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RealD launches large format brand

Tech company launches LUXE, backed by studios, at CineEurope.

Cinema technology company RealD has launched LUXE, a 2D and 3D premium large format (PLF) brand.

“LUXE: A RealD Experience” auditoriums are expected to launch this winter beginning in Europe and will include the rebranding of existing PLF locations as well as new auditoriums upgraded to minimum technology specifications, which will include use of RealD 3D, floor-to-ceiling screens of at least 16 meters in width, 3D sound and auditorium rakes.

Bob Mayson, managing director of RealD Europe, told Screen that early adopt markets would likely include Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, South Africa, Bulgaria, Romania and the Balkans.

The new initiative, announced at CineEurope, is understood to have the support of all major US studios. Exhibitors known to be on board include Russia’s Karo Film and Arena Cinema in Bulgaria.

The new standard will be competing for audiences with existing large format brands including IMAX and exhibitor-own brands such as Vue Xtreme.

“Disparate premium large format brands have limited the potential of today’s high-end cinema offerings,” said Joseph Peixoto, president, worldwide cinema at RealD.

“With an alphabet soup of brands and differing amenities in each auditorium, moviegoers have been left unable to truly equate their PLF experience with a single offering.

“‘LUXE: A RealD Experience’ intends to solve this puzzle by unifying the exhibition community under one brand with one set of industry leading technology standards for an exceptional entertainment experience moviegoers will seek out for years to come.”

Mayson told Screen: “There are more than 50 PLF brands worldwide. We’re trying to unify those brands on the grounds that it’s easier to create awareness around one experience.

“We hope over time that our customers will try this standard, which we’ve been working on for almost a year now. All the US studios have said they will adopt it.”

Jeffrey Katzenberg, DreamWorks Animation CEO said: “We are wholly supportive of [RealD’s] new ‘LUXE: A RealD Experience’ premium large format brand.”  

Anthony Marcoly, president of Paramount Pictures International said: “With premium large format box office figures growing double digits year on year, it’s clear that a greater number of moviegoers are demanding a premium cinema experience.

“RealD’s new initiative delivers the ever increasing quality expected in the evolving PLF market for premium viewing of 2D and 3D content alike.”

Mayson added that while the technology within 3D glasses would remain the same, the company would also offer ‘premium glasses’. 

RealD did not discuss price-points, which it said would be determined by exhibitors.

The company recently shook up the 3D market by launching its Precision White screen, which it claims offers 40% more light.

Approximately 22,700 screens are currently equipped with RealD 3D technology by approximately 1,000 exhibitors in 68 countries.

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