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'Hologram' Like Coachella Tupac 'Very Likely' To Tour, Says AV Concepts President [UPDATED]

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HOLOGRAM TUPAC TOUR VERY LIKELY
Hologram Tupac may be making a comeback, according to its creator. | Getty Images

UPDATE: 1:32 5/17 -- A spokesman for Nick Smith, president of AV Concepts, has said there was a miscommunication about the likelihood of a tour with the Tupac "hologram." Rather, the spokesman believes Smith intended to suggest that it was very likely that the company's technology would be used to create a touring "hologram" of an artist, but not necessarily Tupac. The spokesman also wished to reiterate that any further use of the Tupac "hologram" would be at the discretion of Dr. Dre, and not AV Concepts.

Previously

About a month ago, the so-called Tupac "hologram" took Coachella -- and the Internet -- by storm, leading to speculation on the possibility of a tour.

In an interview with The Huffington Post Wednesday, Nick Smith, the president and founder of AV Concepts, the company that orchestrated the optical illusion, said that a "hologram" Tupac tour was "very likely."

"Given the massive exposure from Coachella ... there is a very high likelihood that they will bring someone on tour," Smith told HuffPost.

According to Smith, AV Concepts also consulted on performance elements like camera angles and wardrobe at Coachella.

Producer Dr. Dre, who hatched the idea of bringing the deceased rapper back to life, has been vague on the subject of a tour. In an April 22 video message to fans and supporters, Dr. Dre insisted that the Tupac "hologram" -- which is actually two-dimensional projection -- was created exclusively for Coachella.

"If a tour happens, we'll see," Dr. Dre said in the video.

While Smith said that the ultimate decision was not in his to make, the positive response the Tupac illusion received was undeniable and that other players in the "digital resurrection game" are already emerging.

Last week, British rock band Queen announced that it will be debuting an optical illusion of singer Freddy Mercury, who died of an AIDS-related illness in 1991.

Smith indicated that, beyond resurrecting a deceased performer, there is also considerable opportunity to augment -- or even create from scratch -- original performances using rich media in a live setting.

"There are plenty of talented singers out there that might not [have what it takes] to perform onstage," Smith said, adding that those performers "could live their lives through an avatar" by utilizing the type of technology his company provides.

While he would not give exact figures since "every situation is different," Smith said virtualization could potentially produce entertainment such as a touring band for less than what it the real thing currently costs.

According to Smith, a 10-person crew produced "hologram" Tupac at Coachella. HuffPost reached out to music industry representatives regarding crew and dollar cost for putting a major headlining act on tour, but requests were not returned by press time.

Smith also said that remote performers could be projected into a venue via telepresence. The company once projected buskers and student artists from studios in London and Montreal onto the stage of a conference in Orlando.

According to Smith, the audience couldn't tell the difference.

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