Plan for Regal, AMC, Cinemark to go all digital

posted by HowardBHaas on March 12, 2008 at 10:50 am

Three exhibitor chains are negotiating a financing plan to go all digital.

Several theater chains and studios are nearing an estimated $1.1 billion financing deal to deploy in cinemas digital technology that promises to boost attendance and save Hollywood billions of dollars in annual print and delivery costs, industry officials said on Sunday.

“We’re hopeful that in the second quarter we will get it all arranged,” said Travis Reid, chief executive of Digital Cinema Implementation Partners. DCIP is wholly owned by theater chains Regal Entertainment Group, Cinemark Holdings Inc and AMC Entertainment Inc, which collectively operate over 14,000 screens.

Read more at Yahoo News.

Comments (65)

KenLayton on March 12, 2008 at 1:02 pm

And at a substantial increase in both ticket prices and snack bar prices to pay for the big tv sets.

moviebuff82 on March 12, 2008 at 2:30 pm

yup. amc’s imax systems will use dlp.

scottfavareille on March 12, 2008 at 2:43 pm

This sounds oligopolical to me. (The fact that DCIP is “wholly owned” by the 3 largest US theater chains.)

markp on March 12, 2008 at 3:52 pm

Lets all remember folks, this whole DLP thing is just going to save the film companies money. It aint going to diddly for the exhibitors and thats why they should just leave everything on 35mm like its been forever.

Mikeoaklandpark on March 12, 2008 at 4:06 pm

To be honest, the local Carmike in Asheville switched to DLP projection about a year ago and I see no difference in the picture quality. Of course this theatre and chain is the pits so they probibly purchased a cheap system or are false advertising. When a chain charges more for a large popcorn and is smaller than Regal’s medium something is not right.

Scott Neff
Scott Neff on March 12, 2008 at 4:23 pm

Don’t fool yourselves. Digital saves exhibitors on film transport fees and the time spent on payroll waiting for the delivery people. And they wouldn’t be forking over the money to do this if it didn’t get them something in return, like substantial film rental savings.

markinthedark on March 12, 2008 at 6:15 pm

I have NOT been impressed with any digital presentation I have seen. Title cards look like a slide show with jagged edges on font when viewed from the first few rows. No warmth in the image. Image is so steady it feels artifical. Digital effects look less cinematic and more like a video game. Give me good old grainy, flickering 35mm. Call me nostalgic but I prefer the film I am watching to be that: FILM.

moviebuff82 on March 12, 2008 at 6:28 pm

yup. just like vinyl and vhs and analog tv.

PeterApruzzese on March 12, 2008 at 9:43 pm

Well, vinyl certainly sounds better than CD on a proper setup…


markp on March 12, 2008 at 10:02 pm

As Justin already knows, I couldn’t agree with you more Mark Campbell.

markinthedark on March 13, 2008 at 1:55 am

Thanks movie534. I work with a lot of DP’s, some of them Oscar winning, and most of them agree that the way that light is captured and then projected with the chemical process of film is a completely different animal than digital. Colors are richer, warmer and more natural. Would Monet switch to Photoshop to make paintings if he were alive today? Digital projection has been ballyhooed as a great new means of presentation. Like 70MM was back in the 60’s and 70’s. Problem is, its not great like 70MM was. Its pure economics and cost cutting. Another way the studios are cutting into the artistic process and cheapening the end product. If Digital Projection was so great and was something the exhibs thought could be a big draw, they would have ponied up the money and redone all their theaters by now. The fact that the studios are stepping in and paying for it proves the point. Soon the magic of going to a grand movie theatre and seeing something really special on a giant screen will be gone. We will be sitting in small stadiumized theatres with drop down masking for scope pictures (the irony: scope films are meant to be grander, yet because most stadium theatres have drop-down masking, the screens for them are actually SMALLER!) and watch a glorified TV. Save digital for reality shows on your LCD (which is fine), the movie-going experience is dying.

