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TOPIC: Dollar Theatres

Dollar Theatres 21 Oct 2004 16:34 #9178

  • nib koob
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does anyone have any experience with "dollar theatres" (discounted movie theatres that run movies 6-8 months after original release?)
are the economics of getting older films (ones currently "new releases" at blockbuster) good enough to make a profit in a theatre setting if one could charge $1 (or $2)?
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Re: Dollar Theatres 22 Oct 2004 11:00 #9179

  • Mike
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no and no. Or as David Spade would say: "No."

I think I mean.. no.


Michael Hurley
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Michael Hurley
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Re: Dollar Theatres 22 Oct 2004 12:39 #9180

  • jimor
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Can't help but wonder: Does "nib koob" mean BOOK BIN? Are you graduating from book stores to cinemas? (but then, is that really a matriculation??!)

P.S. ARE there any true 'dollar' cinemas left?
Jim R. (new E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) member: www.HistoricTheatres.org
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Re: Dollar Theatres 22 Oct 2004 16:23 #9181

  • RoxyVaudeville
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Why would any theatre owner wait 6 to 8 months to play films... even in a "dollar" theatre? The availability for dollar houses is late, but still about two weeks before video in the worst cases.

I believe that I may have held the record for the longest run as a dollar house. My theatre was a "All Seats $1.00 at all Times" for just slightly over twenty five years. It did extremely well for most of that period. However, in the early to mid 90s it started going down hill, mostly due to a holdback in film availability from the distributors, and the opening of several more dollar houses in the area.

In 1996 I went to a $2.50/$1.50 policy, and then in 2003 to a $3.00/$2.00 policy. I plan to go to All Seats $3.00 some time next year. The first couple of years after dropping the dollar policy, things were slow. I lost 50% of my patrons, who just wouldn't pay more. The other dollar houses closed, so they weren't going there. Where did they go... video I guess, or became much more selective when having to pay "high"
prices and only come occasionaly.

The bottom line is that I take in a higher b.o. gross on less people, and therefore less in concession sales, but my profit is about the same as it was back then. Overall, I prefer it this way. Less wear and tare on the theatre, and on the staff as well.

I think it would be very difficult to make any money with a dollar theatre in the present market situation. People won't wait that long today, regardless of the price break. If it is already out on video, they will watch the video. Afterall, it is only around $3.00 for the video... for the ENTIRE family.
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