Odeon has officially announced the location of its first Dolby Cinema in the UK, having signed up to convert seven screens across the country. Unsurprisingly, the first location to get the Dolby Cinema overhaul is Odeon’s flagship Leicester Square cinema, which will re-open its doors this Christmas following an 11-month refurbishment.
As with other Dolby Cinema screens, Odeon will be utilising both Dolby Atmos and Dolby Vision technology. Powering the Dolby Vision will be high-powered dual laser projection system, which will be the first time this system has been installed in a UK cinema outside of Dolby’s own London HQ.
Speaking about the installation, Dolby’s senior vice president, Cinema Business Group, noted, “Odeon Leicester Square is one of the most iconic cinemas in Europe and Dolby is honoured to be a part of this extraordinary renaissance. This installation represents the first opportunity for British film goers to experience the unparalleled magic that Dolby Cinema offers. Our technology is recognised as delivering the most faithful experience of filmmakers’ creative intent. This partnership with Odeon is a significant milestone for Dolby as we strive to extend spectacular experiences to moviegoers in the UK and around the world.”
The Dolby Cinema will be located in Odeon Leicester Square’s main screen, which has a brand-new premium entrance to make it feel like going to the movies is a real event. Alongside the immersive audiovisuals and premium entrance, Odeon’s first Dolby Cinema will also boast 800 Odeon Luxe seats, which should make for a more comfortable viewing experience.
Odeon’s parent company, AMC Cinemas, has been particularly bullish about the Dolby Cinema format, so it’s unsurprising to see it finally come to the UK. In the US, AMC has rolled out the technology to 121 locations under the Dolby Cinema at AMC brand. The roll-out doesn’t appear to be slowing down either.
There is the opportunity for more Dolby Cinema launches in the UK, although Odeon is the only brand to commit to the format so far. Fellow UK cinema chain Vue also has committed to the format, but thus far it is only operating Dolby Cinema screens in the Netherlands. Meanwhile Cineworld is rolling out Dolby Atmos, while trialling some other unique technologies.
The Odeon Leicester Square was initially scheduled to open in time for the BFI Film Festival in October, although it’s now set to swing open its doors in December – just in time for Christmas.