IMAX to develop digital 3D motion picture camera

MUMBAI: On the heels of this week’s announcement between IMAX Corporation, Discovery Communications and Sony Corporation to create a cable television network devoted entirely to 3D content, IMAX announced that it is developing its first IMAX 3D digital camera. The initiative marks the company’s continued move to explore new growth opportunities that capitalize on its leadership in 3D entertainment technology. IMAX expects its first prototype to be ready by early 2010, with the goal of an official launch in 2011. The new IMAX 3D camera is planned to be a component of a suite of IMAX-branded products and services available to studios, partners and filmmakers for use in production of premium 3D content.

The benefits of the IMAX 3D camera are expected to include: proprietary, differentiated content for the IMAX theatre network, increased content for the company’s planned joint venture 3D TV network, and lower production costs, due to the elimination of expensive film stock.

"Just as the advent of digital became the catalyst for evolving our film-based projection system, we believe the prominence of 3D is the catalyst for evolution of our 3D camera," said IMAX Corporation CEO Richard L. Gelfond. "While our priority remains growing our theatre network and delivering the premium out of home entertainment experience, we always strive to be at the forefront on emerging industry trends, be it the roll out of digital projection or the proliferation of 3D content and distribution. As we move forward, we will insist that any new potential venture be consistent with our brand, provide new revenue streams, and look for attractive rates of return, including through licensing and otherwise."

"This initiative is an important step in our strategy to make The IMAX Experience(R) more accessible to consumers and more viable for filmmakers," added IMAX Filmed Entertainment chairman and president Greg Foster. "Given the significant amount of 3D content being developed over the past 12 to 18 months, requests from filmmakers for an IMAX 3D digital camera, consumer appetite for The IMAX Experience and this week’s joint venture announcement for the 3D television network, we believe the timing of this initiative could not be better."

Among the key areas of focus for IMAX’s exploration of strategic brand extension plans will be: 3D in-home entertainment technology, including television, home theatres and additional consumer products, digital re-mastering and conversion of movie and television content using our proprietary technology to include both 2D, 3D and high-definition formats, increased post-production opportunities and partnering with leading technology, studio, programming, content and consumer electronics companies to enhance awareness of the IMAX brand and IMAX technology, and build on the company’s reputation for innovation and excellence.

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