Digital cinema market share leader Barco and China Film Group (CFG) announce the installation of Asia’s first multi-screen, panoramic Barco Escape movie theater at the Changping AEON Cineplex in Beijing, China, one of the largest box offices in CFG cinema. A second Barco Escape theater will open at CFG’s United square Cineplex in Shanghai this December.
The format debuts to audiences in China this month with 20th Century Fox’s MAZE RUNNER: THE SCORCH TRIALS film, which premiered #1 at China’s box office.
“We’re honored to partner with China Film Group to install Asia’s first Barco Escape theaters, further signifying the format’s ongoing momentum and global expansion since its 2014 launch,” explains Todd Hoddick, CEO of Barco Escape. “CFG is a leader in the movie industry and we’re excited to strengthen our longstanding relationship with them by bringing this immersive new cinema experience to audiences in China.”
“As a long-term Barco partner, we are pleased to be the first to install Barco Escape in China,” comments Zhang Yanqin, General Manager of the Beijing division of China Film Group cinema. “As one of our most popular locations, the Changping AEON Cineplex is the perfect place to introduce moviegoers to this brand new experience our customers can only get by coming to the theater.”
After debuting to positive reviews from audiences in fall 2014 with 20th Century Fox’s THE MAZE RUNNER, Barco Escape announced a five-year, multi-title per year agreement with the movie studio to release more films in Barco Escape.
“We started working with Barco on this technology because we believe immersive experiences are the future of cinema,” says Chris Aronson, President of Domestic Distribution at 20th Century Fox. “Now that Barco has upgraded its Barco Escape systems to be fully DCI compliant, we are further interested in finding tent pole movies for the format that will inspire audiences to leave their homes and go to the theater to share in this unique experience.”
Hollywood producer Jerry Bruckheimer also signed on to use the technology on a new, upcoming project, along with re-envisioning a classic Bruckheimer film in the format. Since its initial launch last year, Barco Escape expanded its footprint to more than 20 theaters in the U.S., Europe, Mexico and now China for MAZE RUNNER: THE SCORCH TRIAL’s release, with plans for more than 150 theaters globally in 2016.
Barco will discuss the format’s newest technology upgrades, which include full DCI compliance to preserve premium content standards, optimal side screen angles, and a turnkey installation process for exhibitors, at CineAsia on December 8-10.