Image source: IMAX.

What: Shares of IMAX (IMAX 0.57%) rose as much as 15.7% on Thursday, following a strong earnings report.

So what: In the second quarter, IMAX's sales declined 14% year over year, to $91.7 million. The immersive cinema specialist signed deals for 94 new screens during the quarter, up from 28 in the year-ago period. The company also followed through on performing 38 new installations, up from 35 a year ago.

On the bottom line, adjusted earnings landed at $0.18 per diluted share, down from $0.40 per share in the corresponding 2015 period.

Based on these results and signed theater deals, IMAX raised its full-year guidance for theater installations to 155 theaters. That's up from about 137 installations in last-quarter's guidance update, which itself was a boost from the original forecast of roughly 117 new theaters.

Now what: Sales and earnings may have shrunk this time, but the damage was smaller than expected. IMAX beat analyst estimates on both the top and bottom lines. Moreover, robust theater deals are laying the groundwork for better numbers in future quarters.

The stock has been riding a bumpy road in 2016. Even after today's sudden surge, IMAX shares are still trading down 4% this year.