Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol gets Dec 21 UK IMAX release

November 28, 2011 – 3:31 pm

The UK will get to see Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol a week early with the recently announced December 21 IMAX release date. IMAX theaters in the US get it even earlier with a December 16 release date. The Globe and Mail reports:

Imax’s large-screen cinemas in the U.S. and the U.K .will show the next film in Paramount’s Mission: Impossible franchise five days before its general release, in a marketing gambit being closely watched by other studios.

The Tom Cruise action film, some of which was shot with Imax cameras, will open in Imax screens in the U.S. on Dec. 16 and in the U.K. on Dec. 21, giving Imax exclusivity in each case for the opening weekend, typically the most valuable period for a new film’s box office takings.

The unusual strategy risks limiting the number of screens on which the film is available for the opening weekend, but Rich Gelfond, chief executive of Imax, said he believed the strategy would work to both Imax and Paramount’s advantage.

The Viacom-owned studio “believes it will create a lift for the whole film,” he said: “[Paramount hopes that] by premiering it on our screens with footage shot with our cameras, people will have such a positive experience they’ll go out and talk about it,” generating the word-of-mouth recommendations that can be decisive for a film’s success.

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UPDATE: More on the UK release date:

The Hollywood Reporter: Tom Cruise’s ‘Mission Impossible Ghost Protocol’ Set for Early Imax Release in U.K.