A special showing of The Perks of Being a Wallflower at Dormont’s Hollywood Theater on Tuesday served as a precursor to what manager Chad Hunter hopes will become a regular event.
The viewing was an invitation-only event, mainly for Verizon FiOS customers, to promote the film’s availability through On Demand. But Hunter said as soon as the theater is able to buy a digital projector, he plans to make Perks a regular on the theater’s marquee.
“As soon as we get that projector, this movie will be here,” Hunter said. “We want to do a Perks-Rocky Horror double feature, maybe for a one or two-week run.”
That plan hinges heavily on the theater’s ability to purchase the projector. Click here for information about that project.
Tuesday’s event was sponsored by Verizon FiOS, in conjunction with Pittsburgh Film Office. Lionsgate, which produced the film, covered the cost of renting the theater for the screening.
Ryan Rosales, who works with the On Demand Digital Team for Lionsgate, said Tuesday’s event was in part to celebrate a new partnership between Lionsgate and FiOS, but that it also was a ‘thank you’ to local customers, since the movie was filmed in Upper St. Clair and the surrounding area.
“We’re proud to say ‘thank you’ to the people of Pittsburgh for letting us film here,” he said.
The movie, and the fact that it was filmed in Pittsburgh, was particularly important to one guest.
Pittsburgh holds a special place for Russ Streiner as a filmmaking center, and for good reason—the production company he owned with George Romero and John Russo produced Night of the Living Dead in 1968.
Streiner is the founder and chairman of Pittsburgh Film Office. He said the film office does everything it can to support local filmmakers, like Upper St.Clair alum Stephen Chbosky, who wrote and directed Perks.
“The Pittsburgh Film Office really tries to support local filmmaking and encourage it in this area,” he said. “This happens to be one of the biggest examples of a local, young writer and filmmaker having success right here.”
He said events that bring awareness to small local theaters like the Hollywood emphasize how important those places are to the communities they serve.
“These kinds of theaters really deserve community support,” Streiner said. “Hopefully this is not a dying breed.”
Digital copies of “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” can be bought through On Demand now. It will be available for rental on Feb. 12.