High demand for Angels theaters

By Michael Kay, The Union Democrat July 29, 2010 05:15 am

    Kicking back in a soft chair at the former home of Bella Angels Salon in Angels Camp may soon be possible again. But don’t expect to get your hair cut.
    Angels 5 Theatre is hoping to open a 32-seat screening room in the former hair studio by the end of September. The space is located adjacent to the existing box office.
        “We need more theaters,” said David Corkill, owner of Petaluma-based Cinema West, a cinema chain which operates the movie house.
    He said the additional screen will carry films that have ceased to draw crowds, but that the theater is obligated by contracts to continue showing, opening other screens for newer movies.
    The theater also plans to use the room for art-house and foreign movies that typically draw smaller crowds.
    “The more screens you have, the more flexibility you have,” Corkill said.
    It will also help them keep up with a demand that Corkill says is booming despite the Highway 4 bypass and the current economic slump.
    “2009 was our best year ever,” he said. “And 2010 has started off better than 2009.”
    The new room will be, by far, the most intimate of the building’s theaters. Each of the current rooms have at least 75 seats, with the largest topping out at 200.
    Despite the size, the little room’s projector, like the rest of those at the theater, will be digital.
    Cinema West has done smaller-scale additions at many of its 12 theaters, often in cases where location prevents physical expansion of the building, Corkill said.
    Patrick Corcoran, spokesman for the National Association of Theater Owners, said smaller additions are something that a number of movie houses have been doing, sometimes offering oversized recliner seats, even couches.
    “You’re seeing some of it,” he said. “It’s a niche.”
    Corkill hopes to have permits to begin construction by the end of this week. No plans for the addition had been filed as of Monday afternoon, according to Angels Camp Building Inspector Steve Flaigg.

    Contact Michael Kay at 890-7477 or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it