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Touring LA's First Sundance Cinemas, Opening August 31

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Photos by Elizabeth Daniels

The new Sundance Sunset Cinemas in the former Laemmle Sunset 5 space at 8000 Sunset officially opens to the public at the end of the month, but the company opened the doors up a little early for the press this week. The theater division of Robert Redford's empire has completely remade the space--a press release says they "took the original theatre down to the studs, and have put in the latest digital presentation systems, all reserved stadium seating with plush rockers and tablettes, and rebuilt the lobby to include a Bistro serving classic movie treats, quick and easy snacks and a bar serving beer and wine which may be brought into the theatre during +21 shows" (there'll be drinking-age shows every day around 4 pm). The theater has five screens with a total of 635 seats (down from Laemmle's 1,000). Sundance has also added an outdoor patio area, an art gallery showing work by local artists, and an upstairs lounge outfitted in cushy leather Sundance Catalog furniture.

Sundance hasn't been too specific about its programming yet, but it'll "specialize in American Independent and foreign language titles" and work with local filmmakers and ones who show at Sundance but don't have a lot of luck getting distribution.

Prices are a little confusing--there are base rates and then "amenity fees" based on what day and time a particular screening is--but they top out around Arclight levels: $15 for an adult on a weekend evening. Tickets come with three hours of validated parking in the 8000 Sunset lot.

The theater opens to the public on August 31, but there'll be special events for the Sundance Institute, Outfest, and Heal the Bay in the days before.
· Sundance Cinemas [Official Site]

8000 Sunset

8000 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles, CA