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ITA ? 29 Feb 2012 16:19 #37962

  • Mike
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The Independent Theatre Alliance is an association of independent theater owners and movie industry professionals working together to meet the needs of our members in a rapidly changing communications and entertainment environment.

ITA is not about reinventing the movie industry; we’re about reviving the movie industry through creativity, adaptability, advocacy and cooperation on a variety of issues:
• low-cost digital conversion systems
• group discounts on concessions and point-point of purchase items
• higher revenues from ticket sales
• regional advertising and theater promotions
• industry feedback on popular trends and genres
• providing a showcase for quality independent films
• promoting affordable and fun theater entertainment that serves our communities

Independent theaters and drive-ins face challenges that can be solved by working together. ITA’s goal is to find those solutions and share them with our members.
Michael Hurley
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Re: ITA ? 08 Mar 2012 17:36 #38006

  • Barry Floyd
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I know very little about this organization, but from what I can tell... it's really not an organization but the idea of one guy to sell "pro-sumer" video projectors to independent theatres for a price point of less than $5k.

I seriously doubt that the 7 major studios would license first run product to play on a projector like we have hanging from the ceiling in our church. Nothing of what they suggest is anywhere near DCI compliant from what I can see. In my opinion.... it's another "Thanks for looking but move along".
Barry Floyd
Floyd Entertainment Group
Lebanon, Tennessee

Stardust Drive-In Theatre
Watertown, Tennessee
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Re: ITA ? 21 Mar 2012 00:54 #38130

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The ITA has a base of 70 theatre owners who collectively control over 350 screens. We are currently creating a co-operative model and are assessing 3 manufacturers. We intend upon testing the viability of the equipment will be submitting the units to organizations like CineCert.

Thanks for your interest
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Shipping First Digital Units 25 Mar 2012 04:08 #38164

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(CHICAGO) The Independent Theater Alliance (ITA) today announced initial orders for an
alternative high definition projection system that could serve as a lifeline for 120
drive-ins and 2000 small town theaters in danger of closing this next year. The ITA
projection system is a low cost, high-quality system that allows independent theaters to
offer digitally produced content without having to incur the high costs of the major
Hollywood studios' Digital Cinema Initiative's (DCI) platform. The first ITA systems will be
shipped to two Chicago-area theaters.

The large Hollywood Studios decision to elinate 35mm as a format, is mandating the migration of
all theaters in North America to a new digital format Digital Cinema Initiatives platform,
making older film projection systems obsolete. Industry analysts fear that independent screens nationwide
are in danger of closing simply because they can’t afford to convert to the mandated DCI format. DCI costs
can approach $75,000 per screen.

In contrast, the ITA system is costing ten percent of the DCI cost per screen with
“better-than-HD” quality, according to Buck Kolkmeyer, a midwest theater owner and a founder of the
Independent Theater Alliance. “The ITA system helps theater owners make the expensive
digital transition in small steps,” he said. “For many theaters this system is the first
step toward renewed commercial viability. For many small towns, this will breathe life in
what has traditionally been their cultural center."

Kolkmeyer programs 62 screens and sees the system as a way to help himself and other owners
who face similar challenges. “Many struggling theaters are now back in the game,” he added,
“and will be able to evolve over time to the DCI system.The issue is not only the cost of moving to
DCI but also not diversifying your content source"

The ITA system provides various forms of art house, performance and independent feature
films outside of established Hollywood distribution channels, allowing theaters to offer
second-tier releases, independent programming, classical and musical performances and
independent films.

For further information visit ITA’s website at

About the ITA,

The ITA is a co-operative of Independent Theatre Owners whose goal it is to assist each other with technology
and buying power.
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Re: Shipping First Digital Units 25 Mar 2012 12:59 #38165

  • rufusjack
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ITA wrote:

The ITA system provides various forms of art house, performance and independent feature
films outside of established Hollywood distribution channels, allowing theaters to offer
second-tier releases, independent programming, classical and musical performances and
independent film.

This programming will matter very little to the overwhelming majority of theaters that do not fit a vpf deal.

Have you or anyone on your behalf had any meeting with one of the top 6 studios yet about getting your system approved? Have you or anyone on your behalf contacted any of them?
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Re: ITA ? 25 Mar 2012 16:11 #38166

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ITA.... WOW... old Buck Kolkmeyer resurfaces once again in yet another corporate form.

