Are We Finally Ready for 'Smellovision'?

One Boston artist smells a comeback for funky technology
By Sam Gale Rosen,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 11, 2007 12:19 PM CDT
Mike Piso, left, and Children's Museum Curator of Movies, JB Sapienza, right, hold a box fan to blow a mist of scented oils toward the audience during a showing of "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory"...   (Associated Press)

(Newser) – An olfactory entrepreneur is trying to revive "Smellovision"—the Edsel-era technology that pipes appropriate scents to movie audiences. Megan Dickerson has been showing "Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory" in an open-air theater outside the Boston Children's Museum, complete with the odors of blueberries and banana taffy. "There's been a crazy response to the movement," she says.

One expert says that indoor Smellovision can be trickier.  "The problem is that the scents are layered on top of one another, and people get sick from all of the smells mixed together," he says. And a television and popular culture researcher at Syracuse University doubts the nose will ever become an integral part of movie-watching.  "I think it's forever going to be a novelty," he says.