SLFS

This gorgeous springtime, the vaccine, the ability to get together outdoors, and now the very recent CDC guidelines have many of us feeling lighter and freer than we have for a good while. Naturally, people who love SLFS are curious about what all this means for indoor movies at Broadway and Tower.

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The Pandemic’s Impact on SLFS
We have worked harder than ever before during this time. In the first month of our venue closures we devised a way to show a full schedule of the newest independent films online to SLFS patrons each and every day on SLFSathome.org, quickly claiming a lifeline for our cinematic mission. Then we made our technology available coast-to-coast to aid 34 peer nonprofit movie theaters and a few local arts presenters so they too could earn COVID-closure revenue and survive. Serving our peers has been a great reward of the pandemic; our work on this robust project was needed desperately around the country to ensure the health of arthouses.

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Cultural Tours on a Digital Screen
Our Cultural Tours remained in motion as we continued to collaborate with leaders from the Consulates, and service organizations in various communities to present an unprecedented number of Film Tours in record time while being ‘closed’: Filméxico, L’Chaim Jewish Film Tour, Masimā Pacific Islands Film Tour, and the Climate Change Film Tour collectively included 14 fully-produced artist discussions on topics such as afro-Mexican identity, immigration, post-traumatic stress syndrome, family history, and our planet. Plus, we added Cultural Tour elements never thought of in pre-pandemic times – Zoom cocktail parties, panel discussions, and trivia games! We produced discussions for Sundance Film Festival that included topics of body-imagery though Screendance, female director challenges in Mexico, animation diversity, and the future of film exhibition for independent directors.

Cultural Tours 2021


Donor Supported Through Covid

Through all of this, we know that a donor supported cinema and the mission we bring to our city has been valued by so many of you. We are working diligently to preserve the big screen experience and our facilities so that we might reemerge stronger, better and ideally transformed. Our gratitude to those who continue to participate in our digital screen programs, cultural tours, and MAST is unending. Thank you, it because of you that we know SLFS will exhibit, create, and preserve the big screen community experience for decades to come.

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The SLFS Studio Backlot Motor Cinema & MASTstudio.org
We also created the SLFS Studio Backlot Motor Cinema presented by Redman Movies and Stories. With a 40-foot screen and DCP projection, it truly is a BIG screen experience at the Motor Cinema. Our 2021 Spring season is underway now. Through the unending hustle and fear, we’ve had 14 months to pine for our spaces and the joy they bring. For all the hurt the pandemic has caused, it has given us the gift of distance from our previous day-to-day and given us new perspectives to celebrate our art form.

Eight filmmaker fellows continued to be mentored and supported through MAST. MAST leadership also pivoted to create our digital screen technology.  Our short film production, fostering six animators, made it to post-production and will hit the festival circuit this winter. 

Studio Backlot Motor Cinema


National Network Filming at The Tower and Plans for Broadway

Most recently, our spirits were lifted by an unexpected opportunity in the form of a film shoot at the COVID-shuttered Tower. On 70-degree days, snowmen and holiday decorations dotted the entry to the theater. As the shoot wrapped, we finalized a list of ways to improve the beloved community cinema. While some wished-for things remain well beyond our scope, we’ve chosen to reinvest the production earnings in some attainable improvements we think you’ll really enjoy. We have also been dreaming about the Broadway. We’re taking advantage of closure time to create wonderful improvements there, too. It’s all under wraps for now, but when we reopen, we hope you will be delighted.  

What’s Happening Now at SLFS: Preparing to Open in the Fall

Always keeping a close eye on the health and sustainability of our organization along with the wishes and needs of our lovely patrons, we have set Fall 2021 as our reopening goalpost. This will give us the summer to work on our plans while also giving the staff breathing room for their health and wellness. July and August have historically been our lowest-attended months, so perhaps by fall, once you’ve attended all the outdoor events, festivals, and celebrations our wonderful city has to offer, we can entice you back to experience the big screen as it was intended, full of images from cinematic artists who build empathy, understanding, and a window into worlds and ideas that improve our community, our wellness, and our planet. We thank you for your continued investment in the future of SLFS. The community spirit we’ve seen from patrons, donors, board members, volunteers, and staff has been the guiding force in keeping SLFS so strong and our programs so meaningful. Your interest in what’s next, your immense support, and your concern for our organizational good health is felt on a daily basis by each of us. Thank you. Please enjoy our Motor Cinema (schedule here), stay tuned to our social media for updates on enhancements to our facilities, and keep watching movies on www.SLFSathome.org as all proceeds go to our mission projects.

With Love from all of us at SLFS. 

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You can click here for more pointers and detailed steps in the online viewing process at slfsathome.org.


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