Recently retired from filmmaking, Steven Soderbergh delivered a terrific, funny, passionate and dead-on “State of Cinema” address at the San Francisco Int’l Film Fest in which he lamented the decline of Hollywood movies. He began by saying “the problem is that cinema as I define it and as something that inspired me is under assault by the studios and from what I can tell with the full support of the audience.”
Another highlight: describing meetings with the studio executives he disdains: “I want to jump up on the table and scream and go ‘do you know how lucky we are to be doing this? Do you understand that the only way to repay that karmic debt is to make something good, is to make something ambitious, is to make something beautiful, something memorable?'”
Dear Laemmle Patrons,
It’s a time of transformation for Laemmle and I’m pleased to have this opportunity to share some exciting new developments with you. First and foremost, there’s our new location, the Laemmle NoHo 7! This state-of-the-art theater opened last December at 5240 Lankershim Blvd. in the heart of the North Hollywood arts district. The venue features seven screens, digital projection, stadium seating, and is only two blocks from Metro. With the NoHo 7, we look forward to contributing to the bourgeoning arts and cultural scene in North Hollywood and the broader East Valley region.
On the virtual front, we have a brand new website in the works. It will include features such as Premiere Card ticket purchasing and reloading, site customization tools, staff reviews, theater blogs, and a slew of other enhancements. Watch for more details coming soon.
We’ve also seized this moment to update our logo and other communications with an aesthetic and attitude that better reflects who we are today and where we’re heading. The new header on this website is just the beginning. You’ll see further evidence of the new look in the coming days as we transition everything from our flyers and email newsletter to our for-sale merchandise and even employee uniforms (don’t be afraid to tell ’em how smart they look!).
As you may have heard, after two decades serving the Hollywood area we were unable to come to terms on a lease extension and have closed our Sunset 5 theater. We leave with fond memories and a deepening commitment to exhibiting quality film throughout Los Angeles. When the time is right, we will be back. In the meantime, we look forward to the imminent NoHo opening as well as other future projects where we’ll be taking on the role of both landlord and tenant.
Of course, these are just the highlights. To stay fully current with all things Laemmle, make sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and on our forthcoming blog. As always, we welcome and value your feedback.
On behalf of my father, Robert Laemmle, and our entire staff I want to thank you for your continued support of independent cinema in Los Angeles. We invite you to join with us as we embark on a new era for Laemmle. It’s one that will combine renewed energy and upgrades in services and facilities and with the one essential and unchanging thing that makes us who we are – our passion for exhibiting intelligent films to discerning audiences such as yourself.
See you at the movies!
UPDATE (7/24): SLEEPWALK WITH ME has been tentatively booked at the Claremont, NoHo 7 and Playhouse 7 for 9/14.
Without consulting with us or offering us a chance to bid, the distributor of the film chose to assign the exhibition rights to the film to the Nuart Theatre in West L.A. This decision meant that the distributor had to accept the “clearance” policies claimed by the Nuart and its operator, Landmark Theatres, which include the requirement that the theatre have exclusive Los Angeles County rights to show the film. Since the film will be playing at the Nuart for two weeks beginning on 8/31, the earliest we could exhibit the film in any of our theaters is 9/14. No determination as yet as to whether or not the film will be doing enough business to warrant continued exhibition after the exclusive period at the Nuart.
We will see.
One of the most iconic signs of West Los Angeles has for more than 40 years heralded the best in art and foreign cinema to the continuous flow of traffic along Santa Monica Boulevard. But Laemmle Theaters’ Royal marquee, with its distinctive 17-foot-wide panels, will soon dim forever. It is slated for removal late this summer when we will temporarily close the theater for an expansion project. The new three-screen complex will feature a more modern marquee.
Since the Laemmles took over the theater in 1972, the marquee has advertised such art-house hits as RAN, HOWARD’S END, SHE’S GOTTA HAVE IT, THE QUEEN and WOMEN ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN. Said Laemmle Theatres President Greg Laemmle: “Financially, it is just too difficult to make a go of it with a single screen theatre. But in addition to this, having three screens instead of just one will give us more flexibility in opening and extending runs on the more “artistic” films which Los Angeles audiences have come to expect at the Royal. As for the marquee, the old marquee is great, and we’re proud to see it graced with Paul Davis’ GRAND ILLUSION images. But the cost of creating custom marquee panels is prohibitive, especially for some of the small, independent distributors whose films we regularly show here. Distributors often end up spending more on the marquee panels than they do on display advertising. That just doesn’t make sense. And from an architectural standpoint, we have photos of the theatre from the 40’s (and before) which show the theatre (then named the Tivoli) with a smaller, square marquee with a vertical blade sign. We believe that something like this will be more in keeping with the theatre’s original Neo-Classic architecture.”
For the theater’s current attraction, a new restoration of Jean Renoir’s masterpiece, GRAND ILLUSION, distributor Rialto Pictures wanted to give the marquee a farewell gift; a full-color broadside created by acclaimed artist Paul Davis, who gave Joe Papp’s Public Theater its signature art and ad look, as well as creating numerous other theater and film posters. Among Davis’s most famous works on Papp’s posters for Three Penny Opera and For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf. He recently created the poster for the San Francisco Silent Film Festival’s special presentation of Abel Gance’s Napoleon.