Canadian Cinema Giant Cineplex Ramping Up Theatre Construction

The Toronto-based company is expanding with several more theaters.

TORONTO – Good news at the boxoffice has Canadian exhibition giant Cineplex Entertainment ramping up its multiplex construction.

Toronto-based Cineplex unveiled plans for three theaters Thursday, each with digital technology, with RealD 3D screens and UltraAVX auditoriums.

The chain will build an 11-screen multiplex in Abbotsford, British Columbia, another 11-screen venue in Edmonton, Alberta, and a seven-screen multiplex in Chatham, Ontario.

The three venues, to open between fall 2011 and spring 2012, will feature bells and whistles that Cineplex earlier launched with success in major urban markets, including Toronto.

These include UltraAVX auditoriums with super-sized screens, Dolby digital 7.1 surround sound, bigger chairs and reserved seating.

Cineplex, which runs 132 theatres with 1,366 screens countrywide, has benefited from increased interest in 3D movies, as just over 25% of its screens now have digital projection, and 22% are 3D capable.

At the same time, the real driver for the Canadian exhibition giant and rival cinema chains domestically has been a string of strong Hollywood movie releases, which have lifted theatre attendance and earnings, despite the economic downturn.

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