Florida Site Due 2004
For New York 13
SCHENECTADY, N.Y. – Riverfront
Cinema LLC announced in February plans to open by mid-2004
state-of-the-art 13-plex in downtown Schenectady, N.Y.
The 50,000-square-foot Diamond Cinema
will be located on State Street and house over 2,500
seats. Two auditoria
will offer large-format capabilities.
The Schenectady facility will be the second
site for Riverfront, which currently operates a 10-plex
home base of Amsterdam, N.Y.
More Viacom Synergy
Trailers For NA
DEDHAM, Mass. – National Amusements (NA) and its
subsidiary, CBS, announced March 3 the creation of the
circuit’s new “Survival Guide” policy
trailer, set to run before all NA features in the coming
A parody of the hit CBS reality show “Survivor,” the
trailer uses footage from past episodes to communicate
to patrons such messages as “no talking” and “please
turn off cell phones.” It humorously challenges
moviegoers to follow these rules in order to survive
their trip to the movies.
“The Survivor trailer is another
example of how we keep the experience at our theatres
current and entertaining,” noted
NA president Shari E. Redstone. “We think our patrons
will agree with us that it is a terrific way to start
Cameron, Astin, Affleck Star
Fox Unveils Anti-Piracy
Trailers For Cinemas
LAS VEGAS – Hollywood icons
Ben Affleck and Sean Astin, director James Cameron,
and the late cinematographer
Conrad L. Hall were among those joining forces with 20th
Century Fox for an attack on digital piracy.
The studio recruited their well-known
faces and voices for a 72-second anti-piracy public service
trailer that will precede features.
Fox unveiled the trailer, slated to hit
screens May 2, at a March 5 ShoWest seminar titled “Piracy: The
World’s Concern.” The studio is working to
make the trailer available to exhibitors nationwide.
“I recommend that all theatre owners
show these trailers in an effort to educate patrons to
the ominous threat
that piracy holds for our industry,” said NATO
president John Fithian.
The trailer warns that illegal Internet
downloads and pirate videos and DVDs will put filmmakers
out of business
and could eventually lead to a decrease in movie production.
Exhibitors interested in obtaining a copy
of the trailer should contact their local Fox representatives
Fox directly at (310) 369-1000.
New Hires For GTC
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Georgia Theatre Company (GTC) chairman Bill Stembler
on March 3 announced two new hires.
Jeff Mobley, who joined the company as its
new director of operations, is a 21-year exhibition vet.
He served 18 of those years with United Artists, where
as a district manager supervising locations in Georgia, Florida, and the Carolinas.
He now reports to GTC operations and construction vice president Scott Bagwell.
Joan W. Mannheim, a 10-year veteran of the
cinema accounting trade, rejoined GTC in April as assistant
secretary/treasurer, reporting to secretary/treasurer
St. Simons Island-based GTC, which plans
to open a 16-plex in Valdosta, Ga., in early June, currently
operates 228 screens at 25 sites.
Large Format Venues
Tenn. – Regal
Entertainment Group (REG) and Imax Corp. on Feb. 24
to install by April Imax systems at sites in Boise, Idaho,
The two new sites will increase REG’s total number
of Imax systems to 14 – making the circuit the
largest 3rd-party Imax operator.
“We believe that
Imax theatres offer a high quality experience that
is attractive to our consumers,” said circuit
co-CEO Michael L. Campbell.
Regal currently operates
5,663 screens at 524 sites in 36 states.
Circuit Adds 18 Venues in Chicago, Fort
Cinema Latino Doubling In June
DENVER, Colo. – Cinema Latino’s
screen count will vault from 14 to 32, thanks to three
sites set to bow in June: a 6-plex and a 4-plex in Chicago,
and an 8-plex in Greater Fort Worth, Texas.
The circuit, which programs only Spanish-language
product (mostly dubbed Hollywood fare), opened its first
sites – an 8-plex in Aurora, Colo. and a
6-plex in Las Vegas – last spring.
Circuit owner Jared Polis has a history
of purchasing shuttered or poorly performing cinemas
in areas with sizeable Spanish-speaking populations.
He says he continues to search American
cities for such underperforming multiplexes, and hopes
to eventually open 30 to 40 sites nationwide.
He says that he tries, when possible,
to book films that are culturally relevant to Latinos,
but finds that most films transcend cultural boundaries.
Polis also stocks his circuit’s concession counters with snacks and drinks
popular in Mexico’s moviehouses.
“If we are doing our job right, it looks exactly like you are coming into
a Mexican theatre,” Polis told In Focus.
Silver Becomes AFI Venue
SILVER SPRING, Md. – The American
Film Institute (AFI) unveiled on April 4 its renovated
art-deco triplex in downtown Silver Spring, Md. The launch
event honored screen legend Clint Eastwood and offered
a screening of “The Ox-Bow Incident,” which
celebrates its 60th anniversary this spring.
Theatre, which first opened its doors in 1938, shuttered
in 1985. In 1997, Montgomery
County dedicated $7.8 million to finance its rehabilitation,
and the next year AFI was chosen to operate the site.
“This marks another milestone in the history of Silver Spring – the
day that the Silver Theatre emerges from the dust of its past to become a showcase
for film of all genres,” noted Montgomery County executive Douglas
The 49,000-square-foot complex now boasts
a historic 400-seat auditorium and two stadium-style
auditoria. All three accommodate a variety of film
(from 8mm to 70mm), high-definition video projection, broadcast-quality
video recording and live music accompaniment, as well as “distance learning.” The
site also boasts a film-related retail outlet, office and meeting space, a
café and a reception area.
The plex, atmospherically designed to
give visitors the feeling of boarding an ocean liner,
will showcase festivals, screenings and special events,
such as June’s AFI/Discovery Channel Documentary Festival.
“The AFI Silver Theatre will offer
a range of terrific films. Historically, architecturally
and technically, you could not find a better screen experience
anywhere,” said AFI Silver director Murray Horwitz.