Listening

Warm Up

Helpful Words and Phrases

Listen and repeat.

  1. de-age
    • ex. The new story happens 30 years before the last movie, so they decided to de-age the actors.
  2. footage
    • ex. The police were looking for footage of the crime.
  3. in (one’s) prime
    • ex. This photo is from the 1960s, when my grandpa was in his prime.
  4. pretend
    • ex. My son likes to pretend to be a pirate.
  5. break up
    • ex. Charlie and Annie broke up? I thought they were still dating!

Article

Read the article below and answer your tutor's questions.

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On November 5, Swedish pop group ABBA released a new 10-track studio album. The quartet surprised fans by announcing the album, their first in almost 40 years, in early September. ABBA will perform their new songs at virtual concerts next year.

ABBA’s world tour will begin in London on May 27, 2022, but the group won’t actually be there. Instead, they’ll be using digital avatars called “ABBA-tars” that were created by ILM, the special effects company behind Star Wars, Avengers: Endgame, and many other famous movies. ILM used motion capture technology and 160 cameras to film ABBA performing 22 songs. They then de-aged the footage to show the musicians in their prime. One producer explained, “It is not four people pretending to be ABBA: It is actually them.”

After releasing a number of hit songs in the 1970s and early 1980s, ABBA broke up in 1982. They were the first group from a non-English-speaking country to achieve major success in the US, UK, and other English-speaking countries. ABBA has sold more than 385 million albums worldwide.

Discussion

Choose a topic and discuss the questions with your tutor.

Musical Artists/Groups

  • In your opinion, what are good reasons for successful groups to break up? Why? Discuss.
  • In your opinion, why do artists/groups from non-English-speaking countries not usually achieve major success in the US and UK? Discuss.
  • Imagine that you can make any musical artist/group release a new album. Which artist/group will you choose? Why? Discuss.

Motion Capture and De-aging Technology

  • Do you think many people will pay money to see the “ABBA-tar” concert? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • Do you think it's okay for movies to use de-aging technology? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • In your opinion, do most motion capture movie characters look realistic (ex. the Na'vi in Avatar, Gollum in The Lord of the Rings)? Why or why not? Discuss.