• July 7, 2008

    Start a volunteer program?

    So many of you may be of, or personally know members of, the film industry. What about a national fundraising program for the preservation of theaters? Or, persons of all ages could spend vacation time working on buildings.

    Rather like Habitat for Humanity, film enthusiasts could have working vacations where they meet new friends with similar interests. Perhaps members of SAG and/or AFTRA (is that the correct acronym?) could attend/participate. At the end of the day, put the hammers down, take a shower, then watch the pre-scheduled film and discuss it. Imagine fans of “Casablanca”, “Spiderman”, “Rear Window”, or “The Godfather” getting together for productive fun. Heck, sign me up!

  • July 3, 2008

    Three CT Community Colleges receive grants for CT Film Industry training program

    By Dave Bonan

    Norwalk, Middlesex (in Middletown) and Quinnipiac in Hamden have just received $3 million, to be equally shared, in funding for the CT Film Industry Training Program, as part of the Hollywood East Tax Force. This adds to the new infrastructure for job training for the state’s burgeoning role in the film industry, with new soundstages being built and the most lucrative tax credit in the United States.

    The money was allocated by the legislature and was originally for $6 million but was whittled to the present amount. The programs will start on July 7. The Film Industry Training Program is designed for individuals who want to learn the basics of feature and episodic television film production and potentially pursue entry-level freelance work in the industry. Trainees will also learn about union membership, which is required to work on the majority of productions in the state.

  • July 2, 2008

    Drive-ins: An American classic reborn

    An article in Time takes a look at the current state of the drive-in.

    As the sun slowly set on a recent night in June, 800 cars and a crowd of viewers in lawn chairs pulled up to one of the four screens on the 25-acre green of the Mission Tiki drive-in theater in Montclair, Calif. Lovestruck teens canoodled in back seats. Parents corralled children in minivans. It was a remarkable turnout for a business, born 75 years ago, that has been teetering on the edge of extinction for the past two decades.

    But tickets at the Mission Tiki have started selling again, and at $7 per adult and free entry for kids under 10, movie-goers are re-embracing the affordable luxury of a night at the drive-in. “It’s a family bargain,” says Frank Huttinger, vice president of marketing for De Anza Land & Leisure Corp., the family-owned business that operates the Mission Tiki. “It’s quality presentation. Our biggest problem is letting people know that we’re still there.”

  • June 27, 2008

    Watch a movie, burn some calories

    SIMI VALLEY, CA — A newly renovated Gold’s Gym has “Cardio Cinema” where a room with exercise equipment has been turned into a theater.

    Unlike most Workout Wednesday posts, this week’s installment refers to more of a workout location than a specific workout. This unique feature is the “Cardio Cinema”—a movie theater within a gym—and is located inside the newly renovated Gold’s Gym in Simi Valley.

    The idea behind the workout is this: A dark theater is packed full of treadmills, elliptical machines and bikes, and a different film is featured every day. Due to the fact that show times wouldn’t be very convenient in a gym setting, the films are played on a loop, so people wanting to watch the entire movie can see it in its entirety if they stay long enough.

    Read more at LAist.

  • June 24, 2008

    A Day in the Life of a cinema manager

    This article takes a look at the typical issues that come up in a daily week in the life of Ohio cinema operations manager, Ron Dunn.

    Ron Dunn has been an employee for Jim and Joyce Boyd for the past 18 years, the past two as the all-inclusive employee with the title of Boyd Operations Manager. The Boyds are the owners of three theaters including the Van Wert Cinemas and the Van-Del Drive-In, as well as a theater in Bryan, Ohio. Dunn is hands on with all of them, specifically the ones in the area, and spends his days handling a slew of tasks.

    Dunn is the right-hand man for the owners and has a daily routine that fluctuates frequently, often times differing depending upon the day of the week.

    Read the full story in the Times Bulletin.

  • June 20, 2008

    Movie theaters join fight against MPAA’s anti-DVR initiative

    With the MPAA trying to restrict DVR users from recording new releases at home, movie theater owners are attempting to band together against them because of the negative effects it might have on theaters.

    A Hollywood proposal to block DVR recording capability on some cable-distributed movies has been met with alarm by NATO—that is, the National Association of Theater Owners. The trade association’s Vice President told the Federal Communications Commission yesterday that the idea, floated by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), could have “a devastating effect,” causing “the destruction of neighborhood movie theaters across the country.”

    Read the full story at Ars Technica.

  • June 17, 2008

    RIP Stan Winston

    As many of you know, Stan Winston, one of the fathers of pre-CGI special effects, passed away yesterday of cancer. He was 62 years old. His legacy, however, will live on in the studio he helped create for which many sfx movies were made. May Stan Winston Studio live on in the CGI era with its famous makeup effects.

  • June 13, 2008

    L.A. moviegoing on a budget

    LOS ANGELES, CA — Despite the troubling economy, there are still plenty of low-price movie options in Los Angeles. In this post on Film Radar, site creator Karie Bible dishes out a list of theater discounts that cover most parts of town, with some even appearing in historic venues. Check it out and also lookout for their informative calendar of upcoming events in the area as well.

  • June 12, 2008

    What’s the Cinemark difference?

    Can someone tell me what is the difference between Cinemark’s theater designs. There appear to be three different styles: 1.) The movies, 2.) Tinseltown USA, and 3.) Cinemark.

    Do they have different amenities, projection capabilities, cater to different audiences? What makes them different? Also the front design of the Tinseltown USA design is there any significence to it? The four large columns on the front specifically.

    Thank you!

  • June 11, 2008

    Comedy keeps movie theater owners smiling

    A Boston-area theater thinks outside the box by showcasing stand-up comedy.

    The slump in business for local movie theaters is no laughing matter – unless, of course, you happen to be in the audience.

    To combat flat ticket sales, the Showcase Cinemas in Randolph has added a comedy night to its menu of attractions. The Thursday evening “Stand-up Showcase” features four comics performing a 100-minute show. The first was held in a 180-seat auditorium in the theater May 15, and the series is expected to continue every Thursday night.

    Read the full story in the Boston Globe.