China’s Hengdian To Build Five IMAX Theaters

Hengdian Entertainment has joined the growing band of exhibitors in China to build IMAX theaters.

Hengdian this week confirmed a five screen order with the giant screen company, and revealed that one would be opened in the Shanghai suburb of Fengxian. Others will be located in Hengdian’s other new build sites.

Other IMAX operators in China include Wanda, Jinyi, Shanghai Film Group and CJ-CGV.

“Over the next few years, we expect to build 500 cinemas with 3,500 screens as a part of our strategy to increase our dominance in China’s cinematic and cultural industries,” said Xu Tianfu, chairman, Hengdian Entertainment. The company is part of the Hengdian Group, which includes the colossal Hengdian studios situated a few hours drive from Shanghai.

Hengdian Entertainment has acquired 213 cinemas, totaling more than 1,300 screens. In the first ten months of this year they had gross revenue over RMB1.8 billion ($281 million) RMB, which it says ranks it 5th biggest among all cinema investment companies, and 8th among cinema chains in nationwide.

IMAX China, a subsidiary on IMAX Corp, listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange last month. It has a growing program of local-language Chinese films that will release in IMAX format and is building a DMR conversion facility in China to accelerate that further.

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