IMAX president Richard Gelfond told the Israeli Presidential Conference today that the experience of going to the movies will always appeal despite the proliferation of mobile devices. “People are social animals and I don’t think they want to be chained to their couches, mobile devices and tablets. They want to go out,” Gelfond said, according to Reuters. “They recognize the fact that Steven Spielberg and James Cameron may be better at telling a story than a 16-year-old over the Internet. I think they can exist side by side.” Also on Thursday, IMAX and Germany’s largest exhibitor CineStar Cinemas said they would partner to put an IMAX theater at the CineStar Sony Centre in Berlin. The giant Potzdamer Platz multiplex hosts big film premiers and is familiar to Berlin Film Festival regulars. The new theater will eventually transition to IMAX’s next-generation laser digital projection system which boasts greater brightness and clarity, a wider color gamut and deeper blacks. IMAX EMEA president Andrew Cripps noted that Germany is an under-penetrated market for the company where it is looking to expand.
Score one for BSkyB. UK regulator Ofcom today dismissed a complaint by rival BT that Sky had discriminated against it by refusing to run ads for BT’s new sports channels on Sky Sports’ own channels. Ofcom found that BSkyB had not breached the code of the Prevention of Undue Discrimination between Broadcast Advertisers. The decision comes a day after it was revealed that BT has lodged a separate complaint against BSkyB in which it alleges abuse of dominant position. The two have waged an escalating battle as BT strives to claim a share of the lucrative sports rights business. BT’s new sports channels launch this August and are being offering for free to broadband subscribers. In turn, BSkyB is offering broadband for free to its sports channel subscribers. The pair each have a portion of Premiere League soccer matches which kick off in August.
International soccer federation FIFA could scrap plans for 3D broadcasts of next summer’s World Cup. Referencing the recent decision by ESPN to shutter its 3D channel, FIFA director of television Niclas Ericson on Wednesday said, “We know that the technology has had a few setbacks in recent days.” Per The Associated Press, FIFA has sent questionnaires to rights holders to assess their interest in 3D coverage for the tournament that will be played in Brazil. Ericson said there is interest from “several broadcasters” but said FIFA is “reviewing the cost of it.” He added, “It’s clear when a big sports broadcaster like ESPN makes an announcement like that it creates a lot of extra tension (for the technology).”
Summer In February, the Christopher Menaul-directed drama, has been picked up by uConnect for international sales. Dominic Cooper, Dan Stevens and Emily Browning star in the love triangle that’s set amongst a bohemian group of Edwardian artists in Cornwall. Janette Day and Pippa Cross, Jeremy Cowdrey and Stevens produced from the screenplay by Jonathan Smith that’s based on his eponymous novel. Metrodome released the film theatrically on June 16 in the UK.
Sony Pictures Television’s two French production ventures, SPT Productions France and Starling, are to co-produce gameshow Avec Ou Sans Joker for France Télévisions. An initial 36 episodes will run on France 2 beginning in July in access primetime. In the competition, contestants answer general knowledge questions, accompanied by a multitude of holograms that provide clues in the form of challenges and riddles. SPT Productions France and Starling also produce the French versions of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? for TF1 and The Newlywed Game for France2.