cinemacon.pngWASHINGTON D.C. (March 20, 2015) -Baltasar Kormákur will be honored with a special "International Filmmaker of the Year" Award, as part of CinemaCon's International Day, it was announced today by Mitch Neuhauser, Managing Director of CinemaCon. CinemaCon, the official convention of The National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO), will be held April 20 - 23, 2015, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. Kormákur will receive his special honor during International Day festivities, to take place on Monday, April 20, 2015.

"Since making his directorial debut Baltasar Kormákur has entertained global audiences, with his thrillingly intense movie making abilities," noted Neuhauser. "His action-packed films keep moviegoers at the edge of their seat and ‘Everest' is sure to leave audiences riveted to the screen in anticipation of what will happen next. We couldn't be more excited to honor him as CinemaCon's 2015 International Filmmaker of the Year."

Kormákur is currently in post-production on "Everest," which he direct and produces, starring Josh Brolin, Jason Clarke, John Hawke, Jake Gyllenhaal, Robin Wright and Keira Knightly which will be released in U.S. theatres on September 18, 2015 by Universal Pictures. Inspired by the incredible events surrounding a treacherous attempt to reach the summit of the world's highest mountain, "Everest" documents the awe-inspiring journey of two different expeditions challenged beyond their limits by one of the fiercest snowstorms ever encountered by mankind. Their mettle tested by the harshest of elements found on the planet, the climbers face nearly impossible obstacles as a lifelong obsession becomes a breathtaking struggle for survival.

In addition to ‘Everest' Kormákur is also currently in development of "Viking," a big budget action adventure inspired by Iceland's epic Sagas, "Cascade," an eco-disaster film, and an untitled production of a crime thriller based on the events that inspired the Filipino Film "On the Job." He is in post-production on an Icelandic serialized crime drama called "Trapped."

Born in Iceland, Kormákur graduated as an actor from Iceland's National Academy of Fine Arts in 1990. He was immediately signed on by the National Theatre of Iceland, where he worked as one of the leading young performing artists until 1997. During the last two years of his assignment he also directed several ambitious works, after having produced and directed highly popular, independent stage productions alongside his projects with the National Theatre. In 2000, he wrote, directed, acted in and produced the feature film "101 Reykjavik," which became an international hit and earned the Discovery Award at the Toronto International Film Festival. After the success of "101 Reykjavik," Kormákur formed Blueeyes Productions (now RVK Studios) and since then has maintained his focus on feature film writing, producing, and directing. Kormákur has directed several feature films in the US including "Contraband," and "2 Guns" which both opened in first place at U.S. Box Offices. His films "The Sea," "A Little Trip To Heaven," "Jar City," and "White Night Wedding" have all been very successful in Iceland, and won numerous international awards.

About CinemaCon

CinemaCon will attract upwards of 5,000 motion picture professionals from all facets of the industry -from exhibition and distribution, to the equipment and concession areas - all on hand to celebrate the movie-going experience and the cinema industry. From exclusive Hollywood product presentations highlighting a slate of upcoming films, to must-see premiere feature screenings, to the biggest stars, producers and directors, CinemaCon will help jumpstart the excitement and buzz that surrounds the summer season at the box office.

CinemaCon is delighted to have both the International Cinema Technology Association (ICTA) and National Association of Concessionaires (NAC) as its tradeshow partners. CinemaCon is also delighted to have as its official presenting sponsor The Coca-Cola Company, one of the industry's greatest, highly regarded and respected partners in the world of the movies.
About NATO

The National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) is the largest exhibition trade organization in the world, representing more than 32,000 movie screens in all 50 states, and additional cinemas in 81 countries worldwide. NATO's membership includes the largest cinema chains in the world and hundreds of independent theatre owners, too.

Additional information on CinemaCon can be found at www.cinemacon.com.

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motiontechnology-25years.pngToday, Motion Technology, Inc., leader in high-performance ventless kitchen solutions, announced spring of 2015 marks the company's 25th year of meeting and exceeding customer requirements in an increasingly diverse and technologically challenging industry.

Twenty-five years ago, the AutoFry model FFG-10 was developed and sold as the first of its kind, fully enclosed, fully automated, ventless deep frying system. The initial AutoFry model was a single basket deep fryer that showed the industry costly kitchen renovations and hood installation were no longer necessary to produce high quality fried foods.

Over the last two decades, multiple upgrades to the AutoFry have resulted in the safest and most reliable piece of ventless fryer equipment available. In 2007 SimplifryTM logic was added to AutoFry, a time and temperature compensation technology, providing a more consistent product output to customers. Additional fryer sizes have also been added to the Motion Technology lineup, giving users frying options to meet any operation and kitchen size.

As further commitment to the ventless kitchen theme, Motion Technology introduced the AirMaster oven in 1998, a high-speed oven built to cut cook time without the use of microwaves. Since then, the oven has gone through a series of upgrades and resizing to become the MultiChef high-speed oven that customers know and love today.

