Category Archives: Miscellaneous

CJ@CineAsia CineAsia Universty – Architecture

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In an effort to provide updates on the CineAsia 2014 conference and trade show presently taking place in Hong Kong SAR, this post was written live, and in the present tense, during one of the conference’s presentations. Comments attributed to speaker(s) are paraphrased unless denoted specifically by quotation marks.

Mike Cummings, Principal, TK Architects

Mike opens by saying thanks CineAsia for including architecture in CineAsia university. “How do we continue to raise the level of cinema going experience?” he asks. “By using set design principles. There is a comfort sitting in the home,” so there is a challenge to get people to leave their couch. “As Jim Cameron said he doesn’t care if people watch his films third or fourt time on a smartphone, but first time should be in the theatre,” Mike observes.

Set design – what designers can do to enhance the experince. Make the lobby a key component of the experience. Make the lobby part of the show.

Style and atmosphere is one aspect – realistic, minimalist, traditionalist, luxurious, classic or contemporary.
Tone is another, colour, shape, rythm of visual elements.
Theme – favourite one for architects. Use central metaphore, such as ‘digital glamour’ and another is ‘luxury inside’ – probe deeper to find true beauty.
Visual Cues – [this presentation should really be seen with the great pictures Mike is using to illustrate each point.]
Seating groupings (better yet, ‘activity groupings’) – Think of different places and how people congregate.
Interactivity is the last principle – a whole group of consumers will not be happy with passively watching a film for two hours. So how to cater to them.

“Bringing it all together – with also music, sounds, props you can create a whole new kind of movie experience. Thank you.”

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CJ@CineAsia CineAsia University – Lasers

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In an effort to provide updates on the CineAsia 2014 conference and trade show presently taking place in Hong Kong SAR, this post was written live, and in the present tense, during one of the conference’s presentations. Comments attributed to speaker(s) are paraphrased unless denoted specifically by quotation marks.

Bill Beck, The Laser Guy, Barco

Having confirmed that his business title really is ‘The Laser Guy’ Bill begins, “today I’m going to explain ‘why’ Barco laser.” Mentions the press release yesterday with the milestone of 50,000 Barco screens and Barco also market share leader in laser cinema.

From components to integration.
- First high brightness laser projector 2005,
- First and only cinema-optimised laser projector,
- First and only Integrated cinema media processor 4K3D at 60fps,
- First commercial integrated 6P laser projector.

Also award winner – Lumiere 3D AIS Award and BIRTV 2014 Grand prize.

“Most important point: no lamps. Will save the cost of 120 lamp changes. Super bright at 60,000 lumens. 6 Primary Barco Laser3D that works with all major 3D systems. Also integrates Barco Alchemy cinema processor. We call it integrated because light source is inside projector. Most safe and highest efficiency because the projectors are directly combined. Engineered and testedfor 30,000 hours. 63% more energy efficient than Xenon projector.”

Inside it is 6 Primary Laer3D sets – two each of red, green and blue. Bright, smooth and beatiful colour picture. Works with silver, matt, screen and active or passive 3D glasses. “Clean & Green” is the motto. Over 30,000 hours lifetime it provides 54,000 AVG lumens. Lifetime saving of 150,000 KwH savings over lifetime.

Improve audience experience – Improve exhibitor profitability. Dovetails with Escape, AE, Cinema Barco.

Commerciallly availlable and delivering globally. Installations in China, Europe and the Americas.

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CJ@CineAsia CineAsia University – Immersive Seating

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In an effort to provide updates on the CineAsia 2014 conference and trade show presently taking place in Hong Kong SAR, this post was written live, and in the present tense, during one of the conference’s presentations. Comments attributed to speaker(s) are paraphrased unless denoted specifically by quotation marks.

This ICTA organised session s part of their out-reach and education effort for the industry. Micheal Archer, [above, no longer Doremi but] Dolby does the welcome and introduction.

Dan Jamele, VP and CTO, MediaMation

“We started out in special attraction and now we are entering cinema. Cinema traditionally catered to two senses – sight and hearing. We offer two additional, touch and smell (as of yet we don’t do smell).” That’s how Dan starts his presentation. Each speaker is restricted to just five minutes, so each session is no more than 15 minutes. Short and snappy.

