Daily Cinema Digest – Monday 1 September 2014

By Patrick von Sychowski | September 1, 2014 2:55 am PDT
CGV logo

China (PRC) – Korea’s CGV is expanding aggressively in Mainland China. With its latest opening in Chengdu the city now has more Imax screens than any other in China.

In “5 yuan fare” era, the price war to Chengdu nationally known film market, as yesterday, the Korean CGV Star Studios high Juhui store opening, Chengdu has reached 9 IMAX screen, just three years from scratch , ranking first in the country. Chengdu film market competition has been upgraded from a price war for competing brands and specialty services. And a good cultural atmosphere and great movie box office potential but also to South Korea CJ Group CGV Studios will enter the Chinese market in Chengdu as the layout of the focus will be in Chengdu to build 10 high-end theater cast.

Chengdu is the first to enter the double cinema competition of the city, but also a multiplex cinema city first batch appears. Up to now, Chengdu has 18 theaters, ranking first in the country. Chengdu, Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Shanghai market at the box office behind, ranking fifth in the country, the number of hundreds of movie theaters, the number of screens per capita highest in the country.  LINK

 Roaring Currents

Korea – And while it’s been a bad box office summer in the US, other territories like Korea are doing very, very well – mainly on the strength of local hits.

Korean films attracted a record 25 million viewers to local theaters in August thanks to the popularity of two historical dramas, “Roaring Currents” and “The Pirates,” a market tracker said on Monday.

The number of cinema tickets sold for Korean films came to 25.06 million last month, equivalent to a ticket each for half of the country’s population of about 50 million people, the Korean Film Council said in a monthly report on box-office data.

It easily beat the previous record of 21 million set in August last year when “Snowpiercer,” “The Terror Live” and “Hide and Seek” simultaneously hit the box-office.  LINK

Polish multiplex
Not the multiplex in question (possibly).

Is working in a cinema so terrible? This article from a Polish newspaper would have us believe so, with its headline “Scams, paltry salaries, cleaning toilets, the smell of popcorn and free screenings. Behind the scenes work in the cinema”. But it doesn’t reveal which particular multiplex chain it is that is being described.

It was the worst job of my life … employees there resent it. How I wanted to finish 15 minutes early I had to ask the manager and, of course, remember to deduct me a penny for it from your salary. I sat there sometimes until 2 am, and the next day – I was at 8 in the morning. I went to four years of study, and half of the managers in the theater they were even younger than me shits … And heavy conditions – pissed me the lack of light, and it was terribly dry – I literally drying up of the lens in front of what I wore. Cinema opened even at Christmas, despite the fact that no one came  LINK


Chen Xing Technologies

China (PRC) – The most interesting and important digital cinema technology company at the recent BIRTV trade show in Beijing (sorry AAM, GDC and Christie) did not put out a press release in English. We have written about Chen Xing Technologies before and it is a company worth keeping your eyes on for their innovation.

Chen Xing Digital Technology Development (Beijing) Co., Ltd. in Beijing Eagle International Hotel held a “technology allows more intelligent theater management” New Products Council. The General Assembly is divided into two parts, the first chapter introduces the theater information management solutions, products include concentrated Broadcasting System TMS theater, cinema ticketing system 3.0 two theater information solutions product, which will greatly enhance the theater management to achieve cinema direct contact with the market. The second General Assembly mainly in theater screenings of high quality solutions and optical equipment manufacturing company in cooperation with Konica Minolta Suntec City, which means that Chen Xing Technology will show products yingting brightness test monitoring to ensure that Chen Xing technology products show to achieve the required brightness and after regular external monitoring.  LINK

Law & Order

AMC Bronx

USA (NY) – “Tearjerker”, ha-bloody-ha. Am I alone in not finding this description particularly amusing?

A night at the movies turned into a real tearjerker for nine theatergoers in the Bronx Sunday night when they were exposed to pepper spray, authorities said.

The patrons were at AMC Bay Plaza cinema on Bartow Ave. in Baychester at around 9:45 p.m. when they were hit by fumes from the noxious agent, an FDNY spokesman said.

It was not immediately clear who sprayed the substance or where the toxins were spritzed.  LINK


 Cineplex Hamm

Germany – The Cineplex in Hamm has been recognised as the first “inclusive” cinema makers of the subtitling and audio description app Greta & Stark.

