the museum today and into the future. The 50-year anniversary display will focus on the museum, circa 1964, as it was originally conceived, designed and built. It will also take a look through the past five decades to see how the museum evolved and transformed into what it is today.

From Technology to History: 50 Years
May 16–Sept. 7
Modern digital photographic prints of key National Museum of History and Technology and National Museum of American History exhibitions and activities will be on view to showcase the transformation of the museum from one of history and technology into a museum devoted to American history. The photos highlight the exhibitions and new collecting initiatives that led to the evolution of the museum throughout its 50 years.

Key’s “Star-Spangled Banner” Manuscript on view in The Star-Spangled Banner: The Flag That Inspired the National Anthem
June 14–July 6
To mark the bicentennial of the Star-Spangled Banner, the Maryland Historical Society will loan Key’s original manuscript of the “Star-Spangled Banner” lyrics to the museum for a special short-term display, reuniting it with the flag he saw at “dawn’s early light.” The flag is on permanent display at the center of the National Museum of American History. Visitors can see the fragile 30- by-34-foot wool-and-cotton flag and the manuscript, both on display inside the banner’s specially constructed, environmentally controlled chamber. The chamber is designed and engineered to safeguard the flag while providing maximum visibility to visitors. Low light levels protect the flag, yet dramatically evoke an atmosphere of “dawn’s early light,” similar to what Key experienced on the morning of Sept. 14, 1814.

Through incomparable collections, rigorous research and dynamic public outreach, the National Museum of American History explores the infinite richness and complexity of American history. It helps people understand the past in order to make sense of the present and shape a more humane future. The museum is currently renovating its west exhibition wing, developing galleries on business, democracy and culture. For more information, visit The museum is located at 14th Street and Constitution Avenue N.W., and is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (closed Dec. 25). Admission is free. For Smithsonian information, the public may call (202) 633-1000.


Peter W. Anderson to receive Gordon E. Sawyer Award; Charles “Tad” Marburg to receive John A. Bonner Medal of Commendation 

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced that 19 scientific and technical achievements represented by 52 individual award recipients will be honored at its annual Scientific and Technical Awards Presentation on Saturday, February 15, at The Beverly Hills Hotel.

In addition, visual effects supervisor and director of photography Peter W. Anderson will receive the Gordon E. Sawyer Award (an Oscar® statuette) for technological contributions that have brought credit to the industry.  Post-production and distribution executive Charles “Tad” Marburg will receive the John A. Bonner Medal of Commendation for outstanding service and dedication in upholding the high standards of the Academy.

For the first time in the history of the Scientific and Technical Awards, a large number of individuals, collectively, will be AMPAS_SolidLogo_Goldrecognized with an Academy Award® of Merit (an Oscar statuette). The award is dedicated to “all those who built and operated film laboratories, for over a century of service to the motion picture industry.”

This year’s honorees have in a myriad of ways enabled today’s moviegoing experience,” said Richard Edlund, Academy Award-winning visual effects artist and Scientific and Technical Awards Committee Chair. “Their efforts have advanced not only the art and science of motion pictures, but the work of countless global industries.”

Unlike other Academy Awards to be presented this year, achievements receiving Scientific and Technical Awards need not have been developed and introduced during 2013. Rather, the achievements must demonstrate a proven record of contributing significant value to the process of making motion pictures.

The Academy Awards for scientific and technical achievements are:


To Olivier Maury, Ian Sachs and Dan Piponi for the creation of the ILM Plume system that simulates and renders fire, smoke and explosions for motion picture visual effects.
The unique construction of this system combines fluid solving and final image rendering on the GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) hardware without needing an intermediate step involving the CPU. This innovation reduces turnaround time, resulting in significant efficiency gains for the ILM effects department.

To Ronald D. Henderson for the development of the FLUX gas simulation system.
The use of the Fast Fourier Transform for solving partial differential equations allows FLUX a greater level of algorithmic efficiency when multi-threading on modern hardware. This innovation enables the creation of very high-resolution fluid effects while maintaining fast turnaround times.

The Academy Awards® for outstanding film achievements of 2013 will be presented on Oscar Sunday, March 2, 2014, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® and televised live on the ABC Television Network.

The Academy Awards® for outstanding film achievements of 2013 will be presented on Oscar Sunday, March 2, 2014, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® and televised live on the ABC Television Network.

To Andrew Camenisch, David Cardwell and Tibor Madjar for the concept and design, and to Csaba Kohegyi and Imre Major for the implementation of the Mudbox software.
Mudbox provides artists powerful new design capabilities that significantly advance the state of the art in multi-resolution digital sculpting for film production.

To Martin Hill, Jon Allitt and Nick McKenzie for the creation of the spherical harmonics-based efficient lighting system at Weta Digital.
The spherical harmonics lighting pipeline precomputes and reuses a smooth approximation of time-consuming visibility calculations. This enables artists to quickly see the results of changing lights, materials and set layouts in scenes with extremely complex geometry.

