Los Angeles, CA -- IMAX Corporation (NYSE:IMAX; TSX:IMX), and DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. (Nasdaq: DWA) today announced that the animated adventure Rise of the Guardians will be digitally re-mastered into the immersive IMAX® 3D format and released for a limited engagement in select IMAX® international and domestic theatres starting November 21, 2012.
DreamWorks Animation's Rise of the Guardians is an epic adventure that tells the story of Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, the Sandman and Jack Frost - legendary heroes, each with extraordinary abilities. When an evil spirit known as Pitch threatens to take over the world, the immortal Guardians must join forces to protect the hopes, beliefs and imagination of all children on earth.
Rise of the Guardians is directed by Peter Ramsey and produced by Christina Steinberg and Nancy Bernstein. It features the voices of Chris Pine, Alec Baldwin, Hugh Jackman, Isla Fisher and Jude Law. It is inspired by the highly-acclaimed children's book series by William Joyce, who, together with Guillermo del Toro, serves as Executive Producer. The film will be distributed worldwide by Paramount Pictures Corporation.
The IMAX release of Rise of the Guardians will be digitally re-mastered into the image and sound quality of The IMAX 3D Experience® with proprietary IMAX DMR® (Digital Re-mastering) technology. The crystal-clear images coupled with IMAX's customized theatre geometry and powerful digital audio create a unique environment that will make audiences feel as if they are in the movie.
Universal reports that The Bourne Legacy grabbed an impressive $11 million over the course of four days in China, making it the #1 film in the market.
The opening is huge for Bourne franchise, because it means the film has already surpassed the combined totals of all three previous Bourne films in China.
The Bourne Legacy's worldwide total is currently $251.5 million.
The official press release:
FOX INTERNATIONAL PRODUCTIONS (FIP), a division of 20th Century Fox Film Corporation, and BONA FILM GROUP LTD. (Nasdaq:BONA), one of China's largest motion picture producers and distributors, today announced a multi-picture deal in which the two companies will together produce Chinese language films.
Under the agreement, the two companies will develop, produce and distribute films throughout China.
"This is a significant step in what we believe will be a long-term, multi-faceted collaboration with News Corp. and its subsidiary companies," said Mr. Dong Yu, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Bona Film Group Limited. "The films released under this partnership will combine Bona's deep understanding of production, distribution and audience preferences in China with FIP's international expertise to create movies that satisfy audiences' growing demand for blockbuster characteristics. We look forward to the cooperation and anticipated opportunities with FIP."
The announcement follows an agreement forged earlier this year by which Bona secured a strategic investment from News Corporation (Nasdaq:NWS); (Nasdaq:NWSA); (ASX:NWS), (ASX:NWSLV), the parent company of 20th Century Fox Film. Under that investment agreement, News Corp. acquired a 19.9% equity stake in Bona directly from Mr. Yu, which enabled News Corp. to gain a strategic advantage in China's burgeoning film industry. The new partnership between Fox International Productions and Bona furthers that relationship and enhances Fox's position in China.
Sanford Panitch, President of Fox International Productions, stated: "We continue to be excited about the opportunities in the world's fastest growing market. Mr. Yu's vision for Bona combined with the company's stature as one of the leading distributors makes for great opportunities to co-produce and co-distribute Fox International Productions films in China."
Box office receipts in China increased nearly 30% in 2011 over 2010 to more than U.S. $2 billion, according to EntGroup, making China the world's third largest film market behind the United States and Japan. Industry growth is expected to accelerate even further over the next several years, moving China into the number two slot in worldwide box office revenue.
According to China'sState Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT), the gross box office for the first half of 2012 totaled RMB 8.1 billion ($1.3 billion), up 41.7% from the same period in 2011, when the box office gross was RMB 5.7 billion ($904.5 million). (USD 1 = RMB 6.3).
As of the end of June 2012, China had over 3,000 cinemas with nearly 11,000 screens (including over 7,000+ 3D-capable screens) nationwide. More than 1,600 screens were added during the first six months of the year, with an average of nine screens built each day.