PVR builds on luxury formats with Ice Theatres

PVR Cinemas plans to expand its luxury portfolio in reaction to the belief that as incomes rise, more people will want better quality entertainment experiences.

Ajay Bijli-owned multiplex chain PVR has partnered with French exhibitor CGR Cinemas to bring the high-end theatre-screen format Ice Theaters to India. The first of such properties opened in Delhi and Gurugram on Friday, with one each slated to come up in Mumbai and Bengaluru by February.

The Ice Theaters format uses aspect panels in conjunction with the main display to create a peripheral vision, giving viewers a sense of enhanced immersion with a background contrast of colors and movement.

internationally, high-budget films such as Doctor Strange within the Multiverse of Madness, The Batman, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore, Top Gun: Maverick and Morbius have been released in IMAX.

In an interview, Sanjeev Bijli, joint managing director of PVR said-

“We recognized this format as one which we might carry to India with the intention to encourage audiences to come back watch movies on the massive display. The luxury section is at the moment lower than 10% of our general portfolio however can be an essential a part of our development story, going ahead.”

After successfully opening Ice Theaters in Ahmedabad, Bengaluru and Pune next year, the company will decide on future expansion plans.

According to Bijli, movies shown in this format will cost 20% more than regular cinemas, which could range from ₹450-500 on weekends and ₹250-400 on weekdays. Each cinema will require an investment of around ₹1.8 crores for the new technology brand.

PVR already has 846 screens with premium formats in India, such as Imax, 4DX, Playhouse, Gold, LUXE, PXL, and ONYX Director’s Cut.

This April, PVR teamed up with French cinema architectural design agency Ōma Cinema to design new premium theatres for Indian audiences. These innovative cinemas will feature distinctive tiered balconies or ‘pods’ inspired by those in opera houses to provide protected intimate viewing experiences.

Bijli stated that the chain is still working with the French company’s architects and thinks that the format will help build a better viewing experience for groups in India. Bijli noted that, as opposed to other large formats like Imax, the process of converting movie content to be played in Ice Theaters is relatively simple.

The expansion of Ice Theaters further cements PVR’s commitment to offering luxury theatre experiences and is expected to help the company increase its share of the cinema market in India.

With this launch, PVR is hoping to provide moviegoers with an immersive theatre experience like never before. The company believes that the Ice Theaters format will bring a new level of innovation to India’s cinema industry.

This latest expansion in the luxury segment by PVR is certainly a positive move and will make moviegoing even more enjoyable for its customers.

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