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» Film-Tech Forum   » Operations   » Large Format Forum   » Whitaker Center in Harrisburg PA ordered to pay IMAX $366K (Page 1)

 
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Author Topic: Whitaker Center in Harrisburg PA ordered to pay IMAX $366K
Jonathan M. Crist
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 524
From: Hershey, PA, USA
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 - posted 02-14-2016 09:29 PM      Profile for Jonathan M. Crist   Email Jonathan M. Crist   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Looks like someone may end up losing their job ......

By Matt Miller | mmiller@pennlive.com
on February 10, 2016 at 10:30 AM

A federal judge has ordered the operator of the The Whitaker Center for Science and the Arts to pay IMAX Corp. $365,906 in a breach of contract dispute.

U.S. Middle District Senior Judge Sylvia H. Rambo issued that ruling this week, a month after determining that officials of the Whitaker, a cultural fixture of downtown Harrisburg, had reneged on its long-term lease of IMAX movie projection equipment.

The decision U.S. Middle District Senior Judge Sylvia H. Rambo issued this week puts the downtown Harrisburg facility on the hook for defaulting on a multi-year lease for its former IMAX movie projection system.

Canada-based IMAX initially sought $376,000 in damages from the center's operator, The Capital Center for the Arts, Science and Education Inc. The amount Rambo sanctioned resulted from a stipulation by the parties.

The legal battle erupted last year when IMAX sued the center for breaching an equipment lease that wasn't set to expire until 2019. The Whitaker began renting IMAX equipment in 1998, but in 2014 removed that gear.

Whitaker officials claimed the IMAX system lacked the ability to properly show Hollywood movies. In a failed bid to counter the IMAX suit, center officials claimed IMAX had misled them regarding the system's capabilities when they renewed the lease in 2004.

The center now uses a digital projection system that was installed during a $1 million facilities upgrade.

Whitaker Ordered to Pay IMAX $366K

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Jonathan Goeldner
Phenomenal Film Handler

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From: Washington, District of Columbia
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 - posted 02-15-2016 12:57 PM      Profile for Jonathan Goeldner   Email Jonathan Goeldner   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
ah the Whitaker Center - did a day trip up there from the DC area to see 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' in 15/70 IMAX - great presentation by the way.

so, let me get this straight - they ditched the 15/70 system, changed over to IMAX-Digital, and THEN decided to complain because they thought it looked like crud ... well duh ...

so what's the new system - if it's 2K - I have to laugh.

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Rick Raskin
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 - posted 02-15-2016 01:56 PM      Profile for Rick Raskin   Email Rick Raskin   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Sounds to me like they ditched the 15/70 and installed another vendor's digital system. If they had installed IMAX digital I don't see how there could be a judgement against the theater. Now, if they had done the latter and then replaced it with another digital system...Sucks to be you.

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Jonathan M. Crist
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From: Hershey, PA, USA
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 - posted 02-15-2016 02:57 PM      Profile for Jonathan M. Crist   Email Jonathan M. Crist   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Whitaker installed a competing vendor's (non IMAX) digital projection system. I believe the system installed came from D3D. D3D System

As I understand it, the fight boiled down to IMAX wanting the Whitaker Center to run certain Hollywood films. Those Hollywood films would have required programming exclusivity - the scheduling of those Hollywood films thus would have prevented Whitaker from running the many educational short films which it runs for school field trips during the day. The local school districts are the bread and butter which keep Whitaker alive.

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Jonathan Goeldner
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 - posted 02-15-2016 04:11 PM      Profile for Jonathan Goeldner   Email Jonathan Goeldner   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
^ oh, so THEY are the one's that revamped the once IMAX screen over in Davenport Iowa.

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Ari Leedsw
Film Handler

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From: Stoughton, MA
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 - posted 02-20-2016 11:54 AM      Profile for Ari Leedsw   Email Ari Leedsw   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Not sure how even a technically-ignorant judge could see that a 12,000 line film system and sub-4,000 line digital system are even in the same league.

LieMax!

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Jeffry L. Johnson
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 - posted 02-21-2016 02:13 PM      Profile for Jeffry L. Johnson   Author's Homepage   Email Jeffry L. Johnson   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Format: 70 mm / 15 perf IMAX
Film Dimensions:
H (mm): 69.6
V (mm): 48.5
Area (mm^2): 3376
Film Negative Pixels (a):
H: 11136
V: 7760
Total Pixels (HxV): 86.4 M
Viewable Pixels (b):
H: 5568
V: 3880
Total Pixels (HxV): 21.6 M
Field/Frame (rate/sec): 24
Bandwidth (Mbytes/sec)(c): 1555

Notes:
a) assuming 80 lp/mm resolvable information on film negative;
b) assuming 40 lp/mm resolvable information on screen;
c) bandwidth = (total viewable pixels x frame rate x 24 colour bits/pixel) / 8 bits/byte

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Ari Leedsw
Film Handler

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 - posted 02-21-2016 02:20 PM      Profile for Ari Leedsw   Email Ari Leedsw   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Thank you for the information, Jeffry.