Dan runs through the company essentials. Pivately owned company. Worked with Disney, Legoland and other theme park partners. 9,488 seats, 122 sites, 30 countries installed based. Cinemex, Cine Colombia, City Cinema in Oman. Apprived and worked with all the Hollywood studios.

4D client base breakdown:
3D upcharge 69%
2D upcharge 17%
Incremental 13%
Repeat 1%
“So 14% is customers you wouldn’t get at all,” Dan says, reffering to the last two categories put together.

Grown from 14 films in 2013 to 38 this year. “2015 is going to be a good year for films that go well with 4D.”

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CJ@CineAsia Monetizing Your Digital Investment-In-Theatre Pre-Show Entertainment and Lobby Display

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In an effort to provide updates on the CineAsia 2014 conference and trade show presently taking place in Hong Kong SAR, this post was written live, and in the present tense, during one of the conference’s presentations. Comments attributed to speaker(s) are paraphrased unless denoted specifically by quotation marks.

Cinemas have been digitized, but for new cinemas that were not covered by VPF there is still a need to make money off digital and the pre-show. That was the topic of the second session of the second day of CineAsia, introdiced by Mark Shaw from Shaw Theatres. The talks were short and because the previous Christie session over-ran, everyone on stage talked extra fast.

Todd Hoddick, VP Global Entertainment Barco -  “You are going to see a lot of great ideas today,” he promised. “All about the ideas you see there are two things – we must improve the audience’s experience, give them an adventure and romance, something they can’t get at home. Secondly, drive revenue. These things will not be driven by VPF. With that, lets start the presentation,”  Todd announces.

1. Industry Overvew

Current state of digitization – mostly converted. Flashes up digitisation by continent (Latin America still lagging). “Most of our customers look for ONE partner they can trust. We are happy to partner with out friends GDC, Doremi and Audience Entertainment. Bring a full solution so you can have a choice of partners.”

“In mature markets we see very flat growth, maybe at most one per cent. Whereas in China we see tremendous growth. 14 screens per day in China,” Todd points out are opening.

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CJ@CineAsia Christie Laser Demo

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In an effort to provide updates on the CineAsia 2014 conference and trade show presently taking place in Hong Kong SAR, this post was written live, and in the present tense, during one of the conference’s presentations. Comments attributed to speaker(s) are paraphrased unless denoted specifically by quotation marks.

Early morning talk and demo of Christie’s 6P laser light illuminated projector. Most of this is a repetition of what was said at IBC’s Christie 6P laser demo in September. First topic is ‘Market need’. Given that lasers are not cheap, why do exhibitors need them, particularly when many of them have just gone through the expensive upgrade from 35mm?

“Why is Christie building a 6P laser projector?” asks Don Shaw, Sr Director Product Management Entertainment Solutions for Christie.

“Not because it is cool or because Bill Beck [Barco] is building 6P laser projectors. Butbecause there is a well established market need – for PLF [premium large format] and for 3D. Both of them are places where exhibitors can make more money. PLF gives you an opportunity to give a differentiatied exerience and you can charge more for it. 3D has been around for longer. Ever since the “Avatar” effect. The only way to get a true immersive 3D experience is to go to cinema. The most important thing about 3D is that premium, the upcharge.”

Flashing up the chart demonstrating the decline in 3D attendance (using Screen Digest/IHS data – see above). “This is what will happen in international market if we don’t fix the problem. What does this mean to exhibitors? All the money for 3D premium is drying up.”

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CJ@CineAsia Concession Showmanship Seminar

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The afternoon is presentations from three exhibitors showing what they do in their cinemas. [You will be happy to know that we got a 10 minute break for lunch and I scraped together the last of the rice and whatever suacy went with it that was still left on the buffet table.]

Mariam El Bacha, Director of Operations,MBO Cinemas, is first up.

“I am going to talk very quickly about three things that are unrelated but I want to bring up,” sha starts in a delightfully upbeat and optimistic tone.

