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Patrick Goldstein posted a somewhat polite, if incorrect on many of the details, obituary on the theatre…
Thanks, Ian. My staff, who worked their butts off to help give the theatre its first positive uptick in sales in nearly a decade, will be very pleased to see you think their losing their jobs is a positive thing.
But it is no longer the largest megaplex by a long shot, in terms of location size or number of screens.
The Beverly Connection was opened and operated by General Cinema.
It’s mere coincidence.
The best I can research, only Foot Locker, Victoria’s Secret and (at least until Thursday) the theatre are the only three original tenants at the Beverly Center that are still open.
I too remember Starky’s Deli, quite fondly in fact. As an assistant at the theatre nearly 20 years ago, I would regularly find myself on my break in the arcade, spending a single quarter to play the T2 pinball game for half an hour, before giving up the game and whatever free games I had accumulated to some kid watching me play. I think the downfall for Starky’s, though, was the night in 1992 when there was some kind of commotion that caused hundreds of kids to come running out of the place for their lives and to the only place that was still open at the time: the theatre (we did midnight shows every weekend). I heard it was a shooting, but I was never able to confirm it.
Yes, there is a lot to say about the closing of the theatre, but now is not the time to say it. I will try to take some pictures Thursday night, but it’s going to be an incredibly busy night, closing a theatre one last time. Plus, we have a screening of the Maynard James Keenan wine-making documentary Blood Into Wine that night, which should take us out with quite a bang.
This theatre’s just had nothing but bad luck.
I’m going to post here my comments there, so no one else has to waste their time reading such a bad article…
“There are several problems with your argument, Mr. Cargill…
First, and most importantly, studios have owned movie theatres since the Paramount Decree. Mann Theatres has been owned by a partnership between Warner Brothers and Paramount Pictures for a number of years. Universal had a 49% ownership stake in Cineplex Odeon as the latter rose to become a titan of the industry in the 1980s. And Tri-Star Pictures bought the Loews theatre chain in 1985, retaining ownership of the chain (which even changed its name for a while to Sony Theatres after the Japanese corporation purchased all of Columbia Pictures’s assets in the late 1980s) for seventeen years. The Decree might still exist on paper, but it hasn’t been effectively enforced for quite a while.
You also say consumers are having trouble getting what they want, when they want it. Movie theatre attendance is higher than its been in many years, and with the advent of the megaplex and digital cinema, consumers rarely have to worry about finding out their movie sold out. There are a veritable plethora of stories about how all-digital projection cinemas were able to adapt on the fly during pre-opening midnight shows to have movies like the recent Iron Man and Twilight sequels to play on every screen in the building, when originally only three or four screens were planned.
VOD and PPV have never been that big of a factor, despite how badly the studios might want it to be. Fact of the matter is, with the FCC’s recent ruling, there was nothing that was stopping Paramount from doing a one-time-only, $20-per-pop VOD screening of Iron Man 2 on the night before opening. But Marvel and Paramount had so much money tied up in the film that possibly cannibalizing that opening weekend crowd, from which they will get as much as 90% of the ticket sales minus the house nut, that no distributor will ever seriously go that route with their big tentpole films. There is a reason why only Magnolia and IFC Films regularly do simultaneous or pre-opening PPV/VOD screenings with theatrical, and more often than not, the films that get this kind of treatment only do marginal business in theatres.
And then your points about DVD are completely off-base, from the minor point about the video window (which is more like seventeen to eighteen weeks, instead of twenty) to your ascertain that movies cannot be rented for 28 days after they are released on DVD. Blockbuster has a deal with some studio-affiliated home video distributors to have some titles only available for rental at Blockbuster for 28 days before being released to Redbox and Netflix, but anyone who wanted to rent The Blind Side or Sherlock Holmes the day it was released on DVD could have done so, provided they went to Blockbuster, and provided the Blockbuster they went to had enough copies to go around that day.
Oh, and while the lack of available Digital 3D screens did hurt Avatar when Alice was released, there are a number of theatres still, to this day, more than a month after its home video release, playing Avatar in 3D, and doing very good numbers with it.
There are many other points I could make, but I have to go to work now. Suffice to say, it’s not that much of a surprise that such a poorly researched, poorly constructed argument sat for nearly two weeks before even one person felt the need to comment on it. "
What’s this “we” crap? “We” sat through Smell-o-Vision? “We” sat through the Tingler? You’re at least ten years younger than me, and that stuff was a good 15 years before I was born.
