It’s hard to believe it’s been more than two years since the National Association Of Theatre Owners (NATO) announced they would be taking control of their annual trade show in 2011 when their contract expired with Nielsen Film Group. At ShoWest in March NATO made public the name of their new confab, Cinemacon. Now NATO has solidified the dates of the revamped convention, which will be held at March 28th to March 31st, 2011 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.
ShoWest ran for 36 years and grew into one of the largest and most important annual events for motion picture exhibitors and distributors. NATO is planning for CinemaCon to take up the mantle of largest annual gathering of worldwide theatre owners and as such are moving the event across the Vegas strip from Bally’s and Paris Hotels to Caesars Palace.
The new venue will offer more modern facilities and is meant to accommodate the size of the trade show, especially when it comes to screening product reels and upcoming releases from big Hollywood studios. Such presentations will be held in The Colosseum, a 4,200 seat theatre usually reserved for the likes of Celine Dion and Elton John. NATO is expecting 5,000 attendees at the first CinemaCon.
Like ShoWest, NATO plans for CinemaCon to set the tone for the upcoming summer movie season and will fill the schedule with “sponsored events, seminars, trade show, screenings, product presentations and a gala award show”.