Disney expands 3D movies with “Beauty”, IMAX deal

November 22, 2008 at 5:14 pm (3D, CG) (, )

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The Walt Disney Co, whose 2005 release “Chicken Little” was its first digital 3D movie, expanded its upcoming movie slate on Wednesday with a 3D version of “Beauty and the Beast” and a deal to make 3D films with IMAX Corp.

Disney has begun re-rendering in 3D the 1991 Oscar-nominated “Beauty” for a big-screen debut in 2010, bringing Disney’s 3D slate for that year to 11 titles, Disney Studios President Mark Zoradi said at an event in Singapore.

The company also announced a five-picture deal with IMAX, starting with the 2009 release of Robert Zemeckis‘ “A Christmas Carol” starring Jim Carrey.

Hollywood studios began ramping up production of 3D films about a year ago to shore up theatrical attendance and prices because tickets for those releases sell at a premium.

The coming bumper crop of those films may have trouble finding wide releases, however, because the global economic downturn has slowed plans by exhibitors to install digital 3D projection systems.

(Reporting by Gina Keating)

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