×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Expansion proves appeal of upscaling

Arclight @ 10

When ArcLight Hollywood first opened in March 2002, moviegoers questioned whether the amenities offered by the shiny new movie palace justified ticket prices that were higher than conventional theaters.

Today they not only line up eagerly, they do so regularly at four locations in the greater Los Angeles area.

And with expansion plans that include ArcLight screens in both La Jolla and Washington, D.C., suburb Bethesda, Mary., the idea of a full-service venue for both the devoted cinephile and the casual buff appears to have legs.

The La Jolla venue is set to open this holiday season. The lease, and the go-ahead for development, have just been recently set for the Maryland location, with an expected opening in 2014. While these are considered two high-income areas, the question is whether the same concentration of movie aficionados is present in those places as exists in the Los Angeles area.

“You can look at the top 25 demographic areas in the nation and the moviegoing habits are similar to L.A.,” says chief brand officer Nora Dashwood. “These areas (La Jolla and Bethesda) have people who like to go out, who like to be entertained. The demographic features the same amount of disposable income, which is one of the areas we look at.”

ArcLight established its brand on the strength of its extras, which include reserved seating, more comfortable seats with clear sight lines and cup holders, premium projection and sound, no commercials, and an introduction of the movie by an usher, as well as special events such as Q&As with filmmakers.

In and around L.A., buzz spread among moviegoers, and ArcLight has grown to include locations in Sherman Oaks, Pasadena and the beach cities (in El Segundo). Dashwood is confident the same positive word of mouth will circulate around the new venues and cause customers to queue up and pay the higher ticket prices.

“We certainly had the same experience with ArcLight Hollywood. Nobody had heard of it before,” she says, “but word got out through marketing, publicity and outreach. Now we’re consistently referenced across the country, on the East Coast as well as here.

“The experience creates the word of mouth. People pay $5 more to see a film in Imax. People are used to the price structures out there. I don’t think price is the barrier.”

Related Links:
Immerse and conquer

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • AMC TheatresShop signs, Los Angeles, America

    AMC Theatres Accused of Firing VP Who Complained of Gender Pay Gap

    A former vice president at AMC Theatres filed a federal lawsuit on Wednesday, accusing the company of firing her after she complained that she was paid far less than her male peers. Tonya Mangels, who was vice president of product marketing, said that in March 2018 her supervisor inadvertently sent her a spreadsheet that included [...]

  • Sir Elton John poses for photographers

    Elton John Calls 'Lion King' Remake a 'Huge Disappointment'

    Elton John isn’t feeling the love for Disney’s latest live-action remake. In an interview with GQ U.K., the legendary musician criticized Disney’s remake of “The Lion King,” citing the film’s music as a “huge disappointment.” “The new version of The Lion King was a huge disappointment to me, because I believe they messed the music [...]

  • Fiddlin'

    Film Review: 'Fiddlin''

    Not many forms of music have “old-” actually built into their name as a prefix. So it’s a given that the practitioners of the 200-year-old genre known as “old-time music” will wear their antiquity proudly in “Fiddlin’,” a documentary set in and around the 80th annual Old Fiddler’s Convention in Galax, Va. What may not [...]

  • Jonah Hill attends the press conference

    Jonah Hill Passes on Role in 'The Batman'

    After being offered a role in “The Batman,” Jonah Hill has moved on from the project. Why exactly Hill is passing is currently unknown, and insiders tell Variety that when the news was initially reported, it was very early in the negotiations and that a deal was far from closing. The news comes after Zoe [...]

  • Daniel Kaluuya Elizabeth Moss

    SCAD Savannah Film Festival Honorees Include Daniel Kaluuya, Elisabeth Moss

    Daniel Kaluuya, Elisabeth Moss, Danielle Macdonald, Aldis Hodge, Valerie Pachner, Samantha Morton, Sienna Miller, Alan Silvestri and Olivia Wilde are set to be honored at the 22nd Annual SCAD Savannah Film Festival. Breakout Award honorees include Beanie Feldstein, Kaitlyn Dever, Jharrel Jerome, Mena Massoud and Camila Morrone. Macdonald, who appears on Netflix in “Unbelievable” and [...]

  • Alexander Skarsgard, Nicole Kidman. Alexander Skarsgard,

    Nicole Kidman, Alexander Skarsgard to Reunite for Robert Eggers' 'The Northman'

    With his latest film “The Lighthouse” set to bow this weekend, Robert Eggers’ next film has cast two leads, “Big Little Lies” alums Nicole Kidman and Alexander Skarsgård. The pic, titled “The Northman,” is described as a Viking revenge saga set in Iceland at the turn of the 10th century. In talks to join Kidman [...]

  • Jessica Henwick

    'Matrix 4' Taps 'Iron Fist' Star Jessica Henwick

    Jessica Henwick is in final negotiations to star in the upcoming fourth installment of the “Matrix” franchise. She joins Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss, who will be reprising their roles in the film, as well as Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, who was tapped as one of the leads last week. Neil Patrick Harris also just joined [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content