Technology

  • March 24, 2010

    Independent theaters continue rapid pace of digital cinema deployments

    CYPRESS, CA — Christie, a global leader in digital cinema, announced that Sonic Equipment Company has ordered 100 Christie Solaria Series 4K-ready Series 2 digital cinema projectors, which utilize Academy Award1-winning DLP Cinema technology from Texas Instruments (TI) (NYSE: TXN). As part of the Cinedigm Phase 2 digital cinema deployment plan, the Christie projectors will be installed in theaters across the United States, to upgrade existing multiplexes and as part of new theater constructions. Sonic Equipment will also now offer Christie Managed Services to all its customers, making available a comprehensive suite of technical support and maintenance services to perfectly match their customers' needs, from basic to the most robust, 24-hour, year-round support.

    Kansas-based Sonic Equipment Company, which also offers full-service consulting, remodeling and new construction to motion picture exhibitors, is also a certified reseller of Christie digital cinema projectors. With more than 400 screens across thirteen states, they have been rapidly expanding over the past several years to become one of the industry’s fastest growing companies. Christie is a major partner in Sonic’s highly successful digital rollout strategy, which calls for the installation of hundreds of additional projectors in many new locations this year.

  • March 18, 2010

    Avatar might be rereleased this fall in a longer version

    According to USA Today, James Cameron in an interview with the newspaper said that this fall his highest grossing movie ever, Avatar, might return in 3D in an extended version.

    Q: When is Avatar coming out in 3D on Blu-ray?

    A: We’re not officially announcing it right now but I’m hoping for fall. The wildcard is that we might be re-releasing the movie this fall. It’s kind of gotten stomped out (in theaters) because of Alice in Wonderland. The word we’re getting back from exhibitors is we probably left a couple of hundred million dollars on the table as a result. The question is the appetite still going to be there after the summer glut of movies. We’re going to assess that. We’re talking about maybe adding in additional footage and doing something creative.

  • March 17, 2010

    Theater chain buys 60 Christie 4K-Ready Projectors

    CYPRESS, CA — Christie, a global leader in digital cinema, announced that Studio Movie Grill (SMG) has selected its 4K-ready Solaria™ Series digital cinema projectors for 60 screens in multiplexes across Texas, Missouri and Georgia. SMG audiences watch the latest first-run movies while enjoying restaurant-style table service with upscale foods that include gourmet pizza, BBQ ribs and fresh salads. SMG pioneered the in-theater dining concept and is considered the number one theater of its kind in Texas for close to 10 years. The chain will install the Christie CP2220 and Christie CP2230 projectors, which are based on Texas Instruments' (TI) (NYSE: TXN) Series 2 DLP Cinema technology and are fully upgradeable to 4K.

    SMG is recognized for continuously raising the bar on the quality of entertainment outside the home. It strives to provide audiences with a total immersion of their senses that includes great tasting food, exceptional service, and a spectacular movie-viewing experience.

    “The contrast and brightness of Christie digital cinema projectors are unparalleled. We foresee a much lower cost of operation while providing a new level of excitement for our audiences, especially with all the great new 3D movies coming down the pipeline this year,” remarked founder and President, Brian Schultz of Studio Movie Grill.

  • March 16, 2010

    More 3-D advertising coming

    Looking for a new way to attract advertiser dollars, the increase in 3-D projectors in theaters will also bring more 3-D ads.

    The number of theaters that could handle 3-D advertising has limited 3-D cinema advertising. Screenvision aired the first 3-D ad for Wrigley last May, which aired for five weeks in more than 400 theaters. By the end of the year, only 7,736 theaters had digital projectors, per the Motion Picture Association of America.

    With more film studios producing 3-D films, theaters are gearing up to attract moviegoers and lure advertisers with a new way to promote brands.

    Read more in Media Week.

  • March 4, 2010

    Bow Tie Cinemas will use Technicolor’s non-digital 3D projection system

    LOS ANGELES, CA — Twenty-five of Bow Tie Cinemas 150 current screens will be equipped with Technicolor’s recently announced 3D projection system which uses conventional 35mm projectors fitted with special lenses. The installation cost is said to be significantly less than that for new digital systems. Seven studios have agreed to support the alternative 3D format.

    Technicolor says its film 3-D solution costs a fraction of what it would take to install digital projectors, which has enabled modern 3-D movies to be shown at most theater chains.

    Technicolor’s solution costs about $4,000 to $6,000 to outfit an auditorium with a silver screen, plus a maximum $12,000 in rental costs per year for a specialized lens. Digital projection systems cost about $75,000 per screen.

