Fyodor Bondarchuk's Stalingrad: An IMAX 3D Experience Marks IMAX's First Russian-Language DMR Film
MOSCOW, Feb. 8, 2012 /CNW/ - IMAX Corporation (NYSE: IMAX; TSX: IMX) and Russian producer Alexander Rodnyansky today announced that the World War II 3D epic Stalingrad will be digitally re-mastered into the immersive IMAX® 3D format and released in IMAX® theatres in Russia and the CIS in October 2013. This marks the first Russian-language film to be released in the IMAX format.
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Directed by Fyodor Bondarchuk and starring Pyotr Fedorov and Thomas Kretschmann, the movie recounts the Battle of Stalingrad, a turning point in the Second World War in which Soviet troops fought and eventually won control over the South Russian city of Stalingrad (now Volgograd), occupied by Nazi troops in February 1943. Stalingrad is produced by Non-Stop Production (subsidiary of AR Films) and Art Pictures Studio.
As one of IMAX's fastest-growing international markets, with 22 theatres currently open and 23 more in backlog, Russia and the CIS is home to some of IMAX's highest-grossing theatres in the world. In 2011, four of the top 20 highest-grossing international IMAX sites were located in Russia and the CIS, with these sites producing a combined weighted per screen average of $2.7 million.
"We are proud that IMAX has chosen our film to be the first Russian production presented in the IMAX 3D format," said Alexander Rodnyansky, Producer and Chairman of the Board of Directors of A.R. Films. "We believe that by combining the incredible directional style of Fyodor Bondarchuk with IMAX's amazing technology, we will be able to make the powerful story of Stalingrad the ultimate movie-going experience for Russian audiences."
"We are pleased to join forces with AR Films, one of the country's most prominent and successful filmed entertainment companies, to bring this historic film to movie-goers across Russia," said IMAX CEO Richard L. Gelfond. "Russia is one of our key markets with a tremendous IMAX fan base and we hope that Stalingrad will be the first of many Russian local-language films presented in the IMAX format."
"Producer Alexander Rodnyansky and director Fyodor Bondarchuk are responsible for some of Russia's most successful films and we are honored to be partnering with them on this epic motion picture," said Greg Foster, Chairman and President, IMAX Filmed Entertainment. "Stalingrad brings together these talented filmmakers with a powerful story that -- when presented in IMAX -- will offer Russian audiences the 'you-were-there' experience that IMAX is known for."
Stalingrad: An IMAX 3D Experience will be digitally re-mastered into the image and sound quality of The IMAX Experience® with proprietary IMAX DMR® (Digital Re-mastering) technology for presentation in IMAX®3D. The crystal-clear images, coupled with IMAX's customized theatre geometry and powerful digital audio, create a unique immersive environment that will make audiences feel as if they are in the movie.
Stalingrad is a drama set in 1942, during one of the most important battles of World War II, which stopped the progress of Nazi forces and turned the tide of war in favor of the Allies. The Soviet army mounts a counter-attack on the Nazi forces that occupy half of Stalingrad on the other side of the Volga, but the operation to cross the river is unsuccessful. A few soldiers who managed to get to the other side take refuge in a house on the bank of Volga. Here they find a girl who didn't escape when the Germans came. While the whole might of the German army descends onto them, the heroes of Stalingrad experience love, loss, joy and the sense of ultimate freedom that can only be felt by those about to die. They defend the house at all costs while the Red Army prepares for another attack.
About AR Films
Alexander Rodnyansky, Russian film/television producer and media executive, is the founder of the Ukrainian TV-channel 1+1 and former CEO of the biggest independent publicly traded media conglomerate in Russia - CTC Media (Nasdaq: CTCM). He has produced over 20 TV-series and more than 30 films including East/West (1999), A Chef in Love (1997), The 9th Company (2005), Heat (2006), The Inhabited Island (2009), Innocent Saturday (2011), and Elena (2011). Two of his films were nominated for Oscars in the "Best Foreign Language Film" category. In 2011 a film directed by Andrei Zvyagintsev and produced by Alexander Rodnyansky, Elena, received the Special Jury Prize at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival's Un Certain Regard. The first U.S. project produced by Alexander Rodnyansky - Billy Bob Thornton's Jayne Mansfield's Car, starring Robert Duval, John Hurt, Kevin Bacon, Ray Stevenson and Billy Bob Thornton, will premiere in competition of the Berlin Film Festival.
AR Films is an international filmed entertainment company. Founded in 2009 by Alexander Rodnyansky, AR Films now has production and distribution capabilities in 22 countries in Eastern and Central Europe, Russia and the U.S. These include ownership of one of the biggest film licensing and distribution corporations in Central and Eastern Europe; A Company; Russian movie production company Non-Stop Production; the leader in the distribution of independent films, Cinema Without Frontiers (Kino Bez Granits); and the most influential film festival in Russia – Kinotavr.
About IMAX Corporation
IMAX Corporation is one of the world's leading entertainment and technology companies, specializing in the creation and delivery of premium, awe-inspiring entertainment experiences. With a growing suite of cutting-edge motion picture and sound technologies, and a globally recognized entertainment brand, IMAX is singularly situated at the convergence of the entertainment industry, innovation and the digital media world. The industry's top filmmakers and studios are utilizing IMAX theatres to connect with audiences in extraordinary ways, and as such, the IMAX network is among the most important and successful theatrical distribution platforms for major event films around the globe. The Company's new digital projection and sound systems -- combined with a growing blockbuster film slate - are fueling the rapid expansion of the IMAX network in established markets such as North America, Western Europe, and Japan, as well as emerging markets such as China and Russia. IMAX theaters deliver the world's best cinematic presentations using proprietary IMAX®, IMAX® 3D, and IMAX DMR® (Digital Re-Mastering) technologies. IMAX DMR enables virtually any motion picture to be transformed into the unparalleled image and sound quality of The IMAX Experience®.
IMAX is headquartered in New York, Toronto and Los Angeles, with offices in London, Tokyo, Shanghai and Beijing. As of September 30, 2011, there were 583 IMAX theatres (441 commercial multiplex, 23 commercial destination and 119 institutional) in 48 countries.
IMAX®, IMAX® 3D, IMAX DMR®, Experience It In IMAX®, An IMAX 3D Experience® and The IMAX Experience® are trademarks of IMAX Corporation. More information about the Company can be found at www.imax.com. You may also connect with IMAX on Facebook (www.facebook.com/imax), Twitter (www.twitter.com/imax) and YouTube (www.youtube.com/imaxmovies).
This press release contains forward looking statements that are based on IMAX management's assumptions and existing information and involve certain risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from future results expressed or implied by such forward looking statements. Important factors that could affect these statements include, but are not limited to, general economic, market or business conditions, including the length and severity of the current economic downturn, the opportunities that may be presented to and pursued by IMAX, the performance of IMAX DMR films, conditions in the in-home and out-of home entertainment industries, the signing of theatre system agreements, changes and developments in the commercial exhibition industry, the failure to convert theatre system backlog into revenue, new business initiatives, investments and operations in foreign jurisdictions, foreign currency fluctuations and IMAX's prior restatements and the related litigation. These factors and other risks and uncertainties are discussed in the Company's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and most recent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q.
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