scorpio1949 on March 13, 2008 at 3:34 am

I agree with Mark Campbell about the movie going experience dying. I love movie theaters and seeing movies projected properly (this is a joke anymore). The movie theater owners don’t give a damn anymore about showmanship…it is automation and do it as cheap as possible. I have set through so many movies that were poorly presented. Movie studios want to cut costs. Honestly I haven’t seen that much difference either…a film properly shown with a good print vs. DLP. I think it is just a matter of time when this will be the way it will be…all digital. DLP does have its idiosycrasies no matter how they build it up. I agree with the masking comments in these theaters…just totally horrible. I always loved scope films but anymore…

schmadrian on March 13, 2008 at 5:32 am

‘The future is now, the future is…


The studios are in business to make money. The amount they derive from theatrical ticket receipts world-wide is now between 10 and 12% of the revenue pie. And as renting and buying movies becomes more ‘home entertainment system’-based (read that as ‘via download’, the theatrical experience is going to be come less and less a priority.

This is what it comes down to: for most aficionados here, the default paradigm for viewing a movie is to go to a cinema. But for new generations coming up, and for those who have the $$$ to cocoon at home and leave all the messy aspects of cinema-going behind, less so. (One movie site I frequent had very, very impassioned film fans responding to the question ‘How many films will you see at the cinema this year?’ with astonishingly low numbers. The average, as I recall, was a half-dozen. They might ‘view’ a hundred…but a paucity of these will be seen at the cinema. And these are hard-core film lovers.) And quite frankly, Hollywood doesn’t care. As long as it gets its revenue, what makes anyone here believe that it matters to them where it gets its money from?

If it can reduce bottom-line costs, Hollywood will be happy. This switch will certainly, in the long-term, reduce its costs…increase its profit-margin.

And of course, the people who show the movies have no real say in things. Not when there is no alternative supplier. And not when you can project that in ten years, the cinema slice of the revenue pie will hover somewhere around 5%. At that point, cinema exhibition will merely be flashy way to advertise their wares. Even acknowledging that maybe $10 billion will be the value of this slice.

What’s ironic is that the only thing that an exhibitor can control is the experience of seeing a film in an auditorium. In other words, providing something that you cannot get at home. And I’m writing this in a comments section of a site dedicated to a time when movie palaces were the norm, when ‘cinema treasures’ were cathedrals of worship, when it wasn’t so much the movie that was paramount, but where and how you saw it. If cinema-going is to survive beyond being an esoteric activity, a tertiary choice for consuming movies, then the exhibitors are going to have to innovate. Or, in a nutshell, start appreciating that customer service is at the core of what they’re selling, not the product.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on March 13, 2008 at 1:30 pm

Lets get it straight
1. its a 150,000 per screen ..that is not on the cheap. does not lower film rentals
3.the picture is 10X better than film
They only people who dont like digital old projectionist.The picture is amazing and is the best way to see a movie.
The bsns is not dying.Theaters will be around for 100 years longer.

schmadrian on March 13, 2008 at 1:39 pm

long: So just to clarify… Was that actually five points you were getting straight…?

: )

markinthedark on March 13, 2008 at 2:02 pm

“3.the picture is 10X better than film"
Are you kidding? Describe "better” in detail. Have actually sat up close for a digital screening? I would love to hear your description of 10 times better. If pixels and blockiness are your preference…

moviebuff82 on March 13, 2008 at 2:48 pm

I first saw a digital movie in a theater by seeing “Nightmare Before Xmas 3D” at the Jersey Gardens 20 in Elizabeth back when digital 3D was not a major thing. The picture was sharp and the sound good, but the brightness was a bit dark…due in part to the dark shaded Real D glasses. The next showing was a DLP showing of Ratatouille at the AMC Garden State 16 in Paramus. Since i didn’t get to sit near the guardrail, I sat in the lower seats, and the picture was brighter and the sound great, but it was not sharp. The third and last movie I saw in DLP was “National Treasure 2” in Succasunna in Technicolor Digital Cinema, and the picture and sound was good (a little quiet at times), and the titles and credits were sharp while the action was a bit blurry. Out of all the presentations, the Technicolor DC was the best. Currently nearly every popular Clearview theater except the smaller ones have half or some screens equipped with this technology, and Clearview is doing the right thing. Look at what Beowulf (and Hanna Montana) did for the digital industry. The only movies that lure people away from their homes that they can’t get on bluray, DVD or TV are movies that are shown in IMAX 3-D, IMAX, and digital 3-D. Heck, some theaters are showing films in a format that even the latest HDTVs cant produce, 4K.

vic1964 on March 13, 2008 at 7:22 pm

Has anyone read, heard, or thought about the near future when few film prints are needed?The potential for good theatres to get state of the art show prints to compete with everyones digital cinema?I mean even now digital stuff transfers very well to film with high speed printing but imagine show prints made with care for reputable theatres with a good projectionist and best equipment!
I think it has potential but might be smashed by the big chains who convert completely and want to take the film competition out.

