Support Shotgun Cinema on GiveNOLA Day

By Shotgun CinemaPublished on 04/29/2016

GiveNOLA Day is happening this Tuesday, May 3, and we’re excited to be participating for the third year. We’ve used funds from previous years to restore a legendary Eastman film projector, and we highlighted films and auteurs we intend to present, some of which we’ve shown in various venues around New Orleans. But as much as we enjoy our run-and-gun mobile cinema setup, in order to fully realize our mission, we need a physical space to call our own. In the last couple of years, New Orleans has gotten several new theatrical movie screens, but we still believe we offer unique things to the city in terms of film programming, presentation, and education – all of which will be dramatically increased with a dedicated venue.

This year, our GiveNOLA goal is to raise $5,000 to help fund the initial design and planning of our own venue. We have experience with the design of movie theatres, but essential parts of the process – renderings, logistics, architectural plans – require other resources. These funds will enable us to move forward with a strong plan that supports our vision.

As we’ve mentioned before, a permanent space is important for many reasons: a home allows us to expand our programming, install and run film projection regularly (we’re planning on 16mm, 35mm, and 70mm), host community and education screenings, and create a cinematic hub for folks to not only watch films, but to engage with one another and with the medium. We’ve written posts before that outline why we believe art house cinemas are vital to preserving and celebration film as an art form, and with a space, we can provide educational resources for our community to learn about film. Filmgoing is a unique experience, one in which you sit alone in a darkened room filled with others. But what makes the experience so enriching is the ability to interact with other audience members (and in some cases, with the filmmakers) to discuss what you just experienced. Whether a film moved you to tears, captured a moment of nostalgia or hope, or left you feeling completely emotionally wrecked, a cinema can help shape how you understand and remember that experience. Our vision is to build a space that gives New Orleans audiences opportunities to hash out those feelings, to talk to filmmakers about their work, and to learn about the ever-changing art form of filmmaking and projection. For Travis and me, we’re exhilarated when we enter a cinema, awaiting the experience that will follow. We want to share this with our treasured city, and harness the same energy that we experience in some of our favorite cinemas.

Building a cinema requires a lot of fundraising, but it also requires a lot of research, and one of the most fun parts is to visit cinemas that are doing the work. To bring you into our headspace, we’ll be sharing some of the cinemas that inspire us on Twitter on May 3. You can follow us on Twitter at @ShotgunCinemaNO, and we’d love to hear about some of your favorite cinemas as well. You can access our GiveNOLA Day donation page here.

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