From the Worcester Standard, 1 March, 2012
by Tim Clarke
THE ORGANISER of Worcester’s only independent cinema has warned movie-lovers it could be forced to close unless dwindling audiences begin to pick-up.
Mikel Koven said the Splendid Cinema had witnessed a steady drop in the number of people attending its monthly screenings in the Worcester Arts Workshop (WAW).
At its peak the cinema was seeing audiences of about 35 people but support has started to fall away and last month’s screening of the film Outrage, by cult Japanese director Takeshi Kitano, attracted only ten people.
The film society only needs an audience of about 20 people to cover the cost of showing each movie and Mr Koven believes there is still an appetite for critically acclaimed independent films from world cinema.
But Mr Koven, who is course leader of Film Studies at the University of Worcester, said he feared the WAW would eventually pull the plug on the cinema if it continued to lose money.
“I think the biggest obstacle we are facing is apathy and that’s the one thing we can’t fight,” he said.
“This is really about people standing up for independent cinema in Worcester but it’s remarkable what a cultural desert we can be. I think there is a small appetite for it but that is good enough for us at the WAW. We are not trying to sell out the Swan Theatre or anything like that. But if we lost the Splendid Cinema it would mean people having to go to Birmingham or just making do with the mainstream films being shown at the Odeon or Vue.”
The cinema’s current season continues with the acclaimed French farce Potiche (15) on Sunday, March 11 at 7.30pm, starring Catherine Deneuve and Gerard Depardieu, ahead of the screening of Paddy Considine‘s feature film Tyrannosaur (18) on March 25.
Tickets cost £5 for each film and for more information on The Splendid Cinema visit the group on Facebook or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Read more: Closing credits could roll unless you support us, warns cinema | Worcester Standard