September 2, 2009
SANTA CRUZ, CA — A gamble taken by Bill and Joanne Raney forty years ago when Santa Cruz, Califonia was regarded as a place for people with one foot in the grave eventually became a [url=/theaters/17562/] successful cinema[/url[ operating venture.
Santa Cruz was a sleepy, conservative seaside town of retirees then, but Raney figured the recently opened University of California was only beginning to exert its influence and it was only a matter time before the sleepy town woke up.
Part of that wake-up call came in the summer of 1969 when the Raneys opened the Nickelodeon on Lincoln Street on the site of a former bakery. The first film played on the first day in business at the Nick was “Elvira Madigan,” a lush Swedish romance that featured what today would be thought of as a modest amount of nudity. But in an era when the term “Swedish cinema” was practically a synonym for wild carnal licentiousness, it was a significant cultural moment.
Read the whole story about the the Nickelodeon Theater in the Santa Cruz Sentinel.
August 28, 2009
TACOMA, WA — The Grand Cinema in Tacoma is adding a fourth screen, expanding its lobby area, and replacing all of the theater’s seats.
Cowan, the Tacoma theater’s executive director, has just announced detailed plans for the cinema’s expansion. Come September, the nonprofit art-house movie theater will expand into the adjacent area formerly leased to the Grand Impromptu art gallery to create a fourth screen, central ticketing desk and larger lobby and concessions stand. The construction is slated to finish by December this year.
“What’s exciting is the program: We’ll be able to play 33 percent more films, maybe even more,” said Cowan. “It’ll enable us to bring in more smaller films, more independent films, some film series, even art movies partnered with Tacoma Art Museum.”
Read more in the News Tribune.
August 26, 2009
ROYAL OAK, MI — A developer is proposing to build a 10 screen multiplex in Detroit’s suburb of Royal Oak as part of an entertainment center that would include a bowling and a bar.
Catching a movie in downtown Royal Oak could become a one-stop fun shop in the near future.
The developer behind the Main North building wants to build a combination 10-screen movie theater complex, bowling alley, and bar. He will go before the city’s liquor commission tonight to make his case.
“You could get a drink and go see a movie or order something from the bar,” says Tim Thwing, director of planning for Royal Oak.
Read the full story in Metromode.
August 25, 2009
SZCZECIN, POLAND — According to its owner, the Kino Pionier in Szczecin, Poland will celebrate its 100th anniversary this year and that it is the oldest operating movie theater in the world.
When the first moving picture was projected on the screen in the Kino Pionier cinema – then called Helios – tickets cost just two pennies and Germany was ruled by an emperor. What is now the Polish city of Szczecin on the Baltic coast was then the German city of Stettin, just an hour’s drive northeast of Berlin.
While Hollywood may now be the film capital of the world, it was there in Szczecin that the very first movie was shown in 1909.
Read more in DW World.
August 24, 2009
CLEMSON, SC — Ever since the Astro III closed in August, 2008, the college town of Clemson, SC has been without a cinema. The city hopes that the Astro can be re-activated or that another cinema can be built, with the city able to provide at least some backing.
“It’s left a huge gap in the community,” Clemson Mayor Larry Abernathy said. “We miss it.”
The Astro had been open on College Avenue in Clemson for more than 30 years before it closed in August last year, Abernathy said.
He said the city has a “passionate interest” in acquiring the property but said he has discussed the issue with the owners, whom he said don’t want to sell.
Read more at Greenville Online.
August 20, 2009
BRACEBRIDGE, ONTARIO, CANADA — The Norwood Cinema is celebrating sixty years in business as it looks back at the changes in moviegoing over the years.
Joseph built the original 600-seat building in 1949, complete with a stage for live shows, two aisles and a screen to show movies.
Times have changed and the building now houses three cinemas. Cinema One has 235 seats, Cinema Two has 220 seats and Cinema Three has 120 seats.
The original theatre also had red velvet curtains and its live shows were well attended, remember its owners.
Read more in the Bracebridge Examiner.
August 19, 2009
JERUSALEM, ISRAEL — Despite recent enthusiasm for the film market there, Jerusalem has been losing its theaters.
Ever since Nir Barkat won the mayoral race in Jerusalem in November, the new administration under his helm has gone out of its way to prove the city is vital and has much to offer young people. Barkat spoke of Jerusalem as a “film capital” and hosted Hollywood producers to persuade them to shoot movies there.
But even if this dream comes true, Jerusalemites may soon be forced to go elsewhere to watch these movies. The capital is turning into the periphery, culturally speaking, in the number of functioning movie screens. In just three months, six screening halls in the Malha shopping mall will close to make way for the H&M clothing chain. And a serious threat of closure hangs over the Lev Smadar, a historic and much-loved institution, active as movie house for the last 81 years in the German Colony.
Read more at Haaretz.
FLINT, MI — Television station WJRT reports at that the Spencer Agency, an advertising agency presently in Mundy Township, is renovating a storefront space next to the iconic Capitol Theatre/ downtown. Owner Joshua Spencer is excited to be a part of the revitalization of downtown Flint. The agency plans on moving to the theater building in the fall.
August 18, 2009