TheaterBuff1 on March 14, 2008 at 5:34 am

To the best of my knowledge, no new technology has ever started out perfect, the best it could possibly be at the outset. Yet we all expect that of digital cinema for some reason. And that just strikes me as very odd.

scorpio1949 on March 14, 2008 at 7:34 pm

From the sounds of it the movie studios are slowly killing the movie theatres. Due to the other revenue channels they have. The theatre chains frankly do not give a damn about how they show the films from what I can tell having set through some horrendous showings in several chains. The almighty dollar is the God of the conglomerate studios. This tells me that things are not looking very rosey for anyone that cares about quality in these several areas. As far as the technology being new…yes it is, and yes they probably can resolve some of the issues, but there are some limitations on any format that might not be overcome for years if forever. I doubt these people are going to throw money after money to get that perfection. I totally believe they will reach a certain state of quality and then stop the cash flow. Why would they continue to spend money if they can get an acceptable picture without going further…They have their other revenue channels…why spend money to bring this kind of perfection…?

TheaterBuff1 on March 15, 2008 at 3:09 am

That’s a good point you make. But looking back to early TVs, and early computers for that matter, evolution did occur. When the first digital cameras came out, or the first analog video cameras to displace super-8, in both cases — aside from the new convenience these newer devices offered not to mention savings to be realized in the course of using them — the end product was of far less quality then traditional 35mm cameras and how far super-8 movie cameras had arrived to by that point. Yet I don’t remember anybody complaining about that shortfall in quality, for it was just assumed the new devices would improve over time. And of course they did. And people were thrilled just to get on board with the new technology early — knowing it wouldn’t be the most perfect it could be at the outset.

And I see NOTHING to indicate that digital cinema technology cannot evolve further from what it is now the same way all other technologies have, other than perhaps the lack of competition needed to drive this evolutionary process. Thinking back, for instance, when IBM came out with the first P.C., in the beginning it had the whole market to itself. But then Apple, Hewlett-Packard, even Radio Shack, came out with their own variations, much to the shock of IBM, and computers surely evolved accordingly. And today, well, let’s put it this way, can you still buy a typewriter anywhere?

From my own perspective, if digital cinema can give struggling theaters a whole new shot in the arm, well, that’s better than theaters folding left and right because running traditional film projectors is no longer cost-effective.

KramSacul on March 15, 2008 at 8:31 am

The more properly done 2k DLP setups the better. I kind of doubt we’ll get those with these 3 chains though.

Film is still fantastic as a capture medium and will be around for a while longer. It’s the release prints that suck.

TheaterBuff1 on March 16, 2008 at 2:54 am

One thing to keep in mind with film nowadays is that when we see the release print — and I believe it’s what you’re getting at — we’re seeing a movie that was originally shot on film, transferred to digital for editing, and then transferred back to film prior to release. So really, we’re already seeing digital in theaters no matter how you cut it. As for what we can expect from the chains digital-wise, I hold that digital will be more beneficial to stand-alone single-screen theaters trying to compete with them. For digital cinema can allow a theater to change whatever it’s exhibiting on a dime’s notice. Not having this advantage before, it’s what did a lot of traditional stand-alone single-screen theaters in. So it’s there that I’m seeing digital’s biggest potential right now.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on March 16, 2008 at 9:45 am


moviebuff82 on March 16, 2008 at 10:57 am

and improve the presentation.

schmadrian on March 16, 2008 at 11:05 am

…and cut down on distribution costs. Anyone know what the current cost is to bring a film to cinemas in wide release? (And obviously, I’m referring to traditionally-equipped cinemas.)

