Coming soon: A theater near you
By Cassandra Favre
Dec 3, 2013, 21:39
Renovations are coming along at Waveland's Choctaw CinemaFour, and co-owner John Watzke is still planning for an opening a few months down the road.
"Converting to digital came up faster than we thought," Watzke said Tuesday. "We are working on a a couple of other theaters now, in addition to Waveland."
The Watzke brothers, John and Charles, announced in August their plans to re-open and renovate Waveland's beloved cinema.
According to a September Rolling Stone article written by Gary Susman, state of the art projectors are threatening independent theaters.
Susman wrote that in the past couple of year,s Hollywood has almost stopped distributing films on celluloid reels in favor of digital prints stored on hard drives.
Digital projectors can cost as much as $100,000 each.
"There are two theaters in Florida closing, partly due to digital conversion," Watzke said. "We are looking to buy their seats and draperies for the Waveland cinema. They look brand new, have nice high backs and cup holders.
"We don't want to open the theater until everything is right," Watzke said.
"We have been tearing out the seats," Charles Watzke said on Tuesday. "We have been clearing out all the trash.
"We will have the place professionally de-molded."
Charles said that there are plans to have a theme for each theater.
"We're thinking like a Mardi Gras theme for one," Charles said. "Maybe a New Orleans theme, South Mississippi theme and a cafe Orleans, where a meal would be served with your movie.
"We want this to be a fun place where you can bring the family, enjoy some good food and have a good time."
Charles is working with local musician Pete Leone to design a sound system for the theater
"It might take us a little bit longer," Charles said. "Maybe three-to-six months, but it will be in really nice condition with better movie and sound equipment and seating.
"It's going to look nice to people when they come in."