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Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Let's make a list of non-Landmark indie theaters & support them when we can

Monopolies & vastly powerful corporations can lead to all kinds of problems. In the case of Caveh Zahedi vs. Landmark Theaters/Mark Cuban it is: the worker (in this case the filmmaker) being punished for something that he had nothing to do w/- the battle between Mark Cuban & Comcast (read indieWIRE for details on that issue). Landmark Theaters is the nation's largest indie film theater chain, so I've been told, so it will be difficult to avoid them all together (as indie film fans or indie filmmakers), however, it is in our best interest for there to be competition for Landmark Theaters or for there to be other indie film theaters (non-mega-corporate, not chain owned, if possible) in Landmark cities, towns. Let's spread the word about non-Landmark indie theaters everywhere in the US & support those theaters whenever we can so that they may stay in business & keep Landmark in check to some degree.

I'll start w/ DC:

Indie film theater alternatives to the Landmark Theaters in DC (E St, Bethesda Row):

AFI Silver

The Avalon

(there may be a couple in nearby VA, I'll add those plus links to above mentioned theaters tomorrow AM).

Post your non-Landmark indie theaters suggestions in comments please.

Thanks!

Sujewa
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17 comments:

The Sujewa said...

In Seattle:

Northwest Film Forum

i am sure there are others in Seattle, that's just 1 off the top of my head.

In NYC:

Two Boots Pioneer

more names of NYC non-Landmark indie theaters coming soon.

sujewa
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Josh Boelter said...

The Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor and the State Theater a block away which the Michigan also owns are independent.



Unless you're close to Ann Arbor, it's a haul for most people in the Detroit area. I live close to Ann Arbor, so it's convenient for me.

Hopefully the Comcast/andmark dispute will get worked out. Personally, I'm hoping for a VOD option similar to iTunes for the future of home-viewing. But I like the Michigan Theater for seeing indie and foreign films on the large screen.

Cheers,

Josh

Blake Calhoun said...

In Dallas there are two Angelika theaters - one in Dallas proper, and another in the suburb of Plano. Also, there's an Angelika in Houston, TX. Check out www.angelikafilmcenter.com. Funny huh, how they put them all in Texas after New York Sujewa? :)

-Blake

The Sujewa said...

Hey Blake,

Thanks for the info. Yeah, Texas is like a whole other country (in fact, I think it kind of used to be
for a bit), I am sure there are good reasons for there being two Angelika's in TX.

The more I think about the non-Landmark theater issue the more it appears that when compared against all the other indie - including smaller chains, more mainstream theaters that can play some indies, non-profit venues, microcinemas, other performance venues that can be used to show indie films in this country, Landmark may not be that big.

Later this month I'll convert the comments on this page to a blog entry w/ links & URLs, so peeps in various places in the US can explore their non-Landmark alternatives.

Talk to you soon.

Sujewa
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The Sujewa said...

Thanks Josh B!

So I guess it is possible to add links to words in comments section of Blogger blogs, let us know how you did it Josh. I'll look around to see if I can figure it out.

Sujewa
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Sujewa [Blog Admin] said...

An interesting read, a website about Mark Cuban & Landmark Theaters:

http://www.markcubanhasnoclothes.com/index2.html

clarencecarter said...

We keep a pretty comprehensive list over at Reverse Shot:

http://www.reverseshot.com/reptheatres.html

If the link doesn't work, go to our links page and click "support your local repertory theatre"

The Sujewa said...

Excellent! Thanks for the info. I knew there had to be several exsisiting lists that I could check out on this topic.

It's time for at least some indie filmmakers & audience members to weane ourselves off of the big $ indiewood gravy trains & develop & support sustainable, worthwhile, at least remotely ethical, accountable, real indie film options.

I am sure it will be easy & will also be a lot of fun :)

- Sujewa

Brian said...

San Francisco:

with popcorn:
Balboa (for profit)
Castro (for profit)
Red Vic (worker-owned)
Roxie (now a non-profit org.)
Four Star (for profit, books some mainstream films)
Presidio (for profit, books mostly mainstream films)

no popcorn:
Artists' Television Access (I'm not sure of it's status)
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (screening room in Museum/Performing Arts space)

Other Bay Area:

with popcorn:
Elmwood, Berkeley (for profit)
Parkway, Oakland (for profit)
Oaks, Berkeley (possibly part of a chain?)
Rafael Film Center, San Rafael (non-profit)
Lark, Larkspur (non-profit)
Rialto Cinemas Lakeside, Santa Rosa (for profit)

no popcorn:
Pacific Film Archive, Berkeley (part of University of California)

I don't think this list is comprehensive, however. Links to most of the venues can be found at the top of my blog's sidebar.

