#NewsBytesExplainer: What exactly is IMAX?
Oh, the rush of excitement and joy while watching a film in theaters! Truly an experience like no other. Theatrical viewing is made astronomically better with the presence of large screens, effective sound systems, loudspeakers, high-resolution prints, etc. These features also demarcate the difference between single-screen theaters, multiplexes, and other cinema halls. Today, let's take a look at IMAX—the best in the business.
IMAX Corporation has been going strong since 1967!
IMAX, a firm established in 1967, "manufactures high-resolution lenses, film codecs, projectors, and movie theater equipment." "The main distinction between a standard movie theater auditorium and a premium movie theater auditorium is the diameter of the screen and the theater itself." IMAX is credited with using loudspeakers behind screens and "offering the most refined quality visuals, particularly with their actual 70mm film prints."
Do you know who laid the company's foundation?
The corporation, which went on to become the world's leading premium, high-quality film-watching service, was co-founded by Graeme Ferguson, Roman Kroitor, Robert Kerr, and William C Shaw. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, they developed the first IMAX cinema projection standards in Canada. Founded in Montreal, it's headquartered in the Toronto area and operates from New York and Los Angeles.
There are currently about 1,500 IMAX screens globally
As per IMAX data, there are around 1,500 IMAX theaters in 80 countries worldwide. Coming to its salient characteristics, "IMAX theaters have a large circular dome and a flat-screen. So, you can enjoy the lifelike effects of the movies as if you are actually in the film. They use linear polarization technologies and powerful cameras to provide this incredible impression."
IMAX screens are the go-to choice for 3D releases
While you can watch a film in any theater, IMAX offers an aesthetic perspective, especially in animation and 3D films. "IMAX uses three projection formats in its various products and a 70 mm film system, IMAX 4K with laser and 15 perforations, and IMAX 2K Digital." This is in contrast with traditional theaters that have only one format: 35 mm on a rectangular screen.
What's the difference between Dolby and IMAX?
If you're a regular cine-goer, you must have noticed a Dolby Cinema and a digital IMAX auditorium in close vicinity. While both of these "offer big-screen experiences, IMAX boasts a more prominent display and more seats. However, Dolby is known for producing sharper, more explicit pictures and leather recliners, and plenty of thunder." Comparing their prices, Dolby is priced slightly higher.
IMAX's sound system is another salient feature
What also sets IMAX apart from other theatrical services is the high-quality sound that really adds to the surreal experience. "The speakers have a broader frequency response, which means more extraordinary highs and lows with as many vibrations as sounds. The theater structure has been adapted and improved, with improved soundproofing and speaker arrangement." What's not to like about IMAX?
Did you know how many IMAX screens India has?
Currently, India has 21 screens operational throughout the country and the corporation aspires to add more screens in the coming years, thus eyeing a larger audience. "We have another 19 contracted screens which are in various stages of development. [We] believe, on average, we will see an addition of 6-8 new IMAX screens every year in India," the company shared recently.
How many of these films you caught in theaters?
While Hollywood films, especially those by Marvel and DC are often released in IMAX, Indian films are not far behind. Some examples include SS Rajamouli's Baahubali: The Conclusion, Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Padmaavat, and Ayan Mukerji's Brahmastra: Part One—Shiva. While Dhoom 3 was the first Indian movie to be released in IMAX, RRR was reportedly the first one to be shot with IMAX cameras.