After some delays and years of planning, the curtain is rising on the newest theater downtown — the Bijou Metro. Saturday, June 1, the art house cinema will open to the public with screenings of the Japanese anime film From Up On Poppy Hill, The Angels’ Share (a whiskey flick), The Rep (a movie about indie cinemas with an appearance by the Bijou’s owner-booker Ed Schiessl) and a midnight showing of a cult classic (TBD).
A recent tour of the new theater revealed four intimate auditoriums seating from 17 to 36 people, screens that range from 13 to 16 feet on the horizontal and American-made rocker back cinema seats. “They have two more inches of foam than most of the other chairs that we looked at,” Schiessl says. Through the projection window, patrons can see the new digital projection system that the Bijou was able to purchase after raising more than $50,000 on Kickstarter.
The cozy lobby will have concessions similar to the original Bijou on 13th — paninis, hot dogs and rotating local beers, wines and ciders — in addition to the usual movie theater grub. Between the four auditoriums is a thoroughfare to the First National Taphouse, where Bijou moviegoers with stamped tickets can order off a special menu at the counter through the “red carpet service.” But don’t bother sneaking in, there will be cameras on the Taphouse entrance, and, as Schiessl points out, “It will be pretty easy to tell if anyone sneaks into a 17-seat auditorium.”