National Amusements Signs Theater Deal With IMAX
IMAX Corporation and National Amusements have announced an agreement to install as many as 18 IMAX® theater systems over the next several years.
According to the press release from PRNewswire-FirstCall, “the deal signals an important milestone for IMAX in the implementation of its commercial theatre growth strategy.”
The proprietary IMAX DMR® (Digital Re-Mastering) technology brings major Hollywood event films, such as this summer’s “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” and “Spider-Man,” to the giant screen. The new IMAX MPX® design allows to add an IMAX theater to a new or existing multiplex in a more cost effective and timely manner.
“National Amusements is committed to providing our patrons the ultimate movie going experience,” stated Shari E. Redstone, president, National Amusements. “We … feel that its new DMR technology is consistent with a number of things we are working on throughout our circuit. Our new Cinema de Lux brand, our focus on alternative entertainment and this new IMAX technology we are now introducing will ensure that our patrons have an entertainment experience that is unrivalled elsewhere,”
National Amusements expects to have four IMAX MPX® theater systems — City Center 15: Cinema de Lux in White Plains, New York; Showcase Cinemas Buckland Hills, near Hartford, Connecticut; Showcase Cinemas Stonybrook, in Louisville, Kentucky; and Showcase Cinemas Springdale, near Cincinnati, Ohio — ready in November 2004 for the IMAX® 3D release of “The Polar Express.”
Two additional systems are to follow in 2005 or 2006 with an option that National Amusements may purchase up to 12 additional systems, predominantly in the United Kingdom, beginning next year.
National Amusements currently operates the IMAX Theatre at The Bridge Cinema de Lux (seen above) at The Promenade at Howard Hughes Center in West Los Angeles as part of its more than 1,425 motion picture screens in the U.S., the U.K., and Latin America. North America’s sixth largest theater operator is a closely held corporation that is an equal partner in the online ticketing service, MovieTickets.com and the parent company of global media company, Viacom.
As of June 30, 2004, there were 240 IMAX theatres operating in 35 countries (www.imax.com).