Beijing, China, and New York, NY -- IMAX Corporation and Huayi Bros Group Ltd, one of China's largest film studios, today announced an expansion of their partnership with the digital re-mastering of four Huayi Bros.' motion pictures in the IMAX format. The films will be released into IMAX theatres across China throughout the remainder of 2012 and include Tai Chi 0 (Sep. 27), Tai Chi Hero (Oct. 25), Back to 1942 (TBC), and Chinese Zodiac (Dec. 20). The companies also announced a commitment to present an additional three Huayi Bros. films in IMAX, bringing to eight the total of number of films included under the expanded partnership.
The companies initiated their partnership with the box office hit Aftershock in July 2010 which was the first Chinese IMAX DMR® title, grossing more than $102 million. Richard L. Gelfond, CEO of IMAX, said:. "Today, we are delivering on our promise to present more local-language titles in IMAX for Chinese audiences to enjoy. We believe this strategy will also create opportunities for IMAX to export these films to other large markets, such as Southeast Asia and North America." Huayi Brothers Group Ltd is one of China's largest film studios and holds about a 30-40 percent market share in domestic movie production (top 20 films) and 30 percent in movie distribution.
Huayi was established by brothers Wang Zhongjun (Dennis Wang) and Wang Zhonglei (James Wang) in 1994. The Wang brothers hold a combined stake in Huayi of more than 50 percent. Other major investors include Tom Group Ltd., Focus Media Holding Ltd., and Yahoo China. The company has solely or jointly produced more than 50 movies since 1998. Huayi has begun to build a theatre network in China with plans for 150 to 200 screens within five years.
LOS ANGELES -- Fandango, the nation's leading moviegoer destination, today announced the results of its annual 2012 Fall Film Survey, in which Fandango asked over 1,000 moviegoers which films and performances they were most anticipating hitting big screen this Fall. "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2" dominated as both the "Most Anticipated Fall Movie" and "Best Date Night Movie," earning 32% and 51% of the vote respectively.
Also making a splash on the survey was Oscar-winning director Tom Hooper's adaptation of the musical, "Les Miserables," with 49% of fans choosing it as the "Film that Could Sweep the Oscars" and Judd Apatow's upcoming comedy, "This is 40," which 29% of the fans said was "The Movie Expected to Deliver the Biggest Laughs." A full 38% of fans picked the upcoming Jennifer Lawrence horror film, "House at the End of the Street" as "The Movie Expected to Deliver the Biggest Frights."
"Film fans always look forward to the Fall season, when some of the year's best films debut closer to Oscar season," said Fandango editor-in-chief Chuck Walton. "There's a real diversity of product this year, as there's clearly something for everyone - from baseball to Bond to Bella - and new films that are sure to keep fans buzzing well into next year."
For the Fall season's individual performances, 22% of fans chose Daniel Day-Lewis' turn in Steven Spielberg's "Lincoln" as "Most Anticipated Performance of the Fall," and 47% picked Joaquin Phoenix's role as a disciple in Paul Thomas Anderson's "The Master" as "The Most Welcome Return to the Screen."
As part of the survey, 61% of Fandango's film fans said that Clint Eastwood's recently-broadcast "Empty Chair" speech made them more interested in his upcoming baseball flick, "Trouble with the Curve."
LOS ANGELES & SAN FRANCISCO -- Dolby Laboratories, Inc. (NYSE: DLB) and Twentieth Century Fox® announced today that two of the studio's fall 2012 releases, Taken 2 (U.S. release: October 5, 2012) and Chasing Mavericks (U.S. release: October 26, 2012), will be mixed and released in Dolby® AtmosTM, the new audio platform that has revolutionized the experience of sound in entertainment. Anticipating additional Dolby Atmos titles, Twentieth Century Fox is outfitting its Zanuck Theater postproduction facility with Dolby Atmos capabilities.
Dolby Atmos, the latest sound technology from Dolby Laboratories, delivers a more natural and realistic sound-field that moves sound around and above audiences, transporting them into the onscreen adventure.
"Dolby Atmos transports audiences into the onscreen adventure with the most lifelike sensory experience ever offered in cinema," said Doug Darrow, Senior Vice President, Cinema, Dolby Laboratories. "Dolby Atmos will immerse moviegoers in the sounds of Istanbul's bustling streets in the action-packed Taken 2 and atop the big waves of Chasing Mavericks."
