Page 5 - CinemaRecord Edition 3-2003 #41
P. 5

Local Rules In the Bio-Box.
            Fish and chips warming on the
          rectifier in the bio-box (Circle Preston
          CR 62) wasn’t all that unusual in a
          suburban theatre, although strictly
          taboo, as was smoking. The Health
          Department inspector could drop in any
          time for a spot check, but as many
          operators liked a smoke, they would
          either burn their cigarette butts in the
          lamp-house or bury them in the sand
            When I was assistant at the Circle
          Essendon, the operator, Harry Grattan
          Jnr. enjoyed Dim Sims, and so did one
          of the ushers. At least once a week the
          usher would go to the nearby Chinese
          café, bring the hot bundle to the theatre
          and place them on top of the projector
          lamp-house to keep them warm. The  The interior of the Kings (1904). A bio-box at rear of the Upper Circle meant severe
          smell of Dim Sims mixed with arc-  parallax for the screen image. Photo by Brian Pearson.
          lamp ozone fumes was enough to churn
                                                                               QUEENSLAND - Steve Maggs
          my stomach and put me off them for  •
                                             •• • •• • •• • •• • •• • •• • •• • • •
          years.                            ••  NEWSREEL                   •   New Cinema on Gold Coast
            Harry had a bio-box story in which  •                          ••     Birch Carroll and Coyle closed their
          the joke was on him. One of his   ••  CINEMA, THEATRE &          •   existing complex at Robina to open a
                                                                               new one with Gold Class, VMax
          assistants was a little bit odd, or maybe                        •
                                                                               screens and 3D. There are 11 cinemas
          just adventuresome. Eventually he left  SHOWBUSINESS NEWS •
          the business and Harry lost touch with  • •• • •• • •• • •• • •• • •• • •• •  in the complex, said to be all digital
                                                                               with no 35mm.
          him. One Saturday night some months
          later, Harry heard the bio-door open and  NATIONAL                   Heritage Listing For Regent?
          was startled to see an aboriginal, naked  Hearing Loops Make Cinemas    Submissions to have Cinema 1
          except for a lap-lap. The ‘aboriginal’  More User-Friendly           given Heritage Listing closed early
          was the former assistant, with a     Film fans with impaired hearing and  July. This cinema has plaster-work
          completely blackened body. He had  vision will welcome a Federal     from the original auditorium. No
          travelled out from the city on the tram.  Government initiative, through the  decision has been given.
          Harry wondered how this apparition  Department of Health and Ageing, to  Gympie Loses Movies
          managed to avoid being put off the  fund the installation of special
          tram, let alone allowed into the theatre!  equipment in selected cinemas.  Owner of the Wonga Drive-in and
                                                                               the renovated Sovereign Cinemas,
          Ross King, Essendon                  The initial choice of cinemas is
                                                                               Gary King, has closed both venues.
                                            skewed towards regional centres and
          Tilted Screen At the Kings                                              A run of bad weather finished the
                                            smaller exhibitors, probably because
            Why Cut an Aperture? in CR62                                       drive-in, but Mr King blamed the
                                            the major exhibitors have already fitted
          reminded me of another theatre-turned-                               cinema’s demise on the town habit of
                                            out some important locations with
          cinema in Melbourne which probably                                   driving to Noosa to see their films.
                                            similar equipment. The roll-out began
          also needed some aperture adjustment.
                                            in May and concludes in July. It      Mr King lamented in an interview
          I was backstage at the Kings Russell
                                            comprises audio description equipment,  that he’d had to take work in the Cobar
          Street one Sunday afternoon in the mid-
                                            captioning and headsets.           gold mines to ‘subsidise the right of
          1940s, prior to the community singing.
                                            Northern Territory: Darwin - CMax,  Gympie people to go to the movies.’
          The screen, on a moveable frame, was
          tilted upwards to minimize parallax.                                 NSW - Ian Hanson
                                            Queensland: BigScreen Cinemas,
            The Kings had a very deep stage                                    Cinema Openings:
                                            Hervey Bay
          and the screen was only a quarter of the                             Narellan, west of Campbelltown
          way back from the proscenium arch.  NSW: AMC Tweed Heads,               An eight-screen complex opened in
          There was nothing behind it; no stored  Sydney - Palace Verona
                                                                               late 2008. It is run by an independent
          props, nothing. I think there was another  Canberra: Dendy
                                                                               exhibitor from Sydney’s northern
          screen which descended in front of the  Victoria: Melb. - Palace Nova Carlton,  beaches.
          stage curtain for community singing.  Sale Cinema and Deakin Cinemas,
            Issue 62 also had great pictures of  Mildura                       Newcastle city
                                                                                  A new cinema complex is planned
          the Circle Preston, which brought back  Tasmania: C Max, Devonport
          happy memories. I attended this theatre  SA: Adelaide - Nova East End,  as part of a major shopping centre
          quite a few times with a school friend.   Whyalla Twin Cinemas       development.
          Don McGregor, Rye                 WA: Grand Cinemas, Bunbury
                                                                                       CINEMARECORD 2009     5
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