IMAX: Coming to a home near you

Updated: 2013-10-30 07:55

By WANG JUN in Los Angeles (China Daily USA)

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 IMAX: Coming to a home near you

Li Dongsheng (left) and Richard Gelfond shake hands after agreement signing. Provided to China Daily

IMAX Corporation and TCL Multimedia, one of China’s leading entertainment technology manufacturers, announced a new a joint venture to design, develop and manufacture a premium home theater system. The announcement was made on Oct 29 at IMAX headquarters in Santa Monica.

The companies plan to launch the new system in China and other select markets in early 2015, before introducing it to the US market.

"As content viewing in the home is constantly improving, we wanted to stake out an entirely new position in the premium home theater market," said TCL chairman and CEO Li Dongsheng, "There is no company better-equipped and more knowledgeable than IMAX to deliver that premium experience. Together, we plan to leverage the complimentary assets of our companies to create a high-quality, end-to-end home theater solution."

The new system, which follows the recent launch of the IMAX Private Theater, will incorporate components of IMAX's projection and sound technology adapted for a broader home environment. Viewers will be able to access current theatrical releases that have been digitally re-mastered into the IMAX format, according to IMAX.

The joint venture will initially operate in Hong Kong and China and include research and development, sales, marketing and manufacturing. Current theatrical content will be delivered through the PRIMA Cinema system — a San Diego company that allows subscribers to watch new releases in home theaters. IMAX purchased a 20 percent stake in PRIMA the day before they signed the joint venture with TCL.

"Our recent introduction of the cinema-grade IMAX Private Theater, the partnership with PRIMA and, now, our groundbreaking joint venture with TCL, are all part of our carefully designed effort to expand the IMAX experience to additional platforms," said IMAX CEO Richard Gelfond.

"As one of the fastest-growing and most innovative players in the global entertainment technology marketplace, with a strong expertise in display and manufacturing, TCL is an ideal partner to help us change the way people around the world experience their favorite content in the home environment," Gelfond said.