UPDATE, 6:40 AM: CEO Alan Stock made his comment in a conference call with analysts who asked what he’d do if Sony continues with its plan to stop paying for 3D glasses — leaving it to exhibitors to manage the expense. ”We think the way the glasses model works in the U.S. is a great way to work it,” he said. He added that there’s still a lot of time to negotiate before next summer, when Sony wants the change to take place. “I’m pretty confident we can work out a solution,” Stock says. “If we can’t, we’ll have to head in a different direction.” Regarding Universal’s plan, which it canceled, to show Tower Heist on cable VOD just three weeks after opening in theaters, Stock says the studio “thought they had something the exhibitors would comply with.” After Cinemark threatened to boycott the film, “there hasn’t been any further discussion of that particular test, or anything else they’re working on.”
PREVIOUS, 4:12 AM: The Texas-based exhibition chain smashed through the Street’s revenue expectations in what it says was its best-ever quarterly report. The company had net income attributable to shareholders of $46.9M, up 40.8% vs the same period last year, on revenues of $640M, up 14.2%. Analysts predicted revenues of $617.2M. Earnings, at 41 cents a share, matched forecasts. Cinemark says that admission revenue rose 13.5% to $417.1M — that’s based on a 5.6% pick up in attendance (to 44.4M in the U.S. and 25M abroad) and 7.3% increase in ticket prices (to $6.47 domestically and $5.20 internationally). Meanwhile, concession stands generated $194.8M, a 14.5% increase. Spending per patron domestically grew 5.7% to an average of $3.13, and elsewhere was up 16.1% to $2.23. The chain, which has 5,096 screens — including 3,861 domestic — declared a 21 cent per share dividend. “The 2011 third quarter was was the highest-grossing North American box office period in history, which marks the second quarter in a row that the industry has set a record for box office performance,” CEO Alan Stock said.