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» Film-Tech Forum   » Operations   » Ground Level   » I need ideas for making money at my rep cinema

   
Author Topic: I need ideas for making money at my rep cinema
Georgia Fisher
Film Handler

Posts: 3
From: Peterborough, Ontario, Canada
Registered: May 2005


 - posted 02-24-2006 08:28 AM      Profile for Georgia Fisher   Email Georgia Fisher   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Hi, I've never posted on here before. This is a pretty broad question.

At the start of the year I got put in charge of a single screen independent cinema. I've worked at it for a long time and seen it go through a couple different managements, none of which have been successful at all. Has anyone ever seen an alternative movie theatre that has actually done good business? Does anyone have any cool ideas? We have a licensed cafe out front that I'm developing like a bar. I'm willing to try anything so long as we don't have to put up a lot of money. Any ideas???

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Paul Gordon
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 573
From: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Registered: Aug 2005


 - posted 02-24-2006 08:49 AM      Profile for Paul Gordon   Author's Homepage   Email Paul Gordon   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Its all about programming.. well good presentation also helps... mix up the programming.. stuff for the students and stuff for the locals.. Whats the size of your theatre?, how many shows do you run a day? do you do double bills? I work at a independent theatre in Ottawa and its managed to stay open since 1932 www.mayfair-movie.com, the bar idea is a good one, people can meet before the flick and have a drink or after, its just to bad you can't have a beer in the theatre...

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Wayne Keyser
Master Film Handler

Posts: 272
From: Arlington, Virginia, USA
Registered: May 2004


 - posted 02-25-2006 01:40 AM      Profile for Wayne Keyser   Author's Homepage   Email Wayne Keyser       Edit/Delete Post 
You may have to go with numerous strategies. You might publicize (really MARKET) the availability of the building for large business meetings and church services (off-"show hours" additional uses). Turning the whole house into a table-service "pizzas & nachos & beer" venue would take major renovation but has proven popular in some areas.

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Mark Lensenmayer
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1572
From: Upper Arlington, OH
Registered: Sep 1999


 - posted 02-25-2006 07:46 AM      Profile for Mark Lensenmayer   Email Mark Lensenmayer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Here is a site you might want to check out:

Studio 35

This is a very well run, totally independent house in the middle of a neighborhood with no off-street parking available. It is close to, but not on, the giant Ohio State University campus.

This theatre is run by a couple of neighborhood guys with little experience in the movie business. BUT, they are successfully running this place. They show films just off of first run before it goes to the dollar houses. They have a full bar and get pizzas/subs from the place down the street.

They have been running recent "classic" films at 11:00 and those have done OK. They are now branching out into family films on the weekends. They are showing SPIDERMAN this weekend afternoons.

This week they are running Academy Award short films at 6:30 and BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN at 8:30.

They have also been VERY VERY successful showing Ohio State football games. Admission is free, but they make a killing on beer and food.

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Georgia Fisher
Film Handler

Posts: 3
From: Peterborough, Ontario, Canada
Registered: May 2005


 - posted 02-26-2006 09:06 AM      Profile for Georgia Fisher   Email Georgia Fisher   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Thanks. Its a 100 seat theatre, pretty small, and we run three shows a day, four on weekends. I want to take out the tiered seating and renovate so I can have a liquor license in the theatre, but that might just be a pipe dream. www.cinema379.ca

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Paul Gordon
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 573
From: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Registered: Aug 2005


 - posted 02-26-2006 07:02 PM      Profile for Paul Gordon   Author's Homepage   Email Paul Gordon   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Is this a commerical theatre, or run as a non-profit/artist run theatre? Just curious because with only 100 seats it must be tough to break even? If I ever go through Peterborough i'll check it out.
Good schedule though... The squid and the whale is a personal favorite...

Cheers

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Ryan Navaroli
Film Handler

Posts: 63
From: Athens, OH, USA
Registered: Nov 2005


 - posted 02-26-2006 07:51 PM      Profile for Ryan Navaroli   Author's Homepage   Email Ryan Navaroli   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
im struggling with ways to make more concession revenue right now also. We had a 3 screen downtown theatre that was renevated by Ohio University and we know run it. However outside of town we have our 11 screen stadium seating and there is also a 10 screen on the other side. Our little 3 screens get over looked in this new competetion and we have began running art fare, which works well but that crowd does not generate much concessions. Our percap is often under a dollar. We are also the 2nd biggest party school on campus and would love to go to alcohol sales but my boss is hesitant to do this because of everything that will come with that.

I have toyed around with notions of latte, capuccino, and espresso and the such. As well pastries and other treats that you would find in a coffee shop, but as of now this would cost too much to impliment.

Its strange to me that people seem to want to buy popcorn more at a megaplex when there are huge lines rather than when they can waltz into a small theatre like ours and get top notch service with out any wait. I guess it is the whole shared experience thing or just doing it because everyone else is. Blah to that.

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Matt Fields
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 536
From: Jackson, Ohio, United States
Registered: Jun 2005


 - posted 02-26-2006 08:06 PM      Profile for Matt Fields   Email Matt Fields   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
The college kids don't want to dip into their beer and pot money...and the art house types think concessions are a waste of dough.

When I worked at the arthouse in Columbus, the concession sales sucked there too.

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Ron Curran
Master Film Handler

Posts: 499
From: Springwood NSW Australia
Registered: Feb 2006


 - posted 02-26-2006 08:09 PM      Profile for Ron Curran   Author's Homepage   Email Ron Curran   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Filter coffee would be easier to start with - you can get a commercial machine for about a grand (and tea). Besure to have skim milk available for the coffee. They LOVE bottled water but they don't eat.

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Brad Allen
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 688
From: Evansville, IN, USA
Registered: May 2000


 - posted 02-26-2006 10:56 PM      Profile for Brad Allen   Email Brad Allen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Concessions and Art films normally don't mix well....as your finding out.

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William Hooper
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1879
From: Mobile, AL USA
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 02-27-2006 02:40 AM      Profile for William Hooper   Author's Homepage   Email William Hooper   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Birthday party rentals seem to be a common extra revenue stream for single screens.

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Bill Enos
Film God

Posts: 2081
From: Richmond, Virginia, USA
Registered: Apr 2000


 - posted 02-27-2006 06:15 AM      Profile for Bill Enos   Email Bill Enos   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
We beat our heads against the arthous wall 20 years ago before going with 2nd run.

The arthouse crowd are assholes, rude , mean and arrogant. The don't buy concessions and expect the admission to be $.50. and complain just to hear their own whiny voices. Besides the "classics" are all on video. In spite of constant requests for a particular film, when you play it, they will not come.

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