To Florian Kainz, Jeffery Yost, Philip Hubbard and Jim Hourihan for the architecture and development of the Zeno application framework.
For more than a decade, Zeno’s flexible and robust design has allowed the creation of a broad range of Academy Award-winning visual effects toolsets at ILM.

To Peter Huang and Chris Perry for their architectural contributions to, and to Hans Rijpkema and Joe Mancewicz for the core engineering of, the Voodoo application framework.
For more than a decade, Voodoo’s unique design concepts have enabled a broad range of character animation toolsets to be developed at Rhythm & Hues.

To Matt Pharr, Greg Humphreys and Pat Hanrahan for their formalization and reference implementation of the concepts behind physically based rendering, as shared in their book Physically Based Rendering.
Physically based rendering has transformed computer graphics lighting by more accurately simulating materials and lights, allowing digital artists to focus on cinematography rather than the intricacies of rendering. First published in 2004, Physically Based Rendering is both a textbook and a complete source-code implementation that has provided a widely adopted practical roadmap for most physically based shading and lighting systems used in film production.

To Dr. Peter Hillman for the long-term development and continued advancement of innovative, robust and complete toolsets for deep compositing.
Dr. Hillman’s ongoing contributions to standardized techniques and a common deep image file format have enabled advanced compositing workflows across the digital filmmaking industry.

To Colin Doncaster, Johannes Saam, Areito Echevarria, Janne Kontkanen and Chris Cooper for the development, prototyping and promotion of technologies and workflows for deep compositing.
Their contributions include early advancements in key deep compositing features such as layer and holdout-order independence, spatial and intra-element color correction, post-render depth of field, and precise blending of complex layer edges.

To Thomas Lokovic and Eric Veach for their influential research and publication of the fundamental concepts of deep shadowing technology.
Providing a functional and efficient model for the storage of deep opacity information, this technology was widely adopted as the foundation of early deep compositing pipelines.

To Gifford Hooper and Philip George of HoverCam for the continuing development of the Helicam miniature helicopter camera system.
The current Helicam system is a high-speed, extremely maneuverable, turbine-engine, radio-controlled miniature helicopter that supports professional film and digital cinema cameras. Helicam provides a wide range of stabilized, remotely operated pan, tilt and roll capabilities, achieving shots impossible for full-size helicopters.

To John Frazier, Chuck Gaspar and Clay Pinney for the design and development of the Pneumatic Car Flipper.
This self-contained high-pressure pneumatic device safely launches a stationary full-sized car on a predetermined trajectory. The precision of operation enhances the safety of performers, and the physical design allows a rapid setup and strike.

To Joshua Pines, David Reisner, Lou Levinson, Curtis Clark, ASC, and David Register for the development of the American Society of Cinematographers Color Decision List technology.
The ASC CDL unifies color correction principles for use on- and off-set, providing for the faithful reproduction of color values across a variety of color correction devices. This technology provides basic image-processing mathematics that translate the lift, gamma and gain settings to a set of common color values to help preserve the cinematographer’s intent throughout production.

To Jeremy Selan for the development of the OpenColorIO color management framework.
OpenColorIO is an open source framework that enables consistent color visualization of motion picture imagery across multiple facilities and numerous software applications.


To Ofer Alon for the design and implementation of the ZBrush software tool for multi-resolution sculpting of digital models.
ZBrush pioneered multi-resolution digital sculpting, transforming how artists conceive and realize their final designs. ZBrush has enabled artists to create models far more quickly and with much greater detail than previous approaches.

To Eric Veach for his foundational research on efficient Monte Carlo path tracing for image synthesis.
Physically based rendering has transformed computer graphics lighting by more accurately simulating materials and lights, allowing digital artists to focus on cinematography rather than the intricacies of rendering. In his 1997 Ph.D. thesis and related publications, Veach formalized the principles of Monte Carlo path tracing and introduced essential optimization techniques, such as multiple importance sampling, which make physically based rendering computationally feasible.

To Andre Gauthier, Benoit Sevigny, Yves Boudreault and Robert Lanciault for the design and implementation of the FiLMBOX software application.
FiLMBOX, the foundation of MotionBuilder, enables the real-time processing and control of devices and animation. For over two decades, its innovative architecture has been a basis for the development and evolution of new techniques in filmmaking, such as virtual production.

To Emmanuel Prevenaire, Jan Sperling, Etienne Brandt and Tony Postiau for their development of the Flying-Cam SARAH 3.0 system.
This battery-powered, radio-controlled, miniature helicopter camera system employs computer-assisted piloting and tele-operation in an airframe that utilizes GPS-assisted flight controls for aerial filming of unparalleled sophistication. Flying-Cam SARAH achieves shots impossible for full-size helicopters, cable systems or other traditional camera support devices.


