- ‘I Am Alive’ app gains popularity in terror-ravaged Lebanon
- Gun giveaways gain popularity among Republican candidates
- S.C. hospital worker slapped with $525 federal fine for refilling $0.89 soda
- Teen from ‘Jihad Jane’ plot becomes youngest ever to serve time on U.S. terror charges
- Iranian woman forgives son’s killer at the gallows
- Nebraska principal sorry for ‘don’t tattle’ flier
- Illinois readies to spend $100M for Obama museum in Chicago
- John Edwards back in court — this time as a lawyer for Va. boy’s malpractice case
- Covered California reports more than 200K in overtime Obamacare sign-ups
- Thanks, Chuck: Hagel says U.S. sending Ukraine sleeping mats, helmets
Imax China deal will get more movies into growing market
Higher rate ‘good for our business’
What better market is there for the world’s biggest movie screens than the country with the world’s biggest population?
Movie giant Imax is optimistic that it will be one of Hollywood’s big winners in a new trade agreement between the U.S. and China that will open up the film markets in both countries. The deal expands the number of foreign films that will be permitted in China and increases the box office share that goes to studios.
“The Imax brand is really powerful in China,” Imax Corp. CEO Richard Gelfond said in an interview. “This brings China much closer to what the U.S. business model is for us. If you can ship more movies at a higher rate, that’s a good thing for our business.”
Imax, which has 80 theaters in China and plans to increase that number to 217 in the next few years, specializes in showing supersized films with screens that are larger than in regular movie theaters. They play both traditional and 3D movies.
The White House announced the new film agreement, part of the Obama administration’s efforts to expand U.S. exports, last month in Los Angeles, after Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping reached a deal that is expected to boost the film industry in both countries.
“This agreement with China will make it easier than ever before for U.S. studios and independent filmmakers to reach the fast-growing Chinese audience, supporting thousands of American jobs in and around the film industry,” Mr. Biden said in a statement. “At the same time, Chinese audiences will have access to more of the finest films made anywhere in the world.”
Under the deal, U.S. studios can take a 25 percent cut from box office revenues, up from the current 13 percent to 17 percent. The Chinese government will continue to cover the costs for marketing and film prints.
“This landmark agreement will return a much better share of the box office revenues to U.S. studios, revising a two-decade-old formula that kept those revenues woefully under normal commercial terms,” Motion Picture Association of America Chairman Christopher J. Dodd, a former U.S. senator, said in a statement.
China currently imports only 20 foreign films per year, the bulk of them American. But under this new deal, they will accept an additional 14 films that are “enhanced,” which includes Imax’s big-screen and 3D movies. Almost all such films made worldwide are American.
Hollywood is praising the Obama administration for the new film deal.
“This agreement represents a significant opportunity to provide Chinese audiences increased access to our films,” Walt Disney President and CEO Robert Iger said.
The Independent Film & Television Alliance said the agreement would open new doors in China for small movies that have had difficulty breaking into the market.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Tim Devaney is a national reporter who covers business and international trade for The Washington Times. Previously, he worked for the Detroit News, Grand Rapids Press, Portland Press Herald and Bangor Daily News. Tim can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Dysfunction, disarray at Homeland Security management cited in IG's report
- GM's Barra to be first woman to run top American carmaker
- Treasury sells last shares in 'Government Motors'
- U.S. businesses reach out quickly to partners in Iran
- General Motors ending Chevrolet sales in Europe to focus on Opel and Vauxhall
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
By John R. Bolton
Reality calls for attaching Gaza to Egypt and the West Bank to Jordan
- Obama taunts GOP, takes nationally televised victory lap on Obamacare
- Joe Biden's first Instagram pic mocked as shill for sunglass ad
- Jews being told to register in Ukraine: John Kerry
- BOLTON: A 'three-state solution' for Middle East peace
- Army goes to war with National Guard, seizes Apache attack helicopters
- Rand and Ron Paul ride to the rescue for Bundy in Nevada standoff with feds
- Cliven Bundy's Nevada ranch wrecked by retreating feds
- CURL: The state of the Union worse than you thought
- 'Culture of intimidation' seen in Nevada ranch standoff
- CNN op-ed claims right-wingers 'more deadly than jihadists'
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.