IMAX Corporation inks deal with Europe’s ODEON & UCI Cinemas Group

MUMBAI: IMAX Corporation has inked deals with and ODEON & UCI Cinemas Group, Europe’s largest exhibitor, and will be installing an IMAX theatre in the exhibitor’s multiplex in Cardiff, Wales. The deal was signed as a result of the growing success and popularity of the exhibitor’s IMAX digital locations in Wimbledon and Greenwich. This newest location and the exhibitor’s previously announced IMAX location in Gateshead, UK, are scheduled to open in time for the release of Avatar on 18 December, 2009. Both will feature IMAX’s digital projection technology. The deal brings the total number of IMAX theatres operated by ODEON to five.

To date, IMAX has signed contracts for over 200 IMAX digital projection systems worldwide, with more than 115 currently in operation.

"Cinemagoers are continuing to react positively to the premium experience they get in our IMAX cinemas, and this ongoing success, combined with a growing IMAX film slate, is the key driver of our latest expansion with IMAX in the United Kingdom. We believe there are more opportunities for ODEON and IMAX in the future, and we’re actively exploring additional locations," said ODEON & UCI Cinemas Group CEO Rupert Gavin.

"ODEON & UCI Cinemas Group’s increasing interest in the IMAX business is very encouraging as we continue to focus on network expansion in Europe. We’re very pleased to share our exciting film slate with more consumers in additional IMAX theatres, and we look forward to opening this location in time to capitalize on the IMAX 3D release of Avatar in December," said IMAX CEO Richard L. Gelfond.

"We’re very pleased with ODEON and UCI Cinemas Group’s ongoing success with IMAX theatres, which are driving business for each overall ODEON multiplex we’re operating in. The Group’s endorsement of our digital projection system reinforces the power of The IMAX Experience in a multiplex setting," added Imax executive vice president of theatre development Larry O’Reilly.

IMAX’s revolutionary digital projection system delivers The IMAX Experience and helps drive profitability for studios, exhibitors and IMAX theatres by eliminating the need for film prints, increasing program flexibility and ultimately increasing the number of movies shown on IMAX screens. The system can run both IMAX and IMAX 3D presentations.