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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Local family seeks to save Marshall Cinema from closure

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The show will go on in Marshall -- now that a purchaser for the movie theater has come forward.

A contract for the purchase of Marshall's movie theater has been signed, said purchaser Kim Thompson. "We close on the theater Aug. 17."

Thompson said the theater will close on Aug. 22 for several weeks while repairs and upgrades are made to the building's air conditioning and heating systems.

"We are hoping to be open by Oct. 1," Thompson said. "The largest expense will be the heating and cooling systems."

However, the Thompsons also plan minor upgrades to the concession area.

"I want to have nachos," she said.

The plan is to keep the theater as a first-run theater -- that is to say they will continue showing new movies as they are released.

Among the reasons Thompson decided to purchase the venue are wanting to keep it open in Marshall and personal memories of the theater.

"I remember seeing Poltergeist on the big screen," Thompson said. "I'm not sure if it is the first thing I saw, but it stands out."

Scheduling and staffing decisions have not yet been made, but Thompson said she wants to talk to the people who are currently working at the theater and see who wants to stay.

In a previous story, Cinema Manager Dan Vermillion said building maintenance was an important concern in B&B Theatres' decision to sell the theater.

"The current building is more than 100 years old and maintenance costs on the structure chew up an increasing portion of the cinema's revenue," Vermillion said.

Thompson hopes the upgrades she has planned will stem that tide.

When the theater reopens, Thompson said she wants to see about reducing the cost of tickets and concessions.

Contact Pat Nolan at


Related Stories:

Marshall Cinema to close doors in August


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AWESOME! Marshall doesn't have much for people to do and enjoy and to lose the theater.. One of three good places to hang out would not be cool. This is great to hear!!! Good Luck! Hope the Cinema is here to stay!

-- Posted by LilSis on Fri, Aug 6, 2010, at 2:32 PM

My memories of the cinema are too numerous to write hear without severe writers cramp. Therefore let me just say, you have not only my thanks, but my patronage as well. I no longer live in Marshall, but when I visit will make it a point to see a movie and hopefully influence my friends to go with me. Thank you. I hope the rest of the community joins me in doing our part to make it lucrative.

-- Posted by sparky207 on Fri, Aug 6, 2010, at 1:55 PM

Localgal, my brother worked at a theater some years ago and based on his information, you are correct. The studio, and/or distribution company take a large chunk, he even said that some even demand a piece of the concession. While the26er is correct that lower prices might increase sales, the studio and distribution company will still take their pound of flesh. Plus, unless the workers will not work for minimum wage, that will cut into profits.

I truly hope Kim is able to make it work. I love the convenience of the Marshall Cinema. I also love smaller venue. I am afraid it could be an uphill battle. Good luck!

-- Posted by inthemiddle on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 9:59 PM

Glad to see the cinema is sticking around, but I do have a question about the cost of tickets. Yes, they are high, but my understanding is that the STUDIOS get most of the ticket costs, not the cinema, which is why concessions are so high. Cinema's actually survive off of the concessions sales not the the sale of the tickets. Can anyone elaborate on this...?

-- Posted by localgal1 on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 7:30 PM

Hey, Animal, I picked up something in your blog and there's a great idea in it.


What with all the car junkies in Marshall, I'm not sure why we don't have a track of some kind here. What a great draw from surrounding areas. And I reckon a few jobs could be created also.

Hmmmmmmm, I wonder if we could get some of that stimulus money. We really, really need a 1/4 mile banked dirt oval in the worst way.

-- Posted by Smart Dog on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 2:44 PM

Good luck Kim, happy someone bought it. I wouldn't get hopes up of prices dropping too much but anything would be better obviously. I don't believe the $1 or $2 deal is even close to being an idea at this time. Everyone would just go to that so and they'd lose money on the other nights, maybe once a month or every couple months i could see, but not weekly. Either way I hope it works out, I don't go to the theatre but a few times a year, but I would much rather go to one in Marshall than in Sedalia or Columbia!

-- Posted by oldschool17 on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 2:19 PM

This is great - Yes, the cost of admission and concessions have gotten out of hand. What is often forgotten is simple math. Example - If cost is $7.00 - many will not go, but if 30 tickets are sold, $210.00. Well, let's say cost is reduced to $4.00 - many parents can much more easily afford to send their kids to the movie at that rate - so you have twice as many tickets sold so 60 @ $4.00 = $240.00. Chink, chink, the cash register receipts have increased, there are more patrons, therefore more buckets of popcorn and sodas. And is it necessary to make a 95% profit on popcorn? Yes folks, that is what it can make, as an old Recreational Services professional I have dealt with companies that provide for concessions. Profit on other concessions is not as great, but that popcorn is not costing places hardly anything, even taking into account the overhead costs of fixing it. My hope is that the theatre can become a place of AFFORDABLE family entertainment.

