Jason Reitman and Hollywood's most prominent directors buy beloved Village Theatre in Los Angeles

The coalition wants to preserve the theatre, which has become a mainstay for movie premieres since the venue opened in 1931

February 22, 2024 02:57 pm | Updated 02:58 pm IST

Westwood’s historic Village Theater is now owned by a coalition of 35 filmmakers led by Jason Reitman

Westwood’s historic Village Theater is now owned by a coalition of 35 filmmakers led by Jason Reitman | Photo Credit: @BeyondFest/X

Some of Hollywood's most prominent filmmakers have purchased a 93-year-old iconic theatre known as a cultural landmark for moviegoers in Los Angeles.

Jason Reitman along with more than 30 directors including Steven Spielberg, Christopher Nolan and Bradley Cooper acquired Westwood's Village Theater, the group announced Wednesday. The coalition wants to preserve the theatre, which has become a mainstay for movie premieres since the venue opened in 1931. The terms of the purchase were not disclosed.

Reitman said he felt compelled to pull together other filmmakers after the theatre went up for sale last year. As a Los Angeles native, he wants to extend the rich history of the Village Theater, which is known for its 170-foot (52-metre) white Spanish tower and a large auditorium that can seat 1,300. It's also near the University of California, Los Angeles.

“I immediately made an offer and hoped my fellow directors would join me on this adventure,” Reitman said in a statement. He noted that some of his films, including Up in the Air, Ghostbusters: Afterlife and Juno premiered at the theatre.

“We take this stewardship very seriously and hope to offer a true community for anyone who loves the movies,” he added. The directors will showcase artifacts from their personal collections at the theatre, including props, wardrobe and film prints.

Chris Columbus, who directed the Home Alone and Harry Potter films, expects to share his extensive collection of 16mm film prints. He called the theater a “cinematic miracle.” Spielberg said he wanted to help restore the theatre to its "glory years as a film-going cultural institution.” Nolan added: “Cinema has always been the place where filmmakers and moviegoers meet, and I'm thrilled to be collaborating with so many of my favourite directors on a space that will show what the future of film exhibition can be."

The other new owners include JJ Abrams, Judd Apatow, Damien Chazelle, Ryan Coogler, Alfonso Cuaron, Jonathan Dayton, Guillermo del Toro, Valerie Faris, Hannah Fidell, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, James Gunn, Sian Heder, Rian Johnson, Gil Kenan, Karyn Kusama, Justin Lin, Phil Lord, David Lowery, Christopher McQuarrie, Chris Miller, Alexander Payne, Todd Phillips, Gina Prince-Bythewood, Jay Roach, Seth Rogen, Emma Seligman, Brad Silberling, Emma Thomas, Denis Villeneuve, Lulu Wang and Chloe Zhao.

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