Norwegian cinema association set to start digital conversion of theatres in the late spring.

Film & Kino, the Norwegian cinema association, is poised to start the digital conversion of the country’s theatres after appointing Unique Cinema Systems to carry most of the work.

Unique, one of Europe’s largest suppliers of screen technology, appointed beat nine other companies to win the work. It follows a public tender.

The digital conversion will begin in late April or early May and will include the main cinema in Oslo, Bergen and Trondheim. Digital cinema servicer prodvider Nordic Digital Alliance handle the digitisation in modernise the screens in west region of Norway.

The world’s first non-commercial complete national digital roll out, which will be completed before the end of 2011, will cost a total of $65.5m (NOK 390m). Film & Kino cheif executive Roar Svartberg (pictured) said: ”So far we are on schedule.”.

The investment will be shared by the theatres, distributors and Film & Kino, which last year signed a vpf (virtual print fee) agreement with five Hollywood studios to contribute to the financing.