×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Edwards drops Imax in rebranding

Circuit plans a January opening with rival system

Edwards Theaters Circuit is rebranding a half-dozen large-format screens formerly operated by Imax as Edwards Giant Screen Theaters, with plans to run Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” in January using a system to be installed by a still-unnamed Imax rival.

“We terminated the lease with Imax, and we will not be using Imax equipment,” Edwards spokesman Fred Bell said Thursday. “But we haven’t made a new selection.”

Alternate systems

Alternate large-format systems are marketed by Imax rivals including Iwerks, Advanced Image Systems, Megasystems and others.

Edwards has decided to go with an 8p70 format instead of an 15p70 format such as Imax and some others use. The circuit believes the format is more cost-efficient than 15p, Bell said.

The large-format screens are located in Irvine, Ontario, Valencia and Houston. The sites also will show conventional 35mm movies in addition to running large-format versions of conventional releases such as Disney’s “Beauty” and original large-format features.

Disney is releasing its tooner classic “Beauty and the Beast” for the first time in large format to giant-screen theaters nationwide in January. The re-release will feature new animated film sequences and an enhanced musical score including the song “Human Again.”

“We are thrilled to continue delivering high-quality family entertainment,” Edwards prexy Stephen Coffey said. “Edwards Giant Screen Theaters will allow our guests to experience first-run major studio films as well as exciting adventure fare, using the latest projection technology available.”

Edwards is in Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization. As part of those proceedings, the Newport Beach-based exhib recently won a judge’s approval to void its Imax leases at the six theaters ( Daily Variety, July 2).

Reorg plan OK’d

On Tuesday, creditors approved a reorg plan under which a group led by entertainment entrepreneur Philip Anschutz would buy a 51% in Edwards for $56 million (Daily Variety, Aug. 29). A confirmation hearing is set for U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Los Angeles on Sept. 19.

Imax has been struggling with its own business downturn. The financial crunch being felt by Edwards and most other mainstream exhibs has shaken investors’ confidence Imax can continue selling enough systems amid such difficult conditions.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Mickey Mouse waves to members of

    Spider-Man, Spicer and Splashy First-Looks: Everything We're Looking For at D23

    As if Disney hasn’t owned enough weekends this year at the box office, the biennial D23 Expo will light up Anaheim, Calif. over the next three days to celebrate the content monolith. From a new Netflix-competing streaming platform to scores of movie and series reveals — along with a few hot controversies to confront — [...]

  • Angel Has Fallen

    'Angel Has Fallen' to Dominate Modest Box Office With $20 Million Weekend

    Gerard Butler and Morgan Freeman are leading the way at the North American box office with “Angel Has Fallen” on its way to about $20 million, early estimates showed Friday. Should forecasts hold, “Angel Has Fallen” will take in about double the next title, Universal’s second weekend of raunchy comedy “Good Boys” with about $10 [...]

  • Aracne

    Sanfic Standout ‘Aracne’ Filmmakers Discuss the State of Chilean Genre

    A key project at this year’s Santiago Lab, the Santiago Intl. Film Festival industry forum for promising Latin American projects, Florencia Dupont’s “Aracne” is representative of a push from the next generation of Chilean filmmakers into genre cinema and the themes it can explore. “Aracne” turns on Beatriz, a young journalist at a small Santiago [...]

  • Eduardo Machuca

    Chile’s Eduardo Machuca Unveils Machuca Films Slate (EXCLUSIVE)

    SANTIAGO, Chile – Eduardo Machuca, the former film co-ordinator of Chile’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, has launched his own production company, Machuca Films. “After 25 years at the ministry, I felt I needed to tap my creative side,” said Machuca, who is also tying the knot on Saturday (Aug. 24) with a former Sanfic staffer, [...]

  • Robert Downey Jr. Disney Legends Ceremony,

    Robert Downey Jr. Reveals He Was Busted for Smoking Pot at Disneyland

    Robert Downey Jr. celebrated his Disney Legend status by sharing the endearing tale of how the first time he visited Disneyland, he was arrested. The Iron Man actor was being honored in Anaheim at Disney’s biennial D23 convention. After a brief introduction by Disney chief executive officer Bob Iger, Downey felt he had to come [...]

  • Thandie Newton Reminiscence

    Thandie Newton Reteams With 'Westworld's' Lisa Joy on 'Reminiscence' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Following her Emmy win for her performance on “Westworld,” Thandie Newton is joining the feature directorial debut of the show’s co-creator. Sources tell Variety that Newton is set to join Hugh Jackman and Rebecca Ferguson in Warner Bros.’ “Reminiscence,” directed by “Westworld’s” Lisa Joy. WB acquired the rights to the package after this year’s Berlin [...]

  • Ming-Na Wen poses at the Disney

    Original 'Mulan' Star Ming-Na Wen Weighs in on Remake's Controversy

    Ming-Na Wen, who played the leading voice role in the original 1998 version of “Mulan,” has spoken out about the recent controversy surrounding Disney’s forthcoming live-action remake, which has been co-opted by China’s authoritarian regime to attack Hong Kong protestors. “We are living in a world right now where there’s so much change and confusion [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content