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Short Subjects, Long Memory                                          Valhalla Plan Protest
            Many thanks to David Kilderry for  •                           •      The National Trust of N.S.W. has
                                             •• • •• • •• • •• • •• • •• • •• • • •
          the outstanding article Selected Short  ••  NEWSREEL             ••  urged the city council not to pass the
          Subjects (CR 51).                                                •   current plans for the redevelopment of
                                                CINEMA, THEATRE &
            Having worked for Hoyts from mid-  •                           ••  the former Astor Glebe, (now
          70s to the late 80s, (mostly in Sydney) I  ••  SHOWBUSINESS NEWS •   Valhalla) which closed in August 2006.
          remember well the era of Three Stooges  • •• • •• • •• • •• • •• • •• • •• •  The Trust took a rather novel line
          re-issues.                                                           (at least in arguments over recycling
                                            National News:
            The most  incongruous pairing that                                 theatres), arguing that the plan for
                                               An Australian Film Commission
          I remember was the Stooges supporting                                subdivision would discourage any
                                            initiative will see eight venues in
          The Dresser, a serious ‘art’ film starring                           future entrepreneur from re-uniting the
                                            regional Australia equipped with a
          Albert Finney and Tom Courtenay. We                                  building as a cinema.
                                            digital camera system in early 2007.
          floor staff almost drew straws to avoid                                 Tanner Architects, a firm with
                                               Kodak (Australasia) Pty. Ltd. will
          working Cinema 4 where The Dresser                                   strong conservation credentials, claim
                                            provide equipment and installation.
          was playing, to avoid the complaints!                                that their plan is ‘totally reversible’.
                                               Locations are Hervey Bay (Qld),
            I wonder if the ‘short subjects’ varied                               The art deco exterior of the building
                                            Wagga Wagga and Singleton (NSW),
          from State to State? One that I remember                             can be seen in the colour section of
                                            Yarram (Vic.), Devonport (Tas.) Port
          with regular monotony in Sydney was                                  CR 53.
                                            Augusta (S.A.), Albany (W.A.) and
          Land Of The Long White Cloud,
                                            Katherine (N.T.).                  Regal Newcastle Closes
          produced by the New Zealand Film
          Corporation. It was what one would
          consider a 20-minute ‘Infomercial’ today.
            I remember the acclaim The Herald
          in Melbourne heaped on the short
          Listen To A City in August of 1966,
          depicting the ‘sophistication’ of
          Melbourne. City accompanied They’re
          A Weird Mob, produced in Sydney - a
          sort of tit-for-tat.
            When the Palais St Kilda showed
                                            The Regent Yarram, a beneficiary of   The hall in the Newcastle suburb of
          The Dirty Dozen, the person
                                            digital technology.                Birmingham Gardens, which proudly
          responsible for fitting the letters into
                                                                               carried the name Regal Cinema has
          the illuminated marquee left out ‘plus’  NEW SOUTH WALES:
          so that the sign read - THE DIRTY  Reprieve for Avoca Beach          become a victim of the high cost of
          DOZEN SHORTS.                     Theatre                            fitting out to current fire safety
          John Holloway, Strathmore            Residents and holiday- makers are
                                            smiling about the turn-around for this  Mr Bruce Avard, who has run the
          Whoops!                                                              Regal since 1968, screening fare that
                                            quirky, single-screen on the NSW
            I stand corrected about the                                        would otherwise not get shown in
                                            central coast threatened with
          significance of the visit by Fox head                                Newcastle, was able to keep going
                                            redevelopment (see CR 48).
          Spyros Skouras, and wish to correct a                                because of the peppercorn rent asked
                                               The new owner, Norman Hunter Jnr.
          memory slip in the same story                                        by the council.
                                            is the son of the man who built the
          (Memoirs Part Two CR 52).
                                            theatre in 1948.                      Now the council has to comply with
            The Snowy Mountains Authority                                      their own safety regulations, and it
                                               Mr Hunter had not been involved
          Commissioner was not Hudson Fysh as                                  might be all too costly.
                                            with the theatre for nearly 30 years, but
          I stated. Sir William Hudson held that
                                            with wife Beth and three teenage   Melbourne:
                                            children to help run it, it’s back in the  Outdoor Cinema Booms
          Peter Broome, Mount Victoria
                                            family, and spruced up - new seats,   Warm nights have brought
                                            sound and new projection equipment.  Melbourne’s film lovers outdoors, and
                                               The stage curtains have had an  not just to the drive-ins.
                                            interesting life: Regent Sydney to    The annual summer Moonlight
                                            Valhalla Glebe, and now to Avoca   Cinema at the Royal Botanic Gardens
                                            Beach Theatre.                     has a big rival: the Open Air Cinema
                                                                               on the Birrarung Marr parkland behind
                                                                               Federation Square, close to the Yarra.
                                                                                  Also new is the Rooftop Cinema -
                                                                               exactly what it says - on Curtin House,
                                                                               Swanston Street, which brings night
                                                                               life to a staid commercial building.

                                                                                       CINEMARECORD 2007     5
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