Brian said...

The reverse shot list doesn't include all the venues in the San Francisco Bay Area. Check my blog's sidebar for more:

www.hellonfriscobay.blogspot.com

The Sujewa said...

Thanks Brian for those venue names, will get the links from your blog.

I have a blog called Art Indie Film Venues USA that I started a few weeks back but have not posted much at, I can pull some names & links from there too.

Excellent work everyone, thanks for the info, keep it coming!

Sujewa
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The Sujewa said...

Re: Reverse Shot list: it's probably not a complete list for any of the cities mentioned, but it is 1 good source/starting point in figuring out what the real indie theater options may be.

The venue Visions in DC, listed on the Reverse Shot list, closed about 3 years ago. Too bad, it was a good, non-chain, community & indie filmmaker friendly theater. I don't think they were able to compete w/ 2 Landmark theaters opening up w/ in 30 mins of them. They should have booked their own movies, instead of trying to get the ones that Landmark was trying to book. Over 20 years of excellent film festivals have yielded tons of excellent, undistributed movies, small indie film theaters, small-chains, should develop their own research & acquisition/booking teams, book these movies to their theaters & introduce these movies to the local audiences, offer movies that chains like Landmark are not offering. Press for these movies can now be cheaply built by having a good blog, good writer & also by collaborating w/various writers/reviewers who have liked a given movie. Small indie theaters should become more DIY in getting movies, instead of trying to get like the 5 new "indie" movies every other theater is trying to get. Maybe I'll open up a little theater & try out my own advice soon :)

I also want to add microcinemas to this list, and any indie venue where good movies may be seen.

Sujewa
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O'Rourke said...

Special thanks to clarencecarter for his list of Art House Theater links, which looks very useful. Impressive that he posted, considering he works for Mark Cuban. Nice to see the First Amendment may even survive in corporate America.

The Sujewa said...

Hmmm,very interesting. Hopefully the clarancecarter won't be in any trouble, & then again it might not be the real person, it's the web u know, identities can be fluid here.

-sujewa
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dawn said...

In Dallas, there is also the Regent Highland Park which plays a mix of mainstream and indies. They program quite a bit of their own product from Regent Releasing and Here! Films. It is a great theater and it is Dallas and LA owned.

They do day and date.

Anonymous said...

shouldn't the list be the opposite? how about a locations list of all the landmark theaters, with their individual "brand" names? listing all the indie theaters is a lot more haphazard. though if you wanted to do a database w/theater ownership info, that could be a whole website on its own.

If you want to do it your way, that's cool. Here's some in upstate NY:

Albany: The Spectrum (8 screen but I believe is indie)
Hudson: Time & Space Limited (1 screen)
Hunter: Catskill Mountain Foundation (2 screen)
Pleasantville: Jacob Burns Film Center
Rhinebeck: Upstate Films (2 screen)
Rosendale: Rosendale Theatre (1 screen)
Syracuse: The Manlius & The Wescott (1 screen ea), The Palace (1 screen, shows 2nd run hollywood)

The Sujewa said...

Hey Anonymous,

Thanks for the NY theaters info.

Yeah, all the Landmark locations can be figured out by going to their website, do a google search on Landmark Theaters & you'll get there.

A separate motive for the list is to identify small for-profit, & non-profit venues that program a lot of indie & foreing stuff, not just indiewood & Hollywood, & go out of our way to support them. Non-chain indie theaters owned by one or several entrepenuers (not a mega international corporation) or a non-profit org can make different programming decisions, "more relevant to us" decisions, than a chain like Landmark. Also, those theaters are the ones that need out help in surviving, competeing w/ Landmark.

Another use for the list is for indie filmmakers to figure out where they may be able to book their films easily (w/ greater ease than at a mini-major chain indie theater) - either for a regular booking or a rental, smaller indie theaters may be easier to work w/ & also more affordable (if renting space from them).

Thanks again for the info, I have been working on a couple of yet unpublished blog entries that contain 100s of links to indie theaters, will get it up on the site this month.

- Sujewa

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