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Old 03-30-2018, 11:28 PM   #1
SkyTech6 SkyTech6 is offline
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Default Sky's Theater Management Talk

I thought about sharing my experience working at a local movie theater. It's a bit different than working for one of the franchise chains like AMC or Cinemark because we don't have anyone who handles all the "movie theater tycoon" aspects of the business for us. We have to order our own movies, marketing materials, don't have union projectionists, etc...

So I'll be sharing some things about my theater and what I do. If you have questions about anything or just want to discuss it, I'm happy to do so. I work everyday at theater and as a huge movie fan, I highly enjoy it.

I've worked at this theater for about a year and I've been our only projectionist for about half a year. I handle all movie ingesting, playlisting, and scheduling. As well I do all maintenance on our projectors. In addition to that I assist the owner in picking new movies to get (we only have 2 screens so we switch out movies weekly) and I also handle all the marketing material such as posters, handouts, bus shelters, banners, and standees.

That's the basics. I'll probably start with the most exciting things so first I'll show you guys the projector I work with in the next post!
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Old 04-01-2018, 10:16 PM   #2
SkyTech6 SkyTech6 is offline
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Default NEC 900 Projector

Okay! So first topic is definitely my favorite and the bulk of my job at the theater. The NEC900C-A projector with the SX-3000 Standalone IMB system.

[Show spoiler]


This is the bulk of the theater operation. On the left of the image is the NEC projector, a monitor to display the software, a GDC portable server, and a universal power supply in case power is lost we can correctly shutdown the projector system (or finish the current movie seating), and on the right is the house lighting control board. On that 1/2 is lights up and the 3/4 buttons are lights dimmed, plus breakers on the top to completely turn off the lights in there.



The NEC900C-A projector is a 2K digital projector that does Scope, Flat, and Real3D projections as well can downsample any larger sized projections such as 4K. It uses two lamps that full power last about 3000 hours on average.

In the image is the status lights for the NEC on the top row. On the bottom row is a SX-3000 Standalone IMB system by GDC. That's what handles the control of the projection on the software side (which I'll show below).



This is the on-projector controller for the NEC. The menu button gives access to all the configuration of the projector such as focusing, aspect ratios, and more. As well with the menu you can do a lot of troubleshooting and info logging for the lamps and lens.

At the top you can see that both Lamps 1&2 are at 100 and under that it shows how many hours lamp one has been on (it rotates between showing the hours of both lamps). Under the power button and the Douser button is the manual on/off for the lamps (currently on playing a movie). Below the lamp status indicators is the current projection format (scope) and indicates the current controller (which is the SX).

Then the numbered buttons below are the different presets that are configured in the projector. The white lights indicate which presets are configured and then green indicates current active preset. On my projectors 1 is Flat, 2 is Scope, and 3 is for HDMI. HDMI is mostly used for playing the blu-ray player and sometimes Xbox One.



This device is essentially just a little portable storage server. It only hold 2TBs of movies and trailers. Our theater has 2, one for each of the NEC projectors.



Here you can see two DCPs (hard drives in external cases). One of them is a trailmix which houses a few hundred trailers for upcoming & already playing movies in numerous formats as well any policy, rating, or transitions that we may need. The other is the DCP for "Deep Blue", which is the codename for Ready Player One used so people don't steal the posters or hard drives in shipping.

The silver device that one of them is plugged into is a USB 3.0 hot swap ingestion bay. We put the DCPs in there and are able to then transfer the movie to our portable storage device.



This is the IMB screen SMS, currently playing my playlist "RP1" which of course is shorthand for Ready Player One. Obviously most of the controls are similar to a basic playback device. So I'll explain the differences. Fast Forward/Rewind only work when the movie is paused, as well the skip buttons. If the Stop button is pressed, it ends the playlist and returns it back to the beginning. Next to the Stop button is a "Playlist"/"Shows" button (which will be the next image I show).

Next to the Fast Foward/Skip buttons is the current timeframe of the movie we're at, I find it interesting that it also tells me the current frame number.

Below that is a log of all clip changes, you can see that before starting RP1 it also showed the trailers for Oceans 8, Rampage, and Avengers Infinity War. My theater only shows 10 minutes of previews, so I pick the ones that I think are the most worth showing currently for our audience. I plan to switch out Oceans 8 with "The Spy Who Dumped Me" in the next day or two as it'll better fit the audience that attends my theater.

