Cinerama Dome and ArcLight Hollywood

6360 Sunset Boulevard,
Los Angeles, CA 90028

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Chris Utley
Chris Utley on February 1, 2008 at 8:45 am

“From what I saw, they made a fortune at the snack bar also which we all know is where the real money is made.”

Yeah…and they almost screwed themselves out of a bigger fortune because they were TOTALLY UNPREPARED for the onslaught that hit the snack bar during Intermission. I was literally at the front of the line with a long trail behind me when they abruptly announced that the register I was in was closed. We had a fit and after a crapload of haggling, they quickly assembled a new register and a new line.

The killer of all that was their explanation of why they closed the register:

LOWLY CONCESSION WORKER: We didn’t expect the snack bar to be crowded during intermission.

ME: It’s a ***king sold out show! What did you think was gonna happen?

LOWLY CONCESSION WORKER: I’m sorry. We were unprepared for this.

Manwithnoname on February 1, 2008 at 5:47 am

Neeb, I am also hoping that they will as “2001” was a big success. The Dome sold out well in advance for a weeknight screening and they mentioned when introducing the film that people were turned away. From what I saw, they made a fortune at the snack bar also which we all know is where the real money is made. A D-150 print of “Patton” on that curved screen would be amazing.

neeb on February 1, 2008 at 1:23 am

I drove up from San Diego to see 2001 and, the gaffes aside, I’d do it again.
The clicking was a bit annoying but I blame the print and not the theater.
If only the Dome could play some more 70mm movies (Patton, Dr Zhivago, Wild Bunch, Empire Strikes Back [yeah, I know]…) the world would be a better place.

JSA on January 31, 2008 at 3:07 pm

History tells us that when it comes to single-strip Cinerama, the source came from either Ultra-Panavision or Super Panavision. The Ultra-Panavision films (i.e. It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad World, Khartoum, etc.) received a rectification that consisted of a gradient squeeze. The experts point out to us that the Super Panavision/Cinerama films (2001, Grand Prix, Ice Station Zebra) did not receive any optical rectification. But I have to agree with the above post and also reiterate my earlier statement: the image fit much better along the curve this time. If I’m not mistaken, this print was struck in 2000. I’ve also wondered about years in the past when “2001” was re-issued at the D-150 theatres: Were there any rectified prints ever struck?

By the way, I can’t get “The Blue Danube” off my head!


Manwithnoname on January 31, 2008 at 1:12 pm

The film started late because there was still a mob at the snack bar. Not a problem holding the show as it would not delay a later screening. Seeing original costumes and other items used in the movie was also cool. I began to wonder if the portion shown after intermission was originally from a rectified print, or perhaps portions of it. In some places it seemed to fit the curved screen perfectly and was originally shown in single strip Cinerama when first released as stated in the end credits. I must also agree I found the left channel clicks annoying especially since they were brought to everyone’s attention during the film’s intro. In any event, I haven’t enjoyed this film so much since I saw it first run at the old Hollywood Pacific.

Chris Utley
Chris Utley on January 31, 2008 at 10:36 am

I concur with what JSA said…especially about that clicking noise! Also, the post-Intermission framing was off for the first 5-10 minutes but they fixed it as best they could. The bottom left & right corners weren’t keystoned properly (probably due to the screen design) but I probably wouldn’t have noticed it if it wasn’t for you die-hard cinephiles at Cinema Treasures (and CinemaTour, too!) who examine every aspect of film presentation with a fine toothed comb.


JSA on January 31, 2008 at 9:56 am

2001: All in all, after braving the LA freeway system, it was a good time last night! The Dome was packed. The movie started about 15 minutes late, and yes, overture and intermission were observed accordingly. For some reason, the picture did not seem as distorted (ie the “banana” effect) as the last time I saw it there in the early 90’s. However, the clicking noise due to the bad track was annoying. As mentioned a few postings above, it occured only during the first half. The second part of the film was much better in sound, and with less visible scratches. The Star Gate sequence looked AWESOME in that giant screen!

Truly, I appreciate “2001” more and more as the years go by. Seen from this vantage point in time, it’s hard to believe that a major studio trusted a director’s vision for a film that transcends its medium.

My thanks to the guys at the booth for putting a good show, and hopefully we will see more 70 MM in the future!


JSA on January 28, 2008 at 6:10 pm

Maybe Seattle got the print that was originally set for the Dome…


JodarMovieFan on January 27, 2008 at 12:06 pm

I’m wondering if this is the same 70mm print the AFI Silver had last Feb ‘07. It had an annoying tapping sound starting with the scene with Bowman rescuing Poole. You can read my experience at the AFI Silver’s page. I don’t know how to do the html thingy, yet.

