June 17, 2009
PORTSMOUTH, NH — This year, as part of their Summerfilms program, the Music Hall up in Portsmouth, NH recently screened the great, venerable golden-oldie-but-goody movie/musical classic, “West Side Story”.
Just a little over an hour north of Boston, Portsmouth, NH is a quaint, picturesque old city with many interresting-looking old buildings and many mom-and pop businesses. However, while the Music Hall doesn’t look like much from the outside, it’s clear from the moment that one enters inside, that it’s a beautiful, real old-fashioned-looking theatre.
LOS ANGELES, CA — Seven local sites have been added to the National Register of Historic Places including the Lincoln Theatre.
Seven Los Angeles buildings that experts say have played significant roles in the lives of local African Americans have been placed on the National Register of Historic Places, authorities have announced.
The listing follows a yearlong study of some 4,000 parcels in South Los Angeles by consultants hired by the city’s Community Redevelopment Agency. The survey is said to be the first “historical thematic study” ever undertaken in California of buildings that were integral to the African American community.
Read the full story in the Los Angeles Times.
June 16, 2009
JOHNSTOWN, PA — Only 23 but a veteran of the industry, Blake Feegle is taking over the Westwood Plaza Theater & Cafe.
Blake Fleegle has held just about every job a movie theater has to offer: Usher, cashier, projectionist and concession worker.
Now, he can add a new title to his cinematic resume: Owner.
At the tender age of 23, the Somerset resident has purchased the Westwood Plaza Theatre & Cafe in Lower Yoder Township.
Read the full story in the Tribune Democrat.
June 10, 2009
CHAPEL HILL, NC — Rumors have been speculating that owner Bruce Stone is also putting on sale another independent owned and operated Chapel Hill movie house… the Chelsea,which is an independent three screen cinema located at 1129 Weaver Dairy Road in the Timberlyne Shopping Center in the Northern section of Chapel Hill.
The Chelsea is the second independent arthouse cinema operating in the greater Chapel Hill area. It was originally a twin cinema when it opened in 1998,but somewhere in the late 1990’s,a third screen was added. This was a cinema that showcased a lot of independent films as well as foreign released and first-run features.
Last week, owner Bruce Stone, who had already said he wants to sell the Franklin Street theater, confirmed he is also trying to sell his three-screen Chelsea Theater in Timberlyne shopping center.
“It would be a package deal,” he said.
Times are tough and getting tougher, Stone said.
More on this story at the Chapel Hill News.
June 9, 2009
TOLEDO, OH — A Toledo icon, the Showcase Cinemas, after sitting dormant for 4 years, may have new life with new uses.
City Councilman Tom Waniewski says he’s been talking with developers who want to put in two hotels, restaurants and shops on the site.
The Toledo-Lucas County Planning Commission considers the developers proposal at a meeting next month.
Read the full story at WTOL.
SOUTH HADLEY, MA — A small town gem, the Tower Theaters, celebrated 20 years in the business.
And no one’s happier about the movie theater’s success than the owner of the lingerie store next door, she told 22News the theater’s been great for business.
“The wife will look in the store, and her husband will only say hurry up, let’s go to the movies, but later the wife will come in the next day or the weekend afterwards,” said Charlotte Dunaj.
Read more at WWLP.
June 5, 2009
LONDON, ENGLAND — London’s Empire Leicester Square has become Europe’s first large auditorium to use the new Dolby 3D Digital Cinema large screen solution, which allows exhibitors to project Dolby 3D onto screens ranging from 12.5 to 21 meters.
“We are delighted to be working with Dolby in what is a European first. We share the commitment to bring the finest image quality to the screen in ways that continue to add value to the cinema experience. When it came to hosting the Jonas Brothers 3D premiere, the new Dolby 3D large screen solution seemed the ideal choice,” said Justin Ribbons, Chief Executive Officer, Empire Cinemas Limited. “With the Dolby 3D large screen solution, we can now show 3D to audiences in our largest auditorium at Leicester Square—Empire One—and provide a stunning experience for everyone in the audience.”
Read more at Dolby.
June 3, 2009
HARRIMAN, TN — A number of factors cam together to provide little business lately for the Midtown Drive-In. Could the poor attendance lead to the theatre’s closing soon?
Manager Charli Michaels say it’s likely a combination of the economy, the weather, and the perception of Roane County since the TVA ash spill.
The theater has entertained movie fans from through 1950s to the 1970s. It reopened in mid 1990s.
Michaels says the crowds been as slim as about 100 people one night two weeks ago.
Read the full story at Volunteer TV.
June 1, 2009
CHAPEL HILL, NC — With a possible sale around the corner, the future of the Varsity Theatre is in doubt.
Reports are swirling through Chapel Hill and the surrounding community that the iconic Varsity Theater located in Downtown Chapel Hill at 123 East Franklin Street is scheduled to close its doors forever on Thursday,June 4, 2009, leaving Downtown Chapel Hill without a movie house in years. The owner of the Varsity Bruce Stone said Tuesday that “we’re in the process of negotiating a sale” but offered few details about that announcement or whether a failure to sell the theater, which has been a movie going favorite and a historic Chapel Hill landmark for years,would result in its closure.
The Varsity Theatre opened as a single screen theatre during its heyday,but in the early 1980’s the theatre underwent some changes. Construction of the auditorium began in late-1982 when the original auditorium was split in two making a twin cinema. It reopened in 1983 as the Varsity 1 & 2 under new management. The main focus of the Varsity was its showing of a variety of films ranging for independent features,foreign films,documentaries, re-issued classic films, cult movies,not to mention first-run films and second-run features.
Read the full story in the Herald Sun.(reg rqr’d)
May 18, 2009