vic1964 on March 16, 2008 at 12:07 pm

How does a single screen theatre pay for this when we can barely make ends meet now?The studios are locking us out of good titles because of pressure from the big chains and i think it gets worse in the future.I hope i am wrong but for example we are only now getting NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN!

scorpio1949 on March 16, 2008 at 6:59 pm

vic1964 the studios don’t want single screen theaters.That is why all the nice theaters with BIG screens now are split into little boxes (or closed). They cut down the time between theater release and rental/home release till it is almost nil. They should be helping all their customers not just the big megaplex chain people if they want this digital revolution so badly. I would recommend however that you not hold your breath on that one…They are just like the rest of big corporate america…they think only of themselves…

schmadrian on March 16, 2008 at 7:19 pm

“…they think only of themselves…”


Sorry, don’t get it. What are you suggesting should be happening?

I’m always fascinated when people bemoan free-market, capitalist behaviour…especially where movies are concerned. You’d think there was a moralistic issue attached. Strange, considering we’re talking commerce.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on March 17, 2008 at 12:53 am

vic 1964-#1 thing you should do is call emerging pictures and start with other content.

TheaterBuff1 on March 17, 2008 at 1:59 am

Schmadrian, I tale you to be fabulously filthy rich to be talking that way.

schmadrian on March 17, 2008 at 4:47 am

TheaterBuff1: No, not ‘rich’ at all. What in my comments has led you to say that?

TheaterBuff1 on March 17, 2008 at 5:04 am

The way you keep rooting for those at the top of the economic pyramid as if you’re one of them, and are so quick to defend them when anyone dares question or criticize them. You said as much when you wrote: “I’m always fascinated when people bemoan free-market, capitalist behaviour…especially where movies are concerned. You’d think there was a moralistic issue attached. Strange, considering we’re talking commerce.”

schmadrian on March 17, 2008 at 5:35 am

Because so many of the comments I read are, at best, naïve, at worst, the ‘Wah, wah!“ whining of spoiled brats.

As I inferred, you’d think there was some moralistic element attached to what Hollywood does. As if they should be behaving in a certain way, because movies have a certain place in our lives, especially culturally. (This gets conflated with the misconception that there’s any connection at all between those who produce the product –‘Hollywood’– and those who, at a cinema level, sell the experience to the public, the cinema owner/operators.) I’ve mentioned this before, this ‘proprietorship’ slant on how people see movies, as if, by proxy, they’re actually part-owners of the medium…which of course is ludicrous; we’re nothing more than consumers, and the only ‘say’ we have is regarding what we consume…and in what form we consume it.

I do not believe there is any responsibility on the part of Hollywood except for the bottom-line business-wise, and to whatever ‘artistic’ weight they attach to each project they endeavour to bring to market. Hollywood owes the viewing public nothing in regards to what it tosses out to feed the seemingly endless appetite of that public. Do you think that television has any obligation in this regard? Does the music industry? Do auto-makers? I don’t. We live in a free-market, capitalistic, vote-with-your-dollar system. And we all vote all the time, every day, for the entirety of our lives. When people start to take umbrage at an industry doing what it does, for the reasons it’s always done it…I can’t help but laugh.

Seeing as you’ve questioned my place in Life, I’d be very curious to see the profiles of those people who are ‘loaded for bear’ where this topic is concerned, to see just how grounded in reality their self-righteous stances are. I suspect, even from a distance, that there’s a ton of double-standards involved.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on March 17, 2008 at 3:41 pm

there are a lot whining of spoiled brats on this site.Some because they have lost there jobs to high tech while others who dont know how to compete.
Somethings that drive me crazy on this site—
Goverment bail out to ‘save" old theaters.
love movies hate going-comments on theaters .(only went to 1 movie last year)
Theaters that complain..poor me …..

