Author Seeks Info RE: 1977 theater operation
I am currently working on a young adult novel set in the summer of 1977. The book is not under contract, but an editor at a major publishing house has asked me to submit the manuscript directly to her upon completion. Problem is I’m having trouble finishing the project due to my complete ignorance of movie theater management in 1977. I bought the book Cinema Treasures (which I enjoyed), but it didn’t really provide the kind of information I need. Help?!?!
My teenage protagonist is part of a group of misfits working at a beautiful but decaying historic theater located in a small town in Ohio. I’m trying to capture the magical “lost era” ambiance of one of these theaters….especially in 1977 when everything was….well, so 70’s! The theater is not just a setting for my story. It’s really one of my characters. As such, the daily operations, maintenance nightmares, financial troubles and the protagonist’s efforts to save the theater from being “twinned” (or, worse, sold to a sleazy investor with plans to show porno movies) are all central to my plot (as is the only movie they show for most of the summer – Star Wars).
I know my Star Wars history & I’ve researched 1977 extensively, but I’ve never worked in a theater – cinematic or otherwise.
If you worked at the Midland or in a similar theater in 1977 (or within a few years of that year), I’d greatly appreciate your help.
I cannot offer payment, but I will certainly include my gratitude (with mention of your historic theater) in my author’s notes once the book is published.
Thank you in advance!