By one name or another, the
Senate Theatre in Elsberry, Missouri
has entertained people since 1911. For years, families have come to see the latest films from Hollywood.
But changing technology will make going to see a film at the Senate Theatre a thing of the past.
The making and use of 35 millimeter film is quickly becoming a dying art form.
Sandra Sinnett and her husband have owned and operated the Senate Theatre since 1974.
She says the Hollywood Studios are getting rid of 35mm film and forcing her to spend thousands of dollars on new digital equipment.
"Just the sound equipment will be about 60 thousand. And then when you get your digital camera and everything that goes with it, that will be another 50 some odd thousand. So it usually runs about 110 thousand dollars to get the whole system set in," Sandra said.
According to the Huffington Post, movie theater closings have risen as Hollywood has begun the shift to digital. Click here for that story.
This extra cost comes at an especially difficult time for Sandra and her family who are just recovering from a devastating fire a year ago.
"People came in and dug these dirty seats out that were burnt. And the ceiling had to come down. And the walls had to come down," she said. "There were people who had been laid off that just came in and worked and helped us get back."
Sandra's son Bob understands the changeover to digital, but he says there is a very special magic to these rolls of celluloid that will be lost forever.
"There's a lot of love and a lot of people's time went into this film right here. Because this soundtrack has to be so far ahead of this picture because of that fact that the sound head is farther down in the camera. And just for 35mm there's so many people that put their heart and soul into making this movie," Bob said.
But like it or not, for this community theatre to stay open, the Senate will have to change with the times. And whether it's film or digital, Sandra said she will still be at the ticket window greeting her customers.