That looks like 1/4 the resolution with LieMax as with IMAX?

And IMAX is 12K?

Am I reading that right?

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Steve Guttag
We forgot the crackers Gromit!!!

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From: Annapolis, MD
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 - posted 02-22-2016 06:05 AM      Profile for Steve Guttag   Email Steve Guttag   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
80 lp/mm is on the low side to start with. NTAV used to make their own 35PA film NT-Target and it had higher resolution targets. I had no problem on the projection side of things getting above 100 lp/mm...particularly in the center. Naturally, there are many factors in play here...including that target film is B&W camera original, not duplicated color stock. That said, until the Hateful Eight target, 70PA was duplicated film (and it showed when one looked at the resolution patches).

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Ari Leedsw
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 - posted 02-22-2016 09:34 AM      Profile for Ari Leedsw   Email Ari Leedsw   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Well, if you really want to get technical, you have to consider that line pairs per millimeter are a function of the CONTRAST OF THE SUBJECT, as well.

Unless you are shooting black and white striped charts for your whole movie, regardless of whether it's a chip or silver suspended on a strip of plastic in jello, you're getting resolution that is significantly less than the ideals.

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Ari Leedsw
Film Handler

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From: Stoughton, MA
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 - posted 02-22-2016 04:37 PM      Profile for Ari Leedsw   Email Ari Leedsw   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Jeff, sorry I misread your post. If you are saying only 25% of that makes it to the screen, that would apply just as much to 4K, 35mm, 2K, 16mm, VHS, whatever, too wouldn't it?

I've heard you lose 50% whenever you go through a lens, but 75?

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Mark Gulbrandsen
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 - posted 02-22-2016 08:54 PM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I have replaced a couple Imax's and one Iwerks system in past years. I can assure you that even if they pay the 366 grand they will come out way way ahead on operating expenses over a five year equipment life span period. Overhead costs to run a dual 15/70 booth can easily exceed 20 grand a month with labor and go as high as 35 grand a month if a site is running dual 15K lamps. This is not counting if you have to buy prints and if you are down and lose screen time, plus the per seat percentage you pay just to Imax! The math is pretty easy to calculate... Stacked Christies work great! Operational costs are abut 1/5th of what any of the 15/70 film systems are.

Mark

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Leo Enticknap
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 - posted 02-22-2016 11:50 PM      Profile for Leo Enticknap   Author's Homepage   Email Leo Enticknap   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Jonathan M. Crist
As I understand it, the fight boiled down to IMAX wanting the Whitaker Center to run certain Hollywood films. Those Hollywood films would have required programming exclusivity - the scheduling of those Hollywood films thus would have prevented Whitaker from running the many educational short films which it runs for school field trips during the day. The local school districts are the bread and butter which keep Whitaker alive.
That doesn't sound like precisely it. From the article:

quote: article, Leo's emphasis
Whitaker officials claimed the IMAX system lacked the ability to properly show Hollywood movies. In a failed bid to counter the IMAX suit, center officials claimed IMAX had misled them regarding the system's capabilities when they renewed the lease in 2004.
Maybe the issue is that as large format converted to digital, the titles they wanted to show stopped being available in 15/70 film prints, and therefore Whitaker is arguing that a leasing contract signed in the belief that they would be throughout the contract term became unenforceable as the equipment became essentially obsolete before that term was up?

Slighly OT, but a film industry court case being presided over by a judge called Rambo gave me a giggle.

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Brad Miller
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From: Plano, TX (36.2 miles NW of Rockwall)
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 - posted 02-22-2016 11:59 PM      Profile for Brad Miller   Author's Homepage   Email Brad Miller       Edit/Delete Post 
I've pulled a dual Christie IMAX system with an unmasked and curved silver screen and replaced it with a flat white screen and a single Christie 2230 with anamorphic.

It was no contest. My single Christie install's quality was a no contest winner as comparing against the IMAX image. Of course IMAX got all butthurt and sued (because that's what they do), but in the end Mark is correct...the financial hit IMAX does to their clients is in no way worth it.

Plus the sound was vastly improved too after removing their system and installing QSC.

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Ari Leedsw
Film Handler

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From: Stoughton, MA
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 - posted 02-24-2016 11:01 AM      Profile for Ari Leedsw   Email Ari Leedsw   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Isn't that simple math? Assuming parity elsewhere, 2x2K projectors is half the resolution of 4K. That's assuming the same aspect and 2,048 lines and 4,096 lines, respectively.

4K is 4x the resolution of 2K, as we are talking about an area.

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