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Tue 1 Mar 2005 04:00 AM

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Kuwait to get IMAX theatres

IMAX Corporation will be installing two IMAX MPX theatre systems at multiplexes in Kuwait City for Kuwait National Cinema Company (KNCC).

IMAX Corporation has signed an agreement with Kuwait National Cinema Company (KNCC), the largest commercial exhibitor in Kuwait, to install two IMAX MPX theatre systems at multiplexes in Kuwait City. The first, which is anticipated to open late this year and will be a retrofit of an existing stadium seating auditorium, will be one of the first multiplex-based IMAX theatres in the Middle East. The second is scheduled to be operational in 2007.

The agreement brings the total number of Imax theatres scheduled to be open in the Middle East by 2007 to nine, including new multiplex locations opening in Dubai and Doha. This is the third multi-theatre deal IMAX has announced in recent weeks, reflecting the strong interest IMAX is seeing from commercial exhibitors around the world.

“The compelling economics of the Imax MPX theatre system and the worldwide success of Imax DMR releases make this an ideal time to join the IMAX theatre network,” says Alan Hall, general manager, Kuwait National Cinema Company. “Adding IMAX theatres to our multiplexes will enable us to collect a premium price, offer the ultimate movie experience and further differentiate our sites from competitors.”

Both KNCC IMAX theatres will be capable of showing Hollywood films that have been converted into IMAX’s format using Imax DMR (Digital Re-mastering) technology, as well as original IMAX and IMAX 3D films. The IMAX MPX theatre system was specifically designed to make it more cost effective for commercial exhibitors to join the IMAX theatre network. The system enables a multiplex operator to more easily add an IMAX theatre to a development by retrofitting an existing stadium seating auditorium or via an economical new build.

“KNCC is recognised as a trend setter in the Middle East exhibition business, and we believe the multiplex-based IMAX theatres they will open will serve as a showcase for the whole region,” says Richard L Gelfond, co-chairperson of IMAX. “We're excited to be aligning with such a prominent commercial exhibitor to offer Kuwait's moviegoers a new way to experience Hollywood movies, and we feel it will maximize our visibility and growth opportunities in this developing market.”

IMAX businesses include the creation and delivery of cinematic presentations using proprietary Imax and Imax 3D technology. It has developed revolutionary technology called Imax DMR (Digital Re-mastering) that makes it possible for virtually any 35mm film to be transformed into the image and sound quality of the IMAX experience.

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