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Bush (Sr.) Describes <I>Wonderful Life</I> for the Blind

10 Dec, 2001 By: Hive News

Former President George Bush describes the Christmas classic, It's a Wonderful Life, for the blind via an innovative new technology, entitled TheatreVision, which lets the visually challenged experience motion pictures.

In this special version of the holiday classic, former President George Bush describes It's a Wonderful Life for the nation's 31,000,000 blind and vision impaired who cannot read ordinary print or see motion picture or television screens. The film will tour America in private theaters in 2002.

The newly described version of the classic film will premiere at a special screening at Universal Studios Dec. 16. Simultaneously, an annual holiday telecast for the blind, ``The Eyes of Christmas,'' will be taping in a building adjacent to the screening. Celebrities participating will describe their personal memories of the holidays on camera.

``The power of the word is simply unknown to those who are not able to read it," TheatreVision founder Helen Harris noted. "The printed word can take us anywhere in the world.''

TheatreVision lets the blind experience motion pictures via a special descriptive track added between the dialog of a film describing the on-screen action. The process was pioneered by blind artist Helen Harris, founding president of Retinitis Pigmentosa International (RPI), the leading nonprofit organization fighting Retinitis Pigmentosa and other blinding degenerative eye diseases. Harris' love of movies inspired her to create TheatreVision, which made its debut in 1994 with the first-ever delivery of a motion picture, Forrest Gump, to blind audiences in a movie theater.

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