Services aims to help exhibs convert to digital

Christie Digital Systems launched Wednesday its first sole virtual print fee program designed to assist North American exhibs convert theaters to digital.

Company’s program comes after Christie helped design and execute the original VPF in 2005 with Access Integrated Technology (now called Cinedigm). Christie’s program, sanctioned by all six major studios, will help exhibs install digital systems that are DCI compliant.

“We’re providing turn-key digital cinema packages from a hardware perspective,” Christie exec VP of entertainment solutions Craig Sholder told Variety. “We see this as a platform that we can continue to build upon to bring additional technology to further advance the moviegoing experience.”

Sholder said Christie is in discussions with various exhibs interested in using the VPF.

Christie’s Network Operations Center services operate more than 47,000 digital devices in approximately 1,800 domestic locations.

Independent exhibs make up between 10,000 and 15,000 screens in both the U.S. and Canada, according to Sholder. “The Christie VPF program is specially designed to help exhibitors convert in the simplest, most cost-effective and affordable way possible,” he said.

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