“You are creating a memory”

Alexandra Rens from Cinema Paradiso (Spain)

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Alexandra Rens, Cinema Paradiso, Ibiza (Spain)

What is the name of the exact location here?
It is the Baluard de Sant Pere in Dalt Vila, the Old Town of Ibiza.

It is a fantastic setting you have got here for outdoor cinema, could you explain us a little bit about the location and what it is that your company does?
We are Cinema Paradiso Ibiza and we are an outdoor cinema, which goes to different places on the island. We have a private concept where we set up in villas, as small, intimate outdoor cinemas, and then we have the public outdoor cinemas like here. We go to different beaches and squares in Ibiza, but this has to be our favourite place to set it up. We are here every Thursday, in the middle of Dalt Vila. It is very special to set up a cinema on UNESCO heritage between the old city walls. We like it a lot, obviously. The acoustics are very nice.

What was it that drew you to this location?
When we first came to the island four years ago, we started talking with the local government about our plans. We wanted to bring a cultural addition to the island, so we looked at a couple of different locations with them and this one was immediately one of our favourites. It works very well, it is close to many restaurants etc., so people can go for a drink or they can have some dinner and then go to see a movie afterwards.

You mentioned that the business has been up for four years. Going back to the initial Start-Up period, what were the biggest challenges that you faced when you were setting up the business? And why did you go into this industry?
Well, the biggest first challenges were all the permits and convincing people of our concept. Today you see a set-up where we have chairs, but normally we use beanbags. We do a lot of decoration and we do a lot for the atmosphere. There are the really comfortable beanbags of our own design, there are little tables, and we have candles and lots of lighting. We wanted to create the most ideal setting to watch a movie. Very relaxed under the stars, with a lot of atmosphere. It is very romantic and a stylish cinema, which is very comfortable with blankets and everything. You can order something to drink, we make fresh popcorn and we have some fresh snacks. We had this idea in mind, but we had nothing to show, so we had to really convince people of what we wanted to do. That was a bit hard, especially for the first shows. We were telling people “You have to come, it’s something very unique on the island.” That was definitely a challenge. And then all the people who came were super surprised. We were as well surprised by the turnout. It is very unique for the island, because as you know, Ibiza is very much a party island and this is something different. In the beginning it was a challenge to convince people to do something else and to go to the cinema. They said “What? I’m on Ibiza, I’m not gonna watch a movie” and we said “Why not?” This is such a special place, it is a beautiful island and it is very nice to be outside and make use of this gorgeous space we have here.

Going back four years, you had the option to purchase any number of screens or other solutions. What was it that drew you to an AIRSCREEN and particularly to the product you have now?
We looked into a lot of different options, but AIRSCREEN has been around for a long time and is a bit German quality as well. We saw some videos and pictures and the one that really convinced me was one in the snow, because it is very durable. You also have a very clear video about how to set it up and it is a complete package. We bought the complete outdoor cinema set-up and it comes with everything, like perfect cases and a good manual. It is literally buying an outdoor cinema, it is not just the screen. It has good customer service as well and we have a personal relationship with AIRSCREEN, what we are very content with.

If you had to explain it to somebody, what is the best thing about your AIRSCREEN system and why did you chose to have the airtight and not the classic version with the running blower?
What we really like is that it is very durable and strong material and it is easy to set up. I have to admit that at the first time we thought, “How does this work?” and needed to read the manual and had some technical guys helping us. But once you get the hang of it, it is very easy. We had some very extreme weather conditions like very strong wind, but the screen stayed up. Everyone thought we had to cancel but we were convinced we could do it and in the end it worked out fine. I was a bit nervous sometimes, but it definitely worked out well.

