LEEDERVILLE “drawcard” Luna Cinema could have four new screens by Christmas.
On Tuesday, City of Vincent approved a development application, with a list of conditions attached, to convert a former fish and tackle shop next door to the cinema on Oxford Street into four new screening rooms with a combined 164 seats.
Once completed, the extension would have indoor and outdoor lounge areas, toilet additions and upgrades, new ticketing booth and candy bar and modifications to the building facade.
Luna Palace spokesman Tony Bective said the aim was to be up and running by Christmas to take advantage of the Summer holiday crowds.
“When we first noticed next door going up for lease about a year ago, it triggered a light bulb moment,” he said.
“We thought ‘nah somebody’s going to take it’ then we thought ‘maybe not’.
“We thought this would make for a great addition, then we basically have the street, go for broke.
“We’ve been a beacon here since we opened and it’s really been a drawcard.”
While figures show more Australians are streaming film and television online, with a report in September last year revealing almost 10 million people had access to paid televisions options, people still opt for silver screen entertainment.
A Val Morgan and Co survey showed 71 per cent of people went to the cinema 6.6 times in 2016, compared to 69 per cent in 2015.
Mr Bective said strong attendance continued, particularly in the past nine months.
“We’ve been really fortunate, cinema goes though many waves,” he said.
“We had an amazing run since October last year, we’ve really been solid and riding a great wave because there’s been terrific films coming through.”
Mr Bective said it was unlikely Luna would show blockbusters once additions were complete.
“I don’t necessarily think that’s an area we might or need to go down, but that said it doesn’t exclude it,” he said.
“It’s early days yet to see how that would develop and work and the kind of films we will be looking at but there is that notion we are there and to be able to screen a lot more films and also to do things like accommodate groups and hiring it out.”