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IMAX Signs First Commercial Theatre Deal in Egypt With Misr International Films

/ Source: GlobeNewswire

CAIRO, Egypt, Jan. 25, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- IMAX Corporation (Nasdaq:IMAX) (TSX:IMX) and Misr International Films (Youssef Chahine), the leading film company in Egypt, today announced an agreement to install a digital IMAX® theatre in Cairo, Egypt. The deal marks the first commercial IMAX theatre system contract in Egypt, and brings the total number of IMAX theatres scheduled to be operating in Europe, Middle East and Africa (the EMEA region) to 115 by 2014.

Under the terms of the sale agreement, Misr International Films (MIF) will install a digital IMAX theatre system in a newly-built 18-screen multiplex in the City Stars Katamia, which is expected to be East Cairo's premier shopping and entertainment destination upon completion.

"IMAX theatres are performing very well in markets across the entire globe, indicating to us that the premium IMAX experience resonates with audiences everywhere. That unique characteristic, combined with the world's most advanced cinema technology and a growing list of Hollywood blockbuster releases, makes the IMAX business ideal for us," said Gabriel Khoury, Managing Director of Misr International Films. "We are committed to leading the exhibition business in Egypt with theatres that offer the best quality presentations, and as such, this IMAX location is what we hope to be one of several IMAX locations for us in Egypt."

"Misr International Films has a strong connection with moviegoers in Egypt, and we believe that connection, combined with their extensive knowledge of the market, is the perfect way to introduce The IMAX Experience® to new audiences in the country," said IMAX CEO Richard L. Gelfond. "This new relationship continues the momentum of our network expansion in the EMEA region, which remains an important part of our overall international growth strategy for 2011."

"Misr International Films has an outstanding reputation in the Egyptian film industry, and associating our brand with Misr increases the visibility of our digital theatre model within the network of exhibitors throughout the market," added Larry T. O'Reilly, IMAX's Executive Vice President, Theatre Development. "The City Stars Katamia IMAX theatre will serve as a starting point for our digital theatre system in this part of the EMEA region, and we're looking forward to working with Misr to offer a whole new, awe-inspiring entertainment experience to moviegoers in Cairo."

IMAX's digital projection system delivers The IMAX Experience and helps drive profitability for studios, exhibitors and IMAX theatres by eliminating the need for film prints, increasing program flexibility and ultimately increasing the number of movies shown on IMAX screens. The system can run both IMAX and IMAX® 3D presentations.

About Misr International Films

Misr International Films (MIF) which was created in 1972 by world renowned Egyptian filmmaker, Youssef Chahine is commonly acknowledged as the most prestigious film company in the region. Several of Youssef Chahine's films have received international acclaim ( ).

A major activity of MIF is its shareholding and management of movie theatres. MIF is a partner and manages Stars cinema, the first and most successful multiplex within a mall of this size in Egypt. Other movie theatres include Galaxy, Odeon and Cineplex. Between Cairo and Alexandria, MIF runs more than thirty cinema theatres.

MIF is a partner in Allied Film Distribution (AFD) which distributes Columbia Pictures, Buena Vista (Walt Disney) and Italia Film.

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 and Shanghai.  As of September 30, 2010, there were 470 IMAX theatres (348 commercial, 122 institutional) operating in 45 countries.

The IMAX Corporation logo is available at

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 You may also connect with IMAX on Facebook ( ), Twitter ( ) and YouTube ( ).

This press release contains forward looking statements that are based on 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 the Company, 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 the Company's prior restatements and the related litigation and investigation by the SEC and the ongoing inquiry by the OSC.  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.

CONTACT: IMAX Corporation, New York Ann Sommerlath 212-821-0155 Entertainment Media: Principal Communications Group, Los Angeles Melissa Zukerman/Paul Pflug 323-658-1555 Investors: IMAX Corporation, New York Heather Anthony 212-821-0121 Business Media: Sloane & Company, New York Whit Clay 212-446-1864