Christie, the preferred choice in cinema projection, was awarded a contract to supply Regal CineMedia Corporation (“RCM”), the media subsidiary of Regal Entertainment Group (“REG” NYSE: RCM), with a digital projection solution for the world’s largest projector networking application in theatres.
The contract covers Christie’s digital projectors, the ChristieNET™ networking solution and plasma screens to be deployed as part of RCM’s new national, state-of-the-art Digital Content Network (“DCN”), expected to launch during the first quarter of 2003. The DCN is being assembled for the delivery of digital video content, including entertainment, sports and educational programming, as well as on-screen and in-lobby marketing and advertising products.
RCM’s DCN is being installed in approximately 375 theatres covering 19 of the top 20 and 43 of the top 52 markets through the end of 2003. The DCN is expected to be the world’s largest such network with digital distribution capabilities on a targeted basis to approximately 4,500 theatre screens and in excess of 1,400 42” high-resolution plasma screens in the theatre lobbies. The contract also includes the construction of a Network Operations Center (NOC) outfitted with multiple Christie single-chip DLP™ projection cubes and its proprietary FRC5000 wall display controller for monitoring of the full network. The NOC is currently operational, monitoring over 12,000 devices and will increase to monitor over 40,000 once the DCN installation is complete.
“Our goal is to enhance the movie-going experience through the use of digital technology and Christie has consistently demonstrated their willingness to explore new applications and develop the technology necessary to assist Regal in the seamless integration of a complex network,” said Tom Galley, Chief Technical Officer, Regal CineMedia.
“We are thrilled to be working with Regal CineMedia in providing a fully integrated and digital end-to-end solution that meets their needs and further helps to transition theatres into the digital domain,” says Craig Sholder, Christie’s senior director of sales and business development for cinema. “Our knowledge at Christie within all aspects of theatre projection and automation coupled with our expertise in digital projection provided the confidence that RCM was looking for in a partner.”
Each screen is expected to project short-form entertainment, sports, educational and other types of pre-show programming content, as well as local and national advertisements shown on Christie’s RoadRunner L6 projector. ChristieNET™ networking modules originally introduced at InfoComm 2002 will help control the projectors. Christie-supplied lobby and concession area plasma displays are expected to provide further entertainment value and revenue generating opportunities by offering additional content and information for moviegoers.