-- Posted by the26er on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 11:06 AM

Love it!!!

-- Posted by MG2008 on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 11:03 AM


-- Posted by Cardfan67 on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 10:54 AM

Thank you so much for caring about our town. I saw so many movies that impacted my life so much; Jaws, Star Wars, The Godfather. I have come out from seeing a movie laughing, crying, thinking in new ways. Maybe learned a new thing about a war, or the struggles of people that live in a far-away place. Our parents and grandparents watched newsreels about WWII and the battles overseas. People went to the movies on a hot summer afternnoon to escape the heat and their troubles for a couple of hours. I have not patronized the theatre for a long time, and I take partial responsibility for it's troubles. But, it was a chain theatre and it was unreasonably priced. I am so happy that someone from Marshall who cares about our nice town stepped up so the movies don't go by the way of The Red Cross Fountain, and Boyd Street Cafeteria. I miss the races on Sundays and going to the drive-in. I like our small town and don't want to have to go to someone else's town to enjoy myself. We are so lucky to have such a lovely little place to live. I think we take it for granted that our nice traditions are never going to go away. I'll be more aware of what I have right in my own backyard from now on. Although I don't have the means to purchase the theatre, I will gladly make a donation to help keep it open. Again, thank you for caring about our home as much as of many of us do. God bless you. You are appreciated. P.S. My mom recently passed away and she and I had so many good times at the show when I was little. To keep the theatre going is like remembering good times with her. And for that and respecting the people of our hometown who have gone before us, thank you for revering our memories.

-- Posted by animal on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 10:30 AM

Thanks Kim! I agree memories were developed there. It is definitely people like you that keep the business here in town and also give our children something to do that is safe and supervised. This town appreciates you very much!

-- Posted by fitzgibbonhosp on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 9:07 AM

Thanks Thompsons. Local ownership is a good thing. I'll bet that local contractors will be doing the repairs also.

It's folks like you that step up and create, or save, jobs in Marshall that help the community. You are also providing a great social event for our middle schoolers every weekend.

Thanks again and best wishes.

-- Posted by Smart Dog on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 7:47 AM

AWESOME!!! The memories are kept alive!! Thank you and blessing to the Thompson's!!!!

-- Posted by sparkywire on Thu, Aug 5, 2010, at 1:07 AM

Now if Hollywood would just make some decent movies.

-- Posted by Ray on Wed, Aug 4, 2010, at 10:54 PM

Good Luck and Congratulations Marshall! This is what being part of a community means!

-- Posted by mama11 on Wed, Aug 4, 2010, at 9:47 PM

I am happy that the cinema will continue to exist in Marshall. Back in the day, the cinema used to have $1 night every Tuesday. The theater was always packed on Tuesday nights. Maybe $1 (or $2) night could make a comeback?

-- Posted by born-n-raised on Wed, Aug 4, 2010, at 7:45 PM

Looking forward to the theater re-opening. Thanks Kim.

-- Posted by stiffler on Wed, Aug 4, 2010, at 6:00 PM

I was recently in Columbia with my GF we decided to have dinner and then go to a show at forum 8. Ticket prices there are 8.50 per adult BUT the Cinema's are Keep Really clean. Well lit before the show and no impeccable shape. They are also doing improvements to the Cinema to improve on what is already a GREAT movie exp. Yes Columbia is a bigger town so the same money isn't here. But keeping the place clean shouldn't be the problem it was here. Sticky floors left over popcorn and drink containers were just some of the turn offs at B&B. They also offer a "Frequent Movie goer Program" Where each time you attend a show you get points that can be redeemed for concessions to help off set the price for food and drink. I think that would be a good idea for the Thompsons to do. I know I would use it and as I see ALOT of movies it would make me more likely to stay in Marshall then drive to Sedaila or Columbia.

-- Posted by Selmac8 on Wed, Aug 4, 2010, at 5:29 PM

That is a wonderful thing to have purchased the cinema. I am glad to see a person in the community take the challenge to keep it open for the community.

Thanks Kim Thompson

-- Posted by Construction on Wed, Aug 4, 2010, at 5:05 PM

Thank you Kim, and good luck!

-- Posted by er on Wed, Aug 4, 2010, at 4:51 PM


-- Posted by 1OFTHEGALS on Wed, Aug 4, 2010, at 4:12 PM

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