Banner
Home Forums Movie Theaters The Back Office Wonderful Life & White Christmas
Welcome, Guest
Username: Password: Remember me
  • Page:
  • 1

TOPIC: Wonderful Life & White Christmas

Wonderful Life & White Christmas 04 Jan 2003 01:45 #23716

  • Jeff Knoll
  • Jeff Knoll's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Junior Boarder
  • Posts: 29
  • Karma: 1
Just curious - did anybody else on this forum play these Paramount Films this season? We played both of them and we bombed BIG TIME. While the rest of our cinemas were selling out, these two films had 2-10 patrons per screening tops. We marketed these films in advance very thoroughly and nothing. Nada. Zip!

Did you play them? How did you do? If you did ok or well, how did you market them. I would like to do it again next year, but not when I am not grossing enough to pay the minimums!

Jeff Knoll
Film.Ca Inc. - Encore Cinemas
Canada
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Wonderful Life & White Christmas 04 Jan 2003 16:26 #23717

  • RoxyVaudeville
  • RoxyVaudeville's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 889
  • Thank you received: 16
  • Karma: 3
We were to play "It's a Wonderful Life", but not for a paid public showing. It was for a holiday social that was held at my theatre by the Chamber of Commerce. The chamber paid for it and the event was free to the members. It included free food and drink as well. Considering it was a social event and everything was free it went over very well. However,the day of the event we had a large snow storm and the event was postponed for a week and we couldn't reschedule the print for that date and ran something else instead. All the same people that had registered came for the 2nd date regardless of what was shown. Many said that we should rebook "Wonderful Life" for next year, which we will probably do. I think that this type of program is the only way that I would book one of those films. All costs are covered, and there is a guaranteed audience to view it. Oh, by the way... it was a brand new print, never before run in a theatre... and yes, I did run it for myself.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Wonderful Life & White Christmas 05 Jan 2003 12:23 #23718

  • usfrench
  • usfrench's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Gold Boarder
  • Posts: 177
  • Karma: 0
Just curious....What was your cost to run the film? Thinking of next year. Thanks.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Wonderful Life & White Christmas 05 Jan 2003 13:24 #23719

  • Jeff Knoll
  • Jeff Knoll's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Junior Boarder
  • Posts: 29
  • Karma: 1
For us it was $150 against 35%.

Jeff
Film.Ca Inc. - Encore Cinemas
Canada
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Wonderful Life & White Christmas 06 Jan 2003 18:58 #23720

  • tratcliff
  • tratcliff's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Gold Boarder
  • Posts: 169
  • Thank you received: 1
  • Karma: 0
When we bought our theatre 6 years ago, one of our goals was to bring the classics back to the big screen. We ran several of them. Some did awesome, most were OK to bad attendence wise.

But what we have been doing the last few years is getting local businesses to sponsor the classics and having admission be free.
The formula really works. The sponsors pay for the rental ( usually 35% of our normal ticket price vs min of $150-$350), shipping, build-up/tear-down time.

We played "It's Wonderful Life" the past 2 years, and "White Christmas" last year and the 2 years before that.
Both of these movie got good attendance, and LOTS of good PR from the community.

We don't make money, but we make sure to break even. And the intangible benefits are wonderful - great community PR, older patrons who normally don't come to movies, and the fun of seeing Bing Crosby's blue eyes up on that 40ft image again!

Tony
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Wonderful Life & White Christmas 08 Jan 2003 13:45 #23721

  • Mill
  • Mill's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Expert Boarder
  • Posts: 118
  • Karma: 0
From our experience we've found that most of the time bringing back and older show doesn't work so well unless the big screen and big sound, crowd atmosphere can really contribute to it being more enjoyable. Most of the time the big screen lends itself to more action blockbusters than musicals.
Tommy Boy, Batman, Indaina Jones all did really good but sound of music and wizard of OZ did awful.
It seems that bringing back the old shows always gets us good PR though, even if the people don't come.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Wonderful Life & White Christmas 10 Jan 2003 13:35 #23722

  • Rialto
  • Rialto's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Gold Boarder
  • Posts: 249
  • Karma: 1
Playing classic films is a tricky business. We did real well with a double feature of Some Like It Hot and North by Northwest when we opened. A French double feature of Umbrellas of Cherbourgh and a Bunel film whose title escapes me at the moment did well. Sunset Blvd bombed even though we have a decent sized gay community. Breakfast at Tiffany's worked well. A series of 6 classics from the Columbia catalog bombed.

Our biggest hit in the classics department was something of a fluke. The week Alec Guiness died we were short a film for our 5-plex. It was August which isn't prime art movie season and in the summer of 2000 the art film landscape was dreadful. So out of desperation we booked in Bridge on the River Kwai and put it in our smallest house. Friday night it sold out! Saturday we moved it to our biggest house as it was our biggest grosser on Friday. It turned out to be our best film that week. We did 5K on it in a week at $250 vs. 35%. We held it for a second week and did pretty well then too. What really surprised us was the number of parents bringing their kids (from 8-9 year-olds up through high schoolers) to the film as a family outing.

The lesson we learned out of all this is that timing is everything when it comes to classics. The right film with the right recently deceased actor will work. The films that work best are not the obscure ones but those classic touchstones like Breakfast at Tiffany's that people fell in love with. But you've got to choose your moment wisely. Weeks when there isn't a slew of new product opening are best, especially if you want to try to get some newspaper coverage. We happened to pick a slow week for Kwai and were rewarded with a 1/2 page essay by Roger Ebert about what a great film it is. Roger has written a slew of these kind of things and you can see them on the Chicago Sun Times website. If your local paper runs Ebert reviews and its a slow week for openings you might get lucky or if you have a good relationship with the editorial department, make a suggestion.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Wonderful Life & White Christmas 15 Jan 2003 13:55 #23723

  • Driordan
  • Driordan's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Fresh Boarder
  • Posts: 15
  • Karma: 0
We showed both WHITE CHRISTMAS and IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE. We show them every year. They always perform differently each year. This year, WONDERFUL LIFE did reasonably well, but WHITE CHRISTMAS sold out the two shows we had! (we have 400 seats at $5/ticket; we do 35% with Paramount) We don't make predictions anymore about what these two titles will do, but we bring them back every year (for the last 6 years) and one or both do well enough or better! You need to see if your patrons view you as a theater that plays classic films...otherwise, those that want to see these classics will not look for them at you theater, unless you advertise the heck out of them. We show a lot of classic product and our patrons expect us to show these two films each year. They even plan family outings around it. What I tell new theater operators constantly is that it will take you a while to find out what those in your community expect you to show, each community is different. Then, give them what they want...if they want classic Christmas films on the big screen each holiday season, play it and they will come!
The administrator has disabled public write access.
  • Page:
  • 1
Time to create page: 0.178 seconds
attraction attraction
attraction
attraction
attraction
attraction