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Public Help Sought to Meet Final Target

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 9.00am Wednesday 7 August

Public Help Sought to Meet Final Target

The New Zealand International Film Festival’s campaign to equip the Isaac Theatre Royal for digital cinema has moved significantly closer to target after a funding boost from The Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trust.

The Appeal Trust’s $120,000 contribution towards the campaign means that NZIFF is only $30,000 from the total $280,000 funding target. If successful, the current rebuild of the Isaac Theatre Royal would be extended to include state-of-the-art Digital Cinema Projection facilities.

Christchurch City Council has already agreed to provide partial funding for the equipment of $70,000, with one condition: NZIFF must generate the additional $210,000. A total of $280,000 is required for the estimated costs of providing the equipment required, and the deadline for the funding has been extended to October.

“The substantial post-quake rebuild of the Isaac Theatre Royal has provided the perfect opportunity to bring back a sense of occasion to movie going and celebrate the art and artists of the giant screen in Christchurch,” says NZIFF Director Bill Gosden.

Christchurch audiences have been without a suitable cinema venue for big screen events since the Regent Theatre was converted to a multiplex in 1995. Heavenly Creatures (1994) was the last Gala Premiere to be held by NZIFF in Christchurch.

Plans for the Isaac Theatre Royal rebuild, scheduled for completion in 2014, include 1250 seats and ample foyer spaces. If equipped for film it will become a multipurpose venue like that found in Auckland (Civic Theatre), Wellington (Embassy Theatre) and Dunedin (Regent Theatre).

The Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trust has already funded $1 million towards the Isaac Theatre Royal rebuild, in 2011.

“The intention behind this additional grant is to take the opportunity to equip the theatre with additional digital features to offer another performance dimension for all users, as well as provide a permanent central city venue for future film festivals,” says Appeal Trustee Dr Rod Carr.

Further public donations are being sought with a relaunched Boosted campaign which starts today. The Boosted campaign will seek $12,000 from public donations. An earlier online campaign to raise $40,000 from public donations didn’t reach the total target and donors had their donations refunded.

“We are sure the proximity to our target will convince Boosted donors that their money is well spent. The renewed Boosted campaign will be run alongside other funding appeals, including donations sought directly from NZIFF ticket buyers outside Christchurch,” says NZIFF Director Bill Gosden.

Boosted, an online donation website established by The Arts Foundation, allows for tax deductions on any donation over $5.

In summary:
The equipping of the ITR for Digital Cinema Projection will cost an estimated $280,000. NZIFF has now raised $250,000 for the project. A further $30,000 is being sought from public donations and funding applications.

Prominent Christchurch filmmakers have lent their support to the NZIFF fundraising campaign, including Gerard Smyth, Director, When a City Falls; Peter Young, Director, The Last Ocean; Gillian Ashurst, Director, Snakeskin; and The Hobbit actor Mark Hadlow.


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