LOS ANGELES -- IMAX Corporation (NASDAQ:IMAX; TSX:IMX) and The Walt Disney Studios today announced a new agreement to release three additional 3D pictures to IMAX® theatres in 2011. The titles included are Mars Needs Moms, starring Seth Green and Joan Cusack, slated for release on March 11, 2011 and executive produced by Robert Zemeckis; Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, starring Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz, slated for release on May 20, 2011 and Cars 2, slated for release on June 24, 2011.

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New York, NY -- Screenvision, the leading innovator in cinema advertising, announced today a new exhibitor agreement with Santikos Theatres LLC, the largest family-owned theatre circuit in Texas. With this deal, Screenvision expands its presence in the key Houston and San Antonio markets.

Under the agreement, Screenvision will have exclusive selling and exhibition rights in the late pre-show and non-exclusive rights for promotions. The deal represents Santikos' first partnership with a cinema advertising company providing Late Preshow advertising.

Santikos currently operates eight theater locations and 106 screens in Houston (DMA #10) and San Antonio (DMA #37). In San Antonio, Santikos represents the majority of the market share in terms of total number of screens and box office revenue and operates the #1 (Palladium 19 IMAX) and #3 (Silverado 16) most attended theatres in the market. In Houston, the Silverado 19 IMAX is the 4th busiest theatre in the market in terms of box office revenue per screen.

"The deal with Santikos furthers our reach in key Southwest markets and further underscores the value top exhibitors see in our ability to maximize their revenue potential from cinema advertising and promotions," said Darryl Schaffer, Executive Vice President, Exhibitor Relations, Screenvision.

"We are committed to providing our guests with a superior cinematic experience on every level, and partnering with Screenvision on an enhanced national advertising program is in line with that mission" said Art Seago, Santikos Theatre COO.

Santikos Theatres are state of the art, with amenities such as dedicated VIP screens, IMAX screens, D_BOX motion seats and full service bars and restaurants, including two theatre locations that operate as cinema-eateries offering full service dining in each auditorium. During the 1st quarter of 2010, Santikos began installing Barco digital cinema equipment and XpanD 3D systems. The Silverado 19 IMAX in Houston, Palladium 19 IMAX, Silverado 16 and Embassy 14 in San Antonio has each been fully installed with digital projection equipment. Santikos plans to complete its digital cinema roll-out to all theatre locations by the end of 2010.

 

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CINEMA EXPO, Amsterdam -- GDC Technology ("GDC"), a world leading digital cinema solution provider, is pleased to announce that London's Altitude 360, an iconic venue for corporate and private events famed for its astonishing 360˚ views over the heart of London, has opted for GDC servers in its recent upgrading program. London-based Future Projections was chosen to carry out the project work which involved GDC‘s SA-2100A servers as well as Barco's DP1200 projectors.

Opened in September 2007 and situated high on the 29th floor of the Millbank Tower, Altitude quickly rose to fame and became the most sought-after venue in London for holding both corporate and private events. With a floor area of just under 15,000 sq ft and a capacity of 1,200 people, this chic and stylish event space boasts the latest IT technology and comes complete with a 350-seat state-of-the-art Digital Cinema, the Millbank Cinema and Media Centre. This world renown screening and dedicated presentation venue underwent a complete upgrading this year to get up-to-date with the latest 2D and 3D digital cinema technology in a bid to meet the increasingly sophisticated customer needs.

Since entering a strategic partnership in 2009, Future Projections and GDC have worked closely together on a number of projects in UK with the Altitude project being the one most recently completed. "The GDC server and Barco projector combination provides a perfect package that offers unrivalled advantages: superb reliability, low cost of ownership, and great functional flexibility," said Future Projections' Peter Hall. "This combination has worked well for a number of mixed corporate/D-cinema installations implemented by us and our clients were very impressed by the cost-effective solution we delivered that fully addressed their digital needs."

"It is indeed an unusual honor for us to work on a project with Altitude 360, the winner of Most Unusual Venue UK 2010," said Dr. Man-Nang CHONG, founder and CEO of GDC Technology. "This is yet another high profile venue secured under the GDC-Future Projections partnership and also another one joining our rapidly growing list of UK customers. We are encouraged by the market response in UK and feel optimistic to achieve the same as we expand into the European market."

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Source: THR's Heat Vision Blog

After what he hinted might be a permanent hiatus from non-Minimoys projects, Luc Besson is ready to take the reins once again, on an as-of-yet untitled love story he co-wrote with David Marconi (Enemy of the State).

Besson's last directorial effort, aside from further adaptations of the Minimoys book series (the first chapter was retitled Arthur and the Invisibles in the United States), was Angel-A in 2005, and he hasn't directed an English-language film since The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc in 1999. However, Besson remains one of the film industry's most prolific writer/producers, having created last year's smash-hit Taken and the Transporter series, among others.

According to insiders, Besson is in the process of locking down cast members for a September shoot in London and Paris. No word on when the film will be out, but it seems likely it will be finished for a 2011 release.

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Source: Empire

Animator and producer Don Hahn recently spoke up about two high profile projects: the conversion of Disney's animated smash The Lion King to 3D, and an update on the Roger Rabbit sequel.

On the latter subject, Hahn was tight-lipped, but when asked about director Robert Zemeckis' comments that a sequel was being written, Hahn replied, "Yeah, I couldn't possibly comment. I deny completely, but yeah...if you're a fan, pretty soon you're going to be very, very, very happy."

As for The Lion King, Hahn insisted the conversion process would be done right. "It's going to be spectacular - we will do a good job [and] the technology is tremendous." Hahn previously had a hand in the wildly successful conversions of Beauty and the Beast and Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas into 3D.

Zemeckis and original producer Steven Spielberg have talked on and off about a Roger Rabbit sequel for many years, but the project has yet to move past the development stage. The original won Richard Williams a Special Achievement Oscar for his work combining the live-action and animated characters, while also taking home the statues for Film Editing, Visual Effects, and Sound Effects Editing. In November, while promoting A Christmas Carol, Zemeckis assured fans that, despite his work in motion-capture CG animation, Roger would be animated using traditional techniques, should a sequel go forward.

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