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
May 15, 2009
MCKEES ROCKS, PA — The McKees Rocks, PA borough council has approved an application be submitted to the PA Department of Community and Economic Development for $500,000.
This funding would be used towards reopening the Roxian Theater on lower Chartiers Avenue.
The Roxian was a beloved movie theater which in recent years had been used as a rock venue.
Read the full story in the Post-Gazette.
May 14, 2009
DAYTON, OH — After many years working to get it back in service, some dedicated fans are giving a historic organ a chance to shine again.
Just before King Wrecking Co. crews tore down Dayton’s RKO Keith’s Theatre in 1967, David Bowers and a couple of friends went there on a mission to save a precious artifact.
Bowers and his friends, Roy Haning and Neal White, found a 1922-vintage Wurlitzer Style 210 pipe organ, “a gem of an instrument,” in Bowers' estimation. Haning and White bought the organ and its nearly 1,000 pipes on the spot.
Four decades later, the RKO Keith’s Mighty Wurlitzer is being restored in Medford, Mass., for use in Medford’s Chevalier Theatre. If all goes as planned, it’ll be played for the first time since 1986 sometime next year.
Read more in the Dayton Daily News.
May 13, 2009
The tide is turning for the mood of saving old theaters in South New Jersey.
South Jersey developers have found that old movie houses in disrepair can make great locations for new pharmacies. The iconic Harwan Theatre in Mount Ephraim became a Walgreen’s. The Century Theater in Audubon became an Eckerd Drug.
But now volunteer groups are trying to rescue some of the remaining theaters.
Neighbors Celebrating the Westmont is dedicated to saving the 1,300-seat Westmont Theatre, in Haddon Township, Camden County, where a young Steven Spielberg once sat mesmerized by the silver screen and Dustin Hoffman sat in disguise to gauge audience reaction to “Kramer vs. Kramer.”
Read more in the Philadelphia Daily News.
May 8, 2009
You may see the new Star Trek film before America’s 44th President. Politico reports that Barack Obama, who has made use of the White House screening room to watch “Slumdog Millionaire” and other films, has asked Paramount Pictures for a print.
President Barack Obama gets hailed by supporters as a transformational, visionary leader. But can he boldly go where no man has gone before? Possibly: POLITICO hears from several sources that the President has asked Paramount Pictures for his own screening of the new “Star Trek” film in the White House.
(Image courtesy of the Official White House Photostream.)