“Help me Doctor Dre… You’re my only hope” are not the words iconic rapper Tupac Shakur uttered on stage at Coachella as he came back to life as a hologram. Be kind of awkward if he did though.
As part of the Coachella festival, rappers Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg worked together with San Diego company AV Concepts and James Cameron’s production company Digital Domain to recreate a 3D hologram of Tupac to perform with them on stage. Dre first sought permission from Tupac’s mother before commissioning the hologram piece.
The murdered star performed three songs: 2 of Amerikaz Most Wanted, Come With Me, and Gangsta Party, swapping phrases with Snoop Dogg before eventually disappearing.
This kind of technology is likely to start a whole new breed of entertainment. According to reports, the cost to create a digital version of Tupac took more than four months to create, but cost less than actually paying some living artists to perform. How long until we start seeing digital reincarnations of Michael Jackson (from before he was creepy)? Perhaps a Nirvana reunion, with Kurt Cobain attacking the mic? Maybe INXS will finally solve their ongoing lead singer issues with a hologram Michael Hutchence?
It’s a brave new world for concertgoers, and this is just the start. It’s absolutely amazing to watch though.
Nick Broughall is the Australian Editor of TechRadar.com, where he gets to indulge his passion for geekery and the lastest technology. He is also the Editor of EFTM.com.au, where he gets to indulge his passion for manliness, from sampling fine liquor to the joys of growing a beard. It's a pretty good life, really.