To all those who built and operated film laboratories, for over a century of service to the motion picture industry.
Lab employees have contributed extraordinary efforts to achieve filmmakers’ artistic expectations for special film processing and the production of billions of feet of release prints per year. This work has allowed an expanded motion picture audience and unequaled worldwide cinema experience.

Peter W. Anderson 
Presented to an individual in the motion picture industry whose technological contributions have brought credit to the industry.

Charles “Tad” Marburg
Presented in appreciation for outstanding service and dedication in upholding the high standards of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Portions of the Scientific and Technical Awards Presentation will be included in the Oscar telecast. The Academy Awards® for outstanding film achievements of 2013 will be presented on Oscar Sunday, March 2, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® and televised live on the ABC Television Network.  The presentation, produced by Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, also will be televised live in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.

Starter Unveils The “Starter Clubhouse”, A Pop-up Experience For Super Bowl XLVIII, At The Paramount Hotel In The Heart Of Times Square

Exclusively at the Starter Clubhouse – NFL, NBA, MLB Satin Jacket Collection and Starter Black Label

Friday, January 17‎th – Sunday, February 9th

Starter, the legendary sports apparel brand founded in 1971 and owned by Iconix, continues the momentum from its Fall 2013 re-introduction of the classic Starter satin jacket with a three-week long “Starter Clubhouse” pop-up store during Super Bowl XLVIII. This initiative is done in partnership with Carl Banks, President of G-III Sports and 2X Super Bowl Champion, who will be hosting a series of events for the first-ever NY/NJ-hosted Super Bowl.


Starter’s first-ever retail space at the Paramount Hotel will have their grand opening on Friday, January 17th, with an exclusive preview event the night before. The store will remain open until Sunday, February 9 thand will feature a series of events including exclusive collaboration launches, fan appreciation nights, celebrity DJ sets, celebrity poker tournament, professional athlete appearances and live radio/TV/web broadcasts.

Products available for sale include a wide assortment of NFL, NBA and MLB team jackets as well as the Starter Black Label premium collection featuring collaborations with prominent streetwear designers. A Special-Edition Super Bowl XLVIII Jacket will also be showcased exclusively at the Starter Clubhouse.

We are excited to work with the Paramount Hotel to celebrate the NY/NJ-hosted Super Bowl XLVIII and recognize the die-hard fans with the Starter Jacket – the most legitimate testimony of team loyalty,” says Carl Banks, President of G-III Sports. “We couldn’t think of a better location than Times Square to honor the brand’s sports heritage and fashion tradition giving it premium positioning during Super Bowl XLVIII.”

The goal of the Starter Clubhouse is to provide sports fans the opportunity to experience the different facets of sports culture lifestyle that the brand has pioneered since 1971,” says James Ling, VP Marketing – Men’s Division at Iconix.

The Starter Clubhouse is located at the Paramount Hotel on 235 W. 46th Street with hours from 10 am-8 pm (Friday, January 17 th to Tuesday, January 28 th) and 10 am-11 pm (Wednesday, January 29 th to Sunday, February 9 th). For more information, follow Starter on Twitter @StarterBrand or please visit


etailer rings in the Year of the Horse with unique merchandise, special events, and in-store animation

To celebrate The Chinese New Year, select Bloomingdale’s will be ringing in the Year of the Horse with unique pop-up shops, merchandise, special events, and cultural presentations from Jan. 10 – Feb. 15, 2014.

As a company rooted in family and tradition, we look forward to once again celebrating both the Chinese New Year and entire Chinese culture that is deeply rooted in history,” says Tony Spring, Bloomingdale’s president and COO, and newly appointed chairman and CEO effective Feb. 1, 2014. “We welcome Chinese shoppers and tourists, along with all of our loyal shoppers, to join the festivities as we celebrate the Year of the Horse.”

Shoppers at Bloomingdale’s 59th Street, North Michigan Avenue, San Francisco Centre, and South Coast Plaza are invited to get into the spirit of the holiday and test their luck with the Chinese red envelope tradition from Jan. 30 – Feb. 2, 2014. Select envelopes will be filled with prizes such as a bMoney card in a denomination of $8, $88, or $888 (a traditional lucky number in the culture); a complimentary small Forty Carrots yogurt; a limited-edition Year of the Horse tote bag; special offers at the Clarins, Estee Lauder, and La Prairie counters; savings at select Bloomingdale’s dining destinations; complimentary mini cupcakes at Magnolia Bakery (59th Street location only); special savings at Maximilian Fur Salon (59th Street, North Michigan Avenue, South Coast Plaza only).

