Comments from nbolmer

Showing 17 comments

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on Jun 13, 2006 at 3:50 pm

Gabby, you can’t possibly be serious. Your posts have been extremely inflammatory from your first one on. Your first “comment” included:

“I’m not convinced you’ve done the simplest of work on this yourself.”

AND

“Your questions all show a naivitee to both the restaurant, and theater business, as well as no understanding about how to get answers.”

Then, later:

“Any bets the detailed information given on film percentages won’t be good enough? Although the good news is, he’s learned a couple more catch phrases to make it sound good”

Re-read my first post. You were able to gather, from that post, enough information to pass judgment? You knew what research I had done and planned to do, my expertise— all based on that paragraph? OR did you make unfounded assumptions, and flame what everyone else here was finding to be an ejoyable thread?

This is not constructive, and I asked you to stop threadjacking, which this clearly is. I’m sorry if you take offense to being labled a thread troll, but your conduct from the start has been VERY CLEARLY incitive. Trolling is a common euphemism for inciting this sort of useless and inane exchange. I was hoping you’d just leave this thread and allow the discussion to continue, but clearly, you are looking for a flame war.

Interested participants, I’ll be setting up a blog this week which will be moderated, but uncensored to all who follow basic posting etiquette. I have a backlog of emails to reply to from this, and have removed my email address from the public view, but I will have a contact link up at the new blog shortly. Again, thanks to everyone, and I hope we can continue this discussion soon.

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on Jun 7, 2006 at 4:36 pm

Hi folks, it’s been a few days since I’ve been on the thread; a few minor crises at work took top priority… WGT, I’ll be responding shortly to your enlightening email, JG- thank you for the kind words, I may be in touch at some point to compare notes on utility costs- I realize that I won’t find exact numbers, I’m estimating for a proforma right now. As far as other uses, I will be doing first hand demographic research to see what’s needed, wanted, and what the future influx will want down the road. This theater has an orchestra pit and a balcony— I will definitely lease for live shows, seminars, auctions, whatever else. GWaterman- staffing is another major area that I’m currently developing. I have a long string to post on that very topic, but I’m a bit busy right now; I promise to get to the questions and the answers I’ve come up with soon.

Again, thanks to all participants in this interesting and important thread.

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on Jun 1, 2006 at 7:08 pm

Gabby.

Your ego is showing. If you have nothing useful to add, please stop threadjacking.

Any bets Gabby will return (yet another) amusing remark, totally void of any useful information. Here’s a catchphrase for you to stick in your wikipedia:

Troll

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 31, 2006 at 6:12 pm

WGT, and all-

Thanks for the time you’ve all been putting into this thread, I do appreciate the advice, even the snarky comments. Now, I realize that ballpark numbers can be extremely arbitrary and difficult to derive. Unfortunately, a proforma has to start SOMEWHERE… better an educated guess than an uneducated one… I’ve read about the nut and BO percentage game… is there an additional dollar cost to acquire a film? I’m certainly interested in emailing you directly, hopefully this thread will also continue for the benefit of future readers in a similar situation. I may start a blog eventually.

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 31, 2006 at 5:54 pm

movieman –

Tell me a little about why a single screen is financially less feasible? From what I understand, the bulk or all of net net comes from concessions with movies as the loss leader – in my case the restaurant / beer. Is it that less screens = less patrons = less money? Most of the cinema draft establishments I’ve been to operate only one, sometimes two screens and seem to do quite well. The bulk of rennovation and construction costs are going to be paid for by the town / foundation. I’m very interested to hear what your cost structure was like with regard to movie engagements. Did you do on the fly booking, or calander booking?

Much appreciated!!

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 31, 2006 at 3:28 pm

gabby-

property tax will likely be subsidized in the near-term, utilities are a big question mark that I’m working on. You see the theater hasn’t been used in quite some time (hence the need for extensive rennovations), and a great deal of kw/h and btu’s will be used in the kitchen. The nature of the kitchen (not yet built, but there’s a great space for it, vented etc…) will affect the utility cost, probably more than lighting up the xenon bulb(s) in the projector(s). There is central A/C and heat, but the location is fairly temperate year-round, heat being more necessary than a/c. Currently, it has electric wall mounted radiators, but the costs may be such that a more efficient system will save money mid-term. The utility costs I can get a handle on as the kitchen plan comes together. The biggest question marks which are the hardest to research are the booking costs for second runs, classics, etc… I’ve had some luck finding percentages on a week to week basis, but less luck figuring out what the base cost is to rent the thing in the first place. I’m looking for a representative average cost for second run and indie bookings for a typical 4 week engagement.

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 30, 2006 at 6:23 pm

Dwodeyla:

http://www.capterra.com/ticketing-software.. I’ve seen some software packages, I haven’t compared and contrasted those yet, I have bigger details to tackle before I get down to which box office software, projector brands etc… Right now, day to day operational costs are what I’m focusing on, as I’m in the a unique position with regard to cap expenses.

