CJ Cinema Summit October 29,2020

Even as flying and physical meetings are cancelled, the show must go on for cinema trade shows. How do you re-create the show reels, product announcements and ‘buzz’ of shows like CineAsia and Expocine when you can’t actually be in Bangkok or São Paulo? We talk to the organisers to see how they have adapted to Covid times.

A special thank you to Lucy Jones from Comscore, Marcelo Lima from Tonks, and Jonathan Wolf from AFM.


Vendor Spotlight of the Week: Mark Collins of Harman International

This week’s vendor spotlight is Mark Collins, Senior Manager of Global Cinema, of JBL Professional by Harman. You may reach out to him at 214-985-3138 or via email at mark.collins@harman.com with any questions you have for him.

1. Why is your product necessary for the movie theater industry?

We provide the sound.  Very important since the “Jazz Singer” 1927

2. What are the 5 most common mistakes people make when selecting your items?

Selecting the correct speakers and amps for the size of the theater
Placement of speakers in the theaters
Relying on low cost only when selecting equipment
Working with a true cinema installer, not jus an AV company
Not waiting until the last minute to install.  Leave time for setup and commissioning
Not enough SUBs

3. What should be the top 3 things one should consider when purchasing your items?

Company long term representation
In house expertise

4. What  do you like best about the theater industry?

I have done this all my life.   I still get a thrill when you sit in a new theater showing to the first audience with perfect picture and sound.

5. What is one thing you have learned during COVID?

Do not take for granted that the theater will just come back, every exhibitor has to reinvent their business.

CJ Cinema Summit #26

In addition to David Bell, Head of Global Leisure, Savills UK, Keith Pullinger Co-founder & Deputy Chairman, The Light Cinemas, and Eddy Duquenne, CEO, Kinepolis Group, Kathryn Jacob, CEO of Pearl&Dean will join us to discuss the global outlook as cinemas look beyond Hollywood to stay open.


Exhibitor Spotlight: Jim Cooke from Fresh Strategies

  1. Why is your business unique? 
    1. We believe in solutions first.  Our specialization in the evolution in the cinema & entertainment spaces allows us to execute on design & construction projects more efficiently and effectively.
  2. What are the 5 most common mistakes people make when building a theatre
    1. Exhibitors don’t know the market well enough to ‘right size’ their facility ie.
      1. too big- not enough attendance to justify the fixed costs- never able to get the desired ROI. Too big c/w competitors in the market to achieve desired ROI … or
      2. too small to service their market which creates an overly busy facility and poor guest experience… this opens opportunity for competitors to build against you ….
    2. Exhibitors don’t know the business well enough to size auditoriums appropriately for the business. Ie. 1-2 large aud’s for blockbusters c/w smaller auditoriums to ‘right-size’ auditoriums for lower budget and older film product in the system…
    3. OOH movie going is often an ‘impulse buy’. Cinemas need ample (free if possible), well located parking and drop off facilities, barrier free accessibility and convenient (vertical) transportation to make the perceived and actual movie going experience ‘easy’ and as enjoyable as possible. This increases ‘turns’ ( number of visits). Ie. a happy customer comes more often….
    4. Blockbuster films do not, unto themselves, make the OOH cinema venue profitable. This equation is worsening. “Other Revenue” opportunities MUST be considered in the ‘new normal’ OOH movie ‘experience….Films pay the rent. “Other revenues” pay share holder dividends. Food, beverage, international film, gaming, experiential activations, media revenue and other new concepts must be prioritized….
    5. The old ‘normal’ of opening for business, just cleaning restrooms and popping popcorn has changed forever. The OOH movie going experience is challenged by Covid, technological disruptions, fundamental changes in the ‘film window’ model and changing consumer behavior. This is not the same business we knew for 75 years…
  3. What are 3 things a person building a theatre needs to take into consideration
    1. What priority will the ‘OOH theatrical release window’ play in the future of film making/distribution…..
    2. Does the world need more theaters or should the industry prioritize ‘right sizing’ & evolving the guest experience in existing facilities ?
    3.  Negotiate flexible leased terms to protect oneself against further fundamental changes in the industry. Ie. “Day in Date” release of film.
    4. Consider hiring “Fresh Design and Construction Strategies” to help them through this new and evolved industry.
  4. What other industries do you work in besides movie theaters?
    1. Our focus is the cinema & entertainment industry, and so theatres aside, we love being involved in the repurposing of underutilized spaces and alternate revenue streams for all types of OOH entertainment venues.
  5.  What do you like best about the theater industry?
    1. We believe in the desire for people to want to come together outside the home and enjoy experiences and the ever changing need to evolve and adapt keeps it exciting.
  6. What is one thing you have learned during COVID?
    1. The need to be fluid and adapt to the changing market.  Just like everyone else in this industry, we are having to think where the industry will be in the next 6-12 months and longer and come up with new strategies.

