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TOPIC: Light Boxes

Light Boxes 06 Apr 2006 16:19 #20667

  • Filmfisher
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We have (4) windows that face the street I would like to remove and put light "boxes" or whatever you call them to insert posters into. Due to town ordinances we cannot have a marquee that makes a theater a theater. We still have folks say that they did not even know we were here. Try the fire marshall for one. Sorry for my ramblin.

Any recommendations as to which way to proceed. Thank you.
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Re: Light Boxes 06 Apr 2006 20:12 #20668

  • jacker5
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I understand not having an overhang marque but what about the flat type ones!
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Re: Light Boxes 07 Apr 2006 16:47 #20669

  • Filmfisher
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, helvetica">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by jacker5:
I understand not having an overhang marque but what about the flat type ones!<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

No and quite honestly as large as our building is the signs are like postage stamps. Oh, and no blinking lights.

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Re: Light Boxes 07 Apr 2006 18:21 #20670

  • Large
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Lit poster cases in the window is a time honored way to get around overly restrictive sign regulations. If your theatre is old, research old photos. Frequently you can talk a town in to letting you have a sign if there was a precident for having a sign before. Make a proposal for a tasteful marquee put it front of the town a lot, all the time, make it the only thing they get to think about. Be a pain in the butt. Challange them, show them that movie theatre must have signs. Spend some money, hire an expert. Our sign at my last theatre cost $40,000 and I'm sure that the actual sign part was ony worth $10,000. The rest of the money was design and support. The sign guy was at every design review meeting. It took 6 trips over 8-months to get it approved. Think outside the sign. Is their an Arcitectual aspect you can promote. Our sign guy got a sign with 50-foot letters approved in Emeryville CA just because the town had an identity problem so he came up with giving the Town a sign as well as the project.
Bay Street Emeryville

[This message has been edited by Large (edited April 07, 2006).]

[This message has been edited by Large (edited April 07, 2006).]
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Re: Light Boxes 08 Apr 2006 14:49 #20671

  • jimor
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Large has some great pointers there, but if the town still balks, do as one cinema did and look like a store. I read somewhere of an exhibitor like you who got no approval for anything like a marquee, but he did have a long wall against the sidewalk, so he installed a long plate glass window just like any store and put two mannequins behind the glass, posed as though they were holding up a large name sign for the cinema made of squares of mirror that reflected the color-changing lights cast upon it nicely. A small fan hidden at the side caused the hinged mirror pieces to wiggle in the breeze and glitter much the way light bulbs flash (most smaller sign shops can make such an indoor sign for you; they call it a "Leaf Sign.").

At the bottom, between the mannequins, he placed an easel with posters (One Sheets) or lettered cards showing the current and coming features. Beside one of the mannequin's heads he hung a 'balloon sign' (like those seen in comic strips) which read: "Enjoy Our Products!" --a not too subtle way of saying to objectors: 'this is our product, and we have a right to advertise too.' He said there were no more objections from the town, and he rather enjoyed occasionally redressing the window to reflect a blockbuster film. Where there's a will, there's a way. Best Wishes, Jim
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: Light Boxes 12 Apr 2006 01:58 #20672

  • Mike Spaeth
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You made your first mistake by asking. It's much easier to ask for forgiveness than permission!
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Re: Light Boxes 12 Apr 2006 08:34 #20673

  • dsschoenborn
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Yes check the rules if you don't at least do this and you try to complie they can make it hard on you or at least cost you $$ and time fighting it. I our town their are plenty of loopholes and ways to ask for a varience.

The store idea works well too. If it not on the outside of the building it does not need to complie to the sign rules I bet. At least we have followed that when we had flashing lights for a while in the windows not outside.

We got many compliments when we went to this window look in place of external one sheet cases. This picture is before the construction was finished but you get the idea. http://www.lincolntheatre-belleville.com/images/DCP_0456.JPG
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Re: Light Boxes 12 Apr 2006 17:22 #20674

  • Mike
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this pushes so many buttons for me..... as my part time job I serve as Mayor of Belfast, Maine so I do get to hear all of the above from every angle.

We were lucky to inherit the two classic marquees. We redid the neon in one http://colonialtheatre.com/Index.cfm and though it violated the ordinance it went by without a blink.

When We put a life size fiberglass elephant on our roof the code enforment guy had a fit but guess what: it's an object and not a sign so no problem.

Something to think of is call your local awning company and ask them for ideas. A classic "back lit" awning can really end up looking just like a marquee. http://www.inspiration.showandtelltheatre.com/

And last: the lightbox is a good idea, as is the sign in the window, but it does not make people look down the street and see you stand out: I suggest something like an awning at the least: or an elephant!

Michael Hurley
Impresario
Michael Hurley
Impresario
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Re: Light Boxes 14 Apr 2006 15:21 #20675

  • Filmfisher
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Originally posted by Mike:
We were lucky to inherit the two classic marquees. We redid the neon in one http://colonialtheatre.com/Index.cfm and though it violated the ordinance it went by without a blink.

When We put a life size fiberglass elephant on our roof the code enforment guy had a fit but guess what: it's an object and not a sign so no problem.


If only it could be so. Are those light boxes I see on the front of the theater?
If you don't mind me asking, where did you purchase them? I believe that will be our beginning if I can locate a supplier.

Love the elephant, great idea. Certainly an attention grabber. We blend in so much people pass right by.

One last question, again if you don't mind sharing. Colonial website - the mugs, shirts, etc. Would love to copy the idea, is it a local supplier?

I am 99.9% a rule follower. Unfortunately I have learned it's way too expensive to do and ask questions later. However, ???

Thank you.
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