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» Film-Tech Forum   » Operations   » Ground Level   » Keeping riff raff out of the projection room (Page 1)

 
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Author Topic: Keeping riff raff out of the projection room
Frank Cox
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1974
From: Melville Saskatchewan Canada
Registered: Apr 2011


 - posted 04-11-2017 06:26 PM      Profile for Frank Cox   Author's Homepage   Email Frank Cox   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Sometimes people who have never been here before manage to get lost on the way into the auditorium and end up standing in front of my projection room door. (I've never quite managed to figure out why this is but they do it!) And once in a while they open that door and by then I've hopefully noticed them there so I can tell them that they've gone the wrong way.

Every time this happens (maybe a couple of times a year) I think I've got to do something to keep people from opening that door, though as far as I know nobody has ever actually entered it and walked up the stairs).

I don't particularly want to put a lock on that door since that sounds like an ongoing nuisance. When it happened last night my wife told me that I should just put a "No Admittance" sign on that door but I suspect that would have as much effect as putting up any other sign, i.e. none at all.

I vaguely remember seeing some sort of a trick doorknob years ago that was designed for situations like this, where you had to squeeze the knob or push a button on the back of the knob or something like that to be able to open the door.

I asked at the hardware store today and the owner there says that he vaguely remembers something like that too, that was designed to keep Grandma from opening the door and wandering off. Unfortunately, he can't find it.

And after much google searching I can't find it either, probably because I don't know what it would be called.

What do you folks use to keep the riff raff out of your projection room? And does anyone know where to find one of those trick doorknobs?

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Mike Blakesley
Film God

Posts: 12446
From: Forsyth, Montana
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 04-11-2017 06:49 PM      Profile for Mike Blakesley   Author's Homepage   Email Mike Blakesley   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Our booth door has been right at the top of the balcony stairs for 86 years with no lock on the door and I don't think anybody has ever walked into the booth unauthorized. We don't allow anybody under 21 into the balcony so that could be most of the reason.

Since the projection system is password protected, there's not much they could do if they did walk in anyway. Maybe fiddle with the movie volume, that's about it, but I have a remote volume control in the office so I could fix that instantly.

I guess if some drunk/stoned goofball wanted to go in there and start knocking stuff over, that's a possibility but after all these years I'm pretty confident it won't happen. (Now watch it happen this weekend during "Fate of the Furious" - excuse me while I find some wood to knock on)

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Donald Brown
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 124
From: Lincoln, DE
Registered: Sep 2009


 - posted 04-11-2017 08:10 PM      Profile for Donald Brown   Email Donald Brown   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
While access to the projection room is an obvious security consideration, several years ago, I went into the booth briefly, leaving a rear door to the snack bar back room open momentarily. When I returned to the concession, I noticed what I thought to be water on the floor in a dark corner near the electric service. I checked the ceiling for evidence of a roof leak, since a light shower had recently passed. Fortunately, that didn't appear to be the source, so I discounted the puddle as a spill until I began to notice a peculiar smell.
Evidently, an older patron entered the area and urinated on a box of lawn mower parts on the floor! One of the snack bar crew noticed the gent' and directed him out but didn't realize his undiscovered intent!

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Scott Norwood
Film God

Posts: 7991
From: Boston, MA. USA (1774.21 miles northeast of Dallas)
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 04-11-2017 08:10 PM      Profile for Scott Norwood   Author's Homepage   Email Scott Norwood   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Mike--you don't use the default passwords like every other theatre in the world? Seriously, no one ever seems to change the defaults on D-cinema equipment.

As to the original question: do you have a "safety film only permitted in this room" sign on the door? That might clue the clueless in to the idea that perhaps the door is best left unopened. Or maybe just put a "broom closet" sign on the door.

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Frank Cox
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1974
From: Melville Saskatchewan Canada
Registered: Apr 2011


 - posted 04-11-2017 08:39 PM      Profile for Frank Cox   Author's Homepage   Email Frank Cox   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Beware of the tiger?

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Mark Gulbrandsen
Resident Trollmaster

Posts: 16221
From: Bountiful, Utah
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 04-11-2017 09:06 PM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Scott Norwood
Mike--you don't use the default passwords like every other theatre in the world? Seriously, no one ever seems to change the defaults on D-cinema equipment.
The Roxy's password is"Password" just like Sean Spicer uses!

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Mike Blakesley
Film God

Posts: 12446
From: Forsyth, Montana
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 04-12-2017 01:00 AM      Profile for Mike Blakesley   Author's Homepage   Email Mike Blakesley   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
We haven't changed the default password but who's going to know what that is? Plus, I didn't think they were changeable. At least, I've never found a "change password" menu option anywhere.

