BEIJING — RealD, a global licensor of 3D technologies, has signed up with Chinese cinema operator Shimao Investment to install RealD 3D technology on 100 cinema screens across the Shimao circuit in China.
The 100 screens are part of an initial deployment phase with an option to increase the number of RealD 3D installations, the group said in a statement.
Shimao expects to grow their circuit over the next five years to 60 theater locations totaling 500 screens, most of which are expected to incorporate RealD 3-D technology. This agreement brings the total number of cinema screens in China committed to RealD 3D technology to 1,000 with approximately 400 installations to-date.
“This is an exciting time for 3D in the burgeoning Chinese cinema market where some recent films have delivered up to 80% of their total box office from 3D showings,” Edman Chan, RealD’s g.m. of Greater China, said in a statement.
Last year China added 313 theaters and 1,533 screens for a total of just over 6,200 screens. Roughly three 450-seat theaters were being constructed every day, although three-quarters of Chinese cities still don’t have decent facilities. And the current number of screens translates into about one for every 200,000 people vs. one per 9,000 people in the U.S.