Movies

Tarantino is landlord of LA's New Beverly Cinema

MUMBAI: Quentin Tarantino is the new landlord of Los Angeles‘s New Beverly Cinema, that was till yet the prestigious property of the Torgan family.
The cinema hall has been the business of the Torgan family since 1978. But for the intervention of Tarantino, it would be have been just another chain franchise.


Said Tarantino, "The cinema hall was going to be turned into a Super Cuts. I had been coming to the New Beverly ever since I was old enough to drive there from the South Bay since 1982. So, I couldn‘t let that happen."


Built in 1929 as a first-run cinema hall, the Torgan family moved into the property and turned it into a 200-seat venue for classic, independent and foreign films.
The cinema hall on Beverly hit hard times in the mid-2000s as the DVD market started eating into its ticket sales. And since then, Sherman Torgan, the family patriarch and the operator of the hall was facing serious financial troubles.


"Since I‘m a print collector and I screen movies at my home, I heard from other collectors and projectionists that Sherman might have to close down," Tarantino said.
After that, the director got in touch and asked Torgan how much money he needed a month to keep up the theatre. "The answer was about $5,000. So, I just started paying him that per month. I considered it a contribution to cinema," Tarantino said.


Torgan passed away unexpectedly in 2007, leaving his family and friends of the New Beverly in mourning and the future of the theatre in doubt.


"Within a week of my father‘s death, the landlord had a buyer bidding for the theater space," said Michael Torgan, Sherman‘s son.


Desperate to prevent the loss of the family business, the Torgans began considering all options. "Fortunately, I found a copy of our original lease, and it said that the family had the right of first refusal if we could find another buyer."


"My father had just expired, so it wasn‘t a good time for our family," Michael recalled.
"We thought we might lose the theatre. My mother reached out to Tarantino and explained to him that we were in trouble."


Then, Tarantino decided to buy the space outright.

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