No sign on the door at all, it's just a plain unmarked door...and I guess it helps that about 90% of our customers are repeats who know that the bathroom isn't in there.

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Wayne Keyser
Master Film Handler

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


 - posted 04-12-2017 02:18 AM      Profile for Wayne Keyser   Author's Homepage   Email Wayne Keyser       Edit/Delete Post 
Sorry for my past of being a "projection room pest". In my defense, let me say that if I hadn't troubled some boothmen (and one booth babe) I would have missed out on this whole field.

I would never have spent half an hour in the two-theater booth at the Colonial Williamsburg Visitor Center, when I was 17, and come away with about 20 feet of an old print of utterly unique 70mm (reduced from VistaVision).

I would have missed out on producing my first and only film festival (local 16mm films) which was an utter flop but the owner thought it should be one of his duties to the community.

I would have missed out on a "relationship" of sorts amid the most boring Summer EVER.

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Marcel Birgelen
Film God

Posts: 2610
From: Maastricht, Limburg, Netherlands
Registered: Feb 2012


 - posted 04-12-2017 04:44 AM      Profile for Marcel Birgelen   Email Marcel Birgelen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
A simple sign: Staff Only or a more descriptive one: Projection Room, Staff Only, would probably suffice for most.

I personally prefer a more polite signage, you don't want your guests to feel like potential criminals. I don't like those "KEEP OUT" signs all around. It makes me feel unwelcome.

Also, I doubt most people wanting to look inside the booth are really trying to do any harm. You might as well give them a tour and inspire a few of them. [Wink]

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Carsten Kurz
Film God

Posts: 3777
From: Cologne, NRW, Germany
Registered: Aug 2009


 - posted 04-12-2017 04:49 AM      Profile for Carsten Kurz   Email Carsten Kurz   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I think you should start with a sign. Choose something like 'High Voltage' or similar. Everyone believes that a cinema needs high voltage. That's not on the offensive side, but triggers the survival instinct (well, for most...).

- Carsten

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Dennis Benjamin
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1425
From: Denton, MD
Registered: Feb 2002


 - posted 04-12-2017 05:35 AM      Profile for Dennis Benjamin   Author's Homepage   Email Dennis Benjamin   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
What we've done at some of our locations, is to purchase the pads with the combination lock on them.

This way, you don't need a key to gain access, but a four digit pin number.

With as expensive as this digital equipment is, and a similar problem with people wandering upstairs - it's been worth the investment.

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Scott Norwood
Film God

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From: Boston, MA. USA (1774.21 miles northeast of Dallas)
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 04-12-2017 07:19 AM      Profile for Scott Norwood   Author's Homepage   Email Scott Norwood   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
In Massachusetts, locking the projection booth door is illegal when the building is occupied by the public. Which is not to say that it is not done.

I agree that mechanical push-button locks seem to work well. Electronic versions exist, but the batteries will eventually fail.

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Frank Cox
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1974
From: Melville Saskatchewan Canada
Registered: Apr 2011


 - posted 04-12-2017 09:39 AM      Profile for Frank Cox   Author's Homepage   Email Frank Cox   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Why would it be illegal to lock the projection room door? Is it also illegal to lock the door to supply closet with the spare candy stock, or the boiler room or the elevator maintenance shed?

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Richard P. May
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 243
From: Los Angeles, CA
Registered: Jan 2006


 - posted 04-12-2017 10:01 AM      Profile for Richard P. May   Email Richard P. May   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I'd guess that rule goes back to nitrate days, to be sure a projectionist doesn't get caught in the booth in case of a fire.
These things tend to never get removed.

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Leo Enticknap
Film God

Posts: 7036
From: Loma Linda, CA
Registered: Jul 2000


 - posted 04-12-2017 12:00 PM      Profile for Leo Enticknap   Author's Homepage   Email Leo Enticknap   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Scott Norwood
As to the original question: do you have a "safety film only permitted in this room" sign on the door? That might clue the clueless in to the idea that perhaps the door is best left unopened.
Happy to provide a "Nitrate film present: no admittance to unauthorized personnel" (complete with a triangular explosion logo) one if it would help! However, such a placard was present on our booth door throughout last weekend, but it failed to prevent a number of booth invasions.

The only nitrate-related legal requirements I'm aware of are that the door has to open outwards, and that it has to be openable from the inside without needing a key or combo, which our doors are: a key lock on the outside, and a lever to operate the lock on the inside.

I just keep the door locked whenever the risk of a booth invasion is significant. It would be nice to have a combo keypad on the door, to prevent the need to fumble around for the key, though.

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