Bryant Cinema needs a digital update

Wednesday, December 19, 2012



The people of Bryant, a tiny town in neighboring Hamlin County, are working hard to make sure their community-owned movie theater stays open.


The Bryant Cinema shows movies every Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening. The community of Bryant has owned the theater since 1999 and it is run entirely by volunteers. But the digital age has made it harder to secure movies to play on its 35 mm projector.


The Bryant Cinema Board of Directors has been told the movie industry will stop using 35 mm film altogether within the next year or so. There is already a lot less film in circulation, which makes it difficult for the theater to schedule movies in advance.


If the community does not come up with the money needed buy a digital projector and do the needed updates, the theater is in danger of closing its doors forever within the next year.


Community members have so far raised nearly $11,000 for a new digital projector and needed updates to the building.  Jennifer Carstensen, secretary for the board, said the biggest fund-raiser so far was a craft fair held Dec. 1 at the Bryant City Auditorium.  Proceeds from special showings throughout the year have also gone into their “Go Digital or Go Dark” fund.


“We’ve known this was coming for quite some time and have been saving,” she said.


Carstensen is confident that if the community can raise at least another $5,000, they will be in a good position to make the switch to digital. “We are going to continue our fundraising into the near future so that hopefully we will be able to afford digital programming early in 2013,” Carstensen said.



Story by Donna Palmlund 

The De Smet News

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