Home Forums Movie Theaters The Lobby Basic Business Model / Plan, advice greatly apprec
Welcome, Guest
Username: Password: Remember me
  • Page:
  • 1

TOPIC: Basic Business Model / Plan, advice greatly apprec

Basic Business Model / Plan, advice greatly apprec 06 Aug 2009 04:45 #32066

  • Narwhal
  • Narwhal's Avatar
  • Fresh Boarder
  • Posts: 1
Hey! So I've been scanning this site and several other sources fairly extensively recently, as I'm currently scoping out the prospect of reopening a closed small (5 screen max?) theater. Here's the rundown:

The downtown of my city is undergoing a revitalization recently, largely intended to bring out the young adults and get our city flourishing again. In the downtown vicinity, aside from usual amenities and shady characters, there is a well established music venue, and a recently opened Arts Block (both owned by the same person, a young entrepeneur). Near both of these locations is a currently dead mall. It houses a coffee shop, a few small shops, and a lot of empty space. It also houses an old movie theater.

The theater has been reopened several times within the past decade and never has it lasted long. I think most of this has to do with the previous companies trying to do first and subrun, in competition with a well established and ultra modern cineplex (which is rather far from the downtown core).

My intention is to reopen the theater as a 1, maybe 2 screen theater, dedicated to showing classic and cult-classic films. Aesthetically, I'd intend it to partner well with the local music venue and arts block, which is probably the easiest part of all of this.

I'm slowly getting an idea of costs and factors involved. The last major piece of the puzzle still remains: cost of leasing films. Here's a short list of some example films I'd want to show:

Star Wars: A New Hope
Welcome to the Dollhouse
Annie Hall

and etc.

Is there any estimation of costs or figures involved with movies such as these?

I've arranged to meet with the previously mentioned owner of the venue and arts block next week, mainly to ask some questions regarding the arts block and how the funding came about, but also to see if he'd be interested in offering assistance with this project. I've written up a survey which I'll be using to canvas the town for the next few weeks, trying to see if the classic-film approach makes sense. I have contacted Karen Cooper of the Film Forum in New York, and got some great advice from her regarding the industry (and the notion of making this a not-for-profit theatre).

I need to contact the owner of the mall to inquire about leasing the property, and lastly I need to contact some local organizations concerned with our downtown's revitalization, to see if any funding would be available.

Here's the real gutpunch; I'm a 20 year old on unemployment with no post-secondary education as of yet, and while I'm being candid, a credit card bill. But I do think this project could be succesful if marketed and researched properly.

Is there any advice, comments, constructive criticism any of you have to offer?

I appreciate any words any of you can share.
Thank you sincerely,
Alex Hnatiuk
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re:Basic Business Model / Plan, advice greatly apprec 06 Aug 2009 09:43 #32067

  • lionheart
  • lionheart's Avatar
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 419
  • Thank you received: 38
Similar ideas have been frequently discussed here many, many times. I won't say that a classic or cult classic film wouldn't draw a crowd, but it often doesn't from what people who have tried them say. People say they will come and then don't.

I see it as a novelty at best. Assuming it even starts out with some success, how do you keep them coming? How many older films do you think there are, that you can get rights to show, locate a good quality print, and that would draw a crowd?

A recent discussion on another forum stated that a few theaters are successful with a flashback series, but that is only supplemental to their main business of first run film. It would be incredibly hard to keep it all going, or even to get it started.

And frankly, if you have no or limited experience, limited education, you are not likely to get any investors, support, etc.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re:Basic Business Model / Plan, advice greatly apprec 06 Aug 2009 15:14 #32068

  • revrobor
  • revrobor's Avatar
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 1148
  • Thank you received: 29
Hi Alex:

I would not devote all screens to the type of film you mention. In my opinion the films you mention are not really classic. There are real classic films available from the 40s, 50s, and 60s. In fact, according to the American Film Institute, the best film ever made was the 1941 classic "Citizen Kane" with Orson Wells. Most classic films rent for a flat fee (about $250) or a percentage of the BO gross (usually 35%). Run the classics on one screen and dedicate your other screen to specialty films (foreign, documentary, religious, etc.) and strong sub runs. If you have little experience (and have the financial resources to do this) hire yourself a good GM. I believe it will succeed.
Bob Allen
The Old Showman
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re:Basic Business Model / Plan, advice greatly apprec 07 Aug 2009 08:03 #32071

I agree with Bob on showing foreign films on a screen or 2. I am currently
remodeling an 8 screen in New Jersey that shows predominatly Indian(mid east)
movies. They opened a movie last Friday called Magadheera it reminded me of
a star wars opening and they got 15 bucks a ticket. Several things to remember
you need to cater to your local clients needs if you have Chinese,Korean or
Spanish etc. This theater serves regular concession food plus several Indian
food and drink items they get from a local market. Also the trick is to be the
only one showing these movies nearby and in the language of your local clients.
Some countries have multiple languages like India has at least 5 and even though this movie is being shown 20 minutes from here it is the only one for
100 miles showing it in Tamil & Telugu.Another FYI is the film distributers
are constantly looking for new venues to show there brand of movies.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re:Basic Business Model / Plan, advice greatly app 07 Aug 2009 19:21 #32072

  • debo
  • debo's Avatar
  • Fresh Boarder
  • Posts: 12
Since you asked for general advice in addition to advice on the film issue, I'll say that you should never bet on downtown revitalization plans. Even when communities come together and really do it well, they almost always fail at attracting the crowd you envision. Cities of 150,000+ can make it happen with a lot of really good planning and even more money, but the track record is overwhelmingly against smaller places succeeding.

That said, communities who pursue downtown revitalization efforts are often willing to dump huge sums of money on projects that they "think" may help the effort, even if they know for a fact the venture will lose money. So that may be a source of investment. But at your age and with your lack of experience, even a gung-ho city council is probably going to draw the line at handing over a couple million.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
  • Page:
  • 1
Time to create page: 0.492 seconds
attraction attraction