Columns and Blogs - Day and Date Down Under


Palace takes over Byron Bay art-plex

Nov 20, 2012

-By David Pearce


filmjournal/photos/stylus/64439-Pearce_Md.jpg
Australia has two major art-house cinema chains, Palace and Dendy, both very competitive. Dendy is owned by Icon. Both of these chains are also involved in film distribution. In terms of number of cinemas, Palace is larger, and in terms of number of films released per year, Icon is larger. Dendy Cinemas has operated a three-screen, up-market complex in the very trendy seaside holiday town of Byron Bay for the past ten years. The landlord recently increased the rent and Dendy decided to jump ship. Palace has now come in and taken over the cinema. They are re-opening it in November after a short closure. Benjamin Zeccola, executive director of Palace Cinemas, approached the landlord with an offer based on box-office takings and it has been accepted. Palace will add a bar to the complex and convert it to digital. They are also considering adding new screens.

It had a very limited release in the U.S. before going directly to video, it went directly to video in Sweden, and it had a very disappointing Australian theatrical stay, grossing around A$1 million on a wide release. But Bait3D has proved a huge success in Asia, especially in Malaysia and China. As of this column’s deadline, it had grossed over 150 million yuan (about US$24 million) at the Chinese box office, coming in ahead of several high-profile American films. A sequel is already in the works for this story of sharks circling the aisles in a supermarket flooded by a tsunami.

Instead of showing a crime movie, a suburban Brisbane cinema was the chosen venue for a trio of criminals. Two armed men and a female accomplice broke into the Hoyts cinema through one of the cinema’s exit doors. Alerted to the intrusion, police surrounded the cinema and shopping center underneath and tried to find the men. They only found the female accomplice; the men escaped.

The remake of Sam Raimi's controversial 1981 horror film The Evil Dead is the first New Zealand film to use the new high-end Sony digital F65 camera. It recently finished shooting and is due for release in May.

Ewan McGregor is an experienced thief who takes on a young apprentice criminal in Son of a Gun, a new heist thriller that starts filming in Western Australia in early 2013.

E-mail your Australia/New Zealand news items to David Pearce at insidemovies@hotmail.com.


Palace takes over Byron Bay art-plex

Nov 20, 2012

-By David Pearce


filmjournal/photos/stylus/64439-Pearce_Md.jpg

Australia has two major art-house cinema chains, Palace and Dendy, both very competitive. Dendy is owned by Icon. Both of these chains are also involved in film distribution. In terms of number of cinemas, Palace is larger, and in terms of number of films released per year, Icon is larger. Dendy Cinemas has operated a three-screen, up-market complex in the very trendy seaside holiday town of Byron Bay for the past ten years. The landlord recently increased the rent and Dendy decided to jump ship. Palace has now come in and taken over the cinema. They are re-opening it in November after a short closure. Benjamin Zeccola, executive director of Palace Cinemas, approached the landlord with an offer based on box-office takings and it has been accepted. Palace will add a bar to the complex and convert it to digital. They are also considering adding new screens.

It had a very limited release in the U.S. before going directly to video, it went directly to video in Sweden, and it had a very disappointing Australian theatrical stay, grossing around A$1 million on a wide release. But Bait3D has proved a huge success in Asia, especially in Malaysia and China. As of this column’s deadline, it had grossed over 150 million yuan (about US$24 million) at the Chinese box office, coming in ahead of several high-profile American films. A sequel is already in the works for this story of sharks circling the aisles in a supermarket flooded by a tsunami.

Instead of showing a crime movie, a suburban Brisbane cinema was the chosen venue for a trio of criminals. Two armed men and a female accomplice broke into the Hoyts cinema through one of the cinema’s exit doors. Alerted to the intrusion, police surrounded the cinema and shopping center underneath and tried to find the men. They only found the female accomplice; the men escaped.

The remake of Sam Raimi's controversial 1981 horror film The Evil Dead is the first New Zealand film to use the new high-end Sony digital F65 camera. It recently finished shooting and is due for release in May.

Ewan McGregor is an experienced thief who takes on a young apprentice criminal in Son of a Gun, a new heist thriller that starts filming in Western Australia in early 2013.

E-mail your Australia/New Zealand news items to David Pearce at insidemovies@hotmail.com.

More Day and Date Down Under

Down Under 09-14
Community theatres struggle to stay in business

Around 95% of independent cinemas in Australasia have converted to digital. Several of the other 5% are expected to close forever following news from distributors that they will soon cease supplying film prints. More »

Down Under 08-14
New Zealand earthquake-impacted cinemas earn industry awards

Two cinemas that were affected by the Christchurch earthquake in February 2011 have received top marks from their patrons. More »

Down Under 07-14
Event Cinemas announces eight new locations

Event Cinemas (previously Greater Union/Birch Carroll & Coyle) has announced seven new cinema complexes in Australia, one new complex in New Zealand and a refurbishment of their Miranda complex in Sydney. More »

Down Under 06-14
Sydney cinemas raise 3D ticket price

While many Australian cinemas have been sitting on a top 2D price of A$19.50 for some time, two Sydney cinema complexes have bitten the bullet and gone for an A$20 (US$21.30) ticket price. More »

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