How to Start a Movie Theater?

This article is intended for those who have their sights set on starting their own movie theater. Learn some pointers that may come useful as you go about starting your own cinema movie theater.

The number of independent theatre owners is growing.

theatre business

This is because when done properly, theater business can be a lucrative source of income. Aside from the money you’ll be earning, you also get to enjoy catering to your own niche crowd that shares the same interest in the type of films you love.

Cinema malls are grouped according to the type of movie they feature.

Movie theaters that run mainstream films from big film companies and distributors coinciding with the release date are deemed as first-run theaters.

Second run theaters on the other hand, as the name implies, feature movies that have already been shown in first run theaters. Ticket prices for theaters that fall under this category are much cheaper.

Then there the Art House theater otherwise known as the repertory theater. This category typically features alternative art films, independent films, or second run classic films.

Similar Articles

If you are interested in opening your own movie theater, the first thing you should do is understand the nature of this type of business. There are several resources that can provide you with valuable startup information.

Some suggested reading materials are as follows:

  1. Encyclopedia of Exhibition authored by the National Association of Theater Owners (NATO). This group also maintains a website where pertinent and useful information about the industry is delineated. Examples of such are box office statistics, equipment suppliers, index of concessionaires, theater employment and more can be found.
  2. The Movie Business Book by Jason Squire tackles a wide variety of topics and can be used as a reference handbook.

Don’t worry about competing with the big players. Your selling point will come from your facility to cater to a niche crowd. Getting the rights to show first run movies can be a bit of a challenge, not to mention pricey! What sets independent theater owners apart is the specialty films they feature. You can choose to show films from a variety of genres or show art films, independent films etc. The key is to choose the type of movies that you are interested in and familiar with. But at the same time, you also need to meet the preference of your target market. These two steps should go hand in hand.

As an independent theater owner, you can afford to be different and not conform to how the big players run their movie theaters. For example, you may replace the typical row seats found in theaters and use tables and chairs instead. This will give your patrons a cozier environment to enjoy the cinema.

As a way to entice moviegoers, you can provide discounts to big groups of people. This is usually is the case when they gather for a corporate event or for a party. In ticket pricing, you may offer discount rates during off-peak hours and/or days. (Trivia: It is said that Tuesday is the slowest day of the week as far the movie business is concerned.) You can also offer discounts to students and senior citizens. Still another option is presenting your customers with movie passes that allows unlimited entrance.

