IMAX and Chinese Theatres have announced an agreement to add an IMAX theatre to the iconic TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, through an extensive transformation of the landmark site. The addition brings the theatre into the 21st Century and gives Hollywood its first IMAX theatre, which those involved say will provide fans with a movie-going experience that will rival any in southern California. Once complete, the new screen will be IMAX’s largest auditorium in the world in terms of seating capacity and its third-largest commercial theatre screen in North America.
Home to more than 40 of the world’s biggest, A-list film premieres per year as well as the celebrated handprint and footprint forecourt, the historic, world-famous TCL Chinese Theatre will undergo its first major makeover in 85 years. The theatre will close for principal construction on May 1 and is expected to re-open to the public in late summer.
“As we embark on our much-anticipated renovation of the TCL Chinese Theatre, IMAX will play a key role in rejuvenating this historical landmark,” said Alwyn Hight Kushner, TCL Chinese Theatre President and C.O.O. “We believe that IMAX’s unparalleled entertainment technology, coupled with its blockbuster portfolio of films, will usher in a new era of movie-going at our famed theatre that will strengthen our business by delivering a premium viewing experience for our guests. The recent awarding of naming rights to TCL, the inclusion of TCL technology in many areas of the theatre complex and the addition of IMAX will all play decisive roles in further modernizing this beloved historical landmark.”
“Steeped in Hollywood tradition and history, the TCL Chinese Theatre is arguably one of the most famous movie theatres in the world and we are honored to bring The IMAX Experience to this iconic location,” said IMAX CEO Richard L. Gelfond. “Today’s agreement is the perfect marriage of Hollywood history and cutting-edge entertainment technology that will transform the moviegoing experience for guests of the TCL Chinese Theatre for years to come.”
The popular handprint and footprint-populated forecourt, adjacent Chinese 6 Theatres and vast upstairs ballroom for parties, known as Grauman’s Ballroom, will continue operating normally during construction.
Since 1927, The TCL Chinese Theatre has been the home of the most important, star powered red carpet movie premieres and special events, where Hollywood’s biggest and brightest talents have come to watch their movies. The most famous movie theatre on the globe is world-renowned for its unique forecourt of the stars, featuring cement hand and footprints of major movie stars, from Marilyn Monroe to Brad Pitt, and numerous stars from all eras of Hollywood. In addition to being a major international tourist destination, TCL Chinese Theatre, and its six adjacent cinemas, the Chinese 6, are everyday working movie theatres, hosting millions of moviegoers year round. The TCL Chinese Theatre was declared a historic-cultural landmark in 1968, and there has always been a restoration program in process to maintain the theatre’s beauty. With its current, on-going facelift and new name and new added amenities and event spaces, guided by a new and vigorous ownership team, the TCL Chinese Theatre and its famed “hands and footprints in cement” forecourt will continue to be the preferred location for tourist visits and the entertainment industry’s most prestigious red carpet premieres for years to come.