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Honda launches campaign to save drive-ins


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#1 of 11 OFFLINE   Adam Lenhardt

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Posted August 14 2013 - 07:48 PM

There are less than 400 drive-in theaters left in the United States. This is the last summer that the studios will provide them with film prints to project. Less than 150 of the surviving drive-ins have converted to digital projection. The ones that don't will have to close.

 

The automaker Honda has launched a new campaign to save the drive-in at ProjectDriveIn.com. The top five vote getters will get free digital projectors donated by Honda. Visitors to the site can also donate towards purchasing additional digital projectors to be provided to additional drive-ins.

 

Four of the local drive-ins in my area are participating. I hope they succeed, because I'd hate to see this staple of my childhood die out.



#2 of 11 OFFLINE   Chuck Anstey

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Posted August 14 2013 - 08:17 PM

Well the theater in my original home town is not listed on the Honda website so either they already upgraded to digital or they are doomed.  I was just up there this summer and they were still showing movies.



#3 of 11 OFFLINE   Adam Lenhardt

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Posted August 15 2013 - 04:12 AM

Well the theater in my original home town is not listed on the Honda website so either they already upgraded to digital or they are doomed.  I was just up there this summer and they were still showing movies.

There are three drive-ins not listed in my area, too: the Hollywood Drive-In across the river and the Malta Drive-In to the north have both already converted to digital. The Hi-Way Drive-In to the south in the Hudson Valley hasn't yet; I'm not sure why they're not part of the promotion.



#4 of 11 OFFLINE   Michael Elliott

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Posted August 15 2013 - 01:57 PM

I'd say a lot are going to die out.  There are a few who started up Kickstarter campaigns and the money gathered was rather embarrassing so I'm not certain how many owners will have the way of getting it in other ways.



#5 of 11 OFFLINE   Malcolm R

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Posted August 15 2013 - 07:58 PM

One of the few remaining ones around here started a fundraising drive about a year ago. Their goal...$77K. Raised so far...only $17,500.


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#6 of 11 OFFLINE   Chuck Anstey

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Posted August 16 2013 - 05:56 AM

The one I was talking about will have a Walmart directly in front of it next summer when/if it reopens after the town spent 20+ years of fighting to keep Walmart out.  The developers claim the light dome won't interfere but I don't believe it.  Maybe they had to buy the drive-in a digital projector as part of the deal?



#7 of 11 OFFLINE   JoeDoakes

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Posted August 16 2013 - 06:14 AM

There are less than 400 drive-in theaters left in the United States. This is the last summer that the studios will provide them with film prints to project. Less than 150 of the surviving drive-ins have converted to digital projection. The ones that don't will have to close.

 

The automaker Honda has launched a new campaign to save the drive-in at ProjectDriveIn.com. The top five vote getters will get free digital projectors donated by Honda. Visitors to the site can also donate towards purchasing additional digital projectors to be provided to additional drive-ins.

 

Four of the local drive-ins in my area are participating. I hope they succeed, because I'd hate to see this staple of my childhood die out.

Are studios eliminating physical prints for all theaters or is this limited to drive ins for some reason?



#8 of 11 OFFLINE   Malcolm R

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Posted August 16 2013 - 09:48 AM

The one I was talking about will have a Walmart directly in front of it next summer when/if it reopens after the town spent 20+ years of fighting to keep Walmart out.  The developers claim the light dome won't interfere but I don't believe it.  Maybe they had to buy the drive-in a digital projector as part of the deal?

 

Is this in St. Albans?

 

 

Are studios eliminating physical prints for all theaters or is this limited to drive ins for some reason?

 

All theaters. I think the limited, seasonal nature of the drive-in business makes it more of a hardship. You're only open a few months per year, but still have similar upgrade costs for your projector.


Edited by Malcolm R, August 16 2013 - 09:50 AM.

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#9 of 11 OFFLINE   Chuck Anstey

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Posted August 16 2013 - 10:08 AM

Yes it is St. Albans.



#10 of 11 OFFLINE   Malcolm R

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Posted August 16 2013 - 12:38 PM

Yes it is St. Albans.

 

Interesting. I hadn't heard the drive-in might possibly reopen.


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#11 of 11 OFFLINE   Michael Elliott

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Posted August 16 2013 - 01:22 PM

Are studios eliminating physical prints for all theaters or is this limited to drive ins for some reason?

 

I brought this up in another thread but about a year or so ago Tim Lucas wrote an article in Video Watchdog where a festival in St. Louis were paying tribute to Joe Dante but everyone was upset that they had to show Blu-rays instead of 35mm prints.  It was then learned that GREMLINS only had one 35mm print out there and apparently most movies are in this situation.  As I said in that thread, it's somewhat scary that so few prints are out there now.  There's a theater in Louisville that plays older movies and they always bragged about them being 35mm prints but this claim pretty much stopped a year ago when they couldn't get studios to turn over their only print.






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