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Imax Will Release Chinese-Language Films in China With Huayi

June 16 (Bloomberg) -- Imax Corp., the operator of giant-screen movie theaters, will release up to three Chinese-language films in China as part of efforts to build its local audience.

Imax will join Huayi Brothers Group Ltd. to release the large-screen format movies, Chief Executive Officer Richard Gelfond said in an interview in Shanghai today. Chinese director Feng Xiaogang’s movie “Aftershock” will be re-mastered and released in July 2010, the company said in a press release today.

Imax, which operates 18 theaters in China, plans to expand to 41 by 2012, Gelfond said. The company will open its first three theatres in Japan this week, he said.

The company, unprofitable for the past three years, will turn a profit in 2009, Gelfond said. Its shares have rallied 58 percent in New York this year, compared with a 2.3 percent gain in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.

To contact the Bloomberg News staff on this story: Chua Kong Ho in Shanghai at kchua6@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Liu in Beijing at jliu42@bloomberg.net

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