RealD and Cinepolis see Latin America in 3D

By | July 18, 2008 4:23 am PDT

Cinepolis logo Mexican exhibitor Cinepolis has big 3D plans for the whole of Latin america. Its deal with RealD envisions 500 screens to be converted in the next few years. From the press release:

The rollout of these 500 RealD 3D screens has already begun with six new screens installed for the release of Journey to the Center of the Earth, and will continue through 2010. The partnership makes RealD the exclusive choice of Cinepolis for digital 3D and creates a strong platform in the market for the upcoming slate of over thirty major studio 3D releases in 2009 and 2010.

The press release then goes on to quote Jeffrey Katzenberg and Disney before remembering to sample the opinions of the two companies that made the deal happen, showing you where the TRUE power of 3D lies today (content, content and, yes, more content). THR.com‘s take is that:

Cinepolis and RealD are co-financing the venture, though Cinepolis declined to disclose financial details when contacted Thursday.

The deal provides a major platform for 3-D cinema in Latin America as Cinepolis continues to expand in the region. Cinepolis rival Cinemark also has a partnership with RealD.

and

Cinepolis, owned by the Ramirez family, currently has more than 1,800 screens. In recent years, as Mexico’s exhibition market has grown more saturated, the exhibitor has expanded into Guatemala, Panama, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Honduras and Colombia. Moving forward, Cinepolis is eyeing Brazil’s underserved exhibition market.

So at the present screen count, one out of every 3.6 screens will be 3D. This is clearly a bit too high, so it is likely to come about when Cinepolis has increased its footprint across Latin America. It must also mean that the screens will embrace digital cinema in 2D first, though whether Cinepolis will finance this itself or with a third party provider is nit clear. This means that the deal might not be contingent on something like the delayed DCIP deal holding up Regal and Cinemark’s 3D plans.

Patrick von Sychowski
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Patrick von Sychowski

Patrick was a Senior Analyst at Screen Digest, went on to launch the digital cinema operations of Unique and Deluxe Europe, then digitised Bollywood at Adlabs/RMW, and now writes, consults and appears on panels about cinema all over the world.
Patrick von Sychowski
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