Feel free to reach out to Jim with any questions you may have. He answers in an extremely timely manner (unless he is on top f the world). Photo below is from when Jim recently took on a mountaintop hike! He’s got skills:)


In the event that you scrolled quickly through your emails, peruse this worthwhile information:
(well, by saving your cinema, you will save other cinemas).
In the rapidly changing landscape of pandemic relief negotiations, we are adapting our lobbying efforts to advocate for elements that have the best chance of inclusion that will aid movie theaters. Although we have lobbied heavily for and still support the RESTART Act, the elements below have the greatest chance of making it into this round of relief. The Save Our Stages Act initially called for $10 billion to aid live music venues and live theater. We are working with stakeholders and key sponsors to include movie theaters and increase the funding to $15 billion. The Paycheck Protection Program Extension will provide more flexible and expanded relief to movie theater companies of all sizes, by allowing a greater percentage of funds to go to non-payroll expenses and companies to meet employee headcount limits by counting by location instead of company-wide.

Contact your Senators and Representatives to support their inclusion in the current round of relief. Suggested talking points are below!

Theaters need specific relief targeted to our circumstances. Absent this relief, theaters may not survive the impact of the pandemic.

The pandemic has been a devastating financial blow to cinemas. 93% of movie theater companies had over 75% in losses in recent months. If the status quo continues, 69% of small and mid-sized movie theater companies will be forced to file for bankruptcy or to close permanently, and 66% of theater jobs will be lost. Our country cannot afford to lose the social, economic, and cultural value that theaters provide.

Movie theaters are economic force multipliers and essential cultural landmarks. In addition to the 153,000+ employees working in cinemas nationwide, the industry supports millions of jobs in movie production and distribution, and countless others in surrounding restaurants and retailers that rely on theaters for foot traffic. 268 million people in North America went to the movies last year to laugh, cry, dream, and be moved together. Moviegoing is one of the most affordable out-of-home entertainment options. We cannot let our beloved cinemas disappear.

Support the Expanded Save Our Stages Act 

  • Support an expanded SOS Act that provides grants to performance venues, live theater, and movie theaters, calculated at up to 45% of gross 2019 revenues or $12 million per company, whichever is less. Also allows a supplemental grant for businesses that have lost over 80% in revenue.
  • Movie theaters and live venues are among the hardest-hit industries that will be the slowest to recover from the pandemic.
  • SOS is the only proposal that offers the right amount of FLEXIBLE funding that will be the bridge that keeps the theaters from going dark forever. Across the country this legislation would save over 3,500 theaters.

Support PPP Extension

  • We urge an expansion of the per location/affiliation waiver to the movie theater NAICS Code of 512130. We also urge increased flexibility on the PPP 60/40 rule for businesses that have lost more than 75% in revenue.
  • This targeted funding could save a significant number of the 153,000+ jobs in this industry alone and would include a majority of movie theaters.
  • Many theaters have had trouble accessing any other form of capital; the PPP expansion is necessary to help some of the mid-sized theater companies survive the pandemic.
Questions? Please email Esther Baruh at erb@natodc.com.

CJ Cinema Summit #25

If you were not able to make it to this segment of the CJ Cinema Summit, time to do so. It was a fantastic presentation and definitely worth your while (and the statement about diet coke is real:)

Following the news of the postponement of ‘No Time to Die’ and the responses from cinemas we will be holding a 90 minute Special Edition #CJCinemaSummit#CJCinemaSummit to discuss the path forward for the cinema industry. We will be confirming the panelists in the coming days and more than even look for the involvement of our #CJCinemaSummit#CJCinemaSummit community. The situation is tougher then ever, but it is not hopeless.

The 25th event in the series will go live on October 8th, 09:00 Los Angeles, 17:00 London time

# CJCinemaSummit will enable industry stakeholders to stay connected to the industry and gain key up to date insights as well as to ask questions and support each other through these turbulent times.

The sole aim is to create a virtual meeting space with a regular schedule where speakers will share industry information, as well as enabling a space for round tables and audience participation.




