IMAX Corp. and Moscow-based Rising Star Media have signed a deal that will see the installation of Russia's first IMAX digital cinema. Rising Star is a joint venture between US exhibitor National Amusements and Soquel Ventures, the leisure investment group run by Paul Heth, credited with revitalizing the Russian cinema sector.

The new cinema will be in the KinoStar City multiplex at Mega Belyadacha, a shopping centre in the Russian capital. National Amusements operates nine IMAX cinemas, seven in the US, one in Argentina and one in St. Petersburg, which opened in 2007.

National Amusements president Shari Redstone, who also heads Rising Star, said in a statement. 'The IMAX theatre business has proven to be very effective for both Rising Star Media and National Amusements, and we are very excited to expand with more locations in Russia.' Heth said the digital system provides economical and logistical advantages that will allow Rising Star to open the new venue quickly and take advantage of the 2009 IMAX slate.

Among those titles are a re-release of The Dark Knight, Under The Sea 3-D, Watchmen, Star Trek, Monsters Vs. Aliens 3D, Night At The Museum: Battle Of The Smithsonian, Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen, Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince, James Cameron's Avatar and Walt Disney's A Christmas Carol.

National Amusements and Soquel are also partners in The Bridge: Cinema de Lux, a high-end cinema concept with locations in Los Angeles and Philadelphia, as well as in Monumental Pictures with US film Studio Sony Pictures Entertainment. Monumental was formed to produce and distribute Russian- language motion pictures for the Russian market.