"While we don't have a reopening date yet, our goal is preservation of the Tower Theatre and also the neighborhood of 9th and 9th as a unique hub for neighbors and friends who support safe spaces for diverse communities to gather."
Here’s the full statement from our own Tori Baker, CEO & Executive Director at SLFS:
“Welcome to the 9th & 9th neighborhood and the Historic Tower Theatre. We are currently under renovation.
Salt Lake Film Society, your local nonprofit cinema organization, has a mission to EXHIBIT, CREATE, & PRESERVE the big-screen experience. Our amazing nonprofit staff is working with construction partners to reveal a renovated lobby, ADA improvements, and other upgrades.
While we don’t have a reopening date yet, our goal is preservation of the Tower Theatre and also the neighborhood of 9th and 9th as a unique hub for neighbors and friends who support safe spaces for diverse communities to gather.
Throughout 2022 we have been working on exterior repairs, including interior planning, drawings and design. We’ve also been committed to fund development, assessments and meetings with our 9th and 9th neighbors on neighborhood preservation ideas.
We are happy to report that the auditorium repainting, plus ceiling sound panels and video/DVD archive and library assessment are well under way. SLFS has received a pristine collection of 15,000 DVDs to add to our archive and will begin working on the vision for the archive’s return to the newly remodeled lobby.
While we are renovating, see curated films at our Broadway Centre Cinemas location, including traditional Tower programming such as Rocky Horror Picture Show, Tower of Terror, and the most innovative cinematic presentations of independent film in our state.”
You can be part of the preservation of the Tower as a Salt Lake Film Society Red Carpet Club subscriber or donor.
Film Availability – This is a bit of an unknown right now. As you know, we’ve been able to keep new films available virtually throughout the pandemic, but it’s been far from a normal time in film world. How the fall season will shake out is anyone’s guess. We’re hoping for some strong new independent cinema celebrating the courage and resilience we have all been trying to model. No matter what, we will be ready with a large curated selection of outstanding independent films that match SLFS patrons’ taste and our mission to exhibit, create, and preserve the independent film experience.
The Future of SLFS@home – We didn’t know when we created SLFS@home that we would want to keep it around post-pandemic, but we do! We’ve learned a lot about what access means to people who for whatever reason are not likely to come into a movie theater and we are so happy to commit to continuing to serve them and anyone else who would choose to stay at home and watch in their pjs. Some of the SLFS@home options might even be designed to enhance your enjoyment of the films you see in our theaters!
@homeArts – Our own Tori Baker, CEO/President, recently hosted Purpose in Action, a summit for the 30+ cinemas and arts organizations on @homeArts, the online platform we created for ourselves in mid-March of 2020 and have since opened up to dozens of independent cinemas around the nation and other arts organizations as well.
There are so many people to thank. We send our deepest gratitude to all of you who have wished and worried on our behalf. Your concern and your love have sustained us. Thank you to everyone who donated at any point during the 589 days, whether by sending a check, setting up a recurring donation, tacking a couple of bucks onto an online screening payment or member renewal, or contributing to a challenge grant – thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We felt great love from you and a great responsibility to get this whole thing right and make our way back to you as whole and as soon as possible.
The SLFS team is forging the future of this organization and giving their hearts to the mission. They all have worked tirelessly through the pandemic to keep our programs moving in the digital space and toward this historic moment of reopening our beloved Broadway.
We will bring our immense joy and your strong confidence in SLFS along with us as we finally, finally, walk back through our doors and begin in all the many ways, some old and some new, to Exhibit, Create, and Preserve the cinematic experience for all.
Much love from all of us.
What We’re Asking Of You
First, a word of thanks for all you have given us thus far. Your encouragement, donations, and positivity have kept us afloat during this time. We want you to feel safe and appreciated in our space. We are reopening because of you. You are so important to us.
Please follow the rules we have posted.
We also would like to ask you to maybe be a little extra patient with us as we all get our routines down. We definitely want you to feel free to let us know how we can improve, but in addition, if you could please offer up a bit of grace as we get going, that would be amazing. We are all trying so hard. Many of us at the front-of-house are new and learning our way.
Thank you so much.
What’s Up With The Tower
We’re busy refreshing and enhancing the Tower; however, due to supply-chain issues, a few of our projects are still in motion and will not be completed in time to open the doors just yet. We don’t anticipate a long delay. We’ll keep updates on social media and at SLFS.org. Continue to follow us, consider donating or becoming a subscriber, and without a doubt, we’d love to see you at the Broadway’s reopening on October 22.
We will continue our independent first-run film curation on the digital screen at SLFSathome.org (and the national curation we pioneered for @homeArts and the arthouse cinemas around the US).
The digital screen is becoming a vital part of our mission, allowing us to connect to artists in ways we have never been able to before. We can also curate panel discussions there on important societal and cinema arts themes.
One of our many epiphanies during the pandemic was that not all movie patrons want – or can enjoy – the brick-and-mortar cinema. The home environment can be the favorite theater for some, particularly, but not limited to, those with physical and emotional challenges.
We also learned that we could expand our reach throughout Utah and even globally through presenting our cultural tours programs and even our weekly films online.
We’ve decided that we like and see value in continuing to be part of the technology-driven virtual future of the film industry.
Other Useful Info You Might Need:
Filméxico is our next cultural program, so save the date for Nov. 12-18. You can enjoy it in theater and on SLFSathome.org.
Studio Backlot Motor Cinema presented by Redman Movies and Stories – Our fall season is complete, but the Motor Cinema is a semi-permanent third venue for SLFS. We’ll let you know when our next films will hit the screen.
Last updated October 19, 2021
Reopening Update: Tower reopening delayed. We’re busy refreshing and enhancing the Tower daily, however, due to supply-chain issues a few of our enhancements are still in motion and will not be completed in time to open the doors in October. We don’t anticipate a long delay, we’ll keep updates on social media and at SLFS.org. Continue to follow us, consider donating or becoming a subscriber, and without a doubt, we’d love to see you at the Broadway, Oct. 22 for reopening.
Here’s some photos to show what we’ve been working on at our historic Tower Theatre:
Update August 2021:
Grand Reopening October 22! We have missed you like crazy. Thank you for your patience with us.
Used to be, showing explosion-free movies for adults was the most courageous thing we had to do. Now, like you, we’ve had to do a ton of grown-up things since March of 2020. We’d tell you, but it’s boring.
Here’s the cool, interesting stuff we’ve been working on:
Broadway and Tower – We’re finally reopening our dear venues on October 22. We have some fun changes in store for you, like auditorium improvements at the Broadway and a new proscenium at the Tower, plus some surprises. With the current realities of construction material availability and worker scheduling, you may find that some things will still be in progress when we open. For example, we may not open every auditorium at the Broadway on October 22, but we will have plenty of films and auditoriums for you to choose from. We know you’ll understand if there are still some project elements underway. We can’t wait to welcome you back!
We will for sure crank up our awesome popcorn poppers for you! Of course, we will be following all CDC guidelines and we will want you to do the same.
Studio Backlot Motor Cinema presented by Redman Movies and Stories – The Fall season will run August 27 through October 16 with Cult and Horror films on the schedule. Fun fact: Some folks think the Motor Cinema was just a covid-coping idea, and yes, it has served us well in that regard, but the Motor Cinema is a semi-permanent third venue for SLFS. Come have a fright with us!