November 14, 2008
TACOMA, WA — The Blue Mouse Theatre is celebrating its 85th birthday this week as a single-screen, 221-seat cinema.
For the past 15 years, it has been run by a collective of 32 investors who put together $170,000 in 1993 to buy the theater, refurbish it and reopen it under its original name.
It is the oldest continuously run movie theater in Washington state and one of the oldest in the country. It got its name from a lounge in Paris that showed films.
November 13, 2008
POMONA, CA — With the city behind the restoration of the Fox Theatre, downtown is looking brighter.
In 1982, Pomona civic leaders officially gave up on the Fox Theater.
Given the chance to buy the vacant Art Deco theater for civic use, a divided City Council rejected the idea. Councilman Clay Bryant memorably declared downtowns to be “anachronisms.”
Two decades of blight later, the theater was bought in 2002 by a new generation of city leaders during a renewed focus on the downtown’s potential. They bided their time before selling the Fox to a developer now in the midst of restoring the theater to its 1931 glory.
Read more in the Daily Bulletin.
November 12, 2008
SAIPAN, MARSHALL ISLANDS — The economic downturn, which forced the only cinema on the islands to close two days a week, has led to the only branch of Blockbuster video being closed.
When word leaked out, bargain-hunters descended on the store, and by 7 pm, people were no longer being allowed inside because it was full.
Last month, the seven-screen Hollywood Theatre-Saipan Megaplex started closing its doors two days a week because of poor economic conditions and rising costs. Last April 18th it closed completely, re-opening May 23rd only after overwhelming complaints from the public.
NORTHUMBERLAND, PA — Because the Point Drive-In Theatre was 10 days late in paying its $310 electric bill, the utility cut off its power for the weekend, costing the owner $3,000 in business.
For the last eight years, the drive-in has run a horror movie marathon on weekends in October. On Friday, October 24th, PPL Electric Utilities cut off the power, and despite the owner paying the bill that day, the electric company refused to restore power until the following week.
The owner claims he never received a shut-off notice and no one had tried to called him about the bill.
November 5, 2008
JACKSONVILLE, FL — A congregation that bought an old drive-in theater found at least a hundred reels of X-rated movies and burnt them.
Church members held a special ceremonial service last Sunday where they burned the decades-old porn, saying that they were making the unholy property holy. Firefighters oversaw the blaze.
November 4, 2008
PITTSFIELD, MA — The city has broken ground on the $13 million Beacon Cinema Project in an attempt to revitalize the downtown business area.
The historic 90-year-old Kinnell-Kresge building will be converted into a six-screen cinema, with retail space, restaurants and offices.
The project is a combination of public and private investment and backing from state and local government.
SOUTH JORDAN, UT — The Megaplex Theatre at the District gave moviegoers more than they bargained for when it played the R-rated movie “Sex Drive” instead of the G-rated “High School Musical 3.”
The theater switched one of the showings of “High School Musical 3: Senior Year” to a larger auditorium to accommodate more people, but forgot to switch the movie.
“Sex Drive” includes nudity in its opening minutes and parents could not carry their children out of the hall fast enough.
November 3, 2008
COLUMBUS, OH — The theatre formerly known as the Drexel Grandview will live again. Originally opened in 1926, the Grandview Theatre operated until the middle of the century before it closed. After several brief runs under different operators, Jeff and Kathy Frank began operating it in the early ‘90s as the Drexel Grandview. After 17 years, the Drexel Grandview closed on Sept. 30, 2008.
The theatre will open under its original name, Grandview Theatre, and will be operated by Columbus Independent Media, Inc., helmed by David Nedrow and Jennifer Stancel. The new operators are planning many renovations to the theatre, including new auditorium soft goods, a new concession stand, and booth improvements. The theatre is expected to begin regular programming in early 2009, maintaining the independent and foreign film focus of the Drexel Grandview.
October 31, 2008
NORWICH, UK — Due to pressure from area teachers, the Vue Cinema decided to cancel its 9 am showing of Disney’s “High School Music 3” last week for fear it would promote truancy.
The theater wanted to be the first in the area to screen it, but caved in to complaints from local schools.
However, some bloggers commented that many schools were off last week and wanted to see the film early.
LOVELAND, OH — The community is trying to grasp the tragedy and look forward after the fire at the Loveland Stage Company’s theatre last week.
This week, members of the Loveland Stage Company are reeling after a fire broke out inside the town’s 1939 theater. No one was hurt in the Oct. 20 blaze, which firefighters say originated from heat lamps used to illuminate brand new stained-glass windows. The building, which has been home to the theater company for the past decade, suffered a collapsed roof and massive damage to the interior, but its facade remains intact.
Despite the damage, the community is optimistic about the theater’s future. At a meeting scheduled for tomorrow, company members will assess the possibility of performances returning to the theater. In the meantime, the Loveland Fire Department has set up a repair fund, and productions continue in a local high school.
Read more at Preservation Nation.