Chris Utley
Chris Utley on January 23, 2008 at 11:07 pm

The AFI people said tonight (as they introduced “Dr. Strangelove” – which played in one of the large Arclight auds) that they print they’ve got for “2001” is supposedly better than the one they were gonna originally show.

Rizzo, care to share some details?

JSA on January 23, 2008 at 9:21 pm

Yes, that’s true. The Seattle standard screen has a slight curve though. Many years ago, I saw a 70 MM presentation of 2001 in a large flat screen and it looked great, so no doubt that the Seattle shows will be fine. I was planning to make the trip there until the Dome announcement. I’ll definitely make the trip north when they pull out the large Cinerama screen.

And come to think of it, since the print at the Dome is going to be run in a platter, maybe a 70 MM screening of “2001” at the Ziegfeld is not out of the realm of possibility…


Ed Solero
Ed Solero on January 23, 2008 at 8:06 pm

JSA… My understanding is that the screening of “2001” in Seattle will be on the standard flat screen – though it WILL be a 70mm print.

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on January 23, 2008 at 7:04 pm

I’m just glad they’re giving Rambo the night off on the 30th.

Chris Utley
Chris Utley on January 23, 2008 at 3:37 pm

In case anyone gives a darn…The Dome’s got “RAMBO” starting 1/25/08.

JSA on January 13, 2008 at 12:25 pm

The “2001” screening is sold out! JSA

Manwithnoname on January 8, 2008 at 7:19 pm

I’m pleased to say I just got my ticket and although in the center I am near the back. Tickets really are almost gone.

The comments about only a single screening are valid. Read one of my comments from 2002 where I mention THE WILD BUNCH played in 70mm for 6 weeks at the Dome BEFORE it was renovated.

JSA on January 8, 2008 at 5:50 pm

I agree with Chris: Rizzo, I would like to thank you for aswering my goofy questions and keeping us informed.

Another factoid: This is the first time in decades that “2001” will screen in 70 MM at two Cinerama theatres (i.e. the Dome and Seattle) during the same week. JSA

Flix70 on January 8, 2008 at 3:41 pm

It’s nice to see “2001” screening at the Dome. Would it have killed Archlight and AFI to extend it for a weekend? It is the 40th anniversary afterall. They do have 12 other screens to showcase all the other crap. They seem to forget that the Dome is a palace that desrves to host a little royalty beyond one-night stays. The last “classic” to have an extended run(a weekend or more) was “Alien” in 2003. That’s five years ago. Prior to 2002 when it was just the Dome screen, at least a dozen classic films had extended runs every year.I’m talking week-long festivals that coexisted with current studio bookings. And they were always packed. In a span of one year, I saw Apocalypse Now, River Kwai and Close Encounters. You’ve never seen any of those films until you’ve seen them at the Dome. It’s sad that today’s generation can’t experience classic films on its concave screen beyond one night. I don’t know about you but given the choice of screening “Star Wars,” “Raiders of the Lost Ark” or “Lawrence of Arabia” on my 65" TV or on the Dome screen, the Dome wins every time. Archlight prides itself on being the movie lover’s choice. It would be nice if they actually showed movies we love.

Chris Utley
Chris Utley on January 8, 2008 at 12:20 pm

Rizzo: Is there any way for us who are Cinema Treasures regulars who will be attending “2001” to meet you before the show so we can touch bases and whatnot? I’ll be there with 15 other members of my movie club(s) and we’ll be having dinner at the Arclight Cafe at 6:30 PM.

Let us know.

JSA on January 7, 2008 at 10:15 pm

Thanks Rizzo. Sounds like it’s going to be a good show. My only request is that please allow a reasonable break time during the intermission!


JSA on January 6, 2008 at 10:40 pm


You had mentioned some time ago that the Dome was no longer setup for reel-to-reel operation, thus effectively eliminating the possibility of screening quality 70 MM prints. Has the situation changed?


JSA on January 4, 2008 at 10:49 am

I have the greatest enthusiasm and confidence in the mission.


Chris Utley
Chris Utley on January 4, 2008 at 8:55 am


JRandell on January 1, 2008 at 11:41 pm

The Dome is considered a “historical landmark” by the city so I believe a renovation to put in a mezzanine-level booth isn’t legally allowed, even if Pacific wanted to spend the money to do it (this is the reason that the seats are still crappy). And if they could, they wouldn’t because 90% or more of the patrons only care about “BIG SCREEN!!” and not about the improvement in quality it would bring from a lower projector and shrinking the screen for digital and 35mm.

KramSacul on January 1, 2008 at 6:03 pm


If the projection angle was lowered or only the top of the screen was used the picture would be much improved. The lack of light and cross reflections would probably remain though.