Two acclaimed sound re-recording mixers will be at the helm of the Dolby Atmos mixes. Craig Henighan will mix Chasing Mavericks in Dolby Atmos; Chuck Michael will conduct the Dolby Atmos mix for Taken 2.
According to Darrow, Dolby has a long history of transforming and reinventing cinema sound and is attuned to the desires of both movie audiences and the creative community behind each film.
"Twentieth Century Fox and Dolby have had a long and trusted history together," said Ted Gagliano, President of Post Production, Twentieth Century Fox. "It is therefore not surprising to me that the breadth of Dolby's experience has given them a keen insight not just into the moviegoing experience, but into the wants and needs of postproduction. This has obviously greatly influenced the vision of Dolby Atmos. Fox looks forward to enriching the cinematic experience with this latest innovation from Dolby."
The list of North American theatres selected to show the fall 2012 releases of Taken 2 and Chasing Mavericks in Dolby Atmos will be made available closer to the release dates.
Santa Monica, CA -- Lionsgate® and the filmmakers of THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE are pleased to announce that Jeffrey Wright has been cast in the role of Beetee in the much anticipated film adaptation of Suzanne Collins' worldwide smash hit novel Catching Fire. Hailing from District 3, Beetee earns the nickname "Volts" because of his electronics expertise.
Critically acclaimed and celebrated by audiences for his performances in theater and on film and television, Wright garnered a Tony® Award in 1994 for his work in Tony Kushner's Pulitzer Prize-winning epic "Angels in America" which he reprised in HBO's 2003 mini-series adaptation, earning both a Golden Globe® and an Emmy®. He has played memorable roles in films as diverse as BASQUIAT, SOURCE CODE, CASINO ROYALE and QUANTUM OF SOLACE, W, SYRIANA, and CADILLAC RECORDS. Wright can next be seen with Mark Walhberg, Russell Crowe and Catherine Zeta-Jones in Allen Hughes' political thriller BROKEN CITY.
THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE begins as Katniss Everdeen has returned home safe after winning the 74th Annual Hunger Games along with fellow tribute Peeta Mellark. Winning means that they must turn around and leave their family and close friends, embarking on a "Victor's Tour" of the districts. Along the way Katniss senses that a rebellion is simmering, but the Capitol is still very much in control as President Snow prepares the 75th Annual Hunger Games (The Quarter Quell) - a competition that could change Panem forever.
THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE will be directed by Francis Lawrence, and produced by Nina Jacobson's Color Force in tandem with producer Jon Kilik. The novel on which the film is based is the second in a trilogy that has sold more than 50 million books in print and digital in the U.S. alone.
BEIJING, China and KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Dalian Wanda Group Co., Ltd. ("Wanda"), a leading Chinese private conglomerate and China's largest investor in cultural and entertainment activities, and AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. ("AMC"), a preeminent U.S. movie exhibitor, today announced the successful completion of Wanda's acquisition of AMC, creating the world's largest cinema owner. The transaction is valued at approximately US$2.6 billion.
Wanda Chairman and President Wang Jianlin said, "We are very pleased to have completed the acquisition of AMC and begin this new chapter in Wanda's international development. Throughout this entire process we have been impressed with the expertise and dedication of AMC's management team and associates. We now look forward to working with AMC's CEO Gerry Lopez and his team to invest in and build on the company's widely-recognized brand and the incomparable entertainment experience AMC offers to its millions of customers."
Gerry Lopez, chief executive officer and president of AMC, said, "All of us at AMC are thrilled about our future with Wanda. It allows us to continue expanding and innovating in what is the world's largest movie market. More so, we are enthusiastic about combining AMC's leadership in the US with Wanda's leadership in China, the world's fastest-growing market. We strongly believe in our shared common interests in advancing the movie industry and we feel this partnership creates one of the world's premier location-based entertainment companies."
Wanda will operate AMC as a wholly owned subsidiary under its existing brand while investing up to an additional US$500 million in the unit over time to fund strategic and operating initiatives. AMC will continue to control film programming and remain headquartered in the Kansas City metropolitan area, with more than 17,000 associates operating theaters in 32 states across the United States.
The transaction creates the world's largest global cinema owner by combining Wanda's 94 theatres, 805 screens and large-scale stage show, film production and distribution, entertainment chains with AMC's 338 multiplex theatres and 4,865 screens, including 2,171 3-D screens and 124 IMAX screens, making it the world's largest operator of IMAX screens. Approximately 200 million people watched movies in AMC theatres in 2011.