CJ Cinema Digest – Friday 20 May 2016

By Patrick von Sychowski | May 20, 2016 2:42 am PDT

Cinemark not guilty, Paris cine gun scare, outdoor cinema in Leeds, Paris & Indy500, ‘indecent act’ arrest, sugar tax cinema death, Vainglory cine eSport, Alamo in booze-free zone, Belga multiplex and an ImaxShift cycling studio (yes, really).

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USA (CO) – Cinemark was found not liable in the civil suit brought against it by the families of the victims of the 2012 Aurora (‘Dark Knight’) mass shooting. The defence attorney had argued that it was an unforeseeable tragedy, while the families who brought the case claimed that the cinema should have had armed guards, better surveillance cameras and exit door alarms. The jury reached the verdict after less than a day of deliberation, but there is still a federal lawsuit set to begin in July. Variety – 19 May 2016

France – An off-duty policeman caused a panic and evacuation of the UGC Quatre Temps in La Défense in Paris, when  another cinema goer caught sight of his concealed gun. Security was alerted, the police and French SWAT teams were deployed and the audiences of auditoriums 13 and 14 were evacuated. Since last year’s Paris attacks, French police are permitted to carry their guns off-duty and the police officer had shown his identity at the box office, prior to entering. Le Parisian (FR) – 17 May 2016

Outdoor Cinema

Leed's Millennium Square
Leed’s Millennium Square – Hosting screening events this summer. (photo: Yorkshire Evening Post)

UK – Leed’s Millennium Square will be transformed into a big cinema with themed entertainment, and its taking inspiration from Secret Cinema.

Each screening will include its own movie-themed entertainment – from a fairground and American-style diner food for Grease to cocktails, a casino and James Bond cars for Skyfall and fancy dress competitions and costumed characters for the Avengers movie.

Leeds City Council has partnered Leeds Film and Sneaky Experience for the screening series to be called The Film House on the Square. Yorkshire Evening Post – 20 May 2016


France – An outdoor gourmet cinema? It could only be in Paris. Nestled in the 18th arrondissement you are greeted with a glass of champagne and trendy music as you enter. On the left is a stunning view of Sacre Coeur, on the right the sun sets over Paris. All that and a great meal and a cinephile delight. What could be better? (Sponsored, or at least supported by, Deliveroo.) Time Out Paris (FR) – 17 May 2016

"Winning" Indianapolis 500
“Winning” over film fans at the Indianapolis 500. (photo: CBS4Indy)

USA (IN) – A themed outdoor screening to tie in with the Indianapolis 500 car racing.

The Roving Cinema is part of Indy Film Fest. The Roving Cinema shows fun, cult classics in places that relate to the movie. For example, Field of Dreams was shown at Victory Field.

“It’s always been on the bucket list to do something at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and with it being the 100th Running, all the pieces fell into place,” said Craig Mince, Executive Director of Indy Film Fest. “It’s been a long time coming and it’ll be a really neat one.”

The chosen film? Why of course it is Paul Newman’s “Winning”. [Ed: I guess Steve McQueen’s “Le Mans” was never in the running.]  CBS4Indy – 19 May 2016

Law & Order

Man of steel arrested
Arrested for outraging public decency and assault. (photo: Warner Bros / DC)

UK – Despite negative reviews at least one couple seems to have enjoyed “Batman vs. Superman” – perhaps a bit too much. A man and a woman were arrested in a cinema in Manchester for “performing a sexual act” this past Thursday. When the staff confronted them about this the man punched the staff member in the face. Perhaps no surprise alcohol is said to have been involved. Manchester Evening News – 20 May 2016


The Northern Mariana Island
The Northern Mariana Island (image: Google Maps)

USA (Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands) – The only cinema in Northern Mariana claims that it might have to close if the proposed local tax on sugar-sweetened beverages, powders and syrups is enacted.

Governor Ralph Torres said representatives from the cinema, and from wholesalers and hotels, pleaded the negative effects of the sugar tax.

Mr Torres said the cinema told him the tax would most likely cause it to shut down because it made most of its money from soft drinks.

Northern Mariana Islands, of which Saipan is the largest island, are a U.S. commonwealth in the Pacific Ocean. RNZ – 20 Nay 2016

Event Cinema

Vainglory Ion Cinema Japan
Vainglory beaming to Ion Cinema Japan

Japan – eSports on the big screen in Japan with the Ion Cinema Kyoto Katsura Riverscreening event “Vainglory Cinema Live! Esports × cinema” on 22 May. This is the first time that the Vainglory Premiere League has staged a screening in a cinema in Japan apparently. 4Gamer (JP) – 18 May 2016

Cinema Opening/Closings

Alamo Drafthouse Cinema logo

USA (MO) – Just as Wehrenburg prepares to vacate Springfield by closing the Campbell 16 Cine, Alamo Drafthouse has announced that it plans to open a cinema there. However, serving alcohol there could be complicated as back in 2011 local voters passed an ordinance “to prohibit the sale, consumption or advertising of alcohol in family-oriented movie theaters in the city of Springfield.” Alamo Sodahouse, anyone? News-Leader – 19 May 2016

Belga films logo

Belgium – Distributor Belga Films has announced plans to open a multiplex in central Brussels. The eight-screen multiplex will open this October in a commercial mall. Belga is also getting into English-language film productions, being the #2 distributor in Belgium and the biggest distributor of india films in Holland with output deals for Lionsgate and EuropaCorp. Variety – 18 May 2016

Kinomax logo

Russia – Kinomax is opening a 7,500sqm 13-screen cinema in Irkutsk later this year. Property Xpress – 16 May 2016

Lisa Laurin, theatre manager of the Downtown Movie Lounge.
Lisa Laurin, theatre manager of the Downtown Movie Lounge. (photo: John Lappa/Sudbury Star/Postmedia Network)

Canada (ON) – The new multiplex in the Rainbow Centre in Sudbury, Ont. is getting rave reviews. The six-screen cinema features “delicious hors d’oeuvres, Stack beer and vodka slushies, decadent chocolates and the most comfortable reclining seats you could ask for.” It marks a welcome return to downtown sudbury. Sudbury Star – 19 May 2016



USA (NY) – Imax has opened an immersive cycling studio in New York called ImaxShift. No, this is not an April Fool joke, this appears to be the real wheel deal.

Instructors will teach a spinning-style class amid IMAX’s high-tech projection and sound technology. The company says images will appear on screen in the front of the room to “immerse riders in a full sensory workout experience,” according to the company in a press release. The IMAXShift video above highlights more of what to expect.

Classes, which can fit about 50 riders, will be about 45 minutes in length and cost $34 for each ride — similar to other cycling studios in Manhattan.  Multi-class packages will be offered at a slight discount.

Our prediction about an Imax VR headset cannot be far off now. [UPDATE: the Imax VR headset IS happening. More on this soon.] Yahoo Tech – 19 April 2016

Patrick von Sychowski
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