1. Programming mistakes – “You have to keep trying new things, even if they do’t work, it is a good way of learning what not to do.” During Chinese New Year they were busy, 1.1 million admissions, lot of long lines and lot of complaints. Low strike rate of 19%. “We had good combo strategy, not the issue, so what was it?” Too many films all starting within 20 minutes of each other. We gave cinema managers the ability to decide the session times.

“We had to train cinema managers to follow certain patterns. One is for the main film to programme that one first. At least 10 minutes apart. Multiplexes are not designed for hundreds of people at once. Separate the biggest hall by 30 minutes from your second biggest hall.” Mariam says that she doesn’t care if three shows start within ten minutes of each other first thing in the morning, but peak time is different.

They started testing this concept in March and with almost the same amount of admissions and the same menu, they increased strike rate to 27% and SPP (spend per person) by the equivalent of almost one US dollar.

Loyalty programmes points – Allstar points? What to do with them? So they marketing department came up with this idea of doing an eBay-like store. The rule was that they had to be unique items and had to be movie-related with fanatical following and not too much repeat by only having every second or third film, like Transformers and the Hobbit. People came to cinema and then went home to bid for the items.

Result was: extra sign-up of 20,000 members during that one month of activities. Increased admissions by 11%. Increased views to micro sites by >200,000. Thinking of MBO brings the excitement nearer to you.

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CJ@CineAsia Coca Cola Presentation

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Brian Chau, Customer Leadership and  Operations Director for Coca-Cola Pacific is on immediately after Larry. [No break for lunch - I'm sipping my Coke Zero and thinking that these seminars will do wonders for my figure.]

“We as a beverage company are proud to refresh the world with good drinks. But also happy to refresh movie goers. Today I will share with you how to keep the movie going experience as unique as possible.” Brian points out how well popcorn and Coke go together. “It’s almost become a culture,” not just in the US but also in Hong Kong and around the world, Brian starts of with.

‘Bringing it to life at the point of sale’ is the tile of Brian’s first slide. Kicks off with data: Worldwide average is 80% people driking in a cinema auditorium, but only 30% of those are being bought in a concession stand. People either share or bring in drinks from the outside. “There is a lot of upside there,” Brian observes.

Activation focus areas: 1. outside of cinema, 2. lobby, 3. concession stand and 4. in the auditorium. “That is where we focus to bring the brand experience to life. But the main focus is to get the concession area right.” First point is t make it easy for people to buy – hence combos.

Make it special – by tying in with the movie (Penguins of Madagascar again). “We also do a lot of promotion during festival time – Halloween, Valentine’s Day, Christmas. That is when a lot of people go to the movies and we need to capture that.”  Then come the polar bears – very cuddly and distinct. Next brand heritige. “2015 is the 100 year celebration of the contour bottle,” Brian reveals. Brian plays a video celebrating the Coke bottle shape [Capital Cities' 'Safe and Sound' Hi-NRG mix is the song used].

The Contour 100 Program will see a lot of activation and excitement next year. “We will do a lot of special designs on cups, caps and art collection, digital content and on-site demonstrations. These are the holistic things that we will do together.”

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CJ@CineAsia ICTA – A Panel Discussion

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In an effort to provide updates on the CineAsia 2014 conference and trade show presently taking place in Hong Kong SAR, this post was written live, and in the present tense, during one of the event’s presentations. Comments attributed to speaker(s) are paraphrased unless denoted specifically by quotation marks. [Also no spell check on my tablet version of WordPress. Sorry.]

Dolby’s Senior VP Ioan Allen introduces the ICTA discussion with a distinguidshed panel of exhibitors, distributors, consultants and Hollywood studio reps, then sits down and joins them. They are:

Irving Chee, General Manager, Golden Screen Cinemas
Brian Hall, Exhibitor Consultant  
Brett D. Hogg, Senior Vice President, International Distribution, Sony Pictures Releasing International
Sunder Kimatrai, Executive Vice President, Asia Pacific, Twentieth Century Fox International

“Three of you come year after year, so you must be good,” Ioan observes and then asks them what has surprised them in the last 12 months. Irving says “not too much surprised me but the slow and steady decline of 3D movies is a concern. That’s a little bit on the downside.” He questions how effective 3D is whether shot or converted in terms of audiences perceiving value.