Watch This Success Story of a Person Who is in Cinema Business for Last 50 Years

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460 Comments

  • hannah said on April 11, 2008
    Hi i am a 11 year old girl in 5th grade. No i am not really starting a moive theater but in school we are doing a project on how to run your own business. and i chose a theater. 'cause i just live watching movies. your website helped me a lot.
  • Carlos said on April 14, 2008
    Your site was very informative. My situation is a little different and my questions were not able to be answered in this forum. I am in the service and currenlty deployed in Afganistan. My question is (shocking as it my sound) if i wanted to start a movie thearter business in afganistan how do i get the movies to play. There isn't any law here as far as I ordering DVD movies online and playing them in the thearter(that i know of). If a friend of mine starts the business and he is a local national and orders DVD movies online to show them in his theater could that be an issue? thanks
  • T said on April 18, 2008
    Very informative article. I'd love to start up a movie theather that shows classic films, but I am afraid of the costs of the rights to re-show these movies on a big screen.
  • michael said on April 23, 2008
    wow do I know you hannah? well anyway, I have the same reason as hannah (I think she's the hannah in my class...) and it really helped me. Thank you!
  • matt said on September 2, 2008
    To Carlos (above):
    I think that would be illegal, even in Afghanistan... Well.... Maybe not. But either way it's morally wrong to not pay the creators of a film their rightful due.
  • ish said on September 11, 2008
    carlos and matt: it would be illegal, I'm almost certain even in Afghanistan. even if it isn't corporate lawyers (and they have more than you) would find a way to screw you. I had a similar idea, i'm remiss to share it... but don't charge for tickets, it's a way to boost sales. of course the entire business couldn't be built on that, more of a promo tool.
  • Sandra said on October 17, 2008
    My bro and I are planning to open a Art House Theatre in TEXAS, and this was very helpful...
  • Dan Zee said on November 17, 2008
    I think this article is a little simplistic because independent theaters are shutting down all the time. The big chains get all the first-run movies and by the time you get them as a second-run feature, they've had all the profit drained from them. Independent movies attract a high-brow clientele, but without marketing, no one will show up to see them. The theater business is actually the food business, but that's where all the profit is made, so theater managers are better off if they have a food background than if they're simply fans of movies.
  • Cindy tumeka said on November 20, 2008
    I am a 20 year old female from south africa. i would like to own theatre what i'd want to know is how do i get the movies. i'd want to the first run movies. please contact me on tumekaislands@yahoo.com
  • matidze given said on December 20, 2008
    i am a 23 year old male from south africa. what i'd want to know is where i can get financial assistance through this little business. please contact me on ugeam@thepub.co.za
  • Guest said on January 8, 2009
    i love your work althuogh i started my own movie theater 1st of january 2009, i still find your information useful
  • C.E.Sampel beginner adviser said on January 15, 2009
    Nice to here that there is still people wanting to run or own theaters. My self of course I tried and my success was not as grand as I wanted it to be. For starters try to find an existing theater to run or own building and buying you looking at (from my own personal experience) 1.3 million. That's from the land to the building and the equipment at new prices. Now you may think that you would earn that back in no time but with taxes, mortgagee payment, equipment rental, and movie rental fees you looking and some odd thousands of dollars a month. Now since I looked over and research every thing I could my business still sank small town not enough revenue. Since all of my stuff was less than a year old new I sold every thing for most of the cost that is was bought for. The building I took a hit on until I started an auction house in it made my money back to pay my cost off and sold the building. I came out of all of the with the fine point of location, location, location. I now live in the city and trying to start another business in Indoor rock climbing. I am still dealing with the city and finding the right building and location is no problem I have plenty of option in a big city. Just remember all starting what you love as a hobby is great in all but if you do not know all the in and out of placement of your business then you probably not going to succeed.

