Good fun at the Holiday Party this year. The students from Meter were amazing on stage, Santa took a break from cutting hair to be here, and there was Juggling!
We now have matinee showtimes on Saturdays and Sundays. What could be better on a rainy cold winter afternoon? It started with the Seahawks games and the Dr. WHO event during the day, then it seemed to make sense to keep it rolling with movies on the weekends too. Now we have 3:00 matinees scheduled unless there is a special event. December is pretty busy with events so we could only squeeze in The Nightmare Before Christmas at 3:00 on Dec 7th, ELF at 3:00 on Dec 21st, and When Harry Met Sally at 3:00 on the 28th. January has matinees nearly every weekend. Now you can still catch your favorite movies in the theater even if you have other plans for the evening.
While all projects have their unforeseen problems to deal with, we hit a huge pothole in the road to digital cinema on Friday. As I was testing Casablanca on Friday, it was looking beautiful until about 10 minutes into the movie when it started rapidly looping the same few frames over and over. Uh oh. DCP is supposed to be rock solid. The movies are encrypted and the Studios only unlock them for the actual dates that you have booked with them. This means that testing the movie in advance is out of the question. So here I was on the opening day of a Holiday weekend with a fritzing movie. At first the issue appeared to be a piece of firmware on the media board (IMS) inside the projector. The update was fairly straightforward and applied just fine… then the communication port went down and the projector became unreachable. We sweated over the port settings for a few hours trying to reestablish a link but it just wouldn’t respond to anything. We finally had to break the bad news to all the people in the lobby waiting for a fun Friday night with a great classic. No show, tickets refunded, that inner feeling of frustration and wanting to smash cute things. We were able to get a loaner projector setup as an interim solution, so we were back on the screen for the late show. The IMS board is in the shop for diagnosis and repair. At first it looked as if a software repair was all it was going to need but then the error messages started popping up making it look more and more like there was something physically wrong with the board itself. Since this thing is barely a few weeks old it means that Doremi will be sending us a fresh one from LA. I would love to know what loose solder joint or overheated chip might have caused it, I guess it is a dark fascination. The show is still on with the loaner standing in. The big pretty Barco projector should be relit soon so we can have a bright and shiny December.