Legendary rapper Tupac Shakur made a riveting appearance at the 2012 Coachella Music and Arts Festival in Calfornia's Mojave Desert. No, Coachella 2012 was not the site of a miracle. Tupac was resurrected with the use of digital technology and the creation of a Tupc hologram. Coachella concert-goers stood in awe as the Tupac hologram yelled, What up, Coachella? before performing with Snoop Dog.
Tupac was murdered in September 1996 at 25-years-old. But at Coachella, he looked vibrantly alive. Tupac's lifelike form -- with chiseled abs and tattoos -- awed concert attendees and views far beyond.
The Tupac hologram quickly became a sensation. The video went viral on the Internet and there are already talks about Tupac's hologram going on tour with Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre. Others have brought up the potential of resurrecting other deceased celebrities for performances, like Michael Jackson and Elvis Presley.
Many marveled at the advanced technology used to create the Tupac hologram.
MTV News' Gil Kaufman caught up with Nick Smith, president of AV Concepts, the company that projected and staged the hologram at the Coachella Music and Arts Festival in the Mojave Desert. AV Concepts was behind Madonna's 2006 Grammy performance featuring holographic members of Gorillaz as well as holograms used in concert by the Black Eyed Peas and Celine Dion.
We worked with Dr. Dre on this and it was Dre's vision to bring this back to life, Smith told MTV News. It was his idea from the very beginning and we worked with him and his camp to utilize the technology to make it come to life.
Nick Smith told MTV News that he could not discuss the creative particulars behind the Tupac hologram, including how the hologram was able to seemingly perform the set in sync with Snoop and whether all the vocals were 'Pac's. However, he did say that AV Concepts has the ability to recreate deceased individuals in the studio. You can take their likenesses and voice and ... take people that haven't done concerts before or perform music they haven't sung and digitally recreate it, he said.
IBTimes reporter Roxanne Palmer designed an infographic to further understanding of the Tupac hologram.
The Musion eyeliner system is based on 'Pepper's ghost,' a theater technique for producing illusions that has been used for centuries in plays and magic tricks, wrote Palmer. In the stage version of the illusion, an actor is hidden in a recess below the stage and faces a mirror. The audience sees the actor's ghostly image reflected in a sheet of glass suspended above the stage, and lighting can be used to make him 'appear' or 'disappear.'
The business of resurrecting celebrities could boom because of the success of Tupac's hologram.
This is certainly going to be big money in so many ways, Mark Roesler, who manages dead celebrities through his agency, CMG Worldwide, told FOX News. I can imagine someone organizing a new kind of reunion tour. We already go to Las Vegas to see all of the acts from the fifties, sixties and seventies.
The technology has evolved so much that these celebrities have a lot of new opportunities and the audience can experience them in different ways, Roesler said. The technology is not only more lifelike now but it is also more cost-efficient. As it keeps becoming more of both we will definitely see more of it.
The Tupac hologram might currently be a sensation, but the deceased rapper is not the only celebrity to be turned into a hologram. Here is a slideshow of some of the best celebrity holograms.