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The Era of 35mm film is ending. We must upgrade to digital equipment. Become 'Guardians' and FORTIFY the Castle Theatre!
The Era of 35mm film is ending. We must upgrade to digital equipment. Become 'Guardians' and FORTIFY the Castle Theatre!
43 backers pledged $10,602 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$10,602

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The Castle Theatre has been serving New Castle and the surrounding community since it opened in October, 1935.

Our final step to the digital conversion - PLEDGE Now!!
Our final step to the digital conversion - PLEDGE Now!!

This is a critical time for the fans of the Castle.  Sometimes, when you love something you have to make a stand to keep it.  If this theater is to survive for all to enjoy for years to come, we need to come together and fight for it.  I am a believer in our friends, fans, and families.  No doubt this project can be accomplished, just not by us alone.  With God all things are possible and he has been working things out in His perfect timing to make this project successful.  We have a small amount needed to push us into the final stage of the digital conversion process and this Kickstarter even though two years ago we thought it was the entire answer will be the final piece in the wonderful puzzle. 

We are grateful for the support the community gives us here at the Castle. My Dad told me when I was growing up "no man is an island", there is a Christian song by this exact title that has been playing on my long car ride over to New Castle each day. It gives me hope that our community will come together and I know my Dad will be looking from Heaven and grateful that I'll have another chance to learn that lesson he wanted me to understand.

Rick and I work at the theaters, we enjoy our customers and building long-term relationships with our staff.  We had feared it would be impossible to make the digital conversion being forced by distribution on exhibitors.  We are just a hardworking middle-aged couple.  We aren't able to qualify for the program Hollywood created for the 3 Big Chains to help reimburse after financing and so the future appeared dim.

But fear has been lifted, the future is bright again.  Partnering with others will be the answer!  Many people doing small amounts will result in a Great Big Happy Ending, and since we all love MOVIES who doesn't want to see that happen.  With the monies already raised through our Digital Chamber in the theater lobby; previous help from community-minded people like yourself; and a wonderful fellow independent theater operator willing to make us a great deal on a used (but only a few years old) projector - we are close to jumping into the new digital era!

We are committed to each of the communities we have invested our lives and business in.  We look forward to many continous years of service after our funding project is successful.  Thank you for putting yourself out there in whatever form you have to join us in our fight to keep small, independently owned, neighborhood theaters alive for future generations to enjoy!

We will continue to strive to provide you a theater experience you enjoy and are proud of.  Our guests will be treated to images and sound greater than ever seen before at the Castle.

To our 'Guardians', enjoy your rewards.  We've tried to make them fun and unique and a great value for your donation bracket.  There are items like our hand-made keychain keepsake, or the "Fortify" t-shirt as rewards.

One of our keepsake keychains made with real 35mm film
One of our keepsake keychains made with real 35mm film
Check out the artwork we created for our project t-shirt.
Check out the artwork we created for our project t-shirt.

Keep in mind Kickstarter is an all-or-nothing funding opportunity.  If we don't reach our goal, the pledged funds disappear and we receive nothing (less risk for you our 'Guardians').  

So what is the goal?   "FORTIFY The Castle Theatre!" - is not only in the project's name, but also the goal.  Raise funds to purchase and install a digital projector and additional equipment to become compliant with the new industry standards being imposed on theaters by Hollywood studios and distributors.    

Everyone will benefit from this digital conversion.  It will allow the Castle to carry on for many more years of service to the community and it will provide current and future generations with an even greater movie-going experience in state-of-the-art format not previously possible at this historic single-screen neighborhood theater.

When the project is successfully funded, it will allow us to purchase and install at the Castle the following:

  • A DCI-compliant digital projector
  • Upgrades for the audio system to deliver digitally produced sound
  • A Digital Cinema Media Server
  • Lenses and bulbs
  • A back-up system for power failure
  • Spare parts (we can't afford a second projector as we have now for parts)
  • Fees associated with delivery, installation, construction for a wider port-hole (projection window), electrical upgrades, any permits and additional training

If we exceed our goal, additional funds will be used to repair and improve the marquee.  Kickstarter requires for any monies to change hands, we must meet or exceed our project goal.

With your pledge you are saving this unique vintage movie house from closing the doors once again.  It's not about how much you can give, but how many folks are reached, please share this with your friends and help us reach the goal. We are looking for lots of folks to do a little, which will make the BIG impact for our community.

For those of you in Muncie or Richmond, we encourage you to take advantage of our lower admission and concession prices and give us a try over the newer megaplex cinemas.

It has been asked, 'why does it matter if small town theaters close, what would be lost?'. People want to live where there is a theater, small towns all over stand to lose a foundation that has kept them connected to each other and the world. We believe that loss is unacceptable.

