Saturday, August 24, 2013

The Loss of Independent Movie Theaters

Having a past high school instructor that managed and ran his own independent movie theater was pretty amazing. Especially the easy access I had to go see how theaters ran and how the projectors worked and things. Receiving a phone call not too long ago from my previous instructor warning me that he may be going out of business soon if he doesn’t find a way to get things on the move and get something new going so that he can make some new profits.
            After doing some research I notice that he is no where near the only independent theatre going out of business. For multiple reasons the smaller theaters are thinning out. The big guys like Regal Entertainment Group, AMC, and Cinemark Theaters will always have patrons coming in and they will always have the most current films. Just because of there name and because they are apart of a chain. Being apart of a chain simply means that there are multiple locations, which there is usually a group that maintains all the legal aspects and business deals with each location. It’s easy for a film to go to a company with hundreds of locations, and thousands of screens, instead of dealing with all the small guys with one location, and probably 6-10 screens. The smaller independent theatres don’t have the newest thing that is one reason why they don’t have that steady income, the newest thing they may have may be a month or two old.
            So let me ask, when was the last time you’ve visited an independent movie theater? And why?
            Most people don’t like independent theaters because of the number of screens, number of seats, management, location, and the overall presence of the theater. Many theaters are breaking down financially because of how things are changing with technology. Many distributors are going digital. Of course with new digital projectors, new personnel to run these machines and all the other new things that the smaller theaters aren’t used to, its going to really hurt finances just for these new machines.
            Independent theaters have been doing many different things to keep people coming in. Like hosting a “Dollar Night” where you can go view movies for a dollar on a certain night. They have been also film festivals, different local presentations, since they do have the space. They have been doing many things just to keep the doors open.

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