TheaterBuff1 on March 18, 2008 at 2:10 am

I, for one, have never inferred that the government should bail out theaters, though on occasion I’ve been accused of inferring that. My only take on government intervention is that the government should protect theaters that are seeking to do more than simply make the buck. In brief, it’s called substantiating the protection guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment. This I’m advocating is not a governmental “bail out,” rather, it is a governmental OBLIGATION. And without fulfilment of that obligation our federal government is just a total fraud. And to me it does not make good business sense for U.S. taxpayers to be supporting a total fraud. Which is what we’re doing now, as evidenced by all the many theaters that went down because the government failed to do its part when it needed to. Where was Barack Obama, for instance, when the DuPage movie palace in his senatorial district was being forced into oblivion because certain people didn’t like what it stood for free speech-wise? U.S. congressmen, as well as presidents, are sworn by oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States. But Obama sure as heck didn’t do that in the DuPage’s case. Nor did Bush or anyone else who’s sworn to uphold it.

And Schmadrian, when it comes to the bottom line, that’s not just the province of those on the supply side. Those on the demand side have their bottom lines, too. And the government has to be there to protect that bottom line as well as the other. We’re not talking bail outs here, we’re talking governmental obligations. Do you understand now? For what’s hard to get about the wrongness, the fraud, of taxation without representation?

And theaters being able to operate in ways that is pleasing to customers the government has an obligation to protect if it’s necessary to — as guaranteed by the First Amendment — which it’s sworn to uphold.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on March 18, 2008 at 2:36 am

The goverment has no obligation to make sure its pleasing to customers.Safe yes…pleasing no.

Failing bsns models have no place in a free market society if they get a bailout or Obligation……

TheaterBuff1 on March 18, 2008 at 3:09 am

Yes, to clarify, when it comes to free speech it’s not the government’s place to serve as censors.

And to touch on your other point, I hardly call it a “free market society” if the government takes one side and ignores the other other than “trickle down” — as was the case when Reagan made supply side economics a matter of government policy. When really great theaters fell on hard times when Reagan’s program went into effect, it was far from a case of their having failing business models. What was happening before Reagan’s policies kicked in was that lousily run businesses were complaining they couldn’t compete with the well-run ones. So Reagan, hearing the cries of Cain — with Cain clutching a rock in hand that he couldn’t make use of in the way he wanted to — came to Cain’s rescue…while strapping down Abel at the same time.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on March 18, 2008 at 12:19 pm

Theaterbuff1…i see we can not agree as i am a firm believer in Regans plan .(that worked)

moviebuff82 on March 18, 2008 at 2:32 pm

Yesterday’s purchase of Bear Stearns by JPMorgan Chase is similiar to Clearview’s buyout from Cablevision nearly ten summers ago this year, a month before the chain was set to open its newest theater and the only clearview with the most screens, the Mansfield 15 (later shortened to 14). Originally made by Nelson Furman and completed by Clearview, this theater finally got digital projection in half of its 14 screens, a year after its sister theaters in Morris County with 10 or more screens got the same systems from Technicolor Digital/Real 3D/DLP/Dolby digital cinema. At the time of the purchase, Cablevision’s stock was more expensive than Clearview, and after buying the Wiz (closed), Rangers, Knicks, and the Garden, not to mention the legendary Radio City and Beacon Theatres, the stock tanked due to languishing debt. Since the mid-2000’s, the company has rebounded due to growth in its highly profitable cable business and attendance at its venues. They even bought those Voom HD channels from the failed venue. Recently there were rumors that Cablevision might spin off its Rainbow Media group (which also includes the now hot AMC movie channel plus WE and Fuse) into a separate entity. But with this credit crisis/recession whatever, that might not happen.

TheaterBuff1 on March 19, 2008 at 12:33 am

Yes, Reagan’s plan — which had obviously been unconstitutional — “worked”…as in, worked in getting America tangled in a labyrinth from which it might never be able to emerge from again, Humpty Dumpty style, even with such technological breakthroughs as DLP.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on March 19, 2008 at 10:33 am

Not the place for politics…… i will move on.

TheaterBuff1 on March 20, 2008 at 3:29 am

If a website devoted to the discussion of theaters isn’t the right place for politics, I don’t know what is, particularly when we’re talking about a president who came up by way of the theaters — BEDTIME FOR BONZO, THE GIRL OF JONES BEACH, KING’S ROW, THE KILLERS, etc., etc., etc.

