ST. LOUIS & OMAHA, Nebraska -- Ballantyne Strong, Inc. (NYSE Amex: BTN), a provider of digital cinema projection equipment and services, cinema screens and other cinema products, today announced it will sell and install 144 NEC digital cinema projection systems, including GDC servers, to St. Louis-based Wehrenberg Theatres, the nation's oldest family-owned-and-operated cinema chain. Ballantyne expects to complete shipments and installations by mid-to-late November.
In addition to handling the remaining installations, Ballantyne's Strong Technical Services group is providing after-sale annual maintenance and 24/7 monitoring for all of the Midwestern exhibitor's 210 digital projection systems from its state-of-the-art Network Operations Center (NOC) located in Omaha, Nebraska at its corporate headquarters.
"The complete migration to digital cinema technology offers our guests perfect, crystal clear presentations and allows us to explore an array of alternative entertainment," said Ronald P. Krueger, Chairman and CEO of Wehrenberg Theatres. "We are proud to once again partner with Ballantyne Strong and NEC, who are playing an instrumental role in facilitating our chain's digital transformation."
Ballantyne Strong President and CEO Gary L. Cavey stated, "Wehrenberg has a rich, 105-year reputation as a leading family-owned operator in the cinema space, and we are delighted to offer them Ballantyne's turnkey digital cinema solution - from installations of cutting-edge NEC projectors through after-care maintenance and NOC services."
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COLUMBUS, Ga. -- Carmike Cinemas, Inc. (NASDAQ: CKEC), a leading DIGITAL cinema and 3D motion picture exhibitor, is announcing the October 20th unveiling of the "BigD" theater at Missoula's Carmike 10 to be renamed the Carmike 12 after the complex expansion and renovation to 12 auditoriums seating over 2,000 guests. "We're providing the ultimate entertainment experience that centerpieces large format Digital with bigger screens, bigger and better sound, and luxurious in-theater seating for cutting edge presentation and the definitive enjoyment of our audiences," notes David Passman, Carmike's President and CEO.
With the Missoula opening this area is one of the first in the nation to offer theater goers the exciting new "BigD" format recently launched by Carmike Cinemas, an industry leader in Digital projection and 3D technology since 2006. A special opening night of movies throughout the expanded complex will be presented on Thursday, October 20th at 7 PM benefiting the Missoula Food Bank and the Poverello Center and promoted by area radio and television stations. Admission to Thursday night's event will be only $5 and drinks, popcorn and candy will be $1 each with all proceeds going to benefit the two charities.
Named "BigD," the new auditorium will include a wall-to-wall screen measuring 62 feet wide and nearly three stories tall, the latest in 7.1 surround sound and Digital projection of both 2D and 3D features. In technical terms, Carmike's "BigD" DIGITAL experience is powered by a cutting edge Christie Brilliant 3-D flash projector. Images are projected onto a colossal wall-to-wall, ceiling-to-floor screen. The end result is a light output of 30,000 lumens, creating a picture quality with noticeably higher resolution than HD.
To further enhance the experience, the custom QSC DIGITAL audio system is tuned to a 7.1 speaker array with 16 channels and the ability to upgrade to 11.1, a revolution in surround sound technology with DIGITAL audio processing supported by quad-amplified, 4-way speakers and six 21-inch subwoofers. The new, expanded configuration at the Missoula Carmike 12 promises a new gold standard in unparalleled picture clarity and deep resonating DIGITAL sound.
The new environment will be further embellished by the comfort of plush leather high-back rocking seats placed for optimal viewing in a stadium seating configuration.
"The success of 3-D releases for features like ‘Avatar,' ‘Cars 2,' ‘Transformers Dark of the Moon,' and the record-breaking re-launch of ‘The Lion King in 3D,' proves that audiences are excited about and enjoy the new DIGITAL experience, and are demanding it," notes David Passman. "These early successes will no doubt persuade producers to release more movies in this format, and with the ‘BigD' experience - in either 3-D or 2-D DIGITAL - Carmike has the full capability to provide our audiences with the technology and total luxury that brings theatergoing to a new level."
Plans for the "BigD" Experience will include more locations by the end of 2011 including Chattanooga, TN, Minneapolis, MN, St. Clairsville, OH and Pottsgrove, PA. "Whether it is a movie, concert, sporting event, motivational speaker or church service, patrons will find ‘BigD' placing them at the heart of the event," notes Terrell Mayton, Carmike's Director of Marketing.