Bloomingdale’s will also be debuting limited-edition pop up shops curated by the retailer’s fashion office that are filled with unique pieces for your wardrobe and home celebrating Chinese culture at the following locations: 59th Street, Medinah Home, North Michigan Avenue, Soho, South Coast Plaza, and San Francisco Centre. The shops will be filled with such pieces as a limited-edition reusable “Little Horse Bag” inspired by Bloomingdale’s iconic Brown Bag, an exclusive Longchamp Year of the Horse bag, an exclusive Carmen Marc Valvo Couture red chinchilla jacket, as well as other must-haves from Alex & Ani, Anna B., Art Addiction, Asian Loft, Baccarat, Chaser, Clarisonic, Cynthia Steffe, Diane von Furstenberg, Dogeared, Fox, Franz, Furla, Godiva, Happy Socks, John Robshaw, Jonathan Adler, Lalique, MCM, Michael Aram, Michael Wainwright, Natori, Nike, Olivia Riegel, Prouna, Ray-Ban, Riedel, Salvatore Ferragamo, Topo Ranch, Versace, Voluspa, and Wildfox.

Also look for additional merchandise celebrating Chinese culture in the Burberry, Chloe, Dior, Estee Lauder, fine jewelry, Gucci, Jimmy Choo, and Salvatore Ferragamo departments. Other visual statements celebrating the Year of the Horse will also be present throughout the store.

During not only the Chinese New Year celebration, but all year long, exclusive Tourism Programs for international and domestic visitors to Bloomingdale’s locations in New York, Chicago, Miami and San Francisco are available. In these cities, out-of-town visitors can receive a special Bloomingdale’s visitor savings pass and gift with purchase. Additional visitor services include a multi-lingual Visitors Center staff and directories (including but not limited to – German, French, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, simplified Chinese, Spanish), along with concierge services, hotel package delivery, personal shopper appointments, and more. A Bloomingdale’s welcome guidebook in simplified Chinese is also available at locations in New York, Chicago, Costa Mesa, and San Francisco.

At Bloomingdale’s locations nationwide, there are 193 Chinese-speaking associates (both Mandarin-speaking and Cantonese-speaking), available to make your shopping experience like no other in the world.

To join the Chinese New Year festivities at your local Bloomingdale’s for a full line up of events. Be sure to follow @bloomingdales on social media where you can join the conversation with #bloomiesyearofthehorse.

Bloomingdale’s is America’s only nationwide, full-line, upscale department store and a division of Macy’s, Inc. It was founded in 1872 and currently operates 37 Bloomingdale’s stores and 13 Bloomingdale’s, The Outlet Stores in New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, Illinois, Georgia, Florida, New Hampshire, California, and Texas. In addition, Bloomingdale’s has an international presence with a location in Dubai. Be sure to follow Bloomingdale’s on social media, become a Loyallist, and for more information, or to shop any time, visit


The Woolmark Company collaborates with Christopher Raeburn, Jonathan Saunders, Lou Dalton, Richard James, and Paul Smith for London Collections: Men 


The Woolmark Company has collaborated with several prominent English menswear designers during the 2014 Fall/Winter London Collections: Men. Working with designers Christopher Raeburn, Jonathan Saunders, Lou Dalton, Richard JamesandPaul Smith, The Woolmark Company supports the Best of British designers and continues to promote the most luxurious wool to the fashion industry. Once again the Autumn/Winter season will strongly feature Merino wool as The Woolmark Company continues to support the leading British designers, and London Collections: Men A/W 14/15 will be no exception.

The Woolmark Company is the world’s best known textile fibre brand, established in 1964. The Woolmark brand is owned by Australian Wool Innovation (AWI), a not-for-profit company owned by more than 25,000 woolgrowers. AWI’s vision is to be a significant contributor to a vibrant, stable and profitable wool industry providing the world with the best natural fibre. The company works throughout the global supply chain – from woolgrowers through to retailers. The company mission is to enhance the profitability, international competitiveness and sustainability of the Australian wool industry; and increase demand and market access for Australian wool.

Merino wool provides stability, resilience, softness and luxury to the tailoring industry. The fibre has long been a favourite of designers, but younger consumers, born in an era of ‘disposable’ fashion know too little about the natural benefits. Wool is a 100 per cent natural and renewable fibre. Sheep live on grass, water, fresh air and sunshine. Wool is a fibre that is grown – not man-made. Every year sheep produce a new fleece, making wool a renewable fibre source.

Jonathan Saunders showcased Merino wool in its most sophisticated form. With a collection of sharp and innovative silhouettes, this is an exciting, fashion-forward fibre to be wearing in A/W as Merino wool increasingly becomes the fibre of choice as consumers hear of wools amazing natural performance properties, properties no other fibre can achieve.

