Gloucester Guildhall cinema hoping to secure £40,000 from the council to go digital
WITH visitor numbers doubling in the last two years, Gloucester Guildhall's cinema needs to secure £40,000 to move into a digital age.
Gloucester City Council's cabinet will meet on Thursday this week to discuss upgrading the cinema, at the Eastgate Street building, from 35mm film to digital.
This would enable the Guildhall to show films much sooner after their release date. Currently they have to wait eight weeks to show top titles like Skyfall.
Attendance figures have risen dramatically in recent months proving the popularity of the cinema. It is one of only 28 remaining specialised cinemas in the South West.
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In 2010, 6,747 people attended the cinema, this rose to 7,611 in 2011 and 11,529 in 2012. Gloucester City councillor Paul Toleman (C, Westgate) hopes an agreement can be reached.
He said: "I think it will be great news for the city centre if this comes off.
"The more people we get in the city centre the better. People would visit the cinema, and then go to the shops etc."
James Camp, 27, from Lydney, has been to the cinema a number of times.
He said: "It's a really great little cinema, a bit of a hidden gem.
"It would be great if they had the newer films there sooner, but that's not what the Guildhall cinema is about for me. I like that they show the more niche and independent films. I hope they would carry on showing those."
Most cinemas have now converted to digital formats. The main film studios such as Twentieth century Fox, Sony and Warner Brothers have started to release only selected titles on 35mm, meaning there is getting less and less films to chose from on this format.
The cost to hire digital films as opposed to 35mm is exactly the same, but digital could allow the Guildhall to save 500 staff hours per year.