A format for presenting movies on television that maintains the rectangular theater image on a television screen by reducing the overall image until the full width can be seen, resulting in blank space above and below the image.
To produce or present (film) in a letterbox format.
A video format designed to display the widescreen image of a film on a traditional-width video screen, by means of dark bands above and below the image.
Telecast or recorded for playback using such a format.
The visual effect of black bars on the top and bottom of the screen when a movie with a wide aspect ratio is displayed on a TV that is not as wide. The black bars compensate for the reduced vertical height of the movie frames. This was a common experience on earlier TV sets if the movie was not reformatted for TV viewing (see pan & scan). The term "letterbox" was coined because the wide frame resembles the size of a letter envelope. See pillarbox, aspect ratio and anamorphic DVD.
(film) Transferred to home video formats while preserving the original aspect ratio, having black bars above and below the picture area.
(film) To transfer a widescreen motion picture to home video formats while preserving the original aspect ratio, with the placing of black bars above and below the picture area.