And reviewing the history of cinemas in America, and each forward — or backward — stride they made in the course of that history, there’s no question politics played a very important role. And if anybody thinks that politics right now isn’t playing an instrumental role in what’s holding digital cinema back they need to take a closer look. For digital cinema’s big holdback in the U.S. has politics written all over it. Politicians of a tyrannical leaning see it as a threat, and there’s no question that’s going on right now. And with this being a presidential election year(2008), I think it’s very fair to ask which contender will be best when it comes to American cinema’s future? We already know where Barack Obama stands on this, based on what happened to the DuPage movie palace in his Illinois district in 2007. But what about the other candidates, Hillary, McCain, and also possibly Nader? Are they all anti-movie theater as well? For if so, it’s going to be a very dark era for American cinema on the road ahead, and likewise a very dark era for America itself. For we need theaters to get Americans all uppity in the way they need to be so as to bring about positive change. Short of movie theaters playing this role there aren’t many good substitutes. Nothing does the trick better than a well-run theater. And as Jefferson would say if he were around today, the existence of such is formidable only to tyrants.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on March 20, 2008 at 1:04 pm

Theaters will be around long after you and i are gone……

I will not vote for any president because they are best for American cinema.
Theaters are a private enterprise and i dont care what they think about it.

moviebuff82 on March 20, 2008 at 2:28 pm

I agree. Movie theaters aren’t as well run as a government building (such as the White House). They are a public institution, unlike the private sector. And there’s more eavesdropping to be heard around the plexes, whether it’s gossip or complaints.

TheaterBuff1 on March 21, 2008 at 3:30 am

What I was saying is that the state of movie theaters in this country reflects the government running it. And some presidents were very good for the movie theaters, and some were absolute disasters. FDR was the best thing to happen when it came to America’s movie theaters, and others, such as Eisenhower and Kennedy, were good for the theaters, too. They saw how important they are in being able to help shape American society over all. But longislandmovies, as for your statement “Theaters will be around long after you and i are gone……,” I should point out to you that you’re telling this to someone who grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania — a place that accurately once could have been called “the city of theaters” — but where today every last single neighborhood movie theater is gone. And of the city’s only movie palace still left standing today — this in a city that once had countless movie palaces atop the zillion and one neighborhood theaters it once had — has been boarded up in a state of ruin for the last six years now going on seven. And it’s a case where, if it doesn’t get a buyer soon, will soon be seeing the wrecking ball.

….So, er, what was it you were saying?

Giles on March 31, 2008 at 2:44 pm

since they probably won’t be using Sony 4K’s systems' let’s hope AMC, Regal and Cinemark are smart enough to purchase servers like Doremi’s that can playback future 4K features. To ignore 4K technology is counterintuitive.

Giles on March 31, 2008 at 2:55 pm

for the record, NEC servers can also playback 4K

moviebuff82 on March 31, 2008 at 3:10 pm

sounds good. I know Clearview uses 2k projection on smaller screens that looks sharper but when shown on a big screen like the AMCs, it’s a bit soft and blurry.

GFeret on April 3, 2008 at 3:52 pm

Digital projection is a step BACKWARDS technically. I will not support it myself. If I have to watch a TV, no matter the image size, I’ll do it exclusively from the comfort of my home.

This step backwards, if it becomes the dominant means, you can bet you will also pay more for.

Beware of large-scale overall changes foisted on you, to resolve problems you never even knew you had. You don’t know what you got till it’s gone.

Giles on April 3, 2008 at 4:08 pm

I will miss you cigarette burns and grain…. ;)

did you hear, Spielberg and Lucas Films is rumoured to premier the latest Indiana Jones film at Cannes in 70mm… oh if they could rekick that trend back up, then screw DLP…. resurrect 70mm!!!!!!

GFeret on April 3, 2008 at 4:27 pm

If I thot you’re serious Giles I’d cheer you on.

I know IJ#4’s being premiered at Cannes, but the 70mm part I didn’t know. Really?