    Movie Theater Adviser

  • amanda said on January 15, 2009
    I don't think it is morally wrong what he wants to do in Afganistan. I think its really cool. and this article helped me a lot. thanks
  • Maximo Liriano said on January 19, 2009
    I want to open a theater to show only christian movies. They must be Spanish spoken or subtitled in this language. Where can I find these films?
  • Dilip Jadhav said on January 20, 2009
    I am a 30 year old male from India. Working as a software Engg but now I'd love to start a movie theater that shows Indian movies. what i'd want to know is where i can get financial assistance for this little business. please contact me at jadhavdilips@gmail.com Thanks, Dilip.
  • kelly halligan said on January 31, 2009
    I would like any info on how to start a theatre in a small rural town. my idea is to start very small, and grow from there. Playing current DVD's, but having a large screen and a social exerience. Any advice would be great and possible income from ticket sales and food in a town with population of 4k.
  • Ilean Monterrubio said on February 4, 2009
    yeah i been thinking of opening a small independent theater, i currently am going to school for engineering, but i love movies and independent movies are one of my interests. here in houston there are some independent theater and its something that is a need.
  • obert muzurura said on February 16, 2009
    I saw your article is interesting and thus I am also interested in starting a Movie Theater in a small town in Zimbabwe and need information on how I could do it and start a progressive Movie Theater. I have the passion into doing it but I lake adequate knowledge on how to start it since there is no one in the area offering such kind of business. I will be pleased by your cooperation.
  • Bhu said on February 16, 2009
    yes your article is informative, but my problem is that i wan to know how i can open the movie theatre and what legal process i need to follow from licence to taking right of showing the movie, could you please explain it.
  • Kamogelo Blessing said on February 18, 2009
    Hi! This article is very important to me. I want to own an independent christian movie theatre. Can u please help me on how to achieve copyright license for showing christian movies in public. Thank you very much
  • S K. K said on February 18, 2009
    I want to start my own movie theater(single screen theater in NAGPUR), it's my desire. That is why i need your help, so please give me a all startup information about theater, financial assistance and your own valuable ideas, Thank you, my e-mail, sameerkuduple@yahoo.co.in
  • Kidada said on February 22, 2009
    I am interested in getting more information on how to start my own dollar movie theatre. Information such as possible financial assistance, start-up does and don'ts, legal process and licenses needed will be very helpful. Thanks in advance.
  • Whackymac said on February 23, 2009
    Well, it is certainly inspiring, to see that there are so many folks out there that share the same aspirations & Loves as me. I am currently seeking out info in starting my own Art/First run theater out here in Laredo, Tx. A few of the possibilities that I have considered to aid in obtaining a profit are as follows: 1st I am not sure if any of ya'll have ever been to the alamo draft house in Austin, Tx. But it is really great they feature both 2nd Run films, First run films, as well as indies. At times they have also put on live theater events as well. This idea helps them to appeal to all types of Markets. (Apparently it is something that has proven successful for the owners because there are several Alamo Draft Houses in Austin). 2nd, although they do offer the traditional options of popcorn, candies & Sodas, They also offer other types of food. Here's how it goes. First you purchase your ticket from the box office, Next you arrive at your chosen showroom/screenroom, Then, you are seated and greeted by a waiter or two who ask for your choice of beverage, appetizer & meal. I.e. burgers, wings, pizzas, nachos, icecream, etc... Beverages include items such as: Domestic Beer, Import beer, wines, mixed spirits, as well as non alcoholic bevs. for the kiddos. in the event that you need to order something else during the course of your movie, then you are provided with a small sheet of paper and a pen on which to write down what you need. Lastly, during the last 30 min. of your movie, you are provided the bill for your concessions much as one would come to expect from dining out at a restaurant. My Third observation that I noted, was that at times though they do offer movie camps during the summers, as