And why didn’t you think of a 3-D skin flick first? Probably because it happened before you were born. At least I was alive when The Stewardesses was shot, although about 15 years too young to see it.
And what’s with the red/green mention? Best as I can tell, the only theatrically released movie that used red/green anaglyph glasses was the 3-D sequences in the 1961 Warners movie The Mask.
I know this is supposed to be for entertainment purposes, but you could have some a modicum of real research, instead of relying on legends incorrectly passed from generation to generation.
Jordan (and everyone else), if you haven’t seen the South Korean western “The Good, The Bad, The Weird” yet, I highly encourage you come see it at the Beverly Center. It starts Friday, and will be in the big house at least for the first week. I caught it at the 2008 AFI Film Festival, and it’s an incredible trip. A wonderful re-imagining of the classic Eastwood/Leone classic shot in anamorphic widescreen, and it’s going to look and sound awesome in that theatre.
I wonder how much from every $500 pass TCM paid Mr. Zeitchik to pimp this idea, especially during a down economy? The only person I know who went was able to go thanks to a press pass. The rest of us normal folk couldn’t afford to get in.
The recent Bollywood movies 3 Idiots and My Name Is Khan (the latter released by Fox Searchlight) had intermissions built-in. Those used to Bollywood movies enjoyed the quick break, while those unaccustomed to Bollywood movies just thought the film was over, and I had to make sure I had someone posted near the main exits when the film was getting out, to let those patrons know there was still another hour and a half of the movie to go.
Even when I did live in downtown Long Beach in the mid 1990s, at Ocean and Lime, I’d drive to AMC Marina Pacifica or UA Marketplace to see a film instead of going to the Pine Square. A bleh theatre if there ever was one.
Salvation is the act of saving or protecting from harm, risk, loss, destruction, etc. The Village and the Bruin were never under the threat of harm, risk, loss, destruction or anything else. They were never going to close permanently after March 31st. There were a number of exhibitors who were negotiating to pick up the pair of theatres for their own circuit, if the right deal could be made. Regency was the one who signed the lease, and that’s all there is to it. There was never an eminent threat of the two theatres closing and being torn down, and thus, no salvation. This was not a situation like the National.
Celebrate the salvaging of the Village and Bruin? Give me a break!
The Village and Bruin theatres were never in any danger. A number of companies were in talks with the owners to take over the buildings once Mann announced they weren’t renewing their lease.
Sorry, Chris, but this comes as a complete surprise to me. As I’ve said before, I am not an insider, but I do have access to an insider, and the last I heard, Mann was going month-to-month once the main lease expired.
Chris, bet every dollar you have that if there was ever a chance in the last ten years anyone could have built a Bruin adjunct cinema, it would have happened ten years ago. There are very specific reasons why it hasn’t happened yet, and why it’s not going to happen for many years. Parking is just one issue. Traffic is just one issue. Residents are just one issue. Film clearances are just one issue. And there are many others that I just cannot discuss here… not that I am some insider. I just happen to know certain things from being near the process.
Westwood could easily be resurrected. But it’s going to take a lot of concessions from many different people with dissimilar interests to make it happen.
I’m still waiting to hear where Talionis keeps hearing Rave is taking over in Westwood…
Yes, the Beverly Center opened in July 1982 with 14 screens. The theatre had so much success in its early years, the decision was made a couple years after opening to convert two smaller theatres into one, and then gut the two largest houses in order to build two even larger auditoriums on the roof of the building, which brings us to the current 13.
I got to attend all but one of Ross’s NATO lectures, and I urge everyone who has the chance to attend to do so.
Oh, and… uhm… Roxy? :)
In 1988, this became the Rossmoor Super Saver 7 Cinemas, with ticket prices always a buck or two, until it was torn down in 2002.
Not good enough. :)
Stay tuned for what, Talionis? Rave is not taking over the Village and/or the Bruin, and I would really like to know where people keep hearing this rumor. If you can’t say on these boards, email me. ehavens at ravemotionpictures
I’ll take that bet.
What do I win?
I’m curious… from whom did you hear that Rave was seriously considering taking over the Bruin and Village?