China’s first all-THX certified multiplex cinema has opened across the border from Macau, in Zhuhai. The 10-screen complex, the Zhuhai Haiyun China Film Cinema, is a joint venture with state-backed China Film Group.
THX was founded by filmmaker George Lucas. Although not an equipment manufacturer, the company develops and licenses technologies and specifications for audio and video applications. It opened an office in Beijing in August in 2014.
Inspectors say that they focused on auditorium architecture, acoustics, audio and video equipment calibration, and speaker configuration. Re-certification will take place on a yearly basis.
“As the film industry in China continues to grow, so does our responsibility to provide audiences with the very best cinema experience around the world,” said Min-Liang Tan, CEO of THX.
After a building boom, China now has over 40,000 cinema screens. That puts it on a level with North America. Theatrical box office is catching up, too, making China the world’s second-largest cinema market.
“The feverish pace of construction has outpaced the education of cinema design, installation and maintenance professionals – often resulting in poor architectural and acoustic design as well as under-performing audio and video systems,” said THX in 2015, when it established a pact with the Film Technology and Quality Inspection Center, a unit of the media regulator State Administration for Press Publication Radio Film & Television (SAPPRFT).