I became a member of the Cinema Theatre Association, or CTA, in 2015.
"We are dedicated to cinema history – not the films, but the buildings they were and are shown in. Many of us are film buffs, of course, but what unites us is a fascination with the architecture, design and commercial history of cinema exhibition."
- Cinema Theatre Association website
I became a member of the CTA for research for The Cinema Complex documentary I was developing at the time.
I've always been fascinated by cinemas and cinema buildings, hence why I wanted to make a documentary about them, so becoming a member of the CTA was a natural fit for me.
I was only a member of the organization for one year. I decided not to renew my membership after that because developing The Cinema Complex was becoming less and less of a priority for me... and, to date, remains an unrealized project.
As part of my annual membership, I received seven CTA bullet magazines and one Picture House magazine, which is the CTA's main publication.
The Bulletin magazine contains bi-monthly updates, pages and pages of details on new and old cinemas, details on new cinema theatre publications, campaigns to save historic cinemas, letters from other CTA members, industry news and member obituaries... There's a lot!
I was always amazed by how much information was crammed into each Bulletin edition. For a film and cinema enthusiast, it's very nourishing to realize that cinema buildings that no longer exist can still provide such a wealth of education and enjoyment.
This labour of love and wealth of information is taken to a whole other level with the annual edition of the CTA's annual magazine, Picture House.
Whereas the Bulletins are much more stripped down and simplistic in their presentation, Picture House has the polish and effort of a full-fledged magazine.
Unlike the Bulletins that supplied a multitude of brief updates and information about cinema buildings new and old, Picture House selects a few of them and expands on the histories of their buildings, the people who ran them and the patrons who used them.
I read each publication when I first received them, but now they are just taking up space and gathering dust. I'm thinking of sending them back to the CTA because that would be a better way of recycling them.