Tupac Ready for Tour

'This is just the beginning, says creator

By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 16, 2012 11:30 PM CDT | Updated Apr 17, 2012 2:10 AM CDT

(Newser) – The wildly popular virtual Tupac that debuted at Coachella is ready to hit the road. Representatives for Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg are discussing plans for a concert tour involving the rappers and Tupac, sources tell the Wall Street Journal. A tour might only include the trio, or could involve other rappers like Eminem, 50 Cent, and Wiz Khalifa performing in larger stadiums. "This is just the beginning," said Ed Ulbrich, chief creative officer of Digital Domain, the company that brought the late singer back to life on stage. "Dre has a massive vision for this."

Ulbrich said the performing Tupac illusion is an incredibly complicated operation. "To create a completely synthetic human being is the most complicated thing that can be done," Ulbrich told the Journal. 'Tupac's' performances of hits "Hail Mary" and "2 of Amerikaz Most Wanted" weren't simply recut videos, he explained. "This is not found footage. This is not archival footage. This is an illusion," he said. Dr. Dre approached Digital Domain a year ago to discuss the possibility of creating a virtual Tupac. The company began work on the Coachella performance four months ago. The virtual Tupac is a two-dimensional illusion and technically not a hologram, which is 3-D. Tupac was murdered 16 years ago in Las Vegas at the age of 25.

A sort-of holographic image of Tupac Shakur takes the stage at Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival in Indio, California.
A sort-of holographic image of Tupac Shakur takes the stage at Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival in Indio, California.   (Getty Images)
An image of Tupac Shakur 'performs' at Coachella in Indio, California.
An image of Tupac Shakur 'performs' at Coachella in Indio, California.   (Getty Images)
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