IMAX, Discovery Communications Set Global Documentary Pact

Imax has cut a deal with Discovery Communications for global TV rights to the educational documentaries that the large-format exhibitor is producing through its Original Film Fund initiative.

Deal calls for Discovery to have an 18-month exclusive window for each title after the films are distributed via Imax’s institutional theater network serving museums, science centers and aquariums around the world. Imax’s goal with the fund is to produce educational films that “push the envelope of traditional documentary filmmaking for a new generation of moviegoers.”

Discovery will also consult on development, production and marketing of the films, which should be a good fit with the group’s focus on nature, science and historical docu fare.

“We are proud to come together (with Imax) to ensure these important documentary films are given, through Discovery’s unmatched global distribution platform, the expanded viewership they deserve,” said David Zaslav, president-CEO of Discovery Communications.

The deal marks Imax’s first TV distribution pact for original content. The worldwide reach of Discovery’s channels in more than 220 territories will be a brand boost for Imax as well.

“From content creation and capture to distribution and presentation, Imax is a diversified company involved in every aspect of the entertainment ecosystem,” said Imax CEO Richard Gelfond. “As today’s agreement shows, we will continue to invest in all parts of our business to drive long-term, sustainable growth and bring Imax to more and more consumers worldwide.”

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