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Imax to dive into virtual reality

Just as it announced a partnership with Google to develop a 360-degree VR camera, the company that made the giant movie screen famous said it will open VR experiences worldwide.

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Though Smell-O-Vision is unlikely to make a comeback, virtual reality may be landing at a multiplex near you.

Big screen king Imax will launch "VR experiences" in six cities worldwide this year, starting in Los Angeles and eventually extending to China, the Wall Street Journal reports. Besides traditional cinemas, locations could include shopping malls and tourist sites.

Each venue will use VR headsets that Acer has developed with Starbreeze, a Swedish video game developer. These venues will show content from Starbreeze's existing catalog of VR entertainment and games. Other content will be shot on new 360-degree cameras that Imax is developing with Google.

"As technology and entertainment options evolve, we continue to innovate and find new platforms to extend the Imax experience," Imax CEO Richard L. Gelfond said in an emailed statement.

Imax also said that it will use its existing Hollywood filmmaker and studio relationships to develop new VR partnerships.