“The Cineplex Hamm comes up with creative and self initiatives for inclusive cinema. Theater director Carsten Duhnke and his team wear with different measures to a new culture for common cinema joy. The Cineplex Hamm is exemplary came into contact with potential new visitors and has this and Committed to the press invited to a test screening. Communicated all concerned the new inclusive offer and their pioneering experiences active in their area / environment. The Cineplex Hamm has it even further and for people who do not have a smart device, launched an appeal, any two devices for the deliver including use in the movies. This is a inclusive and sympathetic step to let people who have neither a smartphone nor a tablet could participate. Moreover, the cinema staff are always well informed for questions on accessible cinema and Apps Greta & Starks and friendly way, “it says to justify the award. LINK

Health & Safety

Event Cinema

Australia – Piracy and high ticket prices are being blamed for Australia’s declining cinema attendance, but we may have discovered a third cause.

Movie-goer Aaron Parnell, his partner and two friends were horrified when they noticed their seats at Event Cinemas Mt Gravatt were covered in brown stains and grime.

The group didn’t notice until after they had finished their two and a half hour movie.

Mr Parnell said the sight had made him feel “sick to the point of throwing up”.

“There was dust and grime all over the handles and wet patches,” he said.  LINK

Event Cinema


UK – The Financial Times looks once again at the business of event cinema and interviews one of its key players. Amazingly the article claims that 560 of Britain’s 700 cinemas now take part in NT Live.

Live-streaming of performance into cinema has grown into a technically polished new medium that has found a huge and loyal worldwide audience. The Met’s opera streaming is produced by the pioneers in this industry, By Experience, which is run by Robert and Julie Borchard-Young. Their first live-stream was in 2003 when David Bowie played his new album Reality for 50,000 people in cinemas across the globe. Since then, By Experience has been the name behind “event cinema” that includes art exhibitions, pop concerts and the US distribution of the Bolshoi Ballet and National Theatre Live productions.

Julie Borchard-Young says there is still huge potential for growth: “There are many types of entertainment suitable for the big screen, and we are experiencing only the beginning of what might be possible.”  LINK

Downton Abbey season 5 bottle
Bottle it up!

UK – Downton Abbey’s season opening will be screened early in cinemas. Actually, just one, for a charity event and tickets are GBP £75 (USD $125). Though for that you also get champagne and mingle with the cast.

The Cinema and Television Benevolent Fund (CTBF), a charity for people working behind-the-scenes in the British film, cinema and commercial TV industries, has partnered up for a premiere screening with ITV and producer Carnival Films, part of NBCUniversal.

It will take place at the Empire Leicester Square, one of the British capital’s big premiere cinemas, on Sept. 17, and the show’s cast and creators will attend.  LINK

Tatort Garbo kino

Germany – Long-running television crime drama “Tatort” will also open in at least one cinema in Germany when the new season kicks off this autumn.

Because of the constantly growing success of the television crime series, the German cinema halls remain empty. Some colleagues told the Old Town of Regensburg cinema operators Achim Hofbauer, already thinking about to close completely on Sunday evening. Hofbauer, even “Tatort” fan, takes a different approach and gets the ratings hit in his Garbo-cinema. On Sunday we go and it fits wonderfully, that comes via HD broadcast Adele Neuhauser, a former actress at the Stadttheater Regensburg and loud Hofbauer “a good friend of the house” in his cinema. “Paradise” is this Viennese “Tatort” episode with Harald Krassnitzer as Moritz Eisner and Neuhauser as Bibi Fellner, in which the grim award-winning broadcast due confront, among other things, the very topical subject of poverty in old age.  LINK

Rick Santorum

USA (CA) – Former Senator-turned-Christian-movie-mogul plans to show his films in churches. Not the first time this has been done, but whiff of desperation as Christian-theme films have often done quite well in existing cinema circuits. Ask Walden Media.

Rick Santorum has fired a warning shot across Hollywood’s bows with proposals to build a new film distribution system in which faith-orientated movies are screened in churches rather than cinemas.