Jonathan Saunders 2014 Fall/Winter Collection Featuring Merino Wool from the Woolmark Company

Jonathan Saunders 2014 Fall/Winter Collection Featuring merino wool from the Woolmark Company

Similarly Lou Dalton uses Merino wool as a contemporary fibre with garments that will see you through the daytime into the evening. Investment pieces that can be dressed up or dressed down – one piece fits all as modern innovation in fabric manufacturing allows wools versatility to be explored.  Lou Dalton said “Working with The Woolmark Company provided access to Woolmark licensees and new suppliers through The Wool Lab and visiting UK mills.  The Wool Lab provided instrumental and extensive inspiration for my Autumn/Winter collection, using yarns and fabrics from Abraham Moons, Charles Clayton, Cerruti and Z Hinchliffe to create the wool pieces, including super lightweight fabrics to offer a transition from Autumn through to Spring. Continue reading

The Tiffen Company Launches Three Exceptional Davis & Sanford Tripods at CES 2014

Precision engineering and rugged design provide photographers and videographers a new range of exciting camera support options; see them first at CES at booth C9143


The Tiffen Company, a leading manufacturer of award-winning digital imaging accessories, will be showcasing three new tripods from its Davis & Sanford brand  at the 2014 International CES exhibition held at the Las Vegas Convention Center from January 7 – 10 (Central Hall, Booth 9143).

“The Tiffen theme at CES 2014 is ‘Ahead of the Curve,’ and these new Davis & Sanford tripods hit at the heart of this motto. Inspired by the tremendous work our customers produce, we designed three incredible Davis & Sanford tripods that will aid in their quest to create the world’s greatest images,” states Steve Tiffen, President and CEO.

New Davis & Sanford tripods shown at CES include the compact Steady Stick 3QR with quick release system as well as new additions to the existing Davis & Sanford lines: Magnum P336 and the Vista Attaras 4M Tripods. “Our customers will go to great lengths to capture the perfect shot and we have carefully crafted tripods to support their needs for versatility, performance and sturdiness. Whatever their vision is for the image, the new Davis & Sanford tripods are precision-engineered to make it a reality,” comments Steve Tiffen.

In addition to showcasing the brand new tripod lineup, Davis & Sanford will be featuring the Pro Elite series, winner of the Videomaker Tripod of the Year award (December 2013).

Davis & Sanford Attaras 4M – Part of the Vista Product Line
This affordable, rugged and ultra-light aluminum tripod is also amazingly versatile. The Attaras center post can be quickly released to form a 60-inch monopod. There’s no unscrewing of a leg or the head. Without breaking their rhythm, shooters can lift out the center post to use as a monopod in seconds.

Suitable for both still and video use, the Attaras 4M has a maximum height of 68 inches, minimum height of 22 inches, folds to 24 inches and weighs just 4.6 lbs.

Attaras 4M Highlights Include:

  • Suitable for pro performance, DSLR, mirrorless, point-and-shoot cameras
  • Video grounder three-section tripod with 11 lb. capacity ball head
  • Three position, 26.5mm independent leg adjustments
  • Adjustable four-section snap leg locks
  • Rubber feet add extra stability
  • Premium BQ11 ball head with quick release
  • High-quality Davis & Sanford Tripod bag included

Attaras 4M will be available in March 2014.

Davis & Sanford – Magnum P336 – Part of the Magnum Product Line
The blend of the standard rock-solid Magnum leg set and the ingenious Powerball PB36-18 head provides the ultimate combination of sturdiness and freedom of movement. This robust Powerball head with its incredible 18-pound capacity ensures that shooters have massive flexibility when it comes to adjustment and easy positioning.

The Magnum P336 has a maximum height of 72 inches, minimum height of eight inches and folds down to 27 inches. The center post diameter and height is 28mm and 14″, while the three-section leg sections have a diameter of 30mm. The total weight is 5.6lbs.

Magnum P336 Highlights Include:

  • Extra-sturdy body and legs for indoor or outdoor use with grounder feature for digital DSLR, still, video or scope uses
  • Premium PB336-18 three-way ball head with 18lb capacity
  • Two built-in bubble levels in head and one in tripod
  • Four position, independent leg adjustments
  • Adjustable three-section snap leg locks
  • Quick lift two-section center post for rapid adjustment and low-range shooting
  • Bottom center post hook for hanging equipment or adding weight to increase stability
  • Rubber feet add extra stability
  • High-quality tripod bag included

Magnum P336 will be available in late January 2014. Continue reading

RCA/Legacy Recordings Set to Release 40th Anniversar​y 2CD Edition of Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis, the King of Rock’s Triumphant 1974 Hometown Return Conce

Newly Remastered Album Includes All Concert Tracks Not Included on Original Vinyl

2nd Disc Premieres Previously Unreleased MONO “Test Run” of Entire Concert Recorded with a Live Audience at the Richmond Coliseum on March 18, 1974

"Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis" to be released March 18.  (PRNewsFoto/Legacy Recordings)

“Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis” to be released March 18. (PRNewsFoto/Legacy Recordings)

RCA Records and Legacy Recordings, the catalog division of Sony Music Entertainment, will celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis ( with an expanded 2CD release of the monumental concert experience featuring tracks left off the original album (because of the spatial limitations of vinyl) plus a wealth of previously unreleased material.

