Dolby secures global 3-D deals

Europe, Asia and the Americas purchase screens

Dolby Labs has landed commitments for its 3-D systems on more than 350 screens in Europe, Asia and the Americas.

It expects most of those screens to be ready when Warner’s “Journey to the Center of the Earth” — aka “Journey 3-D” — and Belgian 3-D toon “Fly Me to the Moon” bow later this summer.

Dolby still trails far behind market leader Real D in installed screens and future commitments, but it is preferred by some exhibs, especially in Europe, because it does not require theaters to install an expensive silver screen in each 3-D auditorium, as the Real D system does.

Unlike Real D, which collects a royalty on 3-D ticket sales, Dolby sells its system outright, often to aggregators who install digital projection systems in theaters. As a result, Dolby cannot track exactly where its systems have been installed.

In another announcement made in conjunction with the Cinema Expo confab in Amsterdam, Dolby also unveiled a licensing program for d-cinema server manufacturers to support Dolby 3-D Digital Cinema playback.

Manufacturer XDC has already signed on for the program, which aims to let exhibitors put Dolby 3-D on their existing servers.

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