Movie News

Hadlow Heads Up Isaac Theatre Royal Campaign

Back in 2011, just after the filming for The Hobbit had begun, New Zealand was hit by a huge earthquake. Christchurch was particularly badly affected, with many people killed and buildings destroyed.

One of the buildings to suffer was the Isaac Theatre Royal.  To help raise funds to rebuild the theatre Ian McKellen spent his free time touring New Zealand with a one-man show. Many of us will remember the night the show was in Wellington and allThe Hobbit cast turned up and joined Sir Ian on stage and in the foyer, helping gather more than $10,000 in public donations with their collection buckets alone, whilst those of us half way around the world caught the event unfolding on Twitter.

Well, the money was raised and rebuilding is going well, with the theatre due to open in mid 2014.

But now there is a new fundraising campaign and actor Mark Hadlow, who plays Dori in The Hobbit, is the face of it.

The New Zealand International Film Festival has launched a campaign to bring state-of-the-art digital projection to the Isaac Theatre Royal.

Unlike Auckland (Civic), Wellington (Embassy Theatre) and Dunedin (Regent Theatre), Christchurch has not had a venue for big screen events since the Regent Theatre was converted to a multiplex in 1995. The last NZIFF Gala Premiere to be held in Christchurch was Heavenly Creatures in 1994.

The New Zealand International Film Festival sees the rebuilding of the Isaac Theatre Royal as the perfect opportunity for equipping Christchurch with a big screen and a place for the NZIFF to host its events.

The project will cost $280,000.  Christchurch City Council  has pledged $70,000 and The Trust Community Foundation and The Southern Trust have pledged $15,000 and $30,000 respectively. The rest of the money has to be raised by July 5th or the City Council donation will be lost, so the public are being asked to donate.

Here’s Mark Hadlow, at The Embassy Theatre in Wellington, talking about the campaign.

To see a good film on a big screen is a real delight so here’s wishing the campaign every success.

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