SHOWEAST—Oct 28, 2009
Industry Aligns to Fund Film 3D Rollout to Exhibitors
Technicolor, Deluxe, Eastman Kodak and Fujifilm Create Silver Screen Fund
Thomson (Euronext Paris: 18453; NYSE: TMS), through its Technicolor Business Group, has aligned with entertainment industry leaders Deluxe Entertainment Services Group, Eastman Kodak Company, and Fujifilm to provide financial assistance to exhibitors seeking an immediate 3D solution. The Silver Screen Fund defers costs associated with the purchase and installation of silver screens by providing financial assistance to exhibitors who deploy the Technicolor 3D solution. The fund will be managed by Technicolor, which last week announced broad studio support for the Technicolor 3D solution.
The Silver Screen Fund will finance up to 500 silver screens to be installed at theatres in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. Funding is available immediately for qualified exhibitors. When exhibitors complete the terms of the Silver Screen Fund agreement, they will own the silver screen, a necessary component for future digital 3D projection.
“Technicolor is committed to delivering high-quality, affordable 3D solutions, and the creation of the Silver Screen Fund accelerates our promise to our exhibition partners by helping them defer upfront costs associated with the purchase and installation of silver screens,” said Lanny Raimondo, head of Technicolor. “Thanks to overwhelming studio and industry support, we expect to sign up these first 500 screens in the coming weeks, keeping us on track to reach our target of more than 1,000 Technicolor 3D screens by mid-2010.”
“Deluxe is proud to have a long history of supporting our customers by providing whatever format they choose for their content. This technology bridge for 3D exhibition is a cost effective way to help our customers maximize their theatrical release schedules,” said Cyril Drabinsky, President and CEO of Deluxe.
“Right now, there are not enough 3D screens to accommodate major releases and the screen shortage becomes compounded when you consider issues of overlapping 3D releases,” said Kim Snyder, President, Entertainment Imaging, and Vice President, Eastman Kodak Company. “The industry desperately needs additional screens to satisfy demands by studios and movie fans, who consistently vote for 3D with their box-office dollar. The Silver Screen Fund levels the playing field so all exhibitors can realize the benefits of 3D presentations.”
“With the Digital 3D roll-out slowed significantly by the economy, and because of the prohibitive cost associated with digital cinema conversion, we believe Technicolor’s film-based 3D innovation is the right solution,” said Graeme Parcher, Group Vice President, FUJIFILM North American Motion Picture Group. “We are excited to partner with our industry colleagues to introduce this significant advance in film 3D technology.”
Technicolor 3D Motion Picture Support
Multiple major motion picture studios are supporting the Technicolor 3D solution. DreamWorks Animation, Lionsgate, Paramount, Overture, Universal Pictures, Warner Bros., and The Weinstein Company are working with Technicolor to deliver content for presentation in Technicolor 3D.
Seventeen 3D titles have already been announced for 2010 release, with more expected from several distributors. The studios noted above account for the majority of these titles, including How to Train Your Dragon, Piranha 3D, Shrek Forever After, Despicable Me, Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore, Friday the 13th: Part 2; Guardians of Ga’Hoole, Alpha and Omega, Burst, Oobermind, and Yogi Bear.
How the Technicolor 3D Solution Works
The Technicolor 3D Solution employs a propriety “production to projection” system that leverages 35mm (or film) projectors already in use by the majority of U.S. and international theatres today to deliver high-quality 3D content to moviegoers. A patent-pending lens system assembles the left and right eye images as the film runs through the projector and delivers a 3D ready image onto a silver screen. The solution works with circular polarized glasses—identical to the ones used for existing digital 3D cinema—to “translate” the film’s content into an image that is perceived by the viewer as being three dimensional. The silver screen can be used for the projection of both Technicolor 3D as well as digital 3D content. The Technicolor 3D Solution can be installed nearly immediately. No build-out or significant modifications of the projection booth are required.