Europe's Largest Panorama Cinema in Moscow
Russian premiere of
"Great is My Country" in Kinopanorama
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The 70mm Newsletter
Written by: Retyped from an old Danish trade magazine page about
The largest panorama cinema "Mir" [Peace] in Europe opened in Moscow on the
28th of February 1958. The first audience for the first
performance were all the craftsmen and architects who had participated in
the construction of this mile stone cinema.
All 1226 spectators took their seats in the circular cinema. They saw a
documentary filmed by Roman Karmen.
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"Great is my Country" in Kinopanorama
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New York Times review
The Mir Theatre
gigantic screen, note the audience
The screen, manufactured of white plastic, nearly covered 150 degrees of a
circle. The screen measures 30 meters along the curve, and it is 12 meters
high. 120 speakers are located behind the screen and in the auditorium.
The image is composed of three projectors running in perfect synchronism,
and the illusion is perfect. The audience sits in the middle and forget they
are watching a film. The illusion of reality is perfect.
The Mir was launched in 1957 for test, buts for the public in February
28, 1958 and still alive as a live and movies venue. The screen size was
31 x 11,50 with a 90°curve. They were not 120 speakers. Only elementary
elements. The were 5 for Panorama (12 element each) an one dedicated for
optical sound (12 elements each) and a group af 6x4 speakers for the
surround (2 elements in each). Its 120 elementary boomer an drivers, not
Olga and Lara are still alive. Lara went then to Perm Cristal Panorama
as main technical Director. The Mir was adapted for 35/70mm an Panorama
in the first years of the 60's and was a huge venue until the late 70's.
It was mostly replaced by the Rossia, now in very bad shape.
Russia's New 3-D Feature (Panoramic) Compares
Favorably to Cinerama
(Written by Irving R. Levine, Moscow Correspondent, NBC)
projection room, and Lara checking the lamphouse
From "New York VARIETY" on 12.03.1958 about the premiere of the first
Russian Kinopanorama (Cinepanorama) film "Great is my Country" (How Broad is
my Country / Vast is my Native Land / Shiroka Strana Moya Rodnaya) at the
newly built Moscow Mir Theatre on 28.02.1958.
Russia`s first true 3-D, wide-curved screen film, via a process called
Panoramic, is every bit as original, if not quite as exiting, as was
"This is Cinerama", which opened in the U.S. a half dozen years ago.
Entitled "How Broad is my Country", the 90-minute film is now playing
in a Moscow theatre built especially for the curved screen process and
called "Mir", which in Russia can mean either "World" or "Peace".
trade magazine about the opening of Mir, from Gerhard Witte's collection
"How Broad is my Country"
is a travelogue of sections of the Soviet Union including scenes of Moscow,
Leningrad, Sochi on the Black Sea Coast, the Caucasus Mountains and the
Carpathians. Judging from the lack of shrieks or even gasps, let alone women
fainting as was the case in the roller-coaster ride in the first Cinerama
film, "How Broad is my Country" lacks the excitement of its American
counterpart. There are, however, many scenes that bear striking resemblance
to the initial Cinerama film and its successors. There is a ride aboard a
Soviet airline through valleys of the Caucasus Mountains, a landing on a
cement airstrip, motorboat rides and a trip aboard a speeding electric
train. Perhaps the best scenes in the film are in a steel furnace plant in
the Ural city of Magnitogorsk and a fast-moving ride down a river of
churning rapids aboard a log raft from a lumbering camp.
projection room. Gregor checking the focus.
There were some particularly Soviet sequences. In showing the Winter
Palace in Leningrad, now a State museum, the three segments of the screen
suddenly switch from a single color picture to three panels of black and
white. The center panel shows V.I. Lenin addressing a crowd. The side panels
depict the Communist-inspired workers, peasants and soldiers storming the
gates of the Winter Palace in 1917. Then, the film goes back to the business
Whatever the inadequacies of the Panoramic film – including such
deficiencies as general overexposure resulting in washed-out colors, uneven
exposure among the three panels of the curved screen, and frequent
visibility of the margins between panels – it does provide the best trip on
film to date through the U.S.S.R. It may well be that in the exchange of
films that is to follow the recently concluded cultural agreement between
the U.S. and Russia, an exchange of a Cinerama film for this Panoramic film
might provide an excellent beginning.
The "Mir Theatre", seating 1,226 in a circular, paneled hall, is situated
next door to the Moscow Circus arena. It is said by Soviet newspapers to be
the biggest "Panoramic process theatre in Europe". The screen measures 101.7
feet (31 meters) wide by 37.7 feet (11.5 meters) high. There are 120
loudspeakers arranged all around the circular theatre. A second Panoramic
picture is said to be in preparation which is to show Soviet science
including footage on the Sputniks.
projection room with 4 machines, and Olga checking the lamphouse
More than the last half hour of the film is devoted to scenes of the
Sixth World Youth Festival that took place in Moscow for 15 days during last
July and August. Scenes show the parade by various youth delegations through
Moscow's crowded streets to the huge Lenin stadium where an interminable
parade of delegations, including one from the United States, took place.
A dance on the grounds of the Kremlin during one Festival night also is
depicted and the narrator intones: "Western bourgeois correspondents were
invited. What will they find to write now about the mysteries of the
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