London -- In what is the largest digital cinema deal to date in Spain, Arts Alliance Media (AAM) and Yelmo Cines have reached an agreement to digitise Yelmo's 31-strong chain of cinemas, in a move which is set to dramatically increase the number of digital and 3D screens in the country. The arrangement includes all the financing to procure the equipment, allowing the rollout to begin immediately.

Yelmo, Spain's leading local exhibitor, will install digital systems in 370 screens under this deal. In Phase One of the rollout, at least half of Yelmo's screens at each location will be converted to digital, with the remainder to be installed over the following months. Today's announcement follows the deals struck between AAM and Yelmo over the past two years under which several screens have already been installed. AAM has recently announced the opening of an office in Barcelona to represent AAM's business in the Spanish and Portuguese markets.

The installation and maintenance will be carried out by AAM in conjunction with local Spanish integrator Grupo Kelonik. All screens will be 3D capable and will receive AAM's Theatre Management System software and library management server. Sites will also be equipped with satellite receivers in cooperation with AAM's partner Arqiva for the receipt of digital prints and live events.

The rollout will be achieved with financing provided by AAM through a €50m investment from funds advised by Sankaty Advisors, LLC, the credit affiliate of Bain Capital, LLC, for digital cinema conversion, announced earlier this year. The deployment with Yelmo in Spain is AAM's seventh announced territory following deals in the UK (Cineworld and Reel), France (CGR), Italy (The Space), Holland (ABC), Denmark (Denmark Digital) and in Norway via its JV Nordic Digital Alliance.

Fernando Evole, CEO of Yelmo Cines, said "The results we have had from digital cinema over the last 2 years, particularly in terms of bringing 3D to customers and also in the opportunities brought to us from alternative content, have convinced us to digitise our entire circuit. Our experience with Arts Alliance Media has also proven to us that they are the right long term partner."

Howard Kiedaisch, CEO of Arts Alliance Media, commented, "Yelmo has been a leader in digital not only in Spain, but also in Europe and has always provided the best experience to their customers. We have enjoyed a great working relationship with Fernando and his team, and are thrilled to be selected to work with them going forward."

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Source: Reuters

Hollywood's major studios are reportedly ready to experiment with releasing films via "premium video on demand" as little as 30 to 60 days after they hit theaters. Consumers would pay $24.99 for a movie that has been released theatrically for 60 days and $50 for one that's been in theaters for 30 days. Sources tell Reuters that one studio may do a trial run as early as this fall.

The topic of release windows is a sensitive one. With underwhelming DVD/Blu-ray sales, studios are scrambling to find new ways to bring in revenue. Meanwhile, the exhibition industry remains healthy. 2010's domestic take is outpacing 2009's at the same point in the year, and 2009 ended up posting a record-setting $10.6 billion haul.

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LOS ANGELES -- Movie lovers will immerse themselves in the flavors of Italy, India and Indonesia - the countries author Liz Gilbert visits during her journey of self-discovery - with Gold Class Cinemas' exclusive event and menu offerings for the release of "Eat Pray Love." Beginning August 13, movie fans can transform their movie going experience with the Gold Class Cinemas "Eat Pray Love" menu and cooking demonstration.

On Wednesday, August 18, each Gold Class Cinemas location will feature a live cooking demonstration from the theatre's in-house chef for up to 40 guests starring flavorful treats from the regions of Italy, India and Indonesia. This special event also includes selection of either Pizza Margarita or Curried Chicken Salad from the "Eat Pray Love"-inspired menu, with Basil Fruit Salad for dessert.

"Like 'Eat Pray Love,' Gold Class Cinemas is all about escapism and fantastic life experiences," said Mark Mulcahy, vice president, marketing, Gold Class Cinemas. "Because food plays such an important part of both the movie, and a night at Gold Class Cinemas, we combined the two for the ultimate girls' night out."

Exclusive Flavorful Menu Items

During August, guests at Gold Class Cinemas can journey to each country through an amuse-bouche plate and select menu items, created by Gold Class Cinemas' top chefs. Each guest gets the opportunity to take their own exploration with the main character through each country. The Amuse Platter includes:

* Capresse Skewer inspired by Italy: Grape tomato, fresh mozzarella and basil drizzled with olive oil.
* Masala Chicken Salad inspired by India: Roasted chicken mixed with celery, onions, golden raisins, cilantro, and a tangy curried yogurt dressing, served with grilled flat bread.
* Bali Fruit Salad inspired by Indonesia: Diced mango, papaya, pineapple, banana, chiffanade of Thai basil and mint, and Tahitian vanilla syrup, garnished with coconut crisp.


The in-cinema menu includes the Basil Fruit Salad, along with Pizza Margarita, a hand-pulled pizza dough topped with tomato, fresh mozzarella and hand-torn basil, and the Curried Chicken Salad - a roasted chicken mixed with celery, onions, golden raisins, cilantro and a tangy curried yogurt dressing, served with dressed greens and grilled flat bread.

"Our exclusive Amuse Platter is a trio of tastes that envelopes our members with the passion, experience and ultimately love that is reflected in the movie," added Mulcahy. "Along with the appetizer offering, our special menu items like the Pizza Margarita and Masala Chicken Salad truly make movie-going the ultimate fan experience."

 

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BURBANK, Calif. -- The Walt Disney Company /quotes/comstock/13*!dis/quotes/nls/dis (DIS 35.65, +0.36, +1.02%) today reported earnings for its third fiscal quarter and nine months ended July 3, 2010. Diluted earnings per share (EPS) for the third quarter increased 31% to $0.67 from $0.51 in the prior-year quarter. For the nine month period, EPS increased 24% to $1.60 from $1.29 in the prior-year period. The quarter and nine month results were driven by growth at Media Networks and Studio Entertainment. Media Networks benefitted from earlier recognition of previously deferred revenue at ESPN.

"We're very pleased with our strong third quarter, in which we grew revenues substantially and improved profitability across the majority of our businesses," said President and Chief Executive Officer Robert A. Iger. "Our performance underscores the value of sticking to a smart strategy even in tough times, of investing in the right people, and of focusing relentlessly on quality and innovation to drive growth in shareholder value."

Studio Entertainment

Studio Entertainment revenues for the quarter increased 30% to $1.6 billion and segment operating income increased $135 million to $123 million. Higher operating income was primarily due to the strong worldwide performance of our key titles in theatrical markets and improvements in domestic home entertainment and worldwide television distribution.

Worldwide theatrical results reflected the strong performance of Toy Story 3, Alice in Wonderland, and Iron Man 2 in the current quarter, partially offset by higher film cost write-downs. The prior-year quarter included Up, Hannah Montana: The Movie and The Proposal.

The increase at domestic home entertainment was primarily due to a lower production cost amortization rate and lower distribution and marketing expenses resulting from cost reduction initiatives. Key releases included Alice in Wonderland in the current quarter versus Bedtime Stories, Bolt and Confessions Of a Shopaholic in the prior-year quarter.

The improvement at worldwide television distribution was driven by the timing of titles available in international markets.

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channingtatum.pngSource: Deadline.com

Channing Tatum will star in and produce an adaptation of Craig Clevenger's novel The Contortionist's Handbook, which follows a foreigner who lives on a specific set of rules to avoid dealing with his past.

Tatum is definitely on the rise these days. After the success of G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra and Dear John his drawing power has grown quite a bit. The young actor has The Eagle and Haywire due in early 2011.

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