What is your favourite film to show at an outdoor cinema?
I have to say, the one I really liked was Casa Blanca, which we did here as well. We had this whole setting with the black and white classic on the big screen, the great acoustics and the old city walls with the lights and candles. For me this was a complete picture, I really liked that one. The first show we did here was very special as well. It was a Mexican movie and there were many local people. We had been working on the concept for a while and were always in a local bar behind our laptops and invited everyone there. It was very nice to see everyone showing up and supporting us, that was very special.

And what is the best thing about working in the outdoor cinema industry? Four years is quite a long time, what makes you want to keep doing it?
The thing that I like the most is that we are not selling a movie or selling a ticket, we are selling an experience. As I said, Casa Blanca was one of my favourites and someone came up to me and said “I watched Casa Blanca in your outdoor cinema last year and I don’t like the movie, but I will never forget the setting and how I was in the beanbag with my boyfriend, that really made it special for me”. Of course we choose the ones that we like for our shows, but a movie is always personal, you do not need to love it. You are creating a memory. People go there with their friends, their families or their loved ones and they will always remember how they were here and saw a movie underneath the stars, outdoor on Ibiza.

If you could describe an outdoor cinema in three words, what would those three words be?
I believe that we offer the total package, a whole experience. Normally, I would say “movie under the stars”.

Coming to the end of this season now, what is the future for your company?
We are definitely going to stay here, it is going really well. We worked a lot with the local government this year. The shows that we do at the beach are very special, because those are three events. People come, have a picnic and a bottle of wine, they put their blankets out and there were candles. It was amazing to see. It was actually the beach close to our house and I was walking home thinking “I can’t believe we did this”. So we want to continue these three events with the local government, they were very pleased with it as well. We hope that we are on this location here for another season, but we are at other venues as well, like a couple of hotels for example. Actually, we have lots of plans, we also want to got to another country one day. Ideally, when it is winter here, we go somewhere else where it is summer. And we are thinking about something like a drive-in in winter.

Quickly back to the AIRSCREEN, in terms of set up time and durability, what is so good about having an AIRSCREEN, when it comes to taking it to all these different locations?
It is very mobile. As I said, we do squares, we do beaches and we use this location here. For our cinema, including all the beanbags, we have a big van, but the screen literally fits into our car, which is very easy. With the speakers and speaker stands it is as mobile as a cinema can be. And everything is very easy to set up. I love it that the screen is very high, so even if you are standing all the way at the back, you can still see it. It is the perfect size for us.

For somebody who is launching their own business, what would be your tips and what should they watch out for in the outdoor cinema industry?
I think the best tip would be “Just do it”, because that is what we did. We are from Holland and obviously you cannot do outdoor cinema there, because the weather is not that great. Imagine when we were telling our families and friends that we were going to do something different and that we had this new adventure in mind. We told them that we wanted to start an outdoor cinema in Spain they asked “What? Where in Spain?” and when we said Ibiza everyone thought that it was so random. I had never been here before, but we just did it. What else can you do? We did a bit of research before, but the best advice would be to just do it.

Do you have any feedback for AIRSCREEN or are there improvements you would like to see?
Not really, we are very content. We just need to have more screens to have even more cinemas, maybe one for the drive-in. That would be a bigger one, size does matter!

AIRSCREEN in idyllic surroundings at the José Ignacio International Film Festival

 

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The JIIFF is an international film festival that takes place in José Ignacio, Uruguay. The festival revolves around the screening of internationally recognized movies, in an environment where young people, families, residents and visitors of José Ignacio can share an enriching experience. From 6th – 15th January 2017, the seventh instalment of the JIIFF took place.

José Ignacio is a town that extends for several kilometres along the Atlantic Coast, nearby Punta del Este, a glamorous and busy playground often compared to St.-Tropez or Cannes. Even though José Ignacio has itself evolved into a true hot spot in Latin America, favoured by wealthy jet-setters from around the world, it has kept its old style and became a popular summer enclave and hideaway from enormous hotel chains, expensive shopping streets and loud nightclubs. The town appeals to those who prefer the wittingly bohemian. An informal atmosphere, hand-painted street signs, mom-and-pop boutiques and bed-and-breakfasts determine the picture. Although the region is rather recognized by its chefs, not by its artists, you can always discover a painter or sculptor in José Ignacio, who chose this particular environment as a workplace.