Disc 2 of the newly remastered expanded Legacy Edition of Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis presents for the first time a recently located recording of Elvis’ complete concert “test run” held for an ecstatic live audience on March 18, 1974, two days before his historic concert return to Memphis, where he’d last played live in 1957.  The remarkable “test run” performance was recorded in MONO, drenched in the reverb Elvis preferred, and provides new insight into the magic of Elvis.

As a special added bonus for Elvis aficionados, Disc 2 of Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis includes five intimate tracks (three of them previously unreleased) cut at the RCA Studios in Hollywood on August 16, 1974. Originally intended as reference recordings for an upcoming Las Vegas engagement, the performances–which include “Down In The Alley,” “Good Time Charlie’s Got The Blues,” “Softly As I Leave You,” “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” and “The Twelfth Of Never”–provide a rare fly-on-the-wall glimpse into Elvis’ consummate backstage artistry as he prepares these songs for concert.

The musicians backing Elvis on Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis include James Burton and John Wilkinson (guitars); Charlie Hodge (guitar and vocals); Duke Bardwell (bass); Ronnie Tutt (drums); Glen D. Hardin (piano); The Sweet Inspirations, J.D. Sumner & The Stamps, Kathy Westmoreland (vocals) with Joe Guercio and his Orchestra.

Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis will include a 24 page booklet featuring rare photos, previously unseen memorabilia, new liner notes, press clips and more.

Following the artistic success of his 1973 Stax sessions and the global phenomenon of the Aloha From Hawaii Via Satellite album and broadcast the same year, Elvis opened 1974 with a 15 city tour routed to end in Memphis and a state-of-the-art concert recording.

I wanted to record a live session in my hometown of Memphis,” said Elvis at the time.  “After all, this is where it all started out for me.”

Originally released on vinyl on July 7, 1974, Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis reached #1 on the Country charts and featured “How Great Thou Art,” the track that would bring Elvis his third (and third Gospel) Grammy win.

Elvis Recorded Live On Stage In Memphis
Disc 1
Also Sprach Zarathustra
See See Rider
I Got A Woman/Amen
Love Me
Trying To Get To You
All Shook Up (not included on original album)
Steamroller Blues (not included on original album)
Teddy Bear-Don’t Be Cruel (not included on original album)
Love Me Tender (not included on original album)
Long Tall Sally-Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On-Mama Don’t Dance-Flip, Flop And Fly-Jailhouse Rock-Hound Dog
Fever (not included on original album)
Polk Salad Annie (not included on original album)
Why Me Lord
How Great Thou Art
Suspicious Minds (not included on original album)
Introductions (not included on original album)
Help Me
An American Trilogy
Let Me Be There
My Baby Left Me
Lawdy, Miss Clawdy (not included on original album)
Funny How Time Slips Away (not included on original album)
Can’t Help Falling In Love
Closing Vamp

Disc 2
The Richmond “Test Run” Concert – previously unreleased
Also Sprach Zarathustra
See See Rider
I Got A Woman/Amen
Love Me
Trying To Get To You
All Shook Up
Steamroller Blues
Teddy Bear-Don’t Be Cruel
Love Me Tender
Long Tall Sally-Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On-Mama Don’t Dance-Flip, Flop And Fly-Jailhouse Rock-Hound Dog
Polk Salad Annie
Why Me Lord
How Great Thou Art
Suspicious Minds
Help Me
An American Trilogy
Let Me Be There
My Baby Left Me
Lawdy, Miss Clawdy
Funny How Time Slips Away
Can’t Help Falling In Love
Closing Vamp

Recorded live March 18, 1974 at the Coliseum, Richmond
The August 1974 RCA Rehearsal
Down In The Alley (previously unreleased)
Good Time Charlie’s Got The Blues (previously unreleased)
Softly As I Leave You
The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face (previously unreleased)
The Twelfth Of Never

2014 Fall/Winter London Collections: Men – The English Gentleman at the Cabinet War Rooms

“Help Britain’s Warm Effort, Wear Wool.”

Woolmark event, Cabinet War Rooms, January 7th /photo Bethany Clarke

Woolmark event, Cabinet War Rooms, January 7th /photo Bethany Clarke

On Day 2 of 2014 Fall/Winter London Collections: Men, the underground in SW1A the Cabinet War Rooms came alive at 1800 in a modern interpretation of wool clothes and styles befitting the 1940’s. In a setting representing the activities that occurred below ground during WWII, a number of tableaux’s have been created around the venue in the almost untouched rooms of Sir Winston Churchill, his wife Clementine, the officers and commandant in addition to the precision planning and logistics of the Map room.

