IMAX Expansion Continues — Today Japan!

Theater chain partners with United Cinemas to install up to five new systems

The great IMAX expansion continues.

The theater chain will partner with United Cinemas to install up to five digital IMAX theatre systems in Japan, the company announced on Monday. Three of the systems are confirmed, with two scheduled to be installed in time for the launch of "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" this November. The third system will be in place in either late 2010 or some time in 2011.

IMAX has been on a roll of late. Coupled with a recent announcement that box office had strong second quarter increasing 37 percent, the chain has also expanded its footprint in Russia and the Philippines. Monday’s deal brings the total number of IMAX theatres scheduled to be operating in Japan by the end of 2010 to eight, compared to four at the end of 2009. In addition, this new theatre deal brings the total number of announced IMAX systems signed this year to 92. IMAX had 35 system signings in all of 2009.

Under the terms of the agreement with United Cinemas, the companies will have an option to install two additional IMAX theatre systems in Japan at a later date.