Under the projection log is the current playing clip and to the right of that is information about the clip such as it's general classification. I'll break down the clip name as well.

ReadyPlayerOne = title.
FTR-3 = Feature, probably 3rd revision. (wonder how the first two revisions were, those are normally early screenings they did at major theaters).
S = Scope projection.
EN-CCAP = closed captioning (which is actually no subtitles, whereas OCAP would be subtitles).
OV = Original Video. There can also be VF which is an additional package you put over this original package, such as the OCAP or 7.1 audio.
5.1 = 5.1 Dolby Surround
HI-VI-Dbox = Support for DBOX immersion chairs! Which we don't have haha. This feature is pretty standard nowadays that it's in every OV release.
2K = 2K resolution. My projector can play any resolution, but it'll downsample any larger than 2K.
IOP = the standard that this clips follows. There are two organizations that give us projection standards. IOP and SMPTE, the projector can use both, but it gets confusing when you mix which ones you play due to KDM (keys that unlock the movies) being specific to each standard.

And below that are buttons that lead me to different things. I'll show the Control Panel stuff another post, but I will show Scheduler after showing the Playlist/Show Editor.



This is the Playlist/Show Editor. Here the projectionist will create the playlist of clips that will start at the showtime. The top bar is pretty easy to understand so I won't go over that.

But let's say I hit "New Show" and I'm creating a playlist for Ready Player One as seen in the image. The first thing I would do is click on the green tab on the left that is titled "trailer" this will do a drop-down listing all the trailers currently installed on my projector.

As I add them with the "+" button they appear in the timeline above the tabs and the vertical timeline on the right. As well the "Show Duration" counter keeps track of the entire length of the playlist. I mentioned before that my theater does 10 minutes of previews, so I keep adding trailers from the Technicolor/Delux mix request list until I reach that amount on the Show Duration.

Then I add cartoons that we play before the trailers during seating. "SUPER_BUGS" is a collection of old Looney Tunes that we play. Normally we have 30 minutes of cartoons during seating, but RPO is so long that we need shorter 15 minute cartoons.

Once that is done I click on the "feature" tab and add my movie to the playlist. Making sure it goes after the green labeled clips. Sometimes movies have a special clip they also include. They aren't required to be played unless stated on the DCP slip.

Ready Player One includes an XSN which is Extra Screening. It's a static image that includes social media information for the movie as well a notice that recording the footage is illegal. It also happens to include a Snapchat QR scan that gives RPO themed lenses and filters. I threw one after the movie for people to get (as well another minute of it after the MPAA notice).

Then after the movie we put the MPAA rating notice that you'd normally see after credits. These are generic and can be reused for other movies as they don't give anything other than the generic rating info. Sometimes a movie will have a special MPAA card, but it's uncommon.

Lastly notice the little red arrow at the top timeline in the corner of the cartoon clip. That means there is a Cue there. If I click on any clip in the timeline and then hit the currently greyed-out "Edit Cue" button then I'm brought to another menu that allows me to program configuration changes.

That Cue on the cartoon clip is an automatic "Lamp Start" cue that turns on the projector lamp when this playlist begins. That way I don't have to go upstairs and hand-start the lamp all the time. There is another cue on the last clip of a playlist that turns off the lamp. Other things can also be programmed onto clips such as Projection setting changes from Scope/Flat/HDMI and more.



This is the projector scheduler. It uses 24 hour military time, just to note. the controls are pretty easy to understand by looking at them. You move up and down between days. Those blue blocks on the timeline are movies scheduled to play at 15:45 and 18:45 which after cartoons will start Ready Player One at 4pm and 7pm.

Then the "Add to Schedule" menu allows me to add new things to the schedule. First I'd select the day, then the time I want the playlist to start. You want to take into consideration any pre-show you have. We have cartoon preshows so we need to start those before our scheduled showtime.

Then I'd click the "Set Recurrence Rules" and pick my playlist from the dropdown that currently defaults to "1517" (which is what I named 15:17 to Paris).

Since Recurrence Rules is applied, once "Add" is selected it will bring up a Rules menu which can have that time applied to the next X number of days. This helps when scheduling movies for a whole week.

And next...



Here's the audio rack for theater 1! I know nothing about this haha... All I do is turn on the 4 power switches and make sure the dial is set to a decent volume to meet the dB levels. Theater 4 has a more fancy setup, I'll show it sometime.

If any of you wanna tell me about my setup, I'd like that haha.

Here's some more cool images of it?







