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Press Release FANDANGONOW JOINS IMAX® ENHANCED PROGRAM (1 Viewer)

Ronald Epstein

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FANDANGONOW JOINS IMAX® ENHANCED PROGRAM AS THE FIRST U.S. DIGITAL RETAILER FOR IMAX ENHANCED FILMS

Fandango’s Video On-Demand Service to Roll Out IMAX Enhanced Films in 2019,Featuring the Highest-Quality Image and Sound Experiences for the Home


LAS VEGAS/CES (January 7, 2019) – FandangoNOW, Fandango’s fast-growing video on-demand service, announced today it will become the first U.S. digital retailer for IMAX® Enhanced films releasing to home video. FandangoNOW will have exclusive rights as the sole transactional VOD service to feature this content in the U.S. through 2019, bringing the best in image and sound quality to home entertainment systems. The IMAX Enhanced program is a certification and licensing program, combining the highest-end consumer electronics with IMAX digitally re-mastered 4K HDR content and DTS audio technologies to offer consumers the next generation of immersive sight and sound experiences for the home.

“FandangoNOW prides itself in offering consumers the highest quality image and widest catalogue of premium format movies to enjoy on demand,” said Cameron Douglas, Head of FandangoNOW. “We are thrilled to be collaborating with IMAX and DTS to serve as the exclusive digital retailer in the U.S. for IMAX Enhanced content releasing later this year, helping consumers access premium 4K HDR content as the filmmaker intended in the home.”

Several companies, including global consumer electronics, entertainment market leaders and studios are supporting the IMAX Enhanced initiative, including Sony Electronics, Sony Pictures, Paramount Pictures and Sound United, parent company to Denon and Marantz. FandangoNOW plans to offer IMAX Enhanced movies at launch later this year, including big studio titles and IMAX documentaries.

IMAX and DTS created the IMAX Enhanced program out of their decades of combined expertise in immersive image and sound technology development to enable consumers to select consumer electronics and content for home viewing that deliver the highest quality and sharpest 4K HDR images, along with powerful, immersive sound.

“For decades, Fandango has helped millions of movie fans enjoy IMAX movies on giant screens by creating innovative movie discovery and ticketing services using next generation online, mobile and voice technologies,” said Geir Skaaden, EVP, Chief Products and Services Officer at Xperi Corporation, parent company of DTS. “Now, with the company’s video on-demand service FandangoNOW and its support of IMAX Enhanced films, Fandango can help deliver to fans a level of quality never before experienced at home.”

Now available on more than 200 million connected devices, FandangoNOW experienced double-digit sales growth in 2018. In December, the streaming service was inducted into Variety’s Home Entertainment Hall of Fame, being recognized for its innovation and expansive library of more than 80,000 new release and catalogue movies, next-day TV shows and growing library of 4K titles. FandangoNOW’s heavy push into 4K has resulted in more than 20% of transactions coming from 4K, when that format is available.
 

Josh Steinberg

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As a new standard for HDR, this looks like a solution in search of a problem. The overwhelming majority of physical UHD releases include either HDR or Dolby Vision, and the overwhelming majority of streaming 4K releases also contain some kind of HDR, which is often Dolby Vision. These standards have been developed and rolled out to devices already. I just don't see the benefit to a new kind of HDR.

Where I do think IMAX could make some headway (if they were interested in doing so) is releasing their exclusive aspect ratio to a service. While a select handful of films released with IMAX exclusive aspect ratios have made it to disc with those ratios intact, a good number of such films are stripped of that enhancement before being put on disc.

I would be delighted to use a service that offered me the ability to see films which had special IMAX exclusive ratios presented as they were in IMAX theaters. If IMAX wants to create or partner with someone to do that, I'm all in.
 

Josh Steinberg

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More likely that it'll be implemented, unnoticed and uncared for.

Then again, I question exactly what audience the FandangoNow service is meant to appeal to in the first place.
 

Todd Erwin

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From what I've read on the subject, IMAX is relying on HDR10, with other HDR metadata formats (HRD10+, DolbyVision, Technicolor's Advanced HDR) being optional. Currently, the only studios that have come on-board are IMAX (obviously), Sony, and Paramount.
 

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