Film aficionados and science fans alike will experience some of the industry’s most advanced digital technology when The Hoglund Foundation Theater debuts December 1 at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science. Earlier today media got a chance to visit and experience the new 3D theater but also traveled to Level 4, where they stepped back in time to explore the dinosaur era in the T. Boone Pickens Life Then and Now Hall, took flight in the Rose Hall of Birds and journeyed into space in the Expanding Universe Hall.
“Today is more than just showcasing The Hoglund Foundation Theater and Level 4 halls,” said Nicole G. Small, Eugene McDermott chief executive officer. “We’re also paying tribute to Hoglund family for being the Perot Museum’s biggest cheerleaders, one of our most generous donors, and for Forrest being one of the best fundraisers ever!”
In addition to chairing the Perot Museum capital campaign, Hoglund has collectively raised a billion dollars for the Houston Museum of Natural Science; Reasoning Mind, an innovative math-education program; M.D. Anderson Cancer Center; and the University of Kansas, to name a few. The Hoglund Family and The Hoglund Foundation have donated a total of $10 million to the Perot Museum, with $5 million designated for the theater.
His leadership propelled the Perot Museum to exceed its $185-million campaign goal in November 2011, a full year before the museum opens. Hoglund’s wife, Sally, and children Kelly Compton and Kristy Hoglund were on hand for today’s theater unveiling.
“There’s no bigger payoff for me than when December 1 comes around, and we see the looks on faces of everyone from babies and kids to lifelong learners as they explore the Perot Museum,” said Hoglund. “I’m honored and thrilled to have played a role in making this exceptional science museum a reality for Dallas.”
Before showing a short “sizzle reel” highlighting the theater’s capabilities, Perot Museum COO Terrell Falk explained that the 298-seat theater boasts the most sophisticated digital projection and sound systems available today. It allows quick film changes, the brightest and most crystal-clear images and presents striking colors through state-of-the-art 4K digital projection. Equipped to project both 3D and 2D films, The Hoglund Foundation Theater will feature a variety of films, from educational features and cutting-edge documentaries, to experimental independent films, animation and even Hollywood blockbusters (that are appropriate to the museum’s mission).
The Hoglund Foundation Theater also has the capability to show anything from DVD, Blu-Ray, large format (70mm) and regular movies (35mm), to live feeds, streaming video and PowerPoint presentations.
The boutique theater features elegant décor of dark, subdued colors with striated walls that complement the building’s exterior. The theater is ADA accessible with plenty of wheelchair room and designed so every seat in the house has a good clear angle to the 3D screen. The gently reclining seats also have cupholders. Food and beverages are allowed in the theater.
Falk also announced that the Perot Museum has signed a three-year multi-film deal with National Geographic, which gives the Perot Museum the right to show all NatGeo film products. The Perot Museum also will have the right to first refusal for exclusive local premieres and runs of all new NatGeo releases.
On December 1, the Perot Museum will open with two 3D NatGeo films – Sea Monsters 3D and Meerkats 3D, both appropriate for general audiences. For Spring Break, a new NatGeo release, Wildest Weather in the Solar System 3D, will celebrate its local premiere at the Perot Museum.
“The Perot Museum has made a huge effort to collaborate with national entities to expand our content,” said Falk. “And NatGeo is a perfect example of a partnership that will be hugely beneficial to our visitors.”
The theater schedule will include shorter science films in the morning (appropriate for school groups and families with young children) and a wider selection of longer documentaries and independent fare in the afternoon, evening and weekends.
Theater tickets are available online in advance, at kiosks outside the theater or at the general ticket desk in the lobby. Tickets for the general public will range from $6-8 (with some Hollywood features requiring a higher fee). Perot Museum members will receive discounts as well as free screenings from time to time. (See below for pricing, including combo admission to the exhibit halls and theater.)
After previewing The Hoglund Foundation Theater, Dr. Tony Fiorillo, the museum’s curator of earth sciences (and noted paleontologist), gave media a sneak peek at the Expanding Universe Hall, T. Boone Pickens Life Then and Now Hall, and the Rose Hall of Birds on Level 4. In the Expanding Universe Hall, visitors will experience what it’s like to be a space explorer with a 3D-animated journey through the solar system, an interactive stargazing adventure, an unusual obstacle course that moves at the speed of light, stunning images of space as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope and more that bring the awe-inspiring beauty of stars, planets and distant galaxies perfectly into focus.
Towering dinosaurs, rare fossils, virtual paleo-habitats and much more make the T. Boone Pickens Life Then and Now Hall a must-go destination for dinosaur lovers, fossil collectors or anyone who ever wondered what life was like when dinosaurs roamed the Earth. Upstairs on the fourth floor mezzanine, the Rose Hall of Birds beckons visitors to discover the astonishing links between dinosaurs and modern-day birds, take to the air as a bird avatar via a full-body flight simulator, flip through digital highlights of rare works from the renowned Edmund W. Mudge, Jr., Library of Ornithology, and more.
TICKET PRICES. General admission to the exhibit halls will be $15 for adults (18-64), $12 for students (12-17) and seniors (65+), and $10 for children (2-11). Admission to the theater will be $8 for adults, students, seniors and children. Combo admission to the exhibit halls and theater will be $20 for adults (18-64), $17 for students (12-17) and seniors (65+), and $15 for children (2-11). For members, general exhibit hall admission will always be free. Admission to the theater will be $6 for member adults, students, seniors and children. Note: Some traveling exhibits may have a surcharge.
The Perot Museum is located at 2201 N. Field Street in Dallas, Texas. For more information about the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, visit perotmuseum.org.
About the Perot Museum
Accredited by the American Museum Association, the Perot Museum of Nature and Science is a nonprofit educational organization located in Dallas, Texas, with campuses in Victory Park and Fair Park. In support of its mission to inspire minds through nature and science, the Perot Museum delivers exciting, engaging and innovative visitor and outreach experiences through its education, exhibition, and research and collections programming for children, students, teachers, families and life-long learners. The $185-million Victory Park museum, designed by 2005 Pritzker Architecture Prize Laureate Thom Mayne and his firm Morphosis Architects, will open December 1, 2012. The Perot Museum is named in honor of Margot and Ross Perot, the result of a $50-million gift announced in May 2008 by their five adult children. To learn more about the Perot Museum, please visit perotmuseum.org.