CYPRESS, CA - Christie, a global leader in visual solutions for entertainment, business and industry, has surpassed the historic 5,000 digital cinema milestone, posting a record 5,197 completed installations worldwide just three years after launching the world’s largest digital cinema deployment plan.
“Surpassing the 5,000 milestone is a remarkable achievement, not only for Christie, but for the cinema industry itself. In 2005, there were only a handful of installations in the entire world and many people questioned the long-term viability of the move to digital,” remarks Jack Kline, president and COO of Christie Digital Systems USA, Inc. “As the market faces more competition, it’s helping to drive innovation and we’re seeing interesting growth opportunity around the world. The long term prospects are strong and we look forward to maintaining a steady pace of installations for years to come.”
Kline notes that Christie digital cinema contracts are marked by deployments on a large-scale, the first of which was the launch of the largest deployment in history - the 4,000-installation contract with Access Integrated Technologies, Inc. (“AccessIT”) (NASDAQ: AIXD) through the groundbreaking Christie/AIX funding plan. This agreement led to the 4th largest exhibitor in the United States to “go digital” in 100% of its screens, Carmike Cinemas, Inc. (“Carmike”) (NASDAQ: CKEC), with 2,300 screens.
“Christie/AIX was a landmark achievement for the industry,” recalls Bud Mayo, chairman and CEO of AccessIT. “With Christie’s strong product line, service and support, our server partner, and AccessIT’s software and network technology, we provided the world with the first viable network technology and business model for the successful deployment of digital cinema. The Christie/AIX deployment plan is recognized today as having sparked the digital cinema revolution.”
In addition to Christie/AIX, other major digital cinema deployments for Christie, often marked by 100% conversion of the contracted circuits, include:
- 80 screens for Arts Alliance Digital Cinema (AADC), which selected Christie DLP Cinema® projectors for the roll-out of the digital screen network for the UK Film Council. This digital screen network marked the world’s first digital cinema deployment on a large scale.
- 400 screens for Arts Alliance Media (AAM), which selected Christie as the exclusive DLP Cinema projector provider for French chain Circuit George Raymond (CGR Cinémas). The agreement also saw CGR Cinémas become the first European cinema network to convert completely to digital cinema exhibition.
- 193 Christie DLP Cinema projectors for XDC’s first large-scale deployment in Austria. The agreement with Cineplexx Kinobetriebe GmbH, Austria’s largest cinema chain, will result in 100% conversion of the circuit’s 193 screens. XDC launched the first Pan-European digital cinema roll-out in 2005, selecting Christie DLP Cinema projectors for deployments across Denmark, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Sweden and Switzerland.
- 200 Christie DLP Cinema projectors as part of an exclusive contract with Scrabble Entertainment (SE), launching India’s largest single digital cinema deployment. This was a historic development that finally brought the digital cinema revolution to India.
- 100 Christie DLP Cinema projectors for the Shanghai Film Group (SFG) Corporation’s United Circuit in China. SFG selected Christie exclusively for the initial phase of this growing nationwide deployment plan.
Christie also continues to set the pace of installations internationally, most recently with the major sale of its DLP Cinema projectors for use at the 2008 Beijing Summer Games and eventual installation throughout China. Christie was also part of Canada’s largest digital cinema conversion of 25 theaters across the country for Cineplex Entertainment (TSX:CGX.UN), the country’s leading operator of movie theaters. In the United States, Christie was the exclusive DLP Cinema provider for Warren Theatres’ spectacular new 14-screen multiplex in Moore, Oklahoma. The Moore Warren Theatre, the most expensive in the history of the state, is also one of the largest, with luxury accommodations and screens up to 80 feet wide and 4 stories tall.