TheaterBuff1 on April 4, 2008 at 3:04 am

To me it’s not that DLP itself that has major drawbacks, rather, it’s the current times we’re living in as this new technology is being introduced. That is, politically speaking, we’re living in a “nice guys finish last” type of era right now. The new technology needs to be launched in combination with a deep caring for current day audiences, and politically speaking there’s not much of a regard — or respect — for that type of caring right now. It’s the givers v. the takers, and right now the takers clearly have the upper hand. And when it comes to those with the taker type mindset, they don’t have any especial desire to give the audiences the best exhibition they possibly can. Rather, it’s “here’s your DLP gruel, just accept it, don’t expect to like it.”

I believe though, that in the right hands, DLP can far outshine 70mm if given a chance to. And that chance hasn’t come up yet.

Giles on April 7, 2008 at 10:05 am

I read awhile back, an article on 4K and Fox had transferred a 70mm print of ‘The Sound of Music’ to digital and the 4K presentation pretty much mirrored/replicated 70mm spot on – 2K doesn’t have the resolution of 4K or 70mm/Imax for that matter. Feret – it’s just a rumour at this point about IJ4, it’s mentioned over at, it’d be pretty cool though if say a dozen 70mm prints could be created and distributed to the top film markets that have theatres that still have 70mm projectors – DC’s is pretty much a lock, it’s the Uptown.

Giles on May 1, 2008 at 12:03 pm

“As far as I know Paramount did change their minds on digital distribution of Indiana Jones but the Arclight will only be getting film prints as of now (thankfully). We didn’t get any hard drives for Iron Man either so all of our shows are 35mm.”

posted by Rizzo on May 1, 2008 at 12:07am


can anyone else confirm this reverse decision from Paramount?

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on May 6, 2008 at 11:52 am

not seeing much on the conversion as of yet!!!!!!

Giles on May 14, 2008 at 3:02 pm

unfortunate really, since I wanted to see ‘Iron Man’ again, but in DLP – the 35mm print I saw was attrocious, but almost all the Regal DLP screens in the DC area are changing over to ‘Prince Caspian’ this weekend.

as for Indy 4 – DLP’s website does now denote the film being digitally released – so much for the rumour that Lucas/Spielberg were releasing this 35mm only.

markinthedark on May 14, 2008 at 6:24 pm

Is DLP equipment (and any other digital projection) “fixed” with a specific auditorium at a theatre or can it be moved around among auditoriums as demand for a title decreases?

Giles on May 15, 2008 at 9:15 am

from what I’ve seen it’s too large to move.

pieku on May 20, 2008 at 6:42 am

Indy 4 is only premiering on 35mm. The only theaters getting Digital prints are theaters that have all digital screens. Theaters with a mix of both 35mm and digital will only get 35mm.

Giles on May 20, 2008 at 9:27 am

that would make sense Robert P. – I’m just glad to finally see that AMC installed a DLP unit at Mazza Galleria – a hop and a jump from my home.

Giles on July 9, 2008 at 9:43 am

what AMC has to do is install more Sony 4K units and actually advertise them since there are but only 20 screens in the US showing ‘Hancock’ in 4K Digital Projection.

seagle2011 on August 2, 2008 at 4:58 pm

All the movies that I’ve seen at the AMC Highland Village, which are all digital theaters(the theatre opened last December), have been beautiful, crystal clear movies. I haven’t experienced any problems with grainy titles ,etc… I love it, and I think it’s better than 35mm. If anyone knows what DLPs AMC uses please let me know.

seagle2011 on August 2, 2008 at 5:17 pm

Oh I just figured out that AMC Highland Village 12 uses 4K projectors on all screens. That’s why I’m not having problems!

CineAmerica on June 16, 2009 at 11:17 pm

4K is all hype and not much substance under DCI. AMC are going
4K because they are concerned about peoples perception rather than
image quality. 2K at 250Mb/s is way better than 4K at the same bit rate.
DCI specifies a maximum 250Mb/s for both, so with 4K you have 4
times the image with the same bit rate or you have each quadrant with 4 times the
2K compressions or 62.5Mb/s.

Also, do some searching on the maximum resolution that the human
eye can take in details from concerning moving image and you will
further find 4K is a waste of time ( that is if in fact it was at 500Mb/s
or higher needed to compete with 2K ).

American companies like Doremi, Dolby and Christie are making the
best digital cinema products in the world. Why support cinema chains that buy
overseas products that provide inferior images…………

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