Imax, Korea's CGV Sign 17-Theater Deal as Global Cinemas Reopen

CGV Cinemas location in Buena Park-Publicity-H 2019
Courtesy of CJ CGV

The agreement is the biggest new theater installation deal for Imax in 2020.

As global cinemas look to reopen amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, Imax has signed a 17-theater deal with Korea's CGV, the biggest this year for the giant screen exhibitor.

The agreement will see nine Imax large format screens installed in South Korea, in addition to theaters being added to CGV’s global footprint, which includes Turkey, Vietnam and Indonesia. CGV, the largest cinema chain in South Korea and the fifth largest worldwide, has expanded into the U.S. with locations in California.

"CGV and Imax both understand that, as audiences around the world return to theaters, they will want to see the remarkable slate of blockbusters ahead in Imax,” Richard Gelfond, CEO of Imax, said in a statement on Monday.

The COVID-19 public health crisis has shuttered global cinemas, but theaters in China and across Asia were among the first to reopen, if only with reduced box office revenues.

“South Korea and Southeast Asia continue to be strong performers for Imax and leaders in the global reopening of theaters, and this agreement further accelerates our growth in this key area of the world," Gelfond added.

A 15-year partnership with CGV has more than 185 Imax theaters open or contracted to open internationally.