Sunset Boulevard is about to get a bit more Western as the Sundance Kid is coming to town.
The Sundance Cinema chain, founded by actor Robert Redford, plans to open its first Los Angeles branch on August 31 in the on the southeast corner of Crescent Heights and Sunset boulevards.
The upscale cinema chain will take over the space formerly occupied by the Laemmle Theatres since the early 1990s. on Dec. 1 and has completely renovated the space, taking it down to the studs.
The refurbished cinema will feature all-stadium seating with rocking love seats and tables, plus all reserved seating and digital projection.
The lobby area, redone with a rustic elegance-style decor, will have a Bistro area selling classic movie treats and an upstairs bar area . Patrons will be able to take beer and wine into the theatres for 21+ screenings. The theatre also plans to annex the outside patio area as a place for patrons to relax, eat and chat pre- and post-screenings.
Officially named the Sundance Sunset Cinema, the theatre plans to primarily screen American independent and foreign films, similar to the fare Laemmle programmed there. The theatre promises not to show commercials prior to screenings.
"I discovered my love of movies at a little single screen theatre on the west side of Los Angeles as a boy,” said Redford, president of the Sundance Group, in a press statement. “Having this 'hometown' theatre dedicated to exhibiting the work of independent filmmakers is a considerable goal achieved, and having the Sundance Institute as a neighbor and collaborator on special programs will be a tremendous asset to our patrons".
Sundance Cinemas President and CEO Paul Richardson, added, "The new Sundance Sunset Cinema is going to be a gem located in the heart of West Hollywood. It's long been a dream to build a theatre in my home town, and I'm certain that this will be a place that patrons will enjoy as much as I will.”
Prior to the Aug. 31 grand opening, Sundance Cinemas will host three pre-opening celebration events, benefitting local non-profit organizations:
- Monday, August 27: A Celebration of Film: Sundance Institute
- Tuesday, August 28: Filmmakers and the Community: Outfest
- Wednesday, August 29: Sand Rocks & Sea: Heal The Bay A Night To Benefit Rivers, Beaches & Oceans with a special presentation of Jamie Redford's new documentary Watershed: Exploring A New Water Ethic For The New West, produced by The Redford Center with filmmakers in person.
Based in Westlake Village, Sundance Cinemas LLC operates four other cinemas – San Francisco, Seattle, Houston and Madison, Wisconsin. The chain plans to open its sixth cinema in Westchester County, NY in 2014.