well as other packages, they also did offer classes such as acting classes, screen writing classes, film and production workshops etc... Although, I am not exactly sure as to how they go about doing this, I do hypothesize that the teachers would have to be deemed credible, and that these teachers would probably have to rent the show room/ stage room from the theater and then charge their own prices for the classes. At least that is how I might go about such an endeavor. Any how the combination of such ideas under one roof simultaneously should most likely result in profits. And with Laredo having a population of 300 plus thousand it ought to make for quite an idea. My thing is though where do I go about finding investors? HELP?
  • Hudson said on February 25, 2009
    I was wondering how to start up a theatre for movies that are out on dvd but played on the big screen. is this legal and what do i need to do to make it so, also any info on financial assistance in colorado... please email hudsonian2006@aol.com
  • John said on February 26, 2009
    Has anyone figured the legal aspects of screening DVDs for profit? Naturally, it'd be illegal to do it without some sort of agreement in place. But what about specifics?
  • Lens de great said on March 4, 2009
    I am so aspired on the information i got, i want really want more information on financial aspect, the amount it will cost me to startup this business.
  • Billy said on March 11, 2009
    I really like this article. Can you please send me more information? I would like to start this project ASAP. I love watching movies but hate the prices!! THANKS
  • steven said on March 18, 2009
    i am doing a project for an economic class... would it be possible to get some figures of how much an average movie price is... i am meaning as if i the movie theater where to rent the movie.. thank you
  • Lacey said on April 3, 2009
    I'm 14 and our school is doing a project and i have to find out how to start a movie theater. I'm in charge of the financial part. I'm sol
  • Guest said on April 5, 2009
    Who could I contact to rent movies for a small theater? Who can I purchase the necessary equipment for the theater? Your help will be greatly appreciated.
  • Wes said on April 6, 2009
    I am interested in opening a drive-in theater. I need information on where to start. We would need to start with second-run movies. Any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated.
  • Emmanuella said on April 9, 2009
    Your site was very informative. I am interested in opening an outdoor old classical movie theater, like Family Classics, Shirley Temple, Robin Hood, etc... Who or where can I purchase the movies and equipment from.
  • Maggie and Jeff Spencer said on April 26, 2009
    We are starting a driving range and mini golf with an indoor arcade and wanted to add a movie theater with this business.
  • Bob said on April 28, 2009
    After starting a movie theater, who knows how does one go about purchasing film rights and what is the cost?
  • carina christmas said on May 7, 2009
    Can you please pass along the info you have given others for starting an art house theater? And any help on finding film distributors would also be appreciated.
  • tmy said on May 12, 2009
    Hello, I'm interested in starting a movie theater in my city. If anyone has any information please drop me a line.
  • Richard said on May 13, 2009
    Hi I would like to start a movie theater business - could someone give me pointers on where to get films to show - legally? Email me @ :critical5@hotmail.co.uk Thanks
  • Prudence mashile said on May 14, 2009
    Hey, I am 20 from south africa, i found this articles very informative. i love movies and would also like to start my own movie theater. I want to know where i can get financial assistance the legal procedures involved and where to rent this the DVD. Thank u. Please email me at Prudence.mashile@yahoo.com
  • richie jackson beginner adviser said on May 14, 2009
    Hello everybody. I did start up "Nostalgic Theater" in a small community. I use only 16 mm films & only the rare, unique, & unusual. I started out by finding the right building, obtaining license, purchasing films, creating the theatre feel in the building, great concession goodies, old time music(40's), & so far it seems to be growing. I would encourage all of you to create something different & unique. Open early & play lots of great music. Encourage people to dance before the shows start. Nostalgia is a great way to bring community together. It's been fun. But you gotta stick to your guns...because it takes time for the word to get out...even with advertising. ENJOY. Richiej film&radio

