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ScreenTrade article 23 Feb 2012 18:09 #37910

  • Mike
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I wrote a piece on digital conversion and the projected extermination of smaller theatres for Screen Trade magazine. It has been picked up by Indiewire.com and other. Let the conversation begin. www.indiewire.com/article/were-about-to-...gital-does-it-matter
Michael Hurley
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Re: ScreenTrade article 23 Feb 2012 20:05 #37911

  • rufusjack
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Fwiw,

VPFs: NATO/CBG/Studios need to come up with a variance for smaller theaters. I can envision the following: if a movie plays in over 3500 + locations, a VPF is paid. Less than that, no VPF is paid but the theater still gets the movie. (have a guarantee of some sorts) That way you get some fees paid why getting more movies to play. I am surprised this was not worked out beforehand. mike I wish you would have mentioned the flawed VPF arrangement for small theaters in your article.

Better availability: allow me greater access to movies if you are not payin me a VPF.

Grants/government aid: I disagree with you here Mike. I do not believe that government should step in here. I see nothing wrong with what is happening.
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Re: ScreenTrade article 23 Feb 2012 20:56 #37912

  • Mike
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things vary from state to state/ tax credits are a very good option/ I do not see how grants are applied to small theatres in general/ M
Michael Hurley
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Re: ScreenTrade article 24 Feb 2012 02:39 #37913

  • slapintheface
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Those who want to survive will have to convert we all know that but how.
1. PUT YOUR OWN MONEY UP
2. BORROW THE MONEY FROM THE BANK-- USE THE THEATER BUILDING AS COLLATERAL -( NO VPF) reduce your management by one person to help pay loan.( no more projectionist)
3. Finance through Sony if you can with no vpf
4. Vpf program
5. Close your theater for 2 years wait for prices to fall -- reopen.
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Re: ScreenTrade article 24 Feb 2012 02:42 #37914

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The days of $ 4.00 ticket prices for first run are over for smaller towns. Sell soda still for a $ 1.00 may sound great but you cant make money. These projectors will not pay for them selves prices are going up---- If you are over 3000 in print count VPF IS THE KISS OF DEATH.
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Re: ScreenTrade article 24 Feb 2012 15:47 #37915

  • AllenD
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I've sat quietly by for months without being drawn into some of the comments being made on this site.
I become frightened when I read things like:
-If the number of customers using credit cards double at my theatre, should I quit accepting credit cards?
-Customers don't want to see Hollywood movies; they want to see singing cowboys presented by costumed ushers with "showmanship."
-35 mm isn't dead. Yeah, it's a giant conspiracy.

After reading Slap's comment, “The days of $ 4.00 ticket prices for first run are over for smaller towns. Sell[ing] soda still for a $ 1.00 may sound great but you can’t make money. These projectors will not pay for themselves prices are going up..." I have to comment.
Slap is right on the money. Don't undervalue your product and your theatre. We play multimillion dollar movies in beautiful facilities. We are presenting out of home entertainment. We aren't a dollar DVD rental store.
In the small city I live in high school plays charge $10.00 for admission. Compare your snack bar prices and ticket prices to everything from minor league baseball to concerts.
Cheap prices for first run movies don’t build a business.
AllenD
Last Edit: 24 Feb 2012 15:48 by AllenD.
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Re: ScreenTrade article 01 Mar 2012 04:37 #37966

  • rufusjack
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slapintheface wrote:
reduce your management by one person to help pay loan.( no more projectionist)

I would venture that many small theaters that we are talking about do not have much staff to reduce since the owner/manager is probably the person handling booth duties. I know in my situation we could only reduce needed staff by 1 part-time person earning approx. $8 an hour. Now a bigger theater running 8 screens or more running shows 12 hours a day could save quite a bit.
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Re: ScreenTrade article 01 Mar 2012 04:49 #37967

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AllenD wrote:
Don't undervalue your product and your theatre. We play multimillion dollar movies in beautiful facilities. We are presenting out of home entertainment. We aren't a dollar DVD rental store.
In the small city I live in high school plays charge $10.00 for admission.
AllenD

I think most realize that the ticket price to school event helps to raise money for that project. Plus how many plays does a school put on each year?
AllenD wrote:
Don't undervalue your product and your theatre. Compare your snack bar prices and ticket prices to everything from minor league baseball to concerts.

AllenD

I for one and very happy to make 60*70% gross margins. Plus how often do you want people to go to the movies? I would hope more than they go to a concert on minor league baseball team.

Yes $4 is too little for first run. I only know of a few theaters that charge that for adult tickets and they are usually community owned small town theaters.

Year Admissions
2011 1.27
2010 1.339
2009 1.414
2008 1.341
2007 1.4
2006 1.401
2005 1.376
2004 1.484
2003 1.521
2002 1.57
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Re: ScreenTrade article 01 Mar 2012 06:34 #37968

  • slapintheface
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ALLEN
THANKS
Theaters can not live in the old dream
mim wage is national-- rent-taxes-electric-phone- cable- film rental-- cable--payroll-- No longer maters were you are---
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Re: ScreenTrade article 05 Mar 2012 14:57 #37987

  • rodeojack
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As we review our situation, just prior to the start of the season, we note:

Fuel prices topping $4/gallon. Good or bad for drive-in?

Propane costs up (cooking, heating, hot water)

Popcorn cost up.

Hamburger, syrup, cheese, candy... all up to one degree or another.

Minimum wage up (Washington is highest state is highest in country. Only San Francisco is higher).

Local film depot closed. Can't go get our films anymore. That raises our outgo for film shipping.

Electric went up, due to State mandate to include a percentage of "green" power.

Digital conversion in plan for Fall of 2012.

A business can absorb cost increases for only so long. What's interesting is the level of pain some will endure before passing some of these costs along. What's unfortunate is that some will hold out until they're forced to close.
Last Edit: 05 Mar 2012 15:04 by rodeojack.
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Re: ScreenTrade article 05 Mar 2012 19:56 #37994

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AllenD wrote:
I've sat quietly by for months without being drawn into some of the comments being made on this site.
I become frightened when I read things like:
-Customers don't want to see Hollywood movies; they want to see singing cowboys presented by costumed ushers with "showmanship."
-35 mm isn't dead. Yeah, it's a giant conspiracy.

Hey Allen - My reference to the "singing cowboys" movies was for occasional special matinees for a specific audience (and those ARE "Hollywood" movies). No one can make money on a constant run of such films. While 35mm may not be viable for general release in a few years it will never die just as super8 and 16mm has not died even if only in the hands of collectors. Did you know you can still buy 16mm fresh stock for shooting?
Bob Allen
The Old Showman
Last Edit: 05 Mar 2012 19:57 by revrobor.
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