Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Saving yee old movie house


Oct. 4, 2005 Today, the Brattle Film Foundation (BFF), the nonprofit organization that programs and operates the Harvard Square's landmark cinema, the Brattle Theatre, announced the most important fundraising effort in its 52-year history. The PRESERVE THE BRATTLE LEGACY CAMPAIGN is a two-year fundraising effort that is necessary to sustain repertory film programming at the Brattle. The Phase One goal is to raise $400,000 by the end of 2005; the Phase Two goal is to raise another $100,000 by the end of 2006. If BFF is not successful at meeting the goals set by Phase One of the campaign, BFF will be forced to cease operations at the Brattle Theatre, effectively ending the 52-year legacy of repertory film programming at the Brattle. The Brattle Theatre has outlasted most arthouse cinemas in the country. While landmarks like St. Mark's and Bleeker Street in New York closed their doors long ago, the Brattle has survived. Of the Brattle's current situation, Creative Director Ned Hinkle had this to say: "Repertory film programming at the Brattle simply cannot survive without significant community support. Our current challenges can only be overcome with the involvement of community members who want to keep the tradition of film programming alive at the Brattle Theatre."

While I haven't been there in a while, I have had major milestones at the Brattle. I spent the whole of my first summer in Boston going to the Brattle with my friends. It is where I came to regard indie cinema as de rigueur and not obscure. It is where I first saw Casablanca not on my television. To lose this place would be a real shame, so I am hoping that people will start turning out in droves to support the Brattle and its film series. Including me.

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