Tag Archives: Clearview Cinemas

Can Movie Theatres Be Used As Emergency Storm Shelters?

Hurricane Sandy

What has been dubbed Superstorm Sandy will go down in history as one of the most devastating weather events in United States history. Arguably the most destructive storm since Hurricane Katrina in 2005, it has left dozens dead, thousands homeless and millions of residents in New York and New Jersey without electricity. Though far less important in the grand scheme of the event, it has also shuttered hundreds of movie theatres along the eastern coast of the country for the past three days.

The strong winds, heavy rain and flooding brought New York City to a screeching halt Sunday evening with public transportation suspended indefinitely. Cinema owners also ceased operations with the likes of AMC, Clearview and Regal letting their screens go dark as early as three o’clock on Sunday. The move was meant not only to protect patrons, but also theatre employees who might otherwise have been trapped at work.

Much has been made about the adverse affect Sandy has had on box office receipts, especially on Sunday’s returns. But as film sprockets and reels have given way to digital bits and hard drives throughout the industry, little has been mentioned about the issues faced by modern-day cinemas.

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Is Cinedigm A Digital Cinema Bellwether?

The time before, during and after any motion picture industry trade show is one filled with an endless stream of press releases. Any journalist covering the space receives dozens, if not hundreds, of emails from marketing departments and publicists during these periods filled with press releases. At some point, it becomes easy to read between the lines of such press releases, to determine which ones are truly important. But if one were to take a step back, it can also be easy to spot industry trends through the releases certain companies publish.

This was certainly the case at CinemaCon this past March, especially when it came to press releases distributed by Cinedigm. In the weeks leading up to the conference, the digital cinema deployment entity announced agreements with such exhibitors as Cinemaworld and B&B Theatres. AMC Theatres chose the company’s exhibition management system to help run their North American venues.

Then, during CinemaCon, announcements came that Goodrich Quality Theatres, Guzzo Cinemas, and Wehrenberg Theatres were all entering into deployment agreements with Cinedigm. This was interspersed with news about deals with Sonic Equipment Company and content distribution in Latin America. Shortly after the convention Cinedigm reported they had also signed Clearview Cinemas up to a deployment agreement.

Earlier this week Cinedigm thankfully aggregated much of the news about their deployment agreements into a single press release so that folks like me could keep all the information straight. It turns out I had good reason to take notice of how busy Cinedigm’s PR department has been lately – during the last quarter they signed deployment agreements with 32 exhibitors accounting for 1,402 screens at 142 sites. This is the largest number of exhibitors and screens signed during any quarter of the company’s history.

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SVA Transforms Manhattan’s Chelsea West Theater

Chelsea West TheaterThe Chelsea West Cinemas in New York City has long been a home to film industry events such as premieres and trade screenings. Now, in what Variety is calling “one of the boldest moves in Gotham exhibition this decade” the School of Visual Arts has taken out a 26-year lease on the theatre and will spend the next several months renovating the venue to reopen it as a repertory theatre. (AMC opening the Empire 25 on 42nd Street in 2000 directly across the street from a Loews multiplex must not count as bold, just extremely confident.)

The Chelsea West, which opened in 1963 as a single-screen theatre, is a 20,000 square foot, two-screen complex which had been operated by Clearview Cinemas until SVA recently took over the lease. Clearview will still operate the Chelsea, a nine-screen complex just across Eighth Avenue which shows first-run features.

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Technicolor’s Miniscule D-Cinema Sign Up Is Still Poke In The Eye For AccessIT

Technicolor logo Sometimes companies must wish that they could gloat more in standard press releases and none more so right now than Technicolor in announcing their first three digital cinema exhibitor clients: Clearview Cinemas, iPic Entertainment, Cinemaworld. On a strictly numerical basis it is very little to crow about as between these three, two add up to less than 300 screen and one has yet to open a single cinema. But it is Clearview that is the tiny jewel in Technicolor small digital cinema crown at the moment. From the press release:

Clearview Cinemas is a Chatham, New Jersey-based exhibitor that operates 50 theatres with 254 screens, 246 of which are in the New York DMA, the countrys largest metropolitan market. Clearview also owns and operates New York Citys legendary Ziegfeld Theatre, one of the countrys most famous movie palaces and the location of countless movie premieres and red-carpet events.

Clearview Cinemas is thrilled about working with Technicolor to further deploy digital Cinema in our circuit and to bring our customers all of the benefits of this pioneering technology, said Doug Oines, senior vice president and general manager of Clearview Cinemas.

Clearview ciemas logo Had there been an ‘About Clearview Cinemas ‘ at the bottom of the press release it might have mentioned that Clearview was established by Bud Mayo, who went on to create AccessIT, before he sold it on to Cablevision. The fact that Clearview has selected to be one of the first to go with Technicolor rather than with the largest and most established digital cinema third-party operator is a clear snub to Mayo. This development did not pass un-noticed in the industry and even made it into a Yahoo! discussion forum that resulted in the following exchanges:

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