    “We’ve developed a high-quality solution that addresses the 3-D screen scarcity issue and allows exhibitors an affordable way to bridge the gap to digital,” said Joe Berchtold, president of Technicolor’s creative services business, in a release.

    Read more from the Associated Press.

  • February 8, 2010

    Fiske Theatre enters digital age with DTS Sound

    OAK GROVE, LA — Movie going in Northeast Louisiana just got a little bit better as the Fiske Theatre in Oak Grove, the oldest operating movie theatre in the region, announced the addition of DTS Digital Surround Sound that will be in operation for this weekend’s showing of Sherlock Holmes.

    “DTS Digital Sound is the biggest innovation in the motion picture industry since movies learned to talk with the Jazz Singer in 1928.” Fiske Theatre Director Adam Holland said. “We are very excited for our patrons to be able to enjoy the quality of sound that this system will provide. No other theatre within 60 miles of us will be able to match the quality of sound that we will have.”

    The system which features 16 speakers, a DTS unit and a processor were donated to the West Carroll Chamber of Commerce by Gary Moore of Premier Cinemas located in Big Spring, Texas. Moore began his career in a small single screen theatre in his hometown and was featured in an issue of the International Film Journal last year, as well as being awarded the Exhibitor of the Year Award from the Tri-State Theatre Association in 2009, which the Fiske is a member. The donation was facilitated by Larry Delaney Premier’s Director of Building and Technical Services.

    “We are very grateful for the donation from Mr. Moore,” Holland said. “It is our goal to continue the legacy of our founder the late Donald B. Fiske by providing the best movie going experience possible to our patrons, and this addition helps return us to his standards of excellence in cinema presentation.”

  • January 14, 2010

    Will “Avatar” be to 3D what “The Jazz Singer” was to sound?

    NEW YORK, NY — In a recent article in the New York Times, writer Dave Kehr looks at the history of 3D and discounts the notion that “Avatar” in and of itself will establish 3D as the common mode of theatrical film presentation. He believes that if Hollywood can convince audiences that viewing just about any film in 3D should be the norm, then this time 3D might take its place alongside sound, widescreen, and color photography. He sees potential for 3D if it is used to connect moviegoers to the characters and immerse them in the world of the film rather than simply creating the illusion that things are being thrown at them.

    If 3-D takes hold, it won’t be the exclusive doing of “Avatar,” but the result of a long series of small technological steps and tiny adjustments in audience expectations. The process is far from over, and its outcome is by no means clear.

    The dream of producing 3-D movies goes back to the very beginnings of the cinema. Pioneers like Thomas Edison and the Lumière brothers aspired from the first to make movies with sound, color and depth, and the basic technology (the separation of a scene into left-eye and right-eye images, brought back together when the spectator looks through filtered glasses) had been around since the magic-lantern days. Experimentation with 3-D films continued through the ‘20s, and at least one feature-length film — the now lost “Power of Love” (1922) — was produced but not released.

    The whole article is here.

  • January 7, 2010

    Four manufacturers of 3-D glasses vying for supremacy

    NEW YORK, NY — As the number of screens equipped for 3-D expands and as the number of 3-D productions also increases, the vendors of the special glasses needed to see the dimensional effects are in a contest for market share. A recent article in the New York Times discusses the issue and compares the products of the four companies competing for adoption by film producers and theater owners.

    The battle over what glasses patrons wear is a big deal because exhibitors are convinced that 3-D, while seeming like a gimmick now, will lure movie lovers away from their crisp high-definition widescreen TVs at home and back to the theater. But Maria Costeira, the chief executive of XpanD, believes the sky’s the limit: “Eventually, we’ll see 3-D movies on airplanes as well.”

    The fight over the glasses may well intensify because TV makers are now pushing 3-D TVs for the home as a way to increase their sales of more expensive sets.

    Despite the marketing effort, when it comes down to choosing a 3-D system, many exhibitors are making a decision based on one factor: Do they want to be in the cleaning as well as the movie business?

    More here in the New York Times.

  • January 4, 2010

    A Guide to seeing “Avatar” in several formats

    With all the different versions of “Avatar” out right now, it’s a little confusing as to which provides the best experience.

    This article in the Los Angeles Times goes over the pros and cons of each format.

    You might have opened the newspaper to find a two-page spread advertising “Avatar” in its many theater formats and wondered what the heck the difference is. There’s the standard non-3-D version (pass!), RealD, Dolby Digital and IMAX. The final three are the leading competitors in the battle to add depth dimension to movie theater screens.

  • December 31, 2009

    5 Movies to watch for in IMAX 3-D

    Check out this article at MovieTickets.com that discusses some of the current and upcoming major IMAX-3D releases.