Observing from beyond the solar system, a cultural outsider looks in.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Senator Theatre Reorganization Announced -- Radio Show Today!

This morning, The Senator Theatre's listserv sent out a Senator Theatre Reorganization Plan outlining how the theatre's operations will reorganize for interim programming and eventually under new management. Some highlights of the plan:

1. Buy time to delay the foreclosure and auction process.
2. Reorganize interim operations.
3. Structure a viable acquisition model.
4. Transition The Senator to new ownership and operation.


We are aggressively evaluating our best options to buy the time required to reorganize interim operations and structure an acquisition that is in the best interests of the community, The Senator Theatre and its future. Short of an "angel" scenario materializing before the end of the month, it may be that a Chapter 11 filing is the best and possibly the only option for buying critical time.

Under this scenario, we would work with our creditors within the structure of the court to settle The Senator's debts, while allowing for interim operations to help pay bills, and the development of a viable opportunity for acquisition. We remain hopeful and open to any number of prospective acquisition models that may emerge through reorganization.

The costs of the reorganization process include legal and consulting fees and expenses, utilities and other essential operating expenses, interim payments to creditors, and underwriting for fundraising events. The willingness of individuals and community organizations to help fund these efforts is critical.


In the coming days and weeks we'll continue to provide updates on our evolving plans for implementation of sustainable interim programming models. The goal is to reorganize under new ownership with a viable business plan based on supplementing state-of-the-art film presentations with an expanded array of enhanced multi-purpose uses to attract new audiences in synergy with the Belvedere Square commercial district.

Why are expanded uses and new audiences so important? There is simply no long-term sustainability in an antiquated single-screen business model based solely on first-run films.

On an annual basis, first-run film grosses and the high percentage fees demanded by the studios fall short of meeting fixed monthly overhead costs, even with a significantly reduced debt load. The minimum two to four week uninterrupted runs required by the studios, combined with their substantial film rent commissions, create a significant deficit between fixed overhead and potential revenue, which simply cannot be overcome under the first-run, single-screen model.

Read the whole plan on The Senator's web site.

In a related event, Tom Kiefaber and Sean Brescia will be on the radio today on the Anthony McCarthy Show. From 5 to 6 PM, listeners can call in to ask questions about efforts to save The Senator. Call in with your questions! 410.319.8888

The show will be streamed live on http://www.weaa.org/.

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