İzmir’s oldest movie theater seeks sponsors
ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
İzmir Cinema and Visual Arts Association Deputy Chairman Aydın Karataş says that they did their best to prevent the movie theater from becoming a shopping mall. AA photoİzmir’s historical Konak Movie Theater, which closed its doors two years ago after serving moviegoers since the 1960s, has begun to host guests while still under construction with the support of cinema lovers.
The movie theater was closed down since it failed to compete against movie theaters in shopping malls but has been redeveloped thanks to personal efforts of volunteers. But it needs sponsors to survive.
“Sponsorship means to invest in arts and culture. All companies and powerful holdings should know it. Konak Movie Theater needs sponsors, it is very urgent,” said the İzmir Cinema and Visual Arts Association (İZSGD) Deputy Chairman Aydın Karataş. Konak survived with the efforts of volunteers and the theater was having difficulty finding sponsors, he said.
“I don’t want to say it, but İzmir’s companies are insensitive on this issue,” Karataş said, adding that they wanted to make annual advertisement contracts with companies to sponsor the project. “I call on the city’s old companies. We don’t want money from you like beggars. Just support culture and arts, make your name survive alongside our movie theater.”
Karataş said they had done their best to prevent the use of the movie theater building for other aims and had succeeded in a way to do it. “All of us took out bank loans. The restoration project had a cost of 1.8 million Turkish Liras,” he said. It was a very old building with no air conditioning system, no acoustic panels and no insulation, he said. “Actually, we have recreated the building, not restored it. We did it with our own opportunities and people’s reactions show us that we did a great job.”
Karataş said the Konak Movie Theater opened its curtain with the Festival On Wheels that arrived in İzmir after six years and it was a nice surprise for moviegoers.
He said they did not envision showing too many commercial films. “Our concept is very different. We will mostly screen films from Turkish cinema.”