Alamo Drafthouse Launches Virtual Cinema

Published on March 30, 2020

Theaters across the nation and the world are closed down and suffering. The loss in business and ticket sales are huge. With the new relief package, theaters will receive assistance from the federal government. In the meantime, one beloved theater chain is making sure their audiences remain entertained when they could probably use the entertainment more than ever. The Alamo Drafthouse has officially created “Alamo-At-Home.”

Alamo and Chill 

The Drafthouse wants to keep their love for cinema alive and well during this time. Last week, the Drafthouse announced a Virtual Cinema. They teamed up with Kino Lorber, Film Movement, and Magnolia Pictures. They’ll stream those distributors’ movies digitally to their consumers. Along with every other theater in the United States, the Drafthouse has completely closed its doors due to the public due to the coronavirus. Hopefully, if the state of the country improves, they’ll reopen their doors in the summer. In the meantime, the Drafthouse is getting creative, as they usually tend to do. 

Weathering the Storm

Found and CEO of the Alamo Drafthouse, Tim League, believes his theater and its employees will get through this together. Just because Drafthouse locations are closed, that’s not stopping League from introducing the Drafthouse community to new films. In a statement, League said:

“The entire reason Karrie and I built theaters in the first place was to bring people together in a celebration of film. Our theaters are currently closed, but that doesn’t have to mean our communities have to remain shuttered as well. We intend to hunker down, weather this storm and reemerge on the other side. Until then, we’ll continue to work to share the movies we love with this community, and find ways to support each other.”

Terror Tuesday and Weird Wednesday 

The Drafthouse has joined forces with the American Genre Film Archive for a series called “Terror Tuesday” and “Weird Wednesday.” These will include online screenings, pre-show content, intros, and post-screening discussions. Anybody can find those discussions on the Drafthouse’s editorial website, BirthMoviesDeath, where there’s always good content to enjoy from a wide-range of clever minds and writers. 

In a statement, Sarah Pitre, the Senior Director of Programming and Promotions at Drafthouse, said the following: 

“Terror Tuesday and Weird Wednesday aren’t just film series — they’re communities, and even though our theater doors are currently closed, it’s vital that we continue to foster these communities, because they are truly the heart of the Alamo Drafthouse.”

Tickets to Terror Tuesday are already available on the Drafthouse website. The first movie to kickoff “Terror Tuesday” is a screening of the 1982 Hong Kong horror movie, Centipede Horror. The Drafthouse will screen a new and improved 2K version of the 35 mm film. Showtime starts Tuesday at 8 PM Eastern time. 

As for “Weird Wednesday,” that’ll begin on April 8th with a screening of a 4K restoration of Godmonster of Indian Flats. It’s a classic, universal tale about a toxic sheep monster that goes after politicians and stoners. You know, just another story as old as time. Both “Terror Tuesday” and “Weird Wednesday” will stream weekly. 

What Other Streaming Options?

For the hardcore movie nerds, these are the two streaming options providing them some comfort and joy at the moment: The Criterion Channel and Shudder. The Criterion Channel is home to the classics. There’s no shortage of beautiful movies from around the world to discover there. It’s the best streaming service there is.

Another good option for serious movie fans is Shudder, a platform for horror movies. Since Netflix and Hulu are always seriously lacking in classics, foreign films, and horror movies, anybody looking to catch up on or discover old favorites will want those streaming services in their lives right now.

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Jack Giroux is a Staff Writer at Grit Daily. Based in Los Angeles, he is an entertainment journalist who's previously written for Thrillist, Slash Film, Film School Rejects, and The Film Stage.

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