    Theater Owner

  • Rupindersingh Gambhir said on May 19, 2009
    I wanna start a movie theater with 2 or 4 screens. For this purpose do i have to get a license? if yes from where i should apply for it and what is the cost estimate for getting it. please reply
  • Tokoni Alek said on June 8, 2009
    Hi, at first glance, this site has been helpful, but i would really like to have more and detailed information about opening a movie theater. if anyone can help, i would greatly appreciate it.
  • vukile manzi said on June 12, 2009
    hi, my name is vukile, i live in south africa. i want to open a movie theater but now i don't know where to start can you tell the things i must do.
  • Carol R said on June 22, 2009
    Hi, I would like more information on how to rent the movies to show in a theater, where you obtain them from and prices. Thanks.
  • Monica E said on June 23, 2009
    Hello, I am looking to open a movie theater in a small area but the area is steadily growing. People in the area have to drive at least 30 mins to 45 mins to a movie theater. If anyone could give me some advice in figuring this out, please send me an e-mail and let me know where I can start. Looking forward to hearing from someone.
  • Francis O said on June 27, 2009
    Hi, I am 30 years old looking to start a chain of movie theaters in Nigeria. Could you tell me if it is possible to use DVDs to play movies in a theater or it has to be specifically movies shot on 40mm reel. emekabgt@hotmail.com
  • Del Morrison beginner adviser said on July 1, 2009
    Hey everyone, if you are looking for any help or need some tips feel free to email me at morrison.del@gmail.com, Me and my Team are currently gathering funds and information on opening a Arts theater in BC, And have learned quite a bit of useful information, Your biggest cost is seating, considering when a place shuts down everything of value is taken (in some cases the sink's Taps)Anyways its all about gathering costs, and figuring out if your inflow of cash is gonna be = or greater than your expenses.

    morrison.del@gmail.com || Movie Theater Adviser

  • Keith said on July 4, 2009
    I live in jamaica and where i live there is no theaters at the moment. i would love to start my own chain of theaters and i would really love if you sent me all the info for building a business like this from the ground up.
  • william burgess said on July 8, 2009
    I want to open my open movie theater in a small town. I have the venue and the know how but do not know where the best place to go to rent the movies to show on the big screen. I know the things have changed a lot but if you could point me in the right direction. Thanks, William Burgess
  • James Houston said on July 10, 2009
    I am interested in knowing what it would take to start a theater up in Barrow, Alaska. A small village of about 4 or 5 thousand people. it would sure turn a lot of the kids around from getting into trouble at an early age. a second run theater would sure do good up here. i appreciate any and all replies.
  • Amaris said on July 27, 2009
    Hi, i'm 12 going on 13 and my state really encourages young entrepreneurs. I am trying to start my own theater business in my home town. This site has given me great ideas, I know I sound young, but It would be really nice to have it up and running during High school. Thanks this site was a big help! :)
  • sarah said on August 3, 2009
    Hello everyone! I am currently a high school senior with no idea what I want to do. Movies are my passion, but I can't get into the actual production of them if I want to live in my home state of Ohio. That's why I am interested in starting my own theater. However, I'm not sure if I can afford it.. This site was rather helpful though. Thanks.
  • Jesse beginner adviser said on August 17, 2009
    This article is interesting, but it makes it sound easy. As I've noticed in some comments, location is of great importance. 2nd run theaters are failing everywhere. I currently manage one and my employees as well as myself receive below minimum wage. The films (which can be ordered from deluxe film services among others depending on the film you want) cost hundreds to rent, especially if they are closer to the original release date. If you are starting the theatre from scratch, your screen can be anywhere from half a million on up, and projector and sound equipment in the thousands. You will generally charge a lower price for tickets and concessions to receive a reliable stream of customers. This stretches your budget more. Electricity costs are high, heating is huge for such a large theater, and wages for your employees.

