Here’s the formal announcement of the arrangement we reported yesterday:
HOLLYWOOD, Calif., April 12, 2013 – IMAX Corporation (NYSE: IMAX; TSX: IMX) and Chinese Theatres LLC today announced an agreement to add an IMAX® theatre to the iconic TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, through an extensive transformation of the landmark site. The addition brings the theatre into the 21st Century and gives Hollywood its first IMAX® theatre, providing fans with a movie-going experience that will rival any in southern California. Once complete, this will be IMAX’s largest auditorium in the world in terms of seating capacity and its third-largest commercial theatre screen in North America. Closing of the agreement is subject to the issuance of final permits.
Home to more than 40 of the world’s biggest, A-list film premieres per year as well as the celebrated handprint and footprint forecourt, the historic, world-famous TCL Chinese Theatre (www.tclchinesetheatres.com) will undergo its first major makeover in 85 years. The theatre will close for principal construction on May 1 and is expected to re-open to the public in late summer.
“As we embark on our much-anticipated renovation of the TCL Chinese Theatre, IMAX will play a key role in rejuvenating this historical landmark,” said Alwyn Hight Kushner, TCL Chinese Theatre President and C.O.O. “We believe that IMAX’s unparalleled entertainment technology, coupled with its blockbuster portfolio of films, will usher in a new era of movie-going at our famed theatre that will strengthen our business by delivering a premium viewing experience for our guests. The recent awarding of naming rights to TCL, the inclusion of TCL technology in many areas of the theatre complex and the addition of IMAX will all play decisive roles in further modernizing this beloved historical landmark.”
“Steeped in Hollywood tradition and history, the TCL Chinese Theatre is arguably one of the most famous movie theatres in the world and we are honored to bring The IMAX Experience® to this iconic location,” said IMAX CEO Richard L. Gelfond. “Today’s agreement is the perfect marriage of Hollywood history and cutting-edge entertainment technology that will transform the moviegoing experience for guests of the TCL Chinese Theatre for years to come.”
The popular handprint and footprint-populated forecourt, adjacent Chinese 6 Theatres and vast upstairs ballroom for parties, known as Grauman’s Ballroom, will continue operating normally during construction.