"Motion Technology's 25th anniversary is a huge milestone for the company," said Bill McMahon, president of Motion Technology. "Over the past 25 years, we've introduced the food service world to remarkable innovation with the AutoFry ventless fryer and the MultiChef high-speed oven. We've always looked for better ways to manufacture our product and produce long lasting food service equipment and this has led to major improvements on our equipment along the way.

"I am immensely proud to be leading a team of people who strive for excellence every day and relentlessly work to build and sell the best equipment in the world and deliver incredible service to our customers. We are poised for a strong 2015 with new product innovation and look forward to what the next 25 years will bring to the company."

As part of the 25th anniversary celebration, Motion Technology is launching a 25 day anniversary sale. All filters and cleaners will be sold at 25% off through the AutoFry Webstore, using promo code 25ANV. This discount will provide customers the opportunity to stock up on maintenance items that will help to extend the life of their machines for the next 25 years.

About Motion Technology, Inc.
Motion Technology, Inc., a Northborough, MA based company, manufactures and sells ventless kitchen equipment solutions to the food service industry. Since 1990, Motion Technology has consistently provided the best equipment and dedicated technical service and support to customers from small mom and pop shops to large campuses and theaters alike. For more information on Motion Technology, Inc., please call 800-348-2976 or visit www.MTIproducts.com .

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by Patrick Corcoran

Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing.
-Oscar Wilde

A disappointing summer movie season we thought was safely in the rearview mirror popped up again in January with the release of a Price Waterhouse Coopers report on moviegoers' attitudes toward the moviegoing experience. The 28-page report covered a lot of ground but, inevitably, the report focused on one thing: the cost of movie tickets.

One of the most interesting findings was that although moviegoing was off by roughly 15 percent last summer, the moviegoers surveyed perceived that they had gone to movies at the same rate as they had the previous year. Nearly half said they had gone the same number of times, while more than a quarter said they had attended more often. A quarter said they had gone fewer times. Further, 81 percent said they had seen at least one of the summer blockbusters in a movie theater, while 49 percent saw at least one at home. Unsurprisingly, moviegoing frequency is highest among young adults, with interest declining among older demographics.

While ticket prices got the lion's share of attention in the media, with Time gleefully announcing that "Fewer People Are Going to the Movies Because Ticket Prices Are Just Too High," the reality of what consumers were telling PwC was a bit more complex. Fifty-three percent of those responding selected "Ticket price is too high" when asked the question, "If less or about the same, which of the following best represents the reason for going to the movie theater less often?" Keep in mind that this is a group that overall estimated they went to the movies the same number of times as the previous year. These are not people who are avoiding the cinema because the price is too high.

The next most frequent response to the question was, "Movie genre/themes/titles not as interesting to me." These two reasons are, quite frankly, linked. Price is a raw number and does not really reflect what people are responding to when they answer these surveys. The real question at hand is value. Unlike almost any other consumer proposition, moviegoers recalibrate the value of going to the movie theater every time they think about going. The question in our guests' minds is not "Is going to the movie theater worth it?"-it clearly is, as the respondents in this survey go a bit more often than average. The question is, "Is going to see this movie worth it?"

This becomes a bit clearer when we look at a couple of other data points. The No. 1 response, at 75 percent, to the question "How influential to your decision process about whether or not to see a movie at the theater are the following factors?" was, "Depends on what's playing and if I'm interested in the genre/type." Second, and interestingly, only 23 percent said better movies would motivate them to go more often. Clearly, moviegoers base their moviegoing decisions on whether they are interested in the movies that are playing and are, broadly speaking, satisfied with what they are seeing.

This is not to say that price is not a factor. Respondents say that last-minute cheaper pricing on seats (53 percent) and $20 all-you-can-watch subscriptions (87 percent) would encourage them to see more movies. The most frequent moviegoers, unsurprisingly, are most interested in subscriptions. At that price, who wouldn't be?

Indeed, price comes quite strongly into view when respondents are asked to consider home options. Eighty-two percent are willing to pay a premium of between $10 and $20 to watch movies at home at the same time they are released in theaters. Interest falls off steeply at a higher premium. This is consistent with what theater owners have warned are the pricing traps of so-called "premium" home releases in a short window. Beside the enormous gap of potential profitability represented by that $10-$20 range, that number falls short of what distributors thought they could get at 60 days ($30) or at three weeks ($60). And that's the opening bid.

There is also a hint in this report of the effect that shrinking windows are having on the perception of price across the board. Just as moviegoers calibrate their sense of value based on their interest in the movies that are offered in theaters, so, too, do they adjust that sense on how long they think they'll have to wait to see the movie at home. Right behind price and interest in the movie as reasons why they might go to the movies less often is "Prefer to watch movies on my own schedule" at 30 percent and "Can see movies at home (on demand) shortly after they are released in the theater" at 24 percent.

