Humans have long been captured by the cinema experience, mostly due to its alluring actors and floors covered in rubber cement. Surrender to bewitching films with today’s Groupon: for $25, you get one Friend-level membership plus four regular movie tickets (a $51 total value) to the Hollywood Theatre on Northeast Sandy Boulevard.
Supporting and showing various cinematic projects, the Hollywood Theatre displays independent, foreign, and classic films. Audiences that crave powerful storytelling beyond the major theater menu will savor Hollywood’s Friend-level membership program, which feeds its constituents with an array of discounts and peppered celluloid. In the Friend-level membership, general-admission tickets for all regularly scheduled programming cost $4 (a $7 value for adult tickets) and members are offered opportunities such as the May 7 meet and greet with Miranda July. Inaugural members can get acquainted with the screen thanks to four included general-admission tickets, good for any of the theater’s movie showings, which span independent films, silent movies, Sundance films, and moon-bounce bloopers.
Since its founding in 1926, the historic Hollywood Theatre has housed everything from modern films to early-century vaudeville shows, and its seats currently welcome more than 70,000 occupants each year. The non-profit theater now showcases cinematic films alongside concerts, fundraisers, and lectures.
The light of a projector first hit the Hollywood Theatre's screen in 1926. Since then, this cinema has changed with the times—at various points serving as a Cinerama and a second-run discount movie house. After a near-closure and a nearly 15-year renovation, the building re-emerged as a non-profit, independent cinema. Today, Hollywood Theatre screens about 300 films a year, ranging from classic Hollywood and genre films to newer independent movies and quirky blockbusters.
The core of the theatre's programming, however, is its signature series. Programs such as Kung Fu Theater and Sound + Vision aim to restore classic films' spectacle to the silver screen. Outside the auditorium, Hollywood Theatre hosts educational workshops on topics such as animation, documentary filmmaking, and chiseling your own star onto the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the cinema's Spanish Colonial Revival building retains much of its historic charm. At the top of a curving staircase lies a lounge with plush antique furnishings and signage. Inside the main auditorium—the house's original orchestra level—films blaze to life on a 50-foot screen and a digital surround-sound system. On the theater's original balcony level, two smaller venues with just more than 110 seats provide a more intimate viewing experience.