The major U.S. chains, owned by Regal Entertainment Group, AMC Entertainment, Inc. and Cinemark USA, Inc. are about to borrow $1 billion in order to furnish 13,000 screens (one-third of the country) with digital projectors. A joint venture of the three companies, National CineMedia LLC is working with JP Morgan Chase & Co. to raise the money from hedge funds and private-equity firms. The money will be paid back over seven years with help from the studios (this is still being worked out).
Personally, I've been enjoying the slower process, and this coming from somebody who spent three years working with the annoyances of platter-system film projectors. I love the way film looks and I probably won't change once I do see a movie in digital (I know, it's about time I check it out). Nonetheless, I am always excited about advances in the cinema industry, and am therefore excited about this news, if it is true (it comes from anonymous sources on the fund-raising side of the deal). As long as places like Film Forum always use the old projectors, I don't mind at all if the multiplexes do their thing.