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Cineaste Hangout Alamo Drafthouse To Open In Los Angeles Next Year

Deadline logo Deadline 6/8/2017 Anthony D'Alessandro
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Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, the great food-and-drink-meets-movies exhibition chain, will finally throw its doors open next year in downtown Los Angeles’ The Bloc, a 1.8 million foot open-air retail-entertainment-sports center.

Alamo will have a 12-screen multiplex in the space, each with 4K digital projection, 3D and 35MM projection.  One of Alamo’s novelties is that the front rows of each auditorium have been pulled out so there isn’t a bad seat in the house.  Alamo Downtown will also have locally inspired and sourced food and drink on the menu. The Alamo has a truly serious menu, one that will no doubt challenge other premium venues in town to step up their concession offerings, i.e. Arclight Cinemas and The Landmark. While it has been known for some time that Alamo was coming to L.A., the Bloc is nearing the end of its $180M renovations.

Out of all the major exhibitor chains in the United States, Alamo arguably has the hippest vibe, embracing classic and cult films and filmmakers, and above all charging an economically-priced ticket.  Anecdotally, a Tuesday evening showtime of A24’s Free Fire at Alamo’s Yonkers, NY venue cost only $9, plus they serve a bottomless bucket of popcorn for $8. Inside the Yonkers’ lobby there was a huge metal missile against a bird’s eye sky view of a city, splashed against the wall, so that patrons could take photos and recreate the Slim Pickens scene out of Doctor Strangelove. There were also fan art-posters galore of such films as Terminator, Alien and Star Wars, and the quiet pre-show featured clips from other shoot-out movies that inspired Ben Wheatley during Free Fire, i.e. Django Unchained Dirty Harry and The Wild Bunch. Last weekend, Alamo hosted sold-out all-female screenings of Wonder Woman which stirred up some cavemen.

 “When we announced seven years ago that we would be embarking upon a plan of nationwide expansion, my primary goal was to open a theater in Los Angeles,” said Alamo Drafthouse Cinema founder and CEO Tim League in a statement.  “After many years of exhaustive searching and planning, we feel we have found the perfect home at The Bloc. Building a new audience for foreign language films, documentaries and independent movies is core to the Alamo brand, and this flagship theater will be ground zero for that effort.”

“Alamo Drafthouse is the perfect addition to The Bloc and to Downtown LA’s rapidly growing food and entertainment scene. It brings a fresh and unique take on the traditional movie-watching experience and will be a great compliment to the other retailers at The Bloc. The Bloc is a gathering place for all Angelenos, making it the place to be in Downtown LA.” said Wayne Ratkovich founder and president of The Ratkovich Company.

Alamo Drafthouse Downtown will be located on the second and third floors of the southwest corner of The Bloc, accessible from the Flower Street mid-block crossing and the fourth floor of the parking structure. Alamo will offer four hours of free validated parking. The theater can be accessed via the Blue, Expo, Purple and Red lines at the 7th Street Metro Center Station. The current Metro expansion connects Alamo Drafthouse Downtown to Santa Monica, Pasadena and the San Fernando Valley.

Alamo Drafthouse was founded in 1997 in Austin, Texas and currently has 26 locations including 16 across Texas, in addition to locations in Winchester and Ashburn, Virginia; Yonkers and Brooklyn, New York; San Francisco, California; Kansas City, Missouri; Littleton, Colorado; La Vista, Nebraska; and Chandler, Arizona.

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