Brian echoes that. “Customers have become much more important. Five years ago people were wowed by Avatar,” but now they are more discerning. Brian then points out that Hollywood studios have become better at filling the gap between the [Christmas] holiday and the summer box office, but this year there was a gap after the summer, “though this might have been an anomaly.” Ioan asks whether in 2015, the offical ‘Year of the Blockbuster’, there is adanger of ‘clumping’ that will see too many big films released too close together.

Brett observed “We are glad that Sony has survived the last 12 months, particularly recently.” Ioan jokingly retorts, “I wasn’t going to bring that up,” but Brett says “It’s the elephant in the room.” Brett then aknowledges that that ‘clumping’ does continue to happen, “but hopefully where is small and medium size films that do find an audience.” Ioan asks if we were getting to a natural equilibrium when it comes to the number of 3D films. Brett says that this could be the case not just for 3D but also for 4DX and other new technolgies.

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CJ@CineAsia: Promoting and Protecting Content in Today’s Multi-screen World

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In an effort to provide updates on the CineAsia 2014 conference and trade show presently taking place in Hong Kong SAR, this post was written live, and in the present tense, during one of the event’s presentations. Comments attributed to speaker(s) are paraphrased unless denoted specifically by quotation marks. [Also no spell check on my tablet version of WordPress. Sorry.]

Frank S. Rittman, Senior VP, Deputy Managing Director & Regional Policy Officer, Asia Pacific, MPA

CineAsia has a long tradition of starting off with an overview of IP Protection and Piracy by MPA’s Regional head. With Asia being the home to several territories with major instances of piracy, this is always a timely and important talk. Rittman manages to combine being diplomatic with hard hitting when it comes to spelling out what the situation is.

Andrew Sunshine first does the general welcome to CineAsia 2014, thanking sponsors, partners, studios, trade show exhibitors and other. He promises a great three days ahead and then hands over to Frank, whose talk will cover MPA, Camcording in Asia-Pac and outreach programmes and trailers.

The first slide is ‘Who is the MPA?’. Founded in 1922… I won’t recap the organisation’s history here. From Singapore the MPA covers 14 territories in Asia-Pacific, where it is also involved in legislative efforts to protect IP and also work with local screen communities.

‘The “what” and “why” of camcording’ is the meat of the entire talk. The situation has improved since 2013, Frank notes, with India seeing significant decrease (but still high). “China is still a problem,” Frank aknowledges. “What is MPA doing to deal with this,” Frank asks rhetorically before answering, “Actually, a lot. Though there is no magic bullet.”

“Getting the right legislation in place is important.” He then reels off all the get-outs that a clever defence attourney might use to get their client off the hook where anti-camcording legislation is weak. Anti-camcording Bills are pending in India in Thailand, where in the latter case it has passed parliament and is waiting royal assent. The Trans-Pacific PArtnership also has provisions for anti-camcording that wil help.

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Daily Cinea Digest – Monday 8 December 2014

A truncated Daily on account of preparations for CineAsia, but we felt we had to put it out, if only for the ‘Finally’ item.

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The previously announced promotional joint venture between Cinemaxx and CineStar has been approved by the German competition authorities.

On 28 November, the Federal Cartel Office has completed the merger proposal (B6-56714) for planned joint venture Cinestar and Cinemax with a release and thus given the green light for the establishment of a jointly organized company of the two chains.

As previously reported, Cinemax and Cinestar want to combine their ranges in the cinema market. The company’s headquarters should therefore be on Cinemax headquarters in Hamburg, also has offices in Berlin, Dusseldorf and Frankfurt are planned. LINK

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India – The company whose Vice-President of Technology was caught pirating a major Bollywood film is planning on rolling out mini-plexes across India. Not the first time that they have announced this.

Digital entertainment player KSS plans to invest Rs 90 crore [USD $14.5 million] for rolling out 180 screens in 80 locations in smaller cities over the next five years, a top company executive said. 

KSS Miniplex is a division of KSS which is into setting up miniplexes through joint venture with the local partners and the proposition includes planning set-up,  screening, operations and marketing. The partnership would entail profit share of 50:50.  LINK

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