Keep in mind that these perceptions of pricing come as, on average, ticket prices have increased a modest 3.5 percent since 2010 to $8.17 in 2014. That includes 3D, luxury cinemas, premium large-format screens and theaters offering seat-side food and beverage service. The average is up 8.9 percent since 2009, reflecting the large-scale introduction of 3D in 2010, and is still below the rate of inflation.

Although recent eye-popping attendance gains after reseating older theaters suggest otherwise, in-theater improvements like better seats, better presentation technologies, and the like stir only incremental interest in the respondents' minds as ways to increase their moviegoing. Better, of course, is a rather amorphous idea. How much better is the determining factor and a difficult one to imagine as a motivating factor unless one actually experiences it. It is also a truism that consumers rapidly accommodate improvements, and the improved experience becomes the new minimum expectation. The experience is good, is getting better, and has to keep getting better.

The summer that this report aims to explain is more easily explained by a simple lack of movies in the marketplace that would induce customers to part with their hard-earned dollars. In the record-breaking summer of 2013, there were 22 $100-million-plus budgeted releases. In the less-than-stellar summer of 2014, there were 12. With a 45 percent decrease in inventory, a 15 percent decrease in attendance isn't a disappointment; it's a miracle.

More movies mean more patrons, pure and simple. For movies that played on at least 1,000 screens in 2004, 24 movies (including those that continued in release in the subsequent year, grossed more than $100 million and accounted for 704 million admissions. In 2014, 33 movies grossed more than $100 million and accounted for 770 million admissions (that's down by two movies and 43 million admissions from 2013). The studios' tentpole strategy is working.

However, the movies that aren't in movie theaters tell the tale. In 2004, 41 movies grossed between $50 and $100 million and tallied 444 million admissions; in 2014, 33 movies in that grossing range accounted for 272 million admissions. For under-$50-million grossers in wide release, 15 fewer movies brought in 83 million fewer admissions in 2014 than a decade earlier.

The movies that are in the marketplace are attracting customers. We just don't have enough of them.

And the remarkable box office of the first five weeks of the year shows just how anomalous the past summer was. Without a marked change in pricing, without a fundamentally different movie theater experience from half a year ago, box office is booming. Through February 8, box office is up 6.5 percent over the same period last year-which was up 11 percent over the same period in 2013. In fact, box office is on pace with 2010 when Avatar was demolishing box office records.

What has changed? The movies. And the audience thinks they're worth the price.

 

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cinderellarunallnight.jpgDisney reports that Cinderella earned $4.57 million on Wednesday, bringing its six-day domestic total to a strong $83.1 million. The flick is currently pacing 6 percent behind where Maleficent stood through the same point, although that film had the advantage of 3D surcharges and summer weekday business.

Run All Night took in $0.82 million yesterday, giving it a sum of $13.85 million through six days. The latest Liam Neeson thriller is pacing 13 percent behind A Walk Among the Tombstones.

Moving back up to third place, Kingsman: The Secret Service eased 12 percent from last Wednesday to $0.65 million. The hit graphic novel adaptation has amassed $109.4 million domestically up to this point.

The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel claimed fourth place with $0.648 million on Wednesday. The sequel's 13-day tally stands at a healthy $20.03 million.

Meanwhile, CHAPPiE added $0.57 million yesterday as it fell 41 percent from the same day last week. Neill Blomkamp's latest has taken in an underwhelming $25.15 million through 13 days.

 

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insurgent.pngLOS ANGELES - March 19, 2015 - The highly-anticipated "The Divergent Series: Insurgent," opening tonight at theaters across the country, is dauntlessly leaping to the top of Fandango's Fanticipation movie buzz indicator with a powerful 89 out of 100 points. "Insurgent" reigns supreme over all other new movie releases, representing more than 85% of Fandango's weekend ticket sales.

"The ‘Divergent' series has some of the most fervent fans of any film franchise," notes Fandango Chief Correspondent Dave Karger. "The appeal of ‘Insurgent' is the deeper relationship between main characters Tris and Four, played by Shailene Woodley and Theo James, resulting in a movie that's even more exciting and emotional than its predecessor."

According to a survey of more than a thousand "The Divergent Series: Insurgent" ticket-buyers on Fandango:
84% are Shailene Woodley fans;

67% picked Theo James as the supporting actor they are most excited to see in "Insurgent;"

62% have read all three "Divergent" books by Veronica Roth.


Karger interviewed "Insurgent"' stars Shailene Woodley and Theo James for this week's episode of the movie recommendation show, "Weekend Ticket." The full episode can be seen at http://www.fandango.com/weekendticket.

About Fandango's Fanticipation
Known for having its finger on the pulse of moviegoers, Fandango's movie buzz indicator, Fanticipation, provides statistical insight into the movies fans are planning to see in a given weekend. Fanticipation scores (based on a 1 to 100-point scale) are calculated via an algorithm of Fandango's advance ticket sales, website and mobile traffic, and social media engagement. Fanticipation is not intended as a forecast of the weekend box office; it is a snapshot of movie fan sentiment.

 

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