Pella Chronicle

Business

October 18, 2012

Pella Cinemas going digital

Pella — With the assistance of the Community Betterment Organization, Pella Cinemas will install new, digital projectors in its three theaters beginning Monday. One of the theaters is also being outfitted to accommodate 3-D movies.

"The film companies are going to stop making film," Jim Nicholas, a theater representative said. The end of film has not set date, but he expects that it will happen in 2014. If theaters do not upgrade to digital, they will be unable to remain in business.

The new projectors will include connections that some day, if desired, the theater could download movies from the Internet or satellites. For now, when the new projectors are installed, movies will arrive on hard drives. As more theaters across the country have made the switch to digital, obtaining film copies of first-run movies is becoming more of a challenge.

Digital hard drives are less expensive for movie companies to produce as well. Unlike film, which can scratch after a few weeks, the hard drives will not experience those visible signs of wear.

"The community has to be very grateful to the Community Betterment Organization," Nicholas said.

The CBO built the theater in 2000, and still owns it. Nicholas' company, Dream Star Cinemas, manages the theater. A survey conducted by Central College indicated that a multi-screen theater was a pressing need at the time.

Dr. Mark Putnam, president of Central College and president of CBO, said, “This new equipment will enhance the viewing experience of movie-goers of all ages and enable Pella Cinemas to show current releases.  The theatre has been a major asset for the community and for our students, and we know movie-goers will appreciate the quality of digital format and the added benefit of offering 3D movies.  This will enable the theatre to offer a first-rate movie experience for many years to come.”

The theater hopes to show its first 3-D presentation the weekend of Oct. 26-28.

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