We also have two 35mm projectors, but they aren't currently setup. Perhaps one day I'll show them haha.


Going to be wrapping previous posts in Spoilers to make the thread more viewable.

Last edited by SkyTech6; 04-04-2018 at 08:02 AM.
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Old 04-04-2018, 08:28 AM   #3
SkyTech6 SkyTech6 is offline
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Disney Movie Standees

Hey! I got a super exciting post to do today because it involves two exciting things. Firstly, setting up Standees is always fun because the studios really do make some awesome marketing materials for their movies. You'd be surprised though how few movies are lucky enough to get standees made nowadays.

The second exciting thing for the post is that this will be the official standee for Avengers: Infinity War.





These normally come with TONS of pieces and the last one I did had three rotating cylinders (Lego Ninjagos), so I was a bit worried this would be a huge task. And horribly, they put the instructions under all these parts.

Once I got the instructions which were pretty messy, such as the image below, I started working on the first steps.





First it wanted us to make the "A" logo. It had a LOT of folding tabs to make it.











And then once the back support was on, we had finished the "A" and could admire it... because we wouldn't need it again until about 8 hours later haha.



Next was to make the huge curved wall that would hold all the art and character cutouts.



Of course we have to pop out all those little circles and whatnot. It's pretty messy. These two pieces of board were very thick and it folded together with tabs pretty well to make one large board.



Next to add on some sides to the back board.



This I wasn't expecting personally. It made a really cool domed shape that was very sturdy. So next was to place the artwork on top of it.





The left side artwork sat across to a brace, which it then had tabs in. Above the tabs where little screw sized holes. This was a really great design idea by them. Because the right side would have the left side of it holed so we could put screws with wingnuts through the entire middle support and hold together the backboard and both sides of the artwork.







Then we made three square support beams run through the front of the display and out the back. On the back we put more wingnut screws to hold it all together.



Next was to start building the bottom base panel that would have the info about the movie.







And then we attached it.





Now this next image... a holder for the "A" to be put on later... This took about an hour to put together it felt like. I had to fold that top curved piece into the bottom part while putting TONS of little flaps inside it and doing the tabs. It was insanely annoying and hard to do.



After that we began adding on the characters! First up is the God of Thunder and Teenage Groot!



Now this part was weird... When we put Drax on we noticed something a bit odd... idk perhaps we just have dirty minds?



Then we just slapped on a bunch more until I finally got to put on my favorite. Black Widow. She actually has a TON of 3Dness to her. Like a ton of her tabs push her forward from the rest of the characters and give her a lot of curvyness. It was actually kinda hard to put in there haha.



My coworker had started on the other side.



They put War Machine, Scarlett Witch, Falcon, and Spiderman in his Iron Spider outfit all on the same cutout plus the little pushes that make them stick out. This one took the longest to get on. My coworker also slapped on Iron Man.



All the heroes on there.



Next we finally brought out that "A" again at about 1AM haha. Notice it's missing the little triangle under it's arrow. It connects to those three support beams I showed earlier.



And to finish it off we put the little triangle on there.



And then we had a mess of cardboard to clean up...



Then last but not least we moved it to it's temporary home in the theater... before eventually it ends up at it's permanent home.. my house.


Last edited by SkyTech6; 04-04-2018 at 08:51 AM.
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Old 04-05-2018, 06:16 PM   #4
kngtmat kngtmat is offline
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That is one of the most awesome standees I have ever seen.
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Old 04-05-2018, 09:00 PM   #5
sk33tr sk33tr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kngtmat View Post
That is one of the most awesome standees I have ever seen.
that IS pretty freakin' cool.
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Old 04-05-2018, 09:44 PM   #6
Predatorix38417 Predatorix38417 is offline
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Awesome work! Seems like you have a good thing going, have you guys got a lot of pre sale tickets yet for Infinity War?
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Old 04-06-2018, 02:17 AM   #7
SkyTech6 SkyTech6 is offline
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I agree 100% about the standee. It's one of the coolest we've gotten for sure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Predatorix38417 View Post
Awesome work! Seems like you have a good thing going, have you guys got a lot of pre sale tickets yet for Infinity War?
Strangely not. Our community doesn't plan ahead very well haha. Most of the time the week leading up to the movie they'll start come asking for pre-sale tickets. Almost a month ahead? They're just asking if we'll even have the movie on opening week.
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Old 04-24-2018, 07:49 AM   #8
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Excellent work there.
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