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With the ambition to enlarge the cultural offer of the town, a group of young entrepreneurs around director/programmer Fiona Pittaluga, programmer Pablo Mazzola and programmer Mariana Rubi, launched the José Ignacio International Film Festival seven years ago. The movies shown are not the typical commercial titles, but rather independent names like Harmonium by Kôji Fukada (Japan), Toni Erdmann by Maren Ade (Germany) and Kékszakállú by Gastón Solnicki (Argentina).

What makes the JIIFF particularly special is that all its movie screenings are happening outdoors. There are Pop-up cinemas directly at the beach, near the town, and at the old abandoned train station of Garzón, a few kilometres from José Ignacio. No problem with the AIRSCREEN mobile outdoor cinema systems, which were easily and quickly inflated and deflated where they were needed. The entrance of the festival is free and attracts hundreds of people from throughout the region, who travel to José Ignacio to see the movies in this idyllic environment. With for example around 500 people attending the screening of this years opening film Aquarius by Kleber Mendonça Filho (Brazil), the seventh instalment of the JIIFF was an unquestionable success.

AIRSCREEN as official exhibitor at Prolight + Sound Exhibition 2017

The AIRSCREEN Company is delighted to announce that it will be officially exhibiting at the Prolight + Sound Exhibition in Frankfurt from the 4th to the 7th of April 2017. A 40ft x 20ft (12m x 6m) AIRSCREEN inflatable movie screen will be on show at the Live Sound Arena (AG.0 C19/C21) for all visitors to admire. Anybody interested in the AIRSCREEN will have a great opportunity to see the screen live and up-close and talk to members of the AIRSCREEN team, who will be on hand to advise and answer any questions you may have.

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The Prolight + Sound exhibition is considered as the leading international trade fair for the event-technology sector and covers all products, trades and services. It is the international meeting point for exhibitors, purchasers and event organisers from all over the world. The AIRSCREEN Company looks forward to meeting and speaking to you and making your open-air movie dreams a reality.

Dutch Game Masters – eSports on a big inflatable screen

Paris St. Germain vs. Real Madrid – it sounds like the final in the FIFA Champions League. The game was not played by the real stars, but on the PlayStation. In the stadium of PSV Eindhoven the gamers were able to play the final on a 16m x 8m inflatable movie screen.

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The Dutch Game Masters welcomed 128 teams, each consisting of 2 players. It was not the football shoe, but rather the gamepad and the thumb to determine in which direction the virtual player should run or shoot.

 

eSports enjoys great popularity all over the world and has long been more than a hobby for professional players in the US and China. Incomes of more than $1 million is not a rarity here. Perhaps instead of open-air or drive-in cinemas we will be seeing more such events on mobile outdoor screens soon.

Ben & Jerry’s Movie Nights with AIRSCREEN

Peace, Love & Ice Cream – that was the slogan of the Ben & Jerry’s Movie Nights. True to its corporate values like responsibility and social commitment, the open-air cinema tour was held for free.

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For three hours people had the chance to taste new flavours like Raspberry Cheesecake and Cookie Dough ‘Wich. After sunset the inflatable movie screen was set up and the very popular French movie “The Intouchables” was shown.

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The pop-up cinema stopped over in the biggest cities in Germany. All events were incredibly well attended so surely they will be on tour again next year. Our partner EVENTED will make sure that everything will run smoothly.

 

2016 UEFA European Championships on big inflatable screen in Azerbaijan (Olympic Stadium)

After the Olympic Stadium Baku (Azerbaijan) was completed in the spring of 2015 it was the venue for the European Games, where 6,000 athletes from 50 countries could compete in different disciplines. The stadium also meets the highest FIFA and UEFA standards and is the venue of preliminaries and quarter finals of the European Football Championship 2020.

