Cinemas Aren't Just For Movies Anymore

If 3D and IMAX turn out not to be the saviors of cinema that some have hoped, what else can movie theaters do to keep themselves in business and lure people away from DVDs, Blu-Rays and Netflix streaming movies? Become very large televisions, apparently.

At a presentation in Amsterdam's Cinema Expo, Howard Kiedaisch - of the company Arts Alliance - made a pitch to movie theater owners: Consider the possibility of live broadcasts on the big screen:

Digital cinema can help theaters program opera, soccer matches, a lot of things... People have been really thrilled with the opera we've offered. But opera is not particularly mainstream, so there must be other things that can be even more popular.

I'm torn on how much potential this actually has. On the one hand, if the theaters were showing a live event that I really wanted to see, but had no other access to, sure, I'd consider it... but on the other, this sounds a bit like combining the worst of live theater with the worst of cinemagoing. I know that some theaters in the US have been doing programming like this in off-hours for awhile now, but has anyone actually attending any of these events?

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