Kino takes digital to the community

AUTHOR: Inavate

One of the oldest, and most unique buildings in the UK has become the country’s first community cinema to take an all-digital approach — thanks to equity funding from two DTI schemes and membership of the UK Film Council’s Digital Screen Network.

By adopting Christie 2K projection, integrated in an image processor and Doremi server environment at its cinema in Hawkhurst, Kent, owners Kino Holdings have established a blueprint for expansion into Europe while at the same time supporting local film makers.

The company was set up by Australian entrepreneur Paul Corcoran and partner Helen Jones in 2003, but since they achieved their funding in 2005 there has been no stopping them.

While the fascia of the Kino community cinema betrays its Victorian (and more recently village hall) heritage, inside a sophisticated design upgrade — masterminded by Stefanie Fischer of Burrell, Foley, Fischer — has utterly transformed it. Studio experts Munro Acoustics designed the 5.1 Dynaudio Acoustics process-controlled sound system (while their construction company Form Funktion provided the acoustic insulation) and Arts Alliance Media supplied the media storage, processing and projection devices.

Said Paul Corcoran, “As a result we became the UK’s first all digital cinema, with products like the Christie CP2000 really transforming the place. We are digital focused, and into the whole cinema network management system — we have a Dolby encoder in our other cinema in Sevenoaks and the idea is to link all the screens together. We want to develop small cinemas in towns with a high retail offering, and a crossover into education.”