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Astor Theatre Melbourne
The 70mm Newsletter
by: George Florence &
26 October 2005
The audience at a 70mm screening of
"2001" a few
years back. Image
by: Ric Bean
As l have been working at the Astor Theatre for some years now, a number
of people have contacted me in regard to the recent publicity about the
future of the theatre. For your information, l am forwarding an email
that l received from
my boss yesterday... it does help to clarify the situation.
Anyway - must run - have a double shift to do there today!
Subject: astor theatre melbourne
To: All Our Loyal Patrons
You may have read or heard in the media recently of plans to change
ownership of the Astor Theatre.
This has been somewhat misrepresented as us "closing down".
This is far from the case.
We are looking to find an entity to take over the running of the Astor,
as well as purchase the freehold. This would enable the freedom to
invest further capital into the venture, to re-generate what is a
totally unique and original theatre, and re-launch it with a fresh new
My involvement has seen the culmination and fruition of a life-long
dream, and a labour of love. It has been very gratifying that well over
one and a half million patrons have passed through our doors in the
years since we opened in our current format. That so many identified in
this "real-cinema experience" is deeply appreciated, as it re-inforced
my firm beleif that the Astor needed to be saved and preserved as a
living museum to cinema-going at its grandest.
May I take this opportunity to thank all our patrons, staff, suppliers
and friends for their support, and remind you that without your support
The Astor would not exist.
We will keep our website (www.astor-theatre.com) updated with
developments as they come to pass.
in 70mm reading:
70mm in Sydney
Cinerama at the Melbourne Plaza
70mm Cinema and Film
The audience at a 70mm screening of
"2001" a few years
by: Ric Bean
LETTER FROM THE ASTOR'S
PROPRIETOR, GEORGE FLORENCE
We proudly announce that our wonderful Astor Theatre has today, December 6,
2007, been purchased by our local St Michael's Grammar School.
This opens enormous opportunities for both the school and our cinema
operation. We currently have a few years left on our existing lease, with a
long option, so for the foreseeable future The Astor Theatre will continue
to screen films of its usual eclectic nature along with special events ...
just as always.
All around, the best outcome has been achieved, the theatre will be secure
in caring hands, prepared to protect and help it develop into a useful,
long-term asset for the school and the film community. The Astor could now
well survive into the 22nd century!
This has been my brief from when I started running the business - to
preserve this unique part of Australia's cinema heritage for future
generations to appreciate.
My heartiest congratulations to St Michael's Grammar School for bringing
this wish well into the future.
Thank you for your patronage and support.
Looking forward to continuing to entertain you.
The Astor Theatre
Procenium shot from the balcony. Image
by: John Thiele.
St KILDA ICON SET TO STAR IN NEW ROLE (St. Michael's media statement)
St Kilda's St Michael's Grammar School has been successful in its bid for
the site of The Astor Cinema, which was sold at auction today.
The sale means that the St Kilda Art Deco icon will remain as a much loved
landmark on the corner of Dandenong Road and Chapel Street, St Kilda.
"Our acquisition of The Astor Cinema site represents a major opportunity for
St Michael's. It's also a lifeline to a fantastic building that has been a
part of St Kilda's heritage for over 70 years," said Head of the School,
"St Michael's has been a part of the St Kilda community for 113 years and
remains on its original site, just a block down the road from The Astor,"
added Gipson. "We are honoured to have become the custodians of a building
that holds such architectural and emotional significance for St Kilda."
St Michael's, which is renowned for its performing arts program, sees
enormous potential in the building. "The School currently stages major
productions at external venues such as The Athenaeum, The Malthouse and
National Theatres," said Simon Gipson. "The Astor has the potential to house
an exciting mix of educational and entertainment options close to our main
campus. At the same time, our purchase provides us with a wonderful
opportunity to responsibly protect an important part of St Kilda's heritage
by restoring key elements of The Astor to their former glory."
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