Leading International exhibitor, Kinepolis, has signed an agreement with CJ 4Dplex to install six additional 4DX theatres on top of its first order of five 4DX theatres less than 12 months prior. The new 4DX screens will be installed in Belgium (Kinepolis Hasselt, Ghent and Rocourt), and one each in Luxembourg (Kirchberg), France (Nimes) and Spain (Madrid). The new 4DX auditoriums in Hasselt, Madrid and Rocourt will open before end of year, with the remaining three installations scheduled for Q1 2019. All of the new 4DX auditoriums will feature between 88 to 160 seats, indicating a wide range of theatre suitability.
According to CJ 4DPlex, 4DX is currenlty installed in 573 screens, spanning 59 territories and is on course to reach 600 by end 2018. The company also reached another high this month breaking its own record reaching over 20 million attendance and $250m at the worldwide box office, the first time it has achieved this feat. The result is the product of several record breaking films in the 4DX format led by Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom which grossed over $31m and over 2.2 million tickets sold. The rise is primarily linked to building up a stronger presence in core markets such as Western Europe and with renewed attention on the Middle East.
4DX has also recently announced that it will release Egyptian horror film 122 on its screens in the territory, marking the first local release to use 4DX technology. The company also recently announced a deal with CinemaCity to open its first 4DX theatres in Saudi Arabia in 2018.
The deal with Kinepolis shows how exhibitors are increasing their investment in 4D technology after initial screens have proven a success. The opening of another six theatres is testament to the now widespread popularity of the technology and the desire to expand the experience to further audiences. Kinepolis, as one of the more innovative exhibitors, is looking at 4D as one of their key potential premium and differential experience offerings. However, of the total screen base 4D still accounts for a very small (albeit growing) share of 0.3% of all screens in Western Europe in 2018.
The total 4D market reached 833 screens in H1 2018, of which 4DX accounted for the majority or 62.2% of this total. It is currently the main 4D provider in Europe, however,accounting for over 97% of the 105 screens installed as at H1 2018. This total does not include IMS screens such as D-Box.
If 4DX hits the 600 screen milestone by year end, this would represent a further 26.3% annual increase in 4DX screens, and a similar win of another 125 net new screens (as in 2017) but slowing from the previous uplift of 37.2% in 2017. It has since expanded to another two territories in 2018, with the focus now on strengthening its relationship with existing exhibition partners, such as Kinepolis.