The former Republican senator for Pennsylvania, who has previous labelled Hollywood “the devil’s playground”, is hoping to usher in a new dawn via documentary One Generation Away. Released by EchoLight Studios, the faith-oriented film production company of which Santorum became CEO in June 2013, the movie laments the increasing persecution it suggests Christians in the US are finding themselves subjected to.  LINK


Uganda UTL cinema

Uganda – Telecoms companies are on the cutting edge of driving innovation in Africa. This one to promote cinema-going in Uganda.

Last Thursday, Century Cinemax at Acacia mall, in conjunction with Uganda Telecom (utl), painted the place blue as they launched their new initiative called Epic Flick Thursday (#EFT). With #EFT, film lovers get a chance to enjoy the latest movies at a subsidized fee of Shs 12,000 every Thursday.

“EFT is one of our many innovations for fun-loving Ugandans,” said utl’s Chief Commercial Officer Shailendra Naidu.

He revealed that they would also be giving out free tickets every week via their social media platforms. Last Thursday was an invite-only, and it started off with a cocktail party that was attended by socialites, media personalities and a few musicians.  LINK

Cinema Opening/Closings

Utopia Bordeaux

France – Bordeaux is set to get a new multiplex in competition with the existing Utopia cinema – which uniquely is located in a former church.

The departmental committee BIA met Wednesday, August 27 in the prefecture, and authorized the project to create a multiplex UGC Ciné / Cité in the new district Basins in Flot to Bordeaux.

Promoter, the Somifa subsidiary of Fayat group, will construct the building, instead of the current Hangar 27, rue Lucien Faure, near the site Latule. He should see the current 2017 date.

If the project has been welcomed by local residents, it cringe on the side of alternative cinema, Utopia.  LINK

Prospect St cinema

Australia – It seems that a lot of cinema proposals bring (warranted?) fears of traffic problems from local residents.

ALMOST 200 residents have signed a petition calling for an urgent investigation into potential traffic snarls around a four-storey cinema complex proposed for Prospect Rd.

Last week, dozens of placard-waving residents packed the public gallery at a Prospect Council, protesting against the Maras Group’s plans for the $18 million cinema complex on the corner of Rose St.

Head petitioner Ann Smith told the council the 53 on-site carparks included as part of the development would not be enough to meet demand.  LINK

Fiji Patel

Fiji – Work on Fiji’s new multiplex is progressing nicely.

CONSTRUCTION works on RB Patel Group’s (RBG) Cinema Multiplex in Nadi are 75 per cent complete, with patrons expected to view movies before Christmas.

According to Fijian Holdings Ltd CEO Nouzab Fareed, whose subsidiary FHL Retailing Ltd has a 50.16 per cent shareholding in the supermarket chain, the four-cinema Cineplex at the JetPoint Complex in Martintar was a significant investment that would provide competition in the cinema industry.  LINK

Hull Independent Cinema

UK – Best of luck to these enthusiasts who want to bring an independent cinema to Hull (European City of Culture).

A GROUP of film enthusiasts have taken a step closer to fulfilling their dream of opening an independent cinema in Hull.

The Hull Independent Cinema Project (HICP) has been awarded £5,000 to put on a series of film screenings in community venues around the city as part of its plans to bring independent, world and art cinema to new audiences.

The group eventually wants to open a new independent cinema and stage a film festival in the city.  LINK



“Movies are kind of like smoking. Smoking was a 20th century thing. In the 20th century people smoked, in the 20th century people went to movies – could be it’s over.” Dennis Nyback , walking tour guide of Portland (OR) old and lost cinemas. (No Portlandia sketch this).

Nyback gave quick facts about movie theaters that once stood in lots now occupied by parking garages, restaurants and public squares. They reveal a city that once blossomed – a pre-Hollywood mecca for movies with theaters dotting blocks along streetcar lines, seating hundreds and even thousands.

There were the nickelodeons, the newsreel theaters, the upscale joints and the dim dives. They went by names like The Globe and The Blue Mouse. Some even ran 24 hours a day.

Today those names are all stripped from buildings, the remaining theaters downtown owned by multiplex corporations. The one saving grace, Nyback said, is the remaining historic theaters on the east side of town.

“Many of those theaters that are not downtown still exist, The Baghdad, the Avalon, the Laurelhurst, the Moreland. We’re lucky, we probably have more theaters remaining per capita than any other city,” he said.  LINK

Patrick von Sychowski
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