Woolmark event, Cabinet War Rooms, January 7th /photo Bethany Clarke

Woolmark event, Cabinet War Rooms, January 7th /photo Bethany Clarke

The English Gentleman at the Cabinet War Rooms event is designed to highlight Merino Wool yarns, fabrics and garments produced by some of the world’s most prestigious manufacturers and tailors which demonstrate the craftsmanship and luxurious detailing. The collaboration seeks to raise awareness of wool’s natural performance properties and versatility across the seasons and product categories. Merino Wool naturally ‘breathes’, effectively regulating the wearer’s body temperature keeping them warm in winter and cool in summer. Wool naturally absorbs moisture, and nullifies odour, resists static electricity and provides natural UV protection, and does not ignite so is safe to wear. Merino Wool has a natural elasticity due to the fibre crimp which helps garments resist creasing and retain their shape, and are less likely to pill (bobble) due to the longer fibre lengths used in manufacture to ensure guaranteed garment performance. Continue reading



The Academy Awards® for outstanding film achievements of 2013 will be presented on Oscar Sunday, March 2, 2014, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® and televised live on the ABC Television Network.

The Academy Awards® for outstanding film achievements of 2013 will be presented on Oscar Sunday, March 2, 2014, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® and televised live on the ABC Television Network.

Television icon Ellen DeGeneres will return to host the Oscars® for a second time, producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced. The 86th Annual Academy Awards® will be broadcast live on Oscar Sunday, March 2, 2014, on the ABC Television Network.

We are thrilled to have Ellen DeGeneres host the Oscars,” said Zadan and Meron. “As a longtime friend, we had always hoped to find a project for us to do together and nothing could be more exciting than teaming up to do the Oscars. There are few stars today who have Ellen’s gift for comedy, with her great warmth and humanity. She is beloved everywhere and we expect that the audience at the Dolby Theatre, and in homes around the globe, will be as excited by this news as we are.”

Television icon Ellen DeGeneres returns to host the Oscars for a second time. The Academy Awards® for outstanding film achievements of 2013 will be presented on Oscar Sunday, March 2, 2014, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® and televised live on the ABC Television Network. credit: ABC/Andrew Eccles

Television icon Ellen DeGeneres returns to host the Oscars for a second time. The Academy Awards® for outstanding film achievements of 2013 will be presented on Oscar Sunday, March 2, 2014, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® and televised live on the ABC Television Network.
credit: ABC/Andrew Eccles

I am so excited to be hosting the Oscars for the second time. You know what they say – the third time’s the charm,” said DeGeneres.

DeGeneres hosted the 79th Academy Awards in 2007, for which she received a Primetime Emmy® nomination for “Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program.” DeGeneres has made a home for herself in daytime with her hit syndicated talk show, “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” which has earned a total of 45 Daytime Emmys during its 10 seasons.

credit: ©A.M.P.A.S.®

credit: ©A.M.P.A.S.®

DeGeneres’ began her career as an emcee at a local comedy club in her hometown of New Orleans. Her acting career in television included roles in several successful sitcoms before being offered a part on “These Friends of Mine” by ABC. After the first season, the show was renamed “Ellen.” Running from 1994 to 1998, the show garnered record ratings, with DeGeneres receiving Emmy nominations each season in the Best Actress category. In 1997, DeGeneres was the recipient of the coveted Peabody Award as well as earning an Emmy for writing the critically acclaimed “Puppy Episode” when her character came out as a gay woman to a record 46 million viewers.

DeGeneres has also been successful in her feature film work. DeGeneres scored unprecedented popular and critical response to her character, Dory, the fish with extreme short-term memory, in the blockbuster Pixar animated feature “Finding Nemo.” DeGeneres recently announced the highly anticipated sequel to “Finding Nemo,” Disney-Pixar’s “Finding Dory,” currently scheduled to be released in November 2015.

Shortly after the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was incorporated in 1927, a dinner was held in the Crystal Ballroom of the Biltmore Hotel in downtown Los Angeles to discuss the goals of the new organization. One of those goals was devising a method to honor outstanding achievements, thus encouraging higher levels of quality in all facets of motion picture production.
Once the decision had been made to institute an award, a major item of business was the creation of a trophy to symbolize film achievement. MGM art director Cedric Gibbons designed the statuette and Los Angeles sculptor George Stanley was selected to bring to three-dimensional form the figure of a knight standing on a reel of film, hands gripping a sword. The Academy’s world-

credit: ©A.M.P.A.S.®

  credit: ©A.M.P.A.S.®

renowned statuette was born.

Since the initial awards banquet on May 16, 1929, in the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel’s Blossom Room, 2,900 statuettes have been presented. Each January, additional new golden statuettes are cast, molded, polished and buffed by R.S. Owens & Company, the Chicago-based awards specialty company retained by the Academy since 1982.

