Canadian chain sells theater naming rights

posted by Michael Zoldessy on January 30, 2007 at 7:00 am

How would you like it if you walked up to your favorite theater next week to find it named the Washington Mutual 14 or the Best Buy Theatre @ Main Street? Some people in Canada are feeling that right now as Cineplex and Scotiabank form a partnership.

Following the lead of our new opera house and almost every arena in professional sports, Cineplex Entertainment has entered into a five-year deal with Scotiabank to rebrand theatres in Toronto, Montreal, Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver. Some attendees at last night’s soiree buzzed with concern at a corporate branding trend that continues to encroach upon significant and historic sites, while others pointed out that the former Paramount has always been tied to a brand.

Gone are the familiar Paramount script and bold exterior signage, replaced with temporary signage more appropriate for the boards at a hockey arena. Even the antique bronze railing transplanted from New York’s historic Paramount Theater (shuttered in 1964) has been removed from the area above the escalators. Cineplex currently has a 3-D marquee in the works that is somewhat similar to the recently dismantled one.

For more, go to the Torontoist.

Comments (5)

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on January 30, 2007 at 9:12 am

This has unfortunately become fairly common for live-theatre venues, but a movie theatre? Why would a cinema chain want someone else’s brand on their theatre?

schmadrian on January 30, 2007 at 9:18 am

Why should this surprise anyone? SkyDome is now The Rogers Centre. The Montreal Forum is no longer, replaced by The Bell Centre, Maple Leaf Gardens replaced by ‘The Air Canada Centre’. I know that south of the border it’s no different.

We live in an age where the bottom-line is everything. And heritage has little meaning at all.

And the sad thing is that this is only the tip of the iceberg. Wait for it, wait for it…

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on January 30, 2007 at 9:24 am

The article says

Though Cineplex lost the rights to the Paramount name (owned by Viacom) following the acquisition of Famous Players,

But many theatres in the US continued to be called “Paramount” for many decades after they no longer were associated with that studio. Is Canadian law different? Why would Cineplex be forced to rename the theatre?

rivest266 on January 30, 2007 at 2:24 pm

There is still an Cinéma Paramount in Rouyn-Norada,QC and an Paramount 3 in Amhurst NS. These were built by Famous Players in the late 1940’s. Also the Paramount in Montreal will be renamed Cinémas Banque Scotia. Theatres in Edmonton SilverCity ?, Paramount in Calgary and Vancouver.

Schmadrian, The Forum has been renamed Pepsi Forum (The AMC cinema inside serves Coke.)

rivest266 on April 24, 2007 at 3:05 pm

View link

The Paramount Montreal sign started to come down on April 24

The theatre is being renamed Cinéma Banque Scotia.

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