U.K. exhibs signs up with Real D

U.K. exhib Cineworld has inked a deal with 3-D specialist Real D to roll out 3-D projection on the loop’s digital screens.

Real D will initially outfit 30 of Cineworld’s 72 digital screens with its 3-D projection system in preparation for the Nov. 16 release of Robert Zemeckis’ “Beowulf.”

Cineworld claims to have the largest portfolio of digital screens of all U.K. exhibs. Agreement will see Cineworld continue to add Real D systems to screens as the exhib group finalizes its negotiations with studios over the business terms of digital deployment.

“We could see as many as 100 Real D screens once our digital platform is in place,” said Cineworld CEO Steve Wiener. “The impact of 3-D on the film industry can be compared to the move from black and white to color.”

U.S. studios are embracing digital 3-D technology. DreamWorks Animation topper Jeffrey Katzenberg announced that the studio intends to release all its toons in 3-D in the future, beginning with 2009’s “Monsters and Aliens.”

Paramount, New Line, Disney, Sony, Warner and Fox all have major 3-D projects in the works in formats that include motion capture (“Beowulf”) and live action (James Cameron’s “Avatar”).

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