Thank you for your support, the future of The Castle, a theater with a great historic past, is in your hands. Rick and I especially want to thank Sara Smith, our friends and family, you the patrons and our wonderful employees.

Help us share our story, honor the past, and make history moving forward into the new Digital Era.

Help us move from 35mm to Digital, choose the "KING" reward level and receive your very own 35mm projector a part of The Castle's Legacy!
Help us move from 35mm to Digital, choose the "KING" reward level and receive your very own 35mm projector a part of The Castle's Legacy!

Risks and challenges

Ultimately the risk of this project not being funded could prevent us from making the final step in the conversion process. Hollywood has been greatly decreasing the number of films being distributed on 35 mm, and the community has suffered over the past two years not having all of the titles released available to screen.

After the project is successfully funded we will jump right in to the conversion process. It will be spring and a time when we are gearing up for the summer tent poles to begin with Avengers starting at the first of May. If it is difficult to get all the rewards out to our "Guardians", we will definitely keep open communication through this Kickstarter webpage, our Facebook site and the Castle's website as well.

If you have been following our story you recognize that this is a challenge we have been facing for almost 2 years. We are so close and dedicated to seeing the Castle converted. No-one is saying goodbye, we are preparing to say Hello to the new Digital Era of entertainment in New Castle and Henry County. Please join us and also become a Guardian over the Castle Theatre.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Sir/Madam: Every $ counts, and we are forever grateful for you coming along side to launch The Castle into the digital age. Each 'Guardian' will be recognized on our website and with a handwritten thank you card by one of our friendly staff. Your name will also appear here on Kickstarter under the backer tab as recognition. Additional rewards will be at the following levels below.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Gentleman/Miss: Sample of 35mm film in a clear time capsule as a memento of a bygone era or a keychain with film sample mounted inside.

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    Squire/Maiden: A jumbo popcorn and large drink, along with previous rewards.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Lord/Lady: 1 – admission pass, plus previous reward levels.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Knight/Dame: 2 – tickets, a jumbo combo deal, and a 'FORTIFY' t-shirt.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Baron/Baroness: 4 – tickets paired up with 2 jumbo combos. 2 - 'FORTIFY' t-shirts, name on a plaque in our lobby and on-screen recognition.

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Earl/Countess: - Yearlong admission pass and a ‘FORTIFY’ t-shirt. A genuine movie poster (randomly selected) from our collection built over more than 20 years. Your name on our donor plaque in the lobby, on-screen recognition.

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    Marquees/Marquise: Ever wanted to set up your own home theatre? Let us help you get started, with a pledge at this level we will give you 2 actual movie theatre seats, cupholders included (must be picked up at the theatre, we will be unable to ship). You can't give at this level without also receiving an actual marquee letter from the Castle, and you'll continue to be apart of the theater's history with your name on-screen and on a donor plaque in the lobby.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    KNIGHTS OF THE ROUNDTABLE: 2 – booklets of 10 admission tickets including a jumbo popcorn and large drink. Also,a film sample for each ticket as a keepsake of the bygone era. A 30-second advertisement in our pre-show presentation before each movie for one month.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Prince/Princess: A Yearlong pass, in your name, which includes a jumbo popcorn and large drink with every visit. 2 booklets - 10 admit one tickets including a jumbo popcorn and large drink for you to use or give away however you like. Also, take home an actual movie theater seat, 2 cupholders included (must be picked up at the theater by the 'Guardian', we will be unable to ship the seats).

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    THE QUEEN: We will ship you a vintage 35mm film reel (within the continental United States only.) These are a significant part of the Castle Theatre's history, and you will be sharing in our legacy. These reels are sure to become collector's items since reels will not be needed as digital movies come on hard-drives. We will also send you two booklets with 10 free movie passes including a "bottomless" popcorn and drink for each pass. Plus a Private Screening Party for you and up to 425 guests (date of party to be scheduled after conversion), a movie poster, recognition on our website DONORS PAGE and onscreen prior to all movie showtimes.

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    Pledge $7,500 or more About $7,500

    THE KING: We will ship (or even deliver) to you, one of our two vintage Simplex X-L movie projectors (within the continental United States only.) In this way you will be able to share a piece of The Castle Theatre's legacy perhaps in your very own man cave in your castle at home. Plus, a vintage metal 35mm film reel, the two booklets with 10 free movie passes including the "bottomless" popcorn and drink for each pass, a private movie party here at The Castle, a movie poster, and recognition on our website DONORS PAGE and onscreen prior to all movies.

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Funding period

- (30 days)