Alamo Drafthouse’s Ritz Theater installs 70mm equipment and announces 70mm festival

posted by Michael Zoldessy on August 24, 2012 at 7:45 am

AUSTIN, TX — The Ritz Theatre is celebrating 70mm with a festival of films both new and old. It starts this weekend with “West Side Story” but continues next month with Paul Thomas Anderson upcoming release, “The Master”.

Read more on their website.

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Comments (8)

MPol on August 24, 2012 at 4:58 pm

That sounds terrific! Hey…I wish there were a 70mm-equipped movie theatre here in Boston and that West Side Story and other great classics would come here to Boston!

thejaytrixorlikeyouknow on August 24, 2012 at 7:36 pm

“The Master” in 70mm at the Coolidge!! Maybe they’ll book some classics if “The Master” run is successful.

JohnRice on August 24, 2012 at 10:33 pm

Wow! In this day and age when theatres are abandoning 35mm in droves to go digital (even if they don’t want to!) somebody installing dual projector 70mm is big news and to be applauded! Alamo please bring a theatre (any format but film preferred!) to the Sacramento-Roseville CA market where we are starving for indie, classic & cult product!

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on August 26, 2012 at 5:19 am

MPol, the Somerville Theatre has 70mm projectors and plans to hold a 70mm festival next year.

terrywade on August 26, 2012 at 10:26 am

Does anyone know how big the screen is at the Ritz for 70mm? Will they be installing a larger screen and have a curve to it? The Draft people are coming to the old Mission theatre in San Francisco. Work is going on now to turn this large cinema to a five plex, with the larger downstairs part still large. Hope they put in curtains and a curve 70mm set up. You can buy these 70mm combo projectors cheap these days and add 5 stereo speakers backstage a full surround set up many old 70mm films have been restored. Even a nice wide 35mm CinemaScope┬« screen will look great. I think the new Mission screen may be larger then the Castro’s when put in. The bigger the better. The Draft San Francisco ‘Mission’ will be compitition to the Castro Theatre SF as they shy away from 70mm these days. The Castro is even closed most Mondays & Tuesdays. I think the Mission will be open 7 days per week showing new and classic films with food and beer. As the Castro sits closed people will hit the New Mission Theatre in SF for fun entertainment and eats & drinks.

CSWalczak on August 26, 2012 at 2:19 pm

Most of these 70mm restorations are to digital presentation – not to 70mm film. Access to 70mm prints is increasingly difficult because they exist in very limited numbers are are often faded. The studios and libraries that control them often will often not release them to theaters that use platter systems, because of potential damage. Finding a set of used Norelco DP 70s or Century JJs really is not all that easy (they are collector’s items), and finding skilled projectionists who know to properly use them is also challenging.

The Castro is showing “Vertigo” in 70mm From August 31 through September 3. I doubt if it is shying away from 70mm, just finding it increasingly hard to get good quality 70mmm prints. While I think it is great that Alamo Drafthouse is moving into the New Mission, the Castro’s programming will remain distinctly different. I also think the Alamo operation at the New Mission may face some problems due to its location.

dickneeds111 on August 27, 2012 at 4:55 pm

There are 2 70mm equipped theatres here in the Boston area. Onne is the Coolidge corner theatre in Brookline and the Somerville in Somerville. I don’t know about screen size and curvature. The Coolidge occassionally rune 70 mm like Lawrence of Arabia. I don;t know the last time Somerville did.

MPol on September 7, 2012 at 12:03 pm

As a moviegoer who holds an annual membership to the Coolidge Corner Theatre, I’m aware that they have, on occasion, had 70mm festivals. Disappointingly, West Side Story, however, wasn’t among them, but there were some other good movies that were worth seeing, however.

To Ron Newman: I had no idea that the Somerville Theatre was holding a 70mm Festival next year. They keep saying that, but they’ve never done it. What gives?

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