Los Angeles, CA - Twentieth Century Fox and SmartJog announced today that they have signed a non-exclusive agreement for satellite distribution of digital cinema content to theatres in Europe. Under the terms of the agreement, SmartJog will deliver Twentieth Century Fox movies in digital format to exhibitors connected to SmartJog's Pan-European digital cinema network.

Julian Levin, Executive Vice President, Digital Exhibition and Non-Theatrical Sales and Distribution, Twentieth Century Fox commented, "we are very pleased to conclude a content distribution services agreement with SmartJog to deliver Fox's digital movies via satellite to the ever increasing number of SmartJog equipped theatres across Europe. With the rapidly increasing footprint of digital projection systems, 2D and 3D, coupled with emerging electronic distribution platforms, SmartJog has taken a leadership role toward providing a more efficient electronic delivery methodology which we believe will ultimately dominate the means by which movies are delivered to theatres worldwide. We congratulate our colleagues at SmartJog and look forward to working closely with them in the future as they expand their base of theatres."

SmartJog provides optimized transmission via satellite, network monitoring, traffic supervision and storage solutions tailored to the digital cinema industry. SmartJog currently has over 160 cinemas and more than 800 screens connected to its network in Europe with over 300 sites planned by the end of the year.

European Motion Picture exhibitors are already receiving digital cinema content via the SmartJog network, with over 70 feature films and hundreds of trailers and screen advertising content transmitted since early 2009.

"We are thrilled about this agreement and look forward to providing Fox with a complete end-to-end digital delivery solution to theatres," said Julien Seligmann, CEO at SmartJog. "As the cinema world continues the transition to an all-digital workflow, Fox's selection of SmartJog as an electronic delivery method to cinemas, showcases their leadership role in the digital cinema community."

The SmartJog global network interconnects all major digital cinema service providers and mastering facilities globally. SmartJog is the only digital delivery service provider in the industry today whose solution enable distributors with secure and reliable transmission of DCPs (Digital Cinema Packages) between digital cinema mastering facilities, service providers and theatres. The SmartJog service eliminates the need to send digital files on hard drives.

 

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Source: Deadline New York

James Cameron and Michael Bay aren't exactly fans of converting 2D films into 3D in order to capitalize on the recent surge in box office grosses associated with the format.

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Says Cameron, "Now, you've got people quickly converting movies from 2D to 3D, which is not what we did. They're expecting the same result, when in fact they will probably work against the adoption of 3D because they'll be putting out an inferior product."

Bay notes, "I shoot complicated stuff, I put real elements into action scenes and honestly, I am not sold right now on the conversion process." The director's Transformers 3 is not being shot in 3D, which means it could be met with disappointment from mainstream audiences who will be exposed to a rush of 3D tentpoles before the third installment opens on July 1, 2011.

On April 2, Warner Bros. will open Clash of the Titans in 3D. The epic was originally intended as a 2D release, which means it will be a major test of the conversion process. If average moviegoers are able to tell the different between being shot in 3D and being converted to 3D, then the trend could end quickly. The studio premiered 3D footage from Titans at ShoWest where it received a generally positive reaction.

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Source: The Daily Telegraph

According to director Jay Roach, Mike Myers is working on a fourth installment in the popular Austin Powers franchise. Roach, who directed the first three installments, is game for the fourth.

Roach says that the character will go "somewhere you haven't thought of" in the latest flick.

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It should come as no surprise that Myers would want to return to his most popular property after the critical and commercial failure of The Love Guru, which grossed a paltry $32.2 million domestically in the summer of 2008.

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Source: Variety

Another established property is headed for theaters again via 3D. Popeye will be adapted once again with the help of Sony, Avi Arad and possibly scribe Mike Jones, who is in negotiations to write the screenplay.

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Several old properties are being reinvigorated thanks to 3D. 2010 will see the see the release of Tron Legacy and Yogi Bear, while The Smurfs will hit theaters in 2011.

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PARK RIDGE, N.J. - Last week at ShoWest 2010, Sony Electronics announced it has entered into purchase agreements with Digital Cinema Implementation Partners, under which Sony Digital Cinema 4K projection systems will be deployed to both AMC Entertainment Inc. and Regal Entertainment Group theatres across the United States. AMC and Regal are the two largest theater chains in North America.

"We are pleased that AMC and Regal have recognized the benefits of Sony's 4K technology and we are now moving forward," said Gary Johns, vice president of Sony's Digital Cinema Systems Division. "AMC and Regal's commitment to Sony 4K will significantly accelerate the expansion of digital cinema, and also enable exhibitors to provide their customers with a more dynamic and immersive movie-going experience on a much broader scale."

Both AMC and Regal plan to install the Sony 4K systems across their circuits, creating the most extensive 4K deployment to date, with many of the screens planned to be outfitted for 3D using a combination of Sony and RealD 3D projection technology.

"We believe digital cinema enables the future for our industry, as it provides us versatility and delivers our guests a better entertainment experience," said Gerry Lopez, president and CEO of AMC. "Sony's 4K digital systems take the customer experience to the next level. We are proud to install their systems in our circuit."

"Regal Entertainment Group selected Sony 4K systems because they provide the highest resolution possible for a picture-perfect presentation," said Amy Miles, CEO of Regal Entertainment Group. "Regal is now poised to expedite our nationwide digital rollout of Sony 4K projectors and 3D technology. Regal continues to accelerate the expansion of RealD locations and our capacity for presenting 3D movies. Digital 3D movies have already proven to be a big hit at Regal's box offices. Patrons have enthusiastically responded to our Sony 4K projectors for a truly state-of-the-art experience."

Sony 4K projectors offer the highest image resolution of commercial cinema projection technologies in the market, producing 8.8 million pixels. 4K technology provides image resolution approximately four times greater than 2K projection systems and consumer high-definition televisions.

The digital projection systems deployed by DCIP will comply with the technical and security specifications developed by the Digital Cinema Initiatives, LLC. DCIP has executed long-term deployment agreements with Twentieth Century Fox, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Paramount Pictures, Universal Pictures, and Lionsgate Films.

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