The statuette stands 131/2 inches tall and weighs a robust 81/2 pounds. The design of the statuette has never changed from its original conception, but the size of the base varied until the present standard was adopted in 1945. Officially named the Academy Award® of Merit, the statuette is better known by its nickname, Oscar, the origins of which aren’t clear. A popular story has been that Academy librarian and eventual executive director Margaret Herrick thought it resembled her Uncle Oscar and said so, and that the Academy staff began referring to it as Oscar. In any case, by the sixth Awards presentation in 1934, Hollywood columnist Sidney Skolsky used the name in his column in reference to Katharine Hepburn’s first Best Actress win. The Academy itself didn’t use the nickname officially until 1939.

The 15 statuettes presented at the initial ceremonies were gold-plated solid bronze. Within a few years the bronze was abandoned in favor of britannia metal, a pewter-like alloy, which made it easier to give the statuettes their smooth finish. Because of the metals shortage during World War II, Oscars® were made of painted plaster for three years. Following the war, all of the awarded plaster figures were exchanged for gold-plated metal ones.

Each Oscar statuette is individually handcrafted,” says Scott Siegel, president of R.S. Owens. “This statuette is only a tiny portion of our overall business, but it makes us known all around the world. No other award is as universally recognized as the Oscar, and we treat it with the extra-special tender loving care that it deserves. We are extremely proud that the Academy has entrusted its manufacture to us.”

This year, 289 films were eligible for Best Picture nominations, 76 countries submitted films for best foreign language film nomination, 50 statuettes were created for the 86th annual Academy Awards presentation and 6,028 members from the various branches of the Academy will vote on the winners. It is estimated that over 200 million viewers from 225 countries will view this year’s ceremony with 24 competitive award categories in play.  Continue reading

Oscar®-Winning Make-Up Artist Dick Smith to Receive Make-Up Artists Lifetime Achievement Award at the Annual Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild Awards on February 15

Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild. (PRNewsFoto/Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild)

Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild. (PRNewsFoto/Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild)

Two-time Academy Award® winning make-up artist Dick Smith, considered “The Godfather of Make-Up“, will receive the Make-up Artists Lifetime Achievement Award at the Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild Awards (IATSE Local 706), it was announced today by Guild President Sue Cabral-Ebert. The Awards ceremony, back by popular demand, will be held on February 15, 2014, at the Paramount Studios lot. Academy Award® winner Rick Baker who was Smith’s apprentice will present the award.  M.A.C. Cosmetics is the Official Cocktail Reception Sponsor.

The Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild’s Lifetime Achievement Award is given to those artists whose body of work in the film industry consistently enhances make-up and hair styling artistry, creating memorable characters throughout their career.  Past recipients of the Make-Up Artist Lifetime Achievement Award are Daniel Striepeke (2004), Jack Pierce

Dick Smith. (PRNewsFoto/Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild)

Dick Smith. (PRNewsFoto/Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild)

(2003), John Chambers (2002), Bob Schiffer (2001) and Monty Westmore (2000).

Smith’s distinguished work has garnered him an Honorary Academy Award® in 2012, having previously won both the Academy Award® and the BAFTA Award for Amadeus (shared with Paul LeBlanc, 1985) and he was nominated for an Oscar® for Dad (shared with Ken Diaz and Greg Nelson, 1990). Smith won a Primetime Emmy® for Individual Achievements in Art Direction and Allied Crafts – Make-up for Mark Twain Tonight! (1967), and was nominated for North and South (shared with Alan Fama and Rod Wilson, 1986), Harry S. Truman: PlainSpeaking (1977) and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1968). The Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films honored Smith with their Saturn Award for Scanners and Altered States (tied, 1981), along with nominations for Death Becomes Her (Shared with Kevin Haney, 1993), The Hunger (Shared with Carl Fullerton, 1984) and The Sentinel (1978), as well as the Golden Scroll for The Exorcist (1975).

Smith worked on numerous award-winning films, including Taxi Driver (1976), The Exorcist (1973), and both The Godfather (1972) and The Godfather Part 2 (1974), among many others. Considered to be television’s first important make-up artist, Smith was the make-up director for NBC from 1945 to 1959, where he developed many new materials and pioneered such techniques as the use of foam latex and plastics in unusual quick changes for television shows. Smith attended the Wooster School and Yale University.

“Rarely have there been make-up artists with the legendary inventiveness, creativity and artistic excellence of Dick Smith,” said Cabral-Ebert. “Dick’s transparency and willingness to share the secrets of the craft have been the catalyst for young make-up artists all over the world to follow their imaginations and dreams.  His encouragement and support have led so many to incredible make-up careers. It is with great honor and heartfelt thanks that Local 706 honors ‘one of its own,’ the legendary Dick Smith.”

Rick Baker has won seven Academy-Awards® and been nominated for five others. He has won a Primetime Emmy® Award, three BAFTA Awards, Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films Awards, the Eyegore Awards, and has twice received the Best Special Make-up Effects – Feature award from the Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild.  Among his other numerous nominations, Baker also has a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Members will be honored at this event for outstanding achievement in motion pictures, television, commercials and live theater.