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 30, 2006 at 6:20 pm

WGT:

Right, that’s the problem. Which brings me full circle to my original post looking for someone to share what the costs they encounter are. Again… this is just one of many avenues of research. Everyone here is under some bizzare impression that by posting a question here, it means that I’ve done and plan to do no other research… I’m perfectly aware of the groundwork, just putting the ole fishing line out in case someone in-the-know happens to lurk at this particular forum. Getting friendly with someone “in the biz” as you put it, is what I’m workin on :)

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 30, 2006 at 5:36 pm

WGT:

Yep, I’ve contacted various major distis- it seems that they negotiate terms with bookers based on theater size, run length, how long it’s been out of first run etc… I can’t get baseline prices from these guys. After doing some additional research, it’s looking like second run and independant first run movies are the winning combination, with a first run major releases a possible goal down the line, or every so often for gauranteed blockbusters. It’s a catch 22, you need a theater up and operating before a booker / disti will talk costs with you, and you need to know costs to develop a proforma to get a theater up and running…

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 30, 2006 at 3:31 pm

Dwodeyla:
What do you mean by ticketing system? Your standard boxoffice ticket point of sale seems to be the norm at these places.

Midas:
Having been through the startup and IPO game, I’ve learned to filter the static. Those who attack and make assumptions- threadjackers and trolls- are beneath worrying about. I’m currently in tech; a VP at a silicon valley hardware company. I’m interested in hearing a bit more about the themed bar business.

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 26, 2006 at 4:49 pm

WGT:

I’ve been lurking on bigscreenbiz for a while, though not film-tech (thanks!). I keep seeing the “no such thing as second run” mantra, but among the cinema draft houses, exper. tells me otherwise. The Arlington VA location was always packed, as is the speakeasy cinema pub in Oakland – they play a combination of second run and old favorites (caddyshack and the like) to a packed house. While DVD’s now come out VERY soon after first run, I’ve seen a lot of draw to check out the movie you missed, or see it for a second time, at a place where you can grab a sofa with good food and beer. The whole dinner-and-a-movie crowd seems less concerned with what movie is playing than the megaplex crowd.

Yes, I’ve been doing a ton of reading, and have tweaked my business plan accordingly. I shall continue to do so.

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 25, 2006 at 9:36 pm

dwodeyla:

I haven’t had a lot of lucking turning up distributors in that area which do first / second run movies to indie theaters… Most of the local bookers seem to do mainly genre specific distributing (documentaries, indie flicks, classics, etc…) Is there an association, or other good way to source bookers / distributors by area or by specialty?

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 25, 2006 at 8:33 pm

dwodeyla:

Not sure what credit terms can be worked out with the distributor, I’ve seen the gamut from prepay only to net 15 / 30 terms. The percentage would most likely be set by the disti on a sliding scale until I have bargaining clout, though I’m not certain. I haven’t had a lot of luck finding distis that service one shot theaters; I’m hoping for some direction on which distis I should be examining more closely, and which to avoid.

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 25, 2006 at 5:01 pm

Gabby.

The problem is the film distributors I’ve worked with in the past service non-theatrical release; i.e. colleges, seminars, private functions, amusement parks, and the like. This gives me some amount of proforma baseline, but those who run small theaters would be well equiped to point me to disti A, and stay away from disti B etc… Going directly to the source is one avenue which I’m pursuing, another is asking people here, who may have own local theaters, which disti’s they prefer, what sorts of costs they find typical, etc… As far as the restaurant end, I have assorted options which I’m considering. Asking what other people have found to be cost effective in a cinema draft setting is just a small part of my overall strategy. Don’t assume that my questions here are my ONLY questions. I know how to contact sources directly. Part of hard work
is networking, and gathering data from those with exper. This is one of very few Internet resources for tracking down local theater owners and enthusiasts, which is why I’m putting out the antennae here. Talking to a distributor is one thing, learning from others' exper. with a distributor can be much more enlightening. Doing both is smart business. “go ask the distributors what they charge” is not helpful. I’m already doing the obvious. “I own a similar business… here is what I do, this is what I’ve learned, this is what to avoid, these are my costs” IS helpful.

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 25, 2006 at 4:26 pm

Gabby.

I’ve visited and extensively examined the various cinema draft / pub theaters around the country, taken notes. I’ve conversed with owners of current and past (such as the now closed Sterling Cinema Drafthouse), I have prior exper. in booking films through Films Inc. and Swank Motion pictures in both co-op bookings and solo bookings, though not theatrical (I ran my undergrad second-run film program) My father has spent many years as a chef, and I do have a more-than-basic understanding, a business degree, and have been involved in several profitable start-up ventures. This is neither my primary nor my sole avenue for information and your reply is both self-important and baseless. I am gathering information from those more experienced than I. There are no dumb questions in business, and I’d appreciate you leaving this thread so I may concentrate on exploring the replies of those who care to lend a hand.

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Help with pro forma on cinema/drafthouse on May 25, 2006 at 3:35 pm

I’m somewhat familiar with the restaurant business, and less so the cinema business. The theater in question is in rural Ohio. Currently, I’m fact finding, and having some difficulty developing a basic operational cost structure. Until my backing is firmed up, I’d prefer not to give a great deal of detail as to the location, or specifics, but rennovations and other capital expense will be at least somewhat subsidized. I’m looking for sources for pricing out the restaurant end, as well as film distributors which service small local theaters. In addition, I need to decide what skilled labor I will require in addition to the obvious ushers, ticket takers, etc… – Thanks again!

Thanks!

nbolmer
nbolmer commented about Town Center Cinema on May 23, 2006 at 8:05 pm

Closed