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As a foretaste of the events to come the current soccer championships are shown on an inflatable movie screen. With over 68,000 seats comes almost automatically a fantastic atmosphere. In addition to sporting events various concerts will take place at the Olympic stadium and fill one of the most modern and beautiful stadiums with life.

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“It started out as a hobby”

Michael Woll from EVENTED (Germany)

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Michael Woll, EVENTED, Ensdorf (Germany)
AIRSCREEN user since 1999

To begin with, can you tell us something about your company?
My name is Michael Woll and I’m the managing director of EVENTED in Germany. We host outdoor movie and drive-in cinema events in Germany, France and Switzerland. We are a team of around five people and spend the summertime, the main season for outdoor cinema, travelling to the different locations, supplying various open-air cinema events with movie screens, projectors and sound systems.

When did you start working in the open-air cinema business?
We have been working with AIRSCREEN for 17 years now. Back then we were looking for a system which was easy to install and resistant against winds in the open field and found it in AIRSCREEN which we still use.

What brought you to the open-air cinema business?
Like many others in the outdoor movie world it started out as a hobby. So first it was just for the fun of it and as events grew bigger and bigger I ended up here with lots of screens and events all over Central Europe.

What do you particullary like about it?
The great thing about open-air cinema is that you are able to tell a story. The story being told on the screen in an unusual setting. It’s not the familiar environment of a regular indoor cinema which has the same appearance everytime you go there. Every time it is a different setting with new challenges. So I need to find a way to cast a spell over the audiences with the help of the environment I find at a particular location.

Which screen sizes do you own?
For outdoor purposes we have screen sizes from 32ft (10m) up to 80ft (24m). For indoor events or smaller outdoor cinemas we use the AIRSCREEN airtight models e.g. the 24ft (7.32m). One benefit which accounts for all sizes is that the frame also can be used as a giant inflatable billboard.

What are your favourite events
I like series of events taking place at historic settings. For example «Gladiator» at an historic Roman bath or «Highlander» in an ancient castle. I also really enjoy drive-in cinema with movie classics like «Bullitt» especially if the spectators show up with vintage cars. It is great fun when the setting and the movie become one.

What is the challenge for you as a technical supplier here?
The challenge for us is to have equipment which adopts to the environment, as the location itself hardly can be changed. For example the screen needs to be designed for easy transport. If you have a delicate grass location for example which should not be harmed so that you cannot use heavy equipment like truss construction. Or a historic castle which gives no room for a fork lift.

What do you think is it that the audience fascinates about watching movies outdoors?
The audience knows that they get a unique experience which can not be replicated so easily. Because of this thrill people love outdoor cinema events and like to watch movies which they already know.

What are the challenges for you as an open-air cinema provider in the future ?
Bringing exciting movies to exceptional places. I guess that an event with a standard movie in a familiar environment has served its time; proper concepts and good movies are needed.

What makes an AIRSCREEN a safe product?
AIRSCREEN is an extremely flexible product when it comes to the set-up. This means that we can deflate the screen very quickly and have it flat on the ground within 20 to 30 sec if the weather changes dramatically. If you have a thunderstorm for instance, which happens quite often in Germany during the summer, you can keep the audience safe and also continue the screening right after its over. Another 5 min and the screen is up in the air again.

Can you name further advantages of the product?
One of the biggest advantages is the efficiency of the system. That is the amount of resources you need to set up a screen which is 59ft (18m) wide and 36ft (11m) high. If you bear in mind that this screen can be set up with four people in 1.5 hours, it is a very good ratio compared to existing alternatives. For our customers this also means that short term events become very affordable. Apart from that the inflatable framework gives us great flexibility on the spot. Depending on the evironment you can tilt the screen a little bit, move it a few meters to the front or back, etc.