    I am not discouraging anyone from doing this. I myself would love to own a theatre, or even chain of theatres. However the realities of it make it very daunting indeed.

    Movie Theater Adviser

  • Deon Knowles said on September 5, 2009
    Hi! I am really interested in opening a movie theater where I live. I think it would be very interesting to open a theater in my home town that has a particular viewers interest in mind. People are always looking for a place to go and enjoy themselves where I live. So please help me in my quest. I need to know where to get supplies and further information in the movie industry. I am really serious but I don't know where to start.
  • lazarus francisco said on September 12, 2009
    hey there friends!! this is really helpful information but i'd like to know more about how much it would cost to start a small one and exactly how do i start it in a more detailed way? im just curious cause i'm a 18 yr planning to start my own small movie theatre business sometime in the future. if it all goes well then i will make it grow. but for now i need to gather more resources and information as to how. but anyway thanks for the information..
  • mark corn said on September 15, 2009
    I want to open up a small theater 75 seats in a small town of 4000 in costa rica. I was wondering how to start the theater for showing movies that are out on dvd but played on the big screen. Is this legal and what do I need to do to make it so? Is there any niches to make it legal as maybe charge a price for food and free entry? Thanks for your help....
  • Anthony Yard said on September 26, 2009
    I work for a chain of theaters right now. If anyone has any other questions not in the article, drop me a line, I'd be happy to help!
  • Tyra said on September 28, 2009
    Aloha Mr. Yard... I would really like to talk to you about reopening a theater in a small town of 2k. The screen needs to be replaced and a new reel (spelling) I want to reopen it but have myself acknowledged also... I am not trying to make a million but provide for the community something better. I know we all miss out small town entertainment... can you please e-mail me if you have the time.. tyradu1983@yahoo.com or anyone who reads this who feels like they can give good advice... thanks!! Tyra
  • Michelle said on October 5, 2009
    Our community of 3,000 needs something. We have a potential venue for a movie house. I really have no idea how to start, who to contact, etc. Can anyone help me? Thanks.
  • Daniel Olel said on October 10, 2009
    man, your website has helped me. i am in some kind of competition to win money since my dream is to own a movie theater in my life. i hope the information i get helps me win the dime. thank u a lot for the information. thanks
  • Cenon said on October 18, 2009
    I would like to open a movie theater in San Diego but I don't know where to start and where to get the film. Also, do I need to find an existing place or start from scratch? Please advice. Thanks so much.
  • Ralph M Bohm said on October 28, 2009
    Hello all, What would be the typical rental cost of a 1st-run movie? What would be a typical cost of an "Indie" film to rent? Thanks in advance. Ralph, truckmen@yahoo.com
  • Sarah Dolan said on November 2, 2009
    I'm doing a project in class, and I need to know the start up costs, information on licenses and insurance, and stuff like that. if you could help me, it'd be really amazing. :) smd5287@yahoo.com
  • Bill said on November 5, 2009
    I want to start a small theater with tables and chairs, targeting family-teen-kids. I dont want first run movies. Who do i contact to get these movies and show them legally.
  • ted fuoss said on November 15, 2009
    Hi, I'm looking to start a theater and want to know about first run movies. What are the costs to be able to show and who do I contact in-order to obtain first run movies.
  • Sienna Zooma said on November 24, 2009
    I am in South Africa and would like to start a chain of movie theaters in small towns kindly advice, where do I start?
  • Teboho Ntsuku said on November 26, 2009
    I am an individual from Tumahole Parys in the Free State and i would like to start my own Movie Theater. I would appreciate your advice, Where do I Start?
  • jarrack d. suazo said on November 26, 2009
    hello, i wanted to get some information on how to start a movie theater and don't know where to start and don't know what i would need to or where to even begin. would you be able to give any advice? thank you for your time...
  • Jason said on December 1, 2009
    If anyone needs a NAME for their movie theaters I would like to suggest MovieCEO. I own MovieCEO.com and I am willing to sell it for $1000 or best offer. Thanks!
  • Troy said on December 2, 2009
    Hello, I too would like to get info on starting a theater. How much does it cost to get the movies. 1st and 2nd. and where to get them. Thanks
  • Hem said on December 2, 2009
    Hi i am trying to start a theater which will only show foreign movies, at a existing cinema location which is out of business right now. But i could never find out how do i get access to show foreign movies? by that i mean where do i buy the film
  • Nishaan juguth said on December 4, 2009
    Hi. I live in south africa. In a town called chatsworth. I had worked in the local movie house here until it had closed down about 4 years ago now. The movies were a real help line for people to escape into now ever since it had closed down the town people have no other form of recreation. i understand how to run a movie theater and all the costs it entails. the thing is i need to start from scratch and was hoping on first starting an outdoor cinema. it would be a great help to the community. i am passionate about it. i would really like some advice on how i can start an outdoor cinema. thank you. facebook me nishaan juguth.
  • isidro peters said on December 8, 2009
    seminol texas usa. how to get first run film and second run films
  • HempAngel said on December 16, 2009
    I've read almost everyone's comments and I want to start up a movie theater that specifically only shows documentaries and based on true story movies. But I want it to be more of an educational experience, where after the movie is over people can comment, share experiences, basically inspire one another to make changes in their lives that overall benefits everyone. For example after watching "Food Inc" we can talk about ways how we can come together as a community and possibly get food laws passed. I was wondering if anyone thinks this is a good idea??? I appreciate anyone's input and feel free to email me @ ebjackson15@yahoo.com
  • Vishwajeet Pawar said on December 25, 2009
    I have read this information carefully. This is interrogatory useful. I want to start my own movie theater(single screen theater in Pune), it's my desire. That is why i need your help, so please give me a all startup information about theater, financial assistance and your own valuable ideas, Thank you.
  • suni said on January 5, 2010
    I want to rent an Indian movie and show it at existing movie theater which shows regular movies. Does anybody know how to rent a movie and will the movie owner let me rent theater (only one screen) for one day? email at jazzapple@gmail.com
  • LYNNGODWIN said on January 6, 2010
    I WAS WONDERING IF SOMEONE COULD TELL ME HOW TO DO IT, WHO TO TALK TO && CALL, AND WHAT I NEED TO DO TO START A THEATER IN A SMALL TOWN...IN ALABAMA.. I'M VERY INTERESTED IN THIS IF SOMEONE COULD POINT OUT ME SOME HELP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION...THANK YOU,,,LYNN
  • suni said on January 7, 2010
    reply to 92. suni's post at jazapple@gmail.com
  • Wale said on January 10, 2010
    Would love to set up an independent theatre that shows first rate comedy and cartoon movies in a small community of 10,000 people. pls advise
  • bob beginner adviser said on January 14, 2010
    Hi. We've been running a small digital art/indie cinema over 15 years. We feature alternative seating (chairs/tables/bar), serve beer and wine and show a selection of indie/art and classic movies. We are involved with a digital network that can provide movies and other content to those looking at opening such a venue. Contact me if you would like more info at: bobg@screeningroom.net (www.screeningroom.net)

