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Independent Movie Theater Hosts Locally Produced Film

The Downtime Movie

"The Downtime” tells the parallel stories of how an unhappy man and the girlfriend he breaks up with deal with loneliness over the course of a weekend. Brandon returns to his hometown in an attempt to relive his youth, while Sara takes a more introspective approach. Steven McMillan directed and wrote the film.

“It started out as kind of an outline, and we were shooting from that outline, and slowly as we kept shooting, I started writing the scenes every night before we shot. I would write four or five pages of the scene and then it became written. I guess I wrote it, but there are some scenes in it that are improvised.”

This weekend, “The Downtime” will be screened at Gulf Breeze Cinema 4, an independently operated movie theatre. Cinema 4 shows a mixture of art house films and second-run mainstream films. The theater currently operates four screens with 35mm projection, but needs to acquire two digital projectors to continue screening four movies at a time.

“Film as celluloid, as like a physical thing, is dying," McMillan said. "Its time is over. So now all the theatres are converting to digital projectors, which is not the same thing as what you would see like in a classroom or what you might have in your home. It’s a completely new medium of projecting film

Joshua Carroll works at Gulf Breeze Cinema 4 and was an actor in “The Downtime.”

“There’s only a few huge chains in the country, movie theater-wise. All these other small cinemas, all these independent cinemas like the one in Gulf Breeze, rely on their customer base and private funding, personal finances to convert to digital projection.

Carroll says that Cinema 4 will host events such as the screening of “Downtime” and a film festival in March to raise awareness and funds toward the purchase of the projectors.

“The Downtime” will be screened n Friday February 28 and Saturday March 1 at 8:30pm. More information is available at facebook.com/thedowntimemovie.

Katya Ivanov, WUWF News