Vendor Spotlight: Camatic Seating

This week our vendor spotlight is on Diana Frankowski, National Sales Director at Camatic Seating! Enjoy learning about Camatic Seating as well as Diana. Take the time to visit the Camatic website or contact her via email , or  phone .

Why is your product necessary to have in the theatres? Because standing to watch a movie in the theatre would not be very comfortable!  Which is where Camatic comes in. Providing comfort to the consumer during this premium movie going experience is important. The consumer has a choice in theatres to patronize. We help to contribute to this overall experience to keep them coming back time after time. Camatic believes that one of the main differentials  for viewers attending a cinema is the seating offer, and with over 55 years of seating experience, Camatic adds value and that experience to the overall offer.

What are your best-selling features?  Aesthetically, the Camatic recliners have a very clean and sophisticated look which is what draws patrons in, but what keeps them coming back is the comfort. Our inhouse formulated and moulded specialty foam, is high density and resilient, providing unparalleled comfort for patrons and long-lasting wear, which owners love. Removable features of the Camatic recliner (seat and back overlays, arm caps which cinema staff can change out) makes the chair less expensive to own and maintain over the life of the product.

Any new products coming out in the 2020/2021 year?  We certainly do! We just launched a manual recliner. A great VE option to theater owners that want to upgrade from a Rocker style to a recliner but be a bit more conservative with costs. We still have plenty of exciting cinema products that we will be unveiling before the end of the year. Stay tuned!

What other industries do you work in besides movie theaters?   We provide seating solutions to the sports industry globally- our largest segment – designing , manufacturing & installing seats in major stadiums and arenas all over the world. Recently completed installations are; SoFi Stadium (LA Rams and Chargers), Allegiant Stadium (LV Raiders) & Globe Life Field (Texas Rangers), totalling approx. 175,000 chairs ranging from GA to VIP suite fit outs. We are regarded as the number 1 seating supplier to both the NFL and MLS. We are also heavily involved in performing arts centres, education and auditorium seating.

What do you like best about the theater industry?  Going to see a movie in a theatre is still one of the greatest, low cost experiences in the entertainment industry. Not only is it incredibly enjoyable, widely available and affordable, but for two hours you are completed immersed within the theatrical experience. It is up to the consumer how much additional they want to spend to enhance their experience with inhouse dining options.

What is one thing you have learned during covid?  Take this pandemic seriously but think of ways to still enjoy life. Get out of your house,  support your local businesses and don’t be afraid. Be cautious but not afraid. Life is short – don’t miss a second of it!

Vendor Spotlight: Theresa Boysen : Kernals Season’s


Our featured vendor of the blast this week is Theresa Boysen (you may all know her as Eleanor’s mom) of Kernel Seasonings. Enjoy this new segment and if you would like to be featured, email us.

Why is your product necessary to be in the theaters?
Offering a good variety of Kernel Season’s Popcorn Seasoning, helps split and increase popcorn sales by inspiring groups to “get their own” and season it up to create their own individual perfect popcorn. Even when sales are split between kids/teens getting their favorite flavor popcorn while purist parents stick to butter and salt you’ve still added another high margin sale to your precap totals. Our seasoning has a long shelf life, doesn’t increase queue time, and generates great online reviews for your theatre.

What are your best selling flavors?
White Cheddar is number one followed closely by Nacho Cheddar and Ranch. Kettle Corn and Cheesy Jalapeno round out the core program, and although they are not top seasoning flavors, they are top popcorn sales drivers because lovers of spicy or sweet popcorn will often be directed to buy their own bag instead of sharing with the group.

What new products are coming out in the 2020 year?
Truffle Popcorn Seasoning! This is the item I’m excited to introduce to the Dine-In team because it’s prepared in the kitchen and served to patrons (at a decent upcharge of course:).

Also excited to announce I will be taking on additional Sauer Brands products this year, including DUKE’S MAYONNAISE and Duke’s dipping sauce packs.

What is your favorite flavor? 
I’ve been using our new Sriracha flavor the most. It’s the perfect amount of heat without being overwhelming.

What do you like best about the theater industry?
The energy. Combine the excitement of new movies with the commitment and passion of our exhibitors and vendor friends, and the energy is overwhelming.

What is one thing you have learned during Covid?
I learned to make fresh pasta, because I clearly needed a new way to eat more carbs.


To reach Theresa directly, email, call her at 773.899.3032 or visit her company website🙂