Celebrating Cinepolis: 'FJI' salutes CinemaCon International Exhibitor of the Year Alejandro Ramirez


On International Day of CinemaCon 2013, Alejandro Ramírez Magaña, chief executive officer of Cinépolis, will receive the “Global Achievement in Exhibition Award” on behalf of more than 20,000 employees worldwide. With 161.8 million guests in 128 cities in 11 countries last year alone, Cinépolis truly redefines the meaning of global moviegoing. The company tagline may be “the Capital of Cinema,” but given its reach and presence, “the World Capital of Cinema” sounds equally appropriate.

“Alejandro Ramírez Magaña has shown an unwavering commitment to excellence throughout his career, a commitment that is exemplified by his contributions to the exhibition industry,” Mitch Neuhauser, managing director of CinemaCon, declares. “His work at Cinépolis has revolutionized the business of exhibition not only in Latin America, but throughout the world.”

The family business that began quite by accident in 1949, with one cinema in the central Mexican city of Morelia, Michoacán, has been cultivated into the largest exhibitor in Latin America and fourth largest in the world. Operating 346 cinemas with 3,1022 screens (all counts per April 10, 2013), of which 2,045 have already been digitized and 850 are 3D-enabled with 300 more by this summer, the Cinépolis portfolio includes eight IMAX theatres and 53 under its proprietary large-format Macro XE brand, as well as 16 region-exclusive, multi-sensory Cinépolis 4DX installations and 42 VIP Cinemas with 168 screens.

A market leader in Mexico (280 cinemas with 2,612 screens for a country box-office market share of almost 64%), Cinépolis also operates 17 theatres and 136 screens in Central America (Guatemala, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Panamá and Honduras) and 31 locations and 242 screens in South America (Colombia, Perú and Brazil). Across India, there are ten Cinépolis multiplexes with 49 screens. In the United States, five locations with 35 screens operate under the Cinépolis Luxury Cinemas banner and, since September 2012, four Paragon Theaters with 44 screens, including CocoWalk in Miami, Florida.

Iluminamos la película de tu vida con sonrisas y momentos inolvidables” is the company motto, which chief executive officer Miguel Mier translates as “We enlighten the movie of your life with smiles and memorable experiences.” Mier says, “We like the analogy that we bring light—because that’s what we do in exhibition: We bring light to the screen.”

With this special tribute section, Film Journal International is pleased to shine a spotlight on the Ramírez Family business that, over the course of three generations, has continuously innovated the moviegoing experience and thereby enriches people’s lives every single day of the year. Together with everyone at CinemaCon, we are honoring a company that fosters growth of the industry and gives back to its communities.

“It is a great recognition not for myself alone,” says Ramírez Magaña, “but also for my family and our team at Cinépolis. Before me, of course, it was my father and my grandfather who founded the company. My uncles and my brother too have contributed tremendously to help me continue a family tradition. They all have actively participated in the management of Cinépolis and at the board level. And we couldn’t do most of it without our dedicated team of talented individuals. Receiving the CinemaCon Achievement Award is a great motivation for us as a company that started with one cinema in the small town of Morelia, Michoacán, and, by expanding into 11 markets, has been able to develop into a large player in the international arena. It’s a great motivation for us to continue to try to do what we do best, which is to recreate and enrich the cinemagoing experience.”

Check out this accompanying piece, an in-depth interview with Alejandro Ramírez Magaña, chief executive officer of Cinépolis.

The author wishes to thank Ramón Ramírez Guzmán, public-relations director at Cinépolis, for his tremendous support.