Concerts, TV series to Cinepolis screens

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MEXICO CITY -- Mexican exhibitor Cinepolis is bringing concerts, popular U.S. television series and major sporting events to the big screen, the nation's top theater circuit announced Tuesday.

Under an agreement with Warner Music Mexico, Cinepolis will screen weekly concert recordings of such groups as Mexican rock band Mana, Pearl Jam, Spanish pop artist Alejandro Sanz and Madonna.

To simulate the concertgoing experience, Cinepolis is planning to sell beer and concert souvenirs at the screenings.

Additionally, the theater chain said that, later this year, it will project season openers and finales of popular U.S. television series. Luis Carrillo, Cinepolis' director of new business development, said his company is "logically looking to extend its agreement with Warner" for TV product.

Cinepolis has expressed interest in talking with other content suppliers as well, particularly those with programs that have performed well on Mexican television, such as "Lost," "Desperate Housewives" and "24."

Sporting events also form part of the so-called alternative content platform. Cinepolis is in talks with Televisa to secure transmission rights of the Olympic Games in Beijing and soccer matches of the Mexican national team.

So far, the sports experiment has worked well for rival exhibitor Cinemex, which uses its theaters to air live ESPN transmissions of NFL games.
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