Hi everyone. I'm new to this forum and look forward to learning what I can about movie theater operations. I am currently involved in the restoration of a 1,200 seat vintage movie theater in my neighborhood, which was converted to a 4-screen facility in the 1960s. The theater fell into disrepair and our group is now redesigning the theater, with the intention of turning it into a mixed-use facility for the community, for both film and potentially for live performances of a limited size.
My background is in feature film financing and production, with extremely limited experience running a movie theater in college several years ago. One of the models we've been using is Chicago's Gene Siskel Center, which doesn't include live performance, but represents the type of venue we're looking to create. The existing building is large enough for two screens (approx. 600 & 150 seats respectively), with a cafe that leads into the theater lobby and additional retail space. We envision a place that shows films, hosts festivals and retrospectives, books small live acts and that also has rental possibilities.
If there is anyone who has done anything remotely like this, I'm all ears. Our "investment" includes the gutting of the existing theater, almost 20,000 sq/ft and basically starting over within just the four walls, leaving some of the original architecture intact, which will be part of the new design and appeal. Anyway, I look forward to hearing everyone's opinion and participating in a meaningful discussion.
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