Liege, Belgium—Dec 21, 2005
1st roll out phase completed, XDC increases major stake in European Digital Cinema. XDC financed digital cinema installations chalk up box office successes
XDC S.A., Europe’s leading digital cinema integration and service company, which
has financed and rolled out over 200 digital cinema screens over 9 countries
(Belgium, The Netherlands, Luxembourg, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Spain,
France and Sweden), in less than 6 months, announced today that the first roll
out phase is approaching completion as originally planned. Laurent Minguet, CEO
of XDC said, “Together with all our partners, we made it happen and I’m happy to
see the cinema community’s faith in the XDC concept and I’m confident that 2006
will be a very exciting time for digital cinema in Europe”.
XDC’s progress, since launching its initiative last year has been outstanding.
Over 200 cinemas have been equipped and their personnel trained to show digital
movies. Over 60 movies have been processed and distributed on behalf of most of
the major production companies around the world. These include Star Wars Episode
III – Revenge of the Sith, LucasFilm/20th Century Fox; Madagascar, DreamWorks
SKG/United International Pictures; Oliver Twist, Pathé; Frank Miller’s Sin City,
Miramax/Buena Vista International; The Island, DreamWorks/Warner Bros.; Flight
Plan, Touchstone/Buena Vista International; Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire,
Warner Bros; Polly Blue Eyes, Magnolia, MDR, Equinox/NFP; Merry Christmas/Joyeux
Noël (several producers); The Chronicles of Narnia – The Lion, The Witch and The
Wardrobe, Buena Vista International and Chicken Little, Buena Vista
International. “Whilst Sweden represents the highest number of digital screens
financed by XDC, in less than six months we have achieved remarkable market
presence in the German speaking areas (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) with more
than 50 screens, and growing daily. Many German exhibitors have reported
significant increases in box-office since installing their XDC financed
equipment and this against a considerable decline in box office in the country.
One southern German operator reported over 5,500 seats sold for the first week
and over 2,900 seats sold for the second week for the digital movie presentation
of Frank Miller’s Sin City,” said John Birchell Hughes, Business Development
Manager at XDC in charge of distributor relations for the region and with the
major Hollywood studios.
XDC has also being working hand in hand with equipment manufacturers and
industry organisations to achieve the highest levels of image quality and
security for digital cinema content. Recently, its server equipment was tested
rigorously in The Walt Disney Company’s™ laboratories and added to Disney’s list
of MXF Inter-op compliant servers. XDC supports industry interoperability
initiatives, and all its clients’ endeavours to fully embrace the
recommendations in the industry guidelines to digital cinema – the Digital
Cinema Initiatives (DCI) Digital Cinema Specification. Alone amongst European
systems integrators of this magnitude, XDC offers its partners a cost neutral
technology upgrade plan which insulates them from technological obsolescence.
For instance, “From the beginning of 2006 all XDC sites will be upgraded to
directly accept MXF packaged content”, said Bernard Collard, General Manager of
XDC. Regarding the mastering capabilities, today XDC can process MXF packages,
such as it successfully carried out for movies like Flight Plan, Chicken Little
and The Chronicles of Narnia – The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe.