Shares in Movie Gallery, the nation's No.2 video chain behind Blockbuster, plunged 54 percent Thursday after it disclosed that it had lost $14.9 million in the second quarter. It had posted a loss of $12.2 million during the same quarter a year ago. Analysts blamed the tumble on Movie Gallery's decision to acquire Hollywood Entertainment last year for $862 million and the debt it subsequently incurred in doing so. "It was a really painful day for a lot of investors in this company," one unnamed money manager told the New York Post. "It's a mess, entertainment analyst Dennis McAlpine remarked in USA Today. "They bit off more than they expected." Another big loser Thursday was Canadian-based IMAX, whose shares plummeted 41 percent after reporting that its efforts to find a buyer had been unsuccessful. The company has also seen mixed results from the release of several standard theatrical features on its giant-screen venues. Superman II turned out to be a huge hit on IMAX screens, but Poseidon, V for Vendetta and Ant Bully were at best mediocre.




11/08/2006