IMAX Corp and Tokyu Recreation, the owner of 109 Cinemas, one of Japan’s largest exhibition chains, on Thursday announced a joint venture agreement to install up to four IMAX theaters in Japan. The agreement marks IMAX’s second international joint venture deal, as the company aligns itself with top exhibitors worldwide with its new IMAX Digital theater system. To date, IMAX has signed contracts for more than 180 IMAX Digital theater systems, with approximately 50 expected to be installed by the end of 2008.
The announcement follows a record-setting movie event in Japan, where 25,000 people, the largest IMAX audience ever for a single screening, enjoyed the Japanese premiere of "Speed Racer: The IMAX Experience" on June 29 at Tokyo Dome. The venue was converted into a huge IMAX theater for the event.
Under the terms of the joint venture agreement, IMAX and Tokyu Recreation will share the cost and profitability of the new theaters. The first theater is scheduled to be installed at the 109 Cinemas Kawasaki in the city of Kawasaki in November of this year, followed by another in early 2009 at the 109 Cinemas in the city of Shobu. Each theater will be equipped with IMAX’s new digital projection system. The third and fourth systems are subject to mutual agreement on sites, projected rates of return and certain other factors.© Japan Today