International Edition No. 15 - year 2 - 26 January 2007


The fourth edition of the training course “DigiTraining Plus: New Technologies for European Cinemas” begins on 28 March.
A message to European exhibitors from Mads Egmont Christensen, course moderator.

It has been with great pride and pleasure that I have moderated the three previous “DigiTraining Plus” events, which thanks to the hospitality of Barco has taken place in their state of the art conference theatre at the production plant in Kuurne, Belgium.
Over the years MEDIA Salles and Barco have managed to gather an extensive number of the central key players within the field of digital cinema, i.e. experts, practitioners and artists whose input and reflections have proven to be extremely valuable for the participating cinema-owners and representatives from exhibitors’ organizations.
Add to this a lively debate among speakers and participants both within the realm of the professional presentations and in the friendly atmosphere of the social activities over the four-day intensive schedule, and I do not hesitate to say that participating in the “DigiTraining Plus” workshop is a must for any exhibitor who wants to play a part in the digital roll-out instead of being run over by it!

Mads Egmont Christensen: a career devoted to cinema and to teaching

Mads Egmont Christensen holds a BA in History/Criticism from the University of Copenhagen and a Masters Degree in Film Education from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. When he returned to Denmark in 1971 he started producing, writing and directing at Bellevue Studio, then Denmark’s leading commercial production company. Subsequently he became Managing Director of Gutenberghus Film & TV Production, in which capacity he produced both a number of award-winning commercials, short films and the first major entertainment TV-series to be commissioned outside Danmarks Radio.
Mads Egmont Christensen has been Assistant Director on a number of feature films, among them Pelle the Conqueror, and has directed an award-winning feature-length documentary, Tomas, A Child out of Reach. In 1988 he became CEO of Metronome Productions, where he started the TV department and produced a number of features, including Dance of the Polar Bears, The Boys from St Petri and the award-winning documentary Giselle. Since 1998 he has been teaching production at The Danish Film School, at The Norwegian Film School, at The Super 16 School in Copenhagen and first and foremost at the European Film College in Ebeltoft.

MEDIA Salles,
the initiative on behalf of European cinemas, with the support of the MEDIA Programme and the Italian Government, is promoting the fourth edition of the exhibitor training course:

“DigiTraining Plus: New Technologies
for European Cinemas”

Kuurne, Belgium
28 March – 1st April 2007

in collaboration with

to be held at Barco headquarters

Main topics
The present state of the European and international market for digital screening
Overview of technologies
Exhibition and Distribution
Digital Cinema economics
Market potential
E-cinema – D-cinema – 3-D Cinema

The course will also offer
Visit to a cinema equipped with digital projector
European case studies

Lessons will be held in English.

Deadline for enrolments: 23 February 2007

Course participation fee
(covering tuition, teaching material, accommodation and meals):
500 euro
, for enrolments made by 23 February 2007.
600 euro, for enrolments after the deadline (according to availability of places).

For participants from areas near Kortrijk/Courtrai who do not need hotel accommodation a limited number of places is foreseen at a cost of 150 euro (covering tuition, teaching material and meals only)
A restricted number of scholarships are available.

The training initiatives promoted by MEDIA Salles are open to professionals from countries belonging to the MEDIA Programme.

For further information, please contact the MEDIA Salles’ offices (Tel.: +39.02.66984405, e-mail: or visit the website

To download the course application form, click here


Rita Stella,
Cinema Exhibitor
Apollo Spazio Cinema
Milan, Italy

In 2004 I took part in the first “DigiTraining Plus” at Kuurne. Partly as a consequence of this experience, when we started out to restructure the old Apollo cinema (1,200 seats right in the centre of Milan) with my partner Lionello Cerri, in 2004, we aimed to create a place that was technologically in the avant-garde.
Today it is called Apollo Spazio Cinema and has 5 screens, for a total of around 900 seats. The 5 projecting booths are each fitted with 2 traditional Cinemeccanica Victoria 5 projectors and with video projectors. In the Sala Fedra, the Cinemeccanica digital CMC-D2, using Barco technology, has also been installed.

click here to see the whole article

Digital screens in Switzerland as at 30/06/2006:
12 projectors DLP CinemaTM

click here to see the table

Cinemeccanica extends its decades of experience at the service of cinema exhibitors to the field of digital projection

Vittore Nicelli,
Managing Director of Cinemeccanica, Milan

Cinemeccanica, a world leader in the production of analogical projectors, began to supply digital projectors with DLP CinemaTM technology in 2005.
This new phase in the history of a company that has been operating in Milan, Italy, since 1920 began right there in the capital of Lombardy where, on 15 January 2005, the first CMC-D2 digital projector was installed in the Cinema Manzoni, followed shortly afterwards by the one destined for the Apollo, fresh from a radical transformation which had made it into an avant-garde urban miniplex. From this moment onwards, Cinemeccanica received a series of orders from various European countries.
Among these countries is France, where the first clients include both a chain, like Gaumont (the Marignan, in Paris, has a CMC3-D2 projector and a CMC-D2), and an independent theatre like the Cinéma Le Paris of Forbach. In the second semester of 2006 a digital projector was delivered to a venue as famous as the Rex in Paris.
Italy and France have been joined by other large markets such as Spain, starting with UIP in Madrid, and the United Kingdom (there are two Cinemeccanica digital projectors in the prestigious Odeon Leicester) and by a tiny but dynamic market such as that in Iceland, where 3 projectors have been installed in Reykjavik by the Samfilm Group. Outside Europe the first installation was in Colombia.