    bobg@screeningroom.net || Movie Theater Adviser

  • Abou said on January 15, 2010
    I am a citizen of the Comoros Islands now living in Montreal, Canada. I intend to go back to my home country, the Comoros, to open a movie theatre since, in the whole country, there is no movie theatre. I would like to get information on how to go about that. There is already a big movie theater in the Capital, Moroni. It's been build in the 1960s and was closed a few decades later. My major problem is how to get the movies and the other equipment to open what could be a very lucrative business. Please help. Exp: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • Mikhail said on January 19, 2010
    I am very interested in opening a movie theatre in my country of ~70K people. Currently there's none on island. I would like to know how to get the movies on first run(this is very crucial), and sourcing equipment and so on. Also seeking financial assistance. Your advice would be deeply appreciated. myth135@gmail.com
  • Gretchen said on January 21, 2010
    Sunrise Center, Zanesville, Ohio. In my town this was a second run movie theater. For a short time it did better than the first run, first run didn't like it. Now money is tight and you can stay home and see a wide screen tv. I believe the movie entertainment could use a new coat of paint on an old house. I have some new ideas that could shake it up! I believe there could be something for everyone, with a cheaper way to manage things. I would love to bring it back to life.
  • chinesh kansal said on January 22, 2010
    i want a movie theater in hapur. I have a 50000sq foot in hapur. district ghaziabad, uttar pradesh, india. please send the information in my id and my moblie no 09410053679. urgently, thankyou
  • Steve Reinitz said on January 30, 2010
    so many questions and not even close to enough answers. Licensing is the most important thing and the most difficult. It varies on where you live. Dont worry about buildings, equipment marketing, printing, advertising a "feel"... unless you want to "go broke" work out numbers and details in theory at first and dont buy anything until you have sufficient supporting data that would indicate success possibility. source general small business resources in your community: chamber of commerce etc.
  • BONGANI said on February 3, 2010
    pretoria, gauteng, south africa. how do you go about buying rights to show movies of your choice for first run, second run and reportorial theater
  • Georgia Gabriel said on February 4, 2010
    Hi! My friends and I am thinking of putting up a private movie house. Can you help me? What are the necessary steps, etc? I'm from the Philippines. My email address is georgiajoy.gabriel@gmail.com. Thanks!
  • Georgia Hamilton said on February 15, 2010
    Hi my boyfriend and i would like to open a movie theatre in a rural location of our country. please can u provide information as how we can go ahead in starting our business. thanks
  • John Dough said on February 15, 2010
    Do you have to go to collage to own a movie theater because I would like to own a movie theater with only one screen and only have the movie play once instead of 3 or 4 times just once where do they get the movies from
  • Toushiro said on February 16, 2010
    Hi i live in Johannisburg South Africa i would like to start a cinema. i would like to find out where i get licensed, where i get movies. in short what are the necessary steps? Many thanks.
  • ali said on February 24, 2010
    hi i live in brooks alberta canada, i would like to know the basic steps of opening a movie theater and i would like to know how much i have to invest into it and how much would i get out of it
  • Aerial Ali said on February 24, 2010
    Hey I live in Detroit, MI USA... I would like to know the steps into starting a cinema here. Is there a license that you have to obtain? How much do you typically have to invest into the theater? And how much would I profit from it? Thanks
  • James said on February 25, 2010
    Hey there, I am in Grande Cache Alberta, We are interested in putting a small theatre in our town. So my question is, do all movies main features and second run movies come on DVD now. and can you provide me with as much information as you can on the setup process with distributors. Thanks
  • sameer kuduple said on March 8, 2010
    Please give the all types of startup information as soon as possible, of movie theater business at minimum budget for start, Nagpur, Maharashtra, INDIA
  • Jordan said on March 17, 2010
    I would imagine it might be helpful to actually work (even just part-time) for a theater for awhile to kind of learn as much of the business as you can first. That and taking business classes.
  • Sanjay said on March 18, 2010
    Interested to start a movie theatre in port blair, Andamans, since there are none, pl mail the total cost for a 200 seater, Need also start up valuable information, ready to pay consulting charges.
  • Enner said on March 23, 2010
    I like to start with low profile showing retro movies would like to know what type of licensing plus cost estimate and where to apply. Thank You.
  • Matthew said on April 2, 2010
    Hi I live in Kingston, Jamaica, West Indies and I am interested in opening a movie theater with at least 2 cinemas. I would like to get some idea of how much money I would need for startup including the equipment costs and what not. Could you aid me in this regard?
  • Tony said on April 6, 2010
    Hello, I have lived in Cincinnati, Ohio 45231 since 1966, I have always loved watching movies and was wondering about zoning, city permission, township concerns, before purchasing the property. Afterward where to purchasing the equipment (Reels, screens, etc) or would a huge Big Screen TV or two work?
  • Leslie Mhara said on April 8, 2010
    hie i live in masvingo town of Zimbabwe. i want to start a movie business so i need information on how i can engage distributors so that i can show the movies legally. i think in my case it would be easier and cheaper for me to run a second run theater. may you please help. i would be grateful if you can link me to distributors close to zimbabwe or in zimbabwe.
  • Mpumie said on April 8, 2010
    Hi i'm Penny from South Africa, KZN, Newcastle. I want to start a movie theater in my hometown and i want 2 know the estimation of starting a movie theater from construction to the opening day! Please help i really need yo help on the step-to-step guide to starting my own movie theater. I want my theater to be a first runner theater.

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