A Glimpse of the Miami Beach Cinematheque's New "Green" Theater

Categories: Culture
A few months ago, we told you about the Miami Beach Cinematheque's plans to move the theater to City Hall this summer. The impending change made some of you nervous that a new space would denude the MBC of most, if not all of its Española Way charm. Fear not, oh Miami art house film lovers. According to these recently-released renderings of the new digs, MBC will be cozy, personal...and modern -- without any of that sticky floor, multiplex bullshit that makes you want to stay home and watch Netflix.

MBC Founder and Executive Director Dana Keith says, "We love the intimacy and charm of Española Way, but we are taking that with us, at least the part of it that we created ourselves, such as the living room feel, the library, the relaxed and friendly atmosphere that is the antithesis of the commercial experience."

Exhibit A:

Are you surprised? Stadium seating! (Albeit on a much smaller scale than nearby Regal South Beach.) And even though the new theater will be housed in a historic building, its guts will flaunt upgrades like high-def projection and Dolby digital sound. Eraserhead will never look and sound so good.

According to the construction plans by architect Scott Weinkle and designer Jeffrey Barone, the new MBC will also be the first certified "green" interior in Miami Beach. It's applied for LEED commercial interior accreditation, meaning the space will meet the highest standards for energy efficiency, water conservation, and waste reduction. LEED interiors are known for their supremely good indoor air quality so perhaps MBC could market themselves as a movie house/oxygen bar if things get tight.

In addition to the newfangled, clean-air auditorium, Keith and the design team have plans for a gallery space, film museum, and café at their new address at 1130 Washington Avenue. It'll look like one those art house cinemas you find in countries that actual fund their art programs.

Exhibit B:

Future home of Junior Mints and Sour Patch Kids
But as a non-profit, the MBC has to raise all necessary funds themselves, starting with the 2010 Oscar Night America Miami Beach party on March 7 at Smith & Wollensky's. Every year, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences chooses a local beneficiary to host the official awards party in Miami, and this year all of the $125-$150 tickets sales will go to the MBC's new theater. Visit www.MBCinema.com to buy tickets.

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