Appreciation for the Cinemeccanica digital projectors seems to be confirmed by the fact that, after an initial order, “early adopters” such as the Furlan and Giometti Groups, in Italy, have purchased a considerable series of digital projectors: respectively a total of 8 installed in the cinemas of North-Eastern Italy and 10 in the theatres of the Central Adriatic area.
“Our strength lies in a knowledge of the exhibitors’ demands and in the trust we have built up over 86 years operating all over the world. Companies that shift to the new experience of digital projection want to be able to count on a partner they trust”: this is how Vittore Nicelli, Managing Director of Cinemeccanica, commented on the positive start of the digital adventure from Venice, where Cinemeccanica provided two digital projectors in the Sala Grande and the Sala Perla theatres for the 63rd International Film Festival, confirming their partnership with leading world cinema events from ShoWest to the Locarno Festival.

To read the full article and the technical specifications of the Cinemeccanica digital projectors, click here.

News from Spain

Yelmo Cineplex tries out the Barco 2K projector
The Spanish company Yelmo Cineplex is the first to have installed the digital projection system offered by Barco on a free trial run to three participants in the 2006 edition of the “DigiTraining Plus” course organized by MEDIA Salles. Based on a Barco 2K projector, the initiative is also sponsored by XDC and Kodak. Enrique Martinez del Molino, Technical Director of Yelmo Cineplex, emphasizes the importance of this test run for gaining a wider knowledge of the characteristics of digital screening through hands-on experience. It is Yelmo Cineplex’s intention to try out the new technology both for the presentation of films and for alternative content. Infact the 2006 edition of live Red Bull X-Fighters event, a motorbike race held every September on Madrid’s Las Ventas circuit, was successfully projected by Yelmo using the Barco digital projector and a satellite dish transmission.
A Barco 2K projector on trial at Yelmo Cineplex

Launch of the Catalan Digital Cinema Circuit
Five cinemas have launched the CCCD, Catalan Circuit of Digital Cinema, breaking away from the network set up in Spain by the Cine Digital company. The new, independent group works on the programming of films and live events using Sanyo 1.3K projectors, already tried out over the past few months for the presentation of the documentary The Dragon House, a Spanish production on Bhutan, and the Catalan theatrical work, Mar I Cel. The Circuit’s baptism consisted in the digital projection of a rock concert held on 23 November in Barcelona at the prestigious “Auditori”. Filmed on seven TV cameras by the Catalan public television network, the event was shared, live, by audiences in the five centres served by CCCD, towns counting from 15-20,000 inhabitants, with the sole exception of Leida, which counts 125 000. The coordinator of the Circuit, Montserrat Guiu, an exhibitor from La Seu d’Urgell in the Pyrenees, stresses that one of the objectives of the initiative, supported by Catalan television and by the production company Benecé, is to bring new and interesting shows, of a cultural, musical or sporting nature, to audiences far away from Barcelona. “It has been a positive start,” comments Guiu, “the spectators felt well and truly involved in the atmosphere of the rock music event.”
As regards films, priority will be given to Catalan productions: coming shortly will be Dies d’agost by Marc Recha.


"Cinegames": interactive, online videogames on the big screen
On 29 December the Spanish circuit Yelmo Cineplex opened the first “Cinegames” screen, devoted to interactive, online videogames, in its Leganés complex on the outskirts of Madrid.
Here, thanks to an investment of around three hundred thousand euro, fifty spectators placed in “animated” seats, arranged as stadium seating and fitted with individual 17-inch screens, can actively take part in the game digitally projected on the big screen and accompanied by a high quality sound track (surround 7.1). A commentary on the action taking place, as well as special effects including laser lights, complete the experience.
For the first trial month – at half price – (after 31 January the ticket will cost 5.80 euros, compared to the 6.50 euros for a film), the “gamespectators” can get to grips with a car race, of which there are 6 versions with 140 vehicles and 19 tracks. Other proposals have already been announced, both in terms of pure entertainment (with a videogame on the second World War and another version, defined “futuristic”, set in 2142), and in terms of education (with the 3D game “Aymun”, designed for children).
Enrique Martinez, technical director of the Yelmo Cineplex, who worked for three years on the realisation of Cinegames, for which developments are foreseen both in Spain and abroad, stated: “Cinegames represents a great opportunity for us to distinguish ourselves from our competitors, in view of the explosion of multiplexes in Spain. It is part of a strategy that concentrates not only on the classic offer of films but also on innovative products such as 3D.” Moreover, Cinegames makes it possible to get the most out of smaller theatres, too, which, thanks to the avant-garde technology, allow videogame fans to enjoy game quality that cannot be reproduced in other surroundings.”