There was of course the former Sho-Pro famous for its 'stealth theatre' designs.

And lets not forget EFW or Entertainment Film Works theatre operations:
Last Edit: 25 Mar 2012 16:12 by muviebuf.
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Re: ITA ? 25 Mar 2012 20:45 #38168

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I did a little quick searching and do see that Buck Kolkmeyer was involved with Sho-Pro (which seems to have later become Nova Cinemas). I agree the "stealth theater" concept didn't go over too well with a lot of people. But, some people have said good things about Nova Cinemas. I saw on Film-Tech where Greg Borr of RTS fame said they were a good company. They were noted for using used film equipment and providing lower cost alternatives to customers. Nothing wrong with that in my mind.

But... I read the thread you linked about Entertainment Film Works over on film-tech and I didn't see Kolkmeyer's name or company mentioned anywhere. I did read that Nova Cinemas took over a location that was a former EFW operation in Houston. I read everything I could find on film-tech about Kolkmeyer, Sho-Pro, Nova Cinemas, and EFW. My conclusion is that there wasn't enough information there to conclude that Kolkmeyer was associated with EFW. So, where are you getting your information, moviebuf?
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Re: ITA ? 04 Apr 2012 20:03 #38225

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The day began with the smell of popcorn, a convention goody bag and a comfy seat in a lovely small-town theater called “The State.” I was there to learn about "movie theater digital conversion” (the Future) which from a movie-goer’s (Movie-Goer) perspective offers for some spectacular visual experiences. But this was a meeting for theater-owners (Exhibitors) and the presenters (Manufacturers and Hollywood).

The slideshows revealed the expanded capabilities of modern day movie technology. The presenters talked about receiving phone calls from Steven (Spielberg) and Jim (Cameron) in designing the equipment to meet Hollywood’s future moviemaking needs, and how now all of Hollywood’s movies will be produced and distributed digitally (goodbye Kodak) to be viewed anywhere at any time from pocket devices to home theaters. In between the presentations the Manufacturers drew business cards out of a hat and lots of us won good stuff.

I was made to feel happy to learn that a projection room could now be monitored over the internet by the Manufacturer and by Hollywood. Theaters can now have “projector-booth-free” operations, eliminating jobs, I mean overhead.

The Manufacter can now alert you to dimming bulbs, and Hollywood can make sure you’re showing what you’re supposed to and paying the proper “virtual print fees.” I’m not sure about that, because they kicked me out of that presentation when I didn’t sign a Non-Discolosure Statement, but I’m guessing the Exhibitors still have to pay for the same old “print costs,” even though there are no more “print costs.”

By now I was wondering how this was such a good thing.

I found that all it takes to enjoy this new technology is $100,000 per screen but don’t worry, “we have our own in-house financing.” But since this new technology is easliy damaged by popcorn oil, please “change your filters regularly.”

They talked about 15-year financing on equpment that may not last five years and we all mumbled sadly when an Exhibitor mentioned he’s still using his grandfather’s 35 projector, well oiled from years of popcorn.

When I learned that the cost of this mandated (by Hollywood and the Manufacturers) digital conversion may force the closure of thousands of drive-in and independent movie screens across the country, I understood why the Manufacturer’s open bar social hour had such big shrimp.

The State Theater had a Saturday matinee as we left earlier for our lunch. The popper was going crazy and frazzled moms were negotiating their way through the candy counter. The kids were laughing and it was a happy place filled with excitement and entertainment. The State, along with thousands of other Exhibitors survived the Great Recession only to face a technology conversion forced on them in difficult times with few outside resources.

I feel sad that in a time in when we need fun, family entertainment more than ever, we could lose our movie theaters in favor of iPhones and ear buds. No more “waiting for DVD” - one day we can have global pay-per-view premieres direct to our skulls.

I’ll miss the popcorn.
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Re: ITA ? 04 Apr 2012 23:58 #38226

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Thank-you Lionheart. YOUR information is accurate. I have never been associated with EFW. Throughout my career I have championed the cause of the independent theatre owner and I will do so until I take my last breath. How do you spot a pioneer? He's the one with the arrows in his back.
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Re: ITA ? 05 Apr 2012 01:51 #38227

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The ITA is grateful for the vision and the passion that Buck Kolkmeyer brings to it. He is zealously trying to protect the independent.Thanks Buck
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