IMAX theater construction differs significantly from conventional theaters. It is highly unlikely that the new theater will fit in to an existing space. My assumption is that Mayfaire will lose an auditorium or two...as a sacrifice to the IMAX Gods.
A standard IMAX screen is (72 × 52.8 ft), but can be much larger. The largest IMAX screen in Australia is eight stories high, with dimensions of (117.2 × 96.5 ft) and covers an area of more than (10,930 sq ft).
If Mayfaire does not modify the theater to IMAX standards IMAX will not put their stamp of approval on the project.
The whole point of IMAX is that the print (of the traditional projectors), rather than being that of standard 35mm, is a full 70mm print. Not only that, but instead of running through the projector in a standard way (vertically), the print runs on what is called a "rolling loop" system through the projector in a horizontal manner.
The digital version of IMAX was created in 2008.
Unfortunately, there is much controversy over "artificial" IMAX screens. Roger Ebert, the film critic, has complained about the smaller IMAX screens being installed in standard theater complexes since 2008. His biggest argument is that they charge the same premium prices for films as the true IMAX theaters do. Also, the image resolution of digital IMAX theaters is not the same quality as a standard IMAX print.
IMAX digital movies utilize a 2K resolution system developed by Texas Instruments.
Hopefully the IMAX theater destined for our town will not be a watered-down version of the real thing as well.
Unfortunately, Wilmington tends to serve up sub-standard editions of many experiences and it's not just a "grass is always greener" scenario. I have noticed that when I visit the same chain restaurants or retail spaces in other towns...that ours are all just a little lacking of the same quality.
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