Friday, 01 May 2015 18:07

The Hi-Pointe Opens The Backlot

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After 93 years the Hi-Pointe Theatre (1005 McCausland Avenue) has a new buddy! Opening this weekend, The Backlot is a boutique movie theatre located directly behind the venerable movie house.

Getting the new space open was no easy task. The Backlot now occupies a former derelict building that required over three years of extensive renovation and TLC to transform it into a modern movie house. The inside space was torn inside out, leaving two stories of brick and concrete to play with. What emerged from the reconstruction is intimate state of the art goodness enhances the Hi-Pointe's ability to bring in a diverse slate of film programming.

In order to make their dream come true owners Diana and Bill Grayson logged over sixty straight days of time prepping the space and overseeing construction and renovation to ensure that the Back Lot opening reached to the finish line to meet the targeting opening date.

The theatre is on the second floor and is accessible for the disabled. The open space features natural light framed by the original brick walls of the building. Its cozy lobby serves as a gathering place with several small tables, a bar, ticketing space and concessions.

The theatre itself is perfect for cinephiles. The walls, and ceiling are black, devoid of the tacky colors and strange designs of the multiplexes. The seats feature convenient armrests and drink holders and are the latest in comfort.

At first glance one notices that this is welcome space for both the casual and serious movie lover. In addition to the latest in sight and sound, the forty-eight seat room is crowned with a comfy leather couch located at the front of the house and a movie screen measuring 19 feet wide by 8 feet tall.

The souped up Hi-Pointe Theatre offers improved flexibility with programming. In addition to movies, the Backlot is equipped for special event rentals like seminars, lectures or business meetings. As for the movies it allows their programming team to holdover popular films in the new space while opening a new release in the main theatre. The Backlot can also accommodate smaller or niche films that may otherwise never get the opportunity to be seen in St. Louis. Other possibilities include film series, local films and festivals.

In this age of garishly weird movie theaters it's nice to have the Hi-Pointe around. Movie buffs can rest better at night knowing that this cultural institution is expanding its legacy of independent film with an additional venue free from the commercial blandness of chain theaters.

Opening The Backlot is the documentary Dior and I. Its premiere launches the latest chapter in the near century long tale of The Hi-Pointe Theatre and its love for the movies.

For more information visit http://hi-pointetheatre.com or call 314-995-6273.

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