Moviegoers will be able to catch the 6-minute 70mm Imax film prologue for Warner Bros’ The Dark Knight Rises beginning December 16 in front of special advance previews in the same ultra-large-format film versions of Paramount’s Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol. Warner Bros. on Thursday revealed the names and locations of the 70mm Imax film theaters that will present the 6-minute TDKR prologue ahead of the 70mm Imax film version of Ghost Protocol. In a statement director Christopher Nolan described the shooting and presentation of Imax 65mm/70mm film as “inspiring” and said “the immersive quality of the image goes beyond any other filmmaking tool available. … Giving the fans an early look at an Imax sequence is a great way to draw attention to what I believe will be an incredible way to experience” The Dark Knight Rises when it opens July 20, 2012. The prologue for The Dark Knight Rises will not screen with digital Imax or regular digital or 35mm film presentations of Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol. Regular, non-Imax versions of Ghost Protocol open December 21. The list of theaters follows. Moviegoers should confirm theaters will be playing the prologue for The Dark Knight Rises before purchasing tickets.
Following is a list of the theatres in North America in which the prologue of The Dark Knight Rises will screen on December 16: Read More »
The large-screen theater company says it generated $8.39M in net income for 3Q, up 24.6% vs the period last year, on revenues of $67.5M, up 32.2%. That translated into adjusted earnings of 16 cents a share, light of the 20 cents that the Street expected. But IMAX says it took a 6 cent hit due to “a sudden decrease of the Canadian Dollar against the U.S. Dollar at the end of the third quarter.” Most of IMAX’s revenues are in U.S. dollars, but most of its expenses are in Canadian dollars. Since the end of September the Canadian dollar has strengthened, leading IMAX to project a $3.4M gain in 4Q. CEO Rich Gelfond says he’s optimistic about upcoming films led by Paramount’s Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol: The IMAX Experience as well as revenues from new theaters being built overseas. Gelfond says that 3Q was the first time that IMAX saw more gross revenues from overseas theaters than from domestic. The company increased its international growth plans by 25% and says those markets will account for about 75% of the new IMAX venues planned for the next 15 months.
UPDATE, 6:40 AM: In a conference call with analysts, CEO Rich Gelfond continued to talk up future opportunities while acknowledging that “like you we’re not happy” with recent box office sales. He’s talking to studios about making films available to IMAX venues before they open elsewhere and is “optimistic about obtaining a title in the not-too-distant future.” He’s also considering making a bigger bet on potential blockbusters by reducing the number of films IMAX shows each year. No decision has been made but “my own vote is for less (films) with longer lead times.” Gelfond also will change the mix of films IMAX runs: “Our audience is more of a fanboy-driven audience than a family-driven audience, so we are going to make an adjustment.” Gelfond says he’s excited about a new digital laser projection technology he hopes to introduce in 2013 that would brighten screen images and reduce costs on bulbs. He’s not sure, though, whether he’ll accomodate director Peter Jackson’s effort to have his upcoming film The Hobbit shown at 48 frames per second vs the industry average of 24 fps. “We’re in discussions with Warner as to whether it makes sense,” he says.
PREVIOUS, 4:55 AM: Not a happy quarter for IMAX. The large-screen theater company reported 2Q net income of $1.8M, down 86.5% vs the same period last year, on revenues of $57.2M, up 3%. After adjusting for stock compensation and deferred taxes, earnings came in at … Read More »
Wall Street’s backlash against 3D movies is growing serious. Just weeks after movie executives and investors wondered how well 3D films would do this summer, they’ve begun to ask much tougher questions including: When will movie theater chains begin to cancel orders for 3D projection equipment? And could continued weakening in ticket sales force AMC Entertainment to shelve its plan to go public and raise as much as $450 million?
Defenders of the technology are urging everyone to wait and see whether there’s an uptick in 3D ticket sales for Paramount’s Transformers: Dark Of The Moon, which opens July 1, and Warner Bros’ Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows, Part II, which opens July 15. The films should “help provide for a more positive outlook” for 3D in general and particularly for 3D technology company RealD, says Merriman Capital analyst Eric Wold.
But investors didn’t appear to agree on Friday. RealD’s stock price fell 13.2% to $20.90 the day after executives responded to the Street’s concerns with talking points that simply urged people not to read too much into disappointing 3D sales for just a few films. RealD shares now have lost 41.3% of their value since May 19. “While management dismisses a change in consumer enthusiasm toward 3D, the public is speaking and 3D is simply being overused with ticket premiums far too high,” says BTIG analyst Rich Greenfield — who has a “sell” rating on RealD. Read More »
Add Imax to the list of companies taking advantage of today’s low interest rates by borrowing or refinancing debt. The big-screen exhibition company says that Wells Fargo and Export Development of Canada have agreed to to provide up to $110 million in credit. The new arrangement replaces a $75 million credit facility with the lenders that charged a higher interest rate. The cash will “provide us with enhanced flexibility as we pursue our strategic initiatives and continue the global expansion of our business,” CEO Rich Gelfond says
Here’s the strange thing about IMAX these days: the large screen exhibitor reported terrible financial results for the first quarter although analysts were projecting it would continue to report a profit. Yet its stock price closed up 6% at $34.24, for a more than 60% gain over the past year. Even this morning, Wall Street was reassured by the IMAX upbeat projections for ticket sales and global expansion plans. Which is why CEO Richard Gelfond today tells me that 1st quarter financial results are not nearly as terrible as they look.
GELFOND: If you strip out nonrecurring things, it really shows up as a 4 cent (earnings per share) number. That was a little short of expectations among analysts. And I think frankly some of that happened because we incurred expenses in China in building our business there. Some in R&D, and reinvesting in our business. And I think people didn’t understand that the first quarter was devoid of any blockbuster films. For us, if the box office drops 25% — as it did — as long as there are blockbuster films that doesn’t matter. We don’t play a full film slate. We play just a couple of films. But what made the quarter noteworthy was that there were no blockbuster films. That has a big impact on us. Fortunately, starting tonight at midnight, we have Fast Five domestically and Thor internationally. So the blockbuster season … Read More »
The 3D joint venture of Sony Corp., Discovery Communications and IMAX Corporation has announced the first slew of original series and acquisitions that will be part of its inaugural slate. It includes Sony’s 3D theatrical movie Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. The channel launches in 2011.
Abandoned Planet Explore the strangest places on earth – entire cities now completely devoid of all humanity. This series of one-hour programs sheds light on why people have abandoned the places they once called home and what happens after they leave. Produced by Flight 33 Productions.
Africa in 3D From Gannet Island and its 100,000 seabirds of the same name sharing one giant rock, the 60,000 flamingos at Kamfers Dam, the Luangwa River and its 30,000 hippos and much more, this series of one-hour programs captures the richness and diversity of the world’s second-largest continent. Produced by Aquavision Television Productions.
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