A Retro and Eco-Friendly Theater in the center of Gardena. A Hipster’s ideal movie hangout? We think so.
Judy Kim, the manager and daughter of the family owned Gardena Cinema, told us about her faith in Dealflicks and the progress of their forward thinking small theater.
The Kim family purchased Gardena Cinema in 1976 from the DeNato family who had owned the theater for about 30 years prior. Yes it’s old. The theater is an LA gem, built in 1947.
Growing up in the family’s theater business for so long, Judy shares her insights to the ups and downs of tickets sales over the last couple of decades.
Due to the innovations in home theaters and film mediums, ticket sales have definitely fluctuated. Judy explains that when VHS first came out, everyone in the movie business said that’s it. The movie business is over, everyone can watch movies with their family from the convenience of their own living room. Business did go down for a little while, but then it went back up.
“Humans are social creatures. Even if you have the most ‘decked out’ home theater, you are not going to stay home to watch movies. You are going to want to go out, meet friends, and new people. There was a transformation of movies with DVD and Blu-Ray, but despite these advancements movie theaters survived. It’s the communal feeling when a group of human beings are experiencing the same thing at the same time.”
As a young kid and teenager, Judy worked at the theater. She went onto college and law school, but afterwards returned to help her mom and pop.
She recalls how she signed up with Dealflicks. She laughs,
“We were the first Dealflicks theater that agreed to sign on to Dealflicks! Honestly, when Kevin first came to us he said he had a program to sell movie theater tickets the way Hotwire and Expedia sold hotel rooms. He was young, but he was passionate and persistent. He never gave up. And Kevin, like myself, was a young Korean,and I wanted to help. I convinced my parents to sign up.”
She put her faith in Dealflicks, and Dealflicks put more butts in her theater seats! The partnership with Dealflicks led to bigger profit and more customers.
Before Gardena Cinema signed on with Dealflicks they did not have a parking structure that gave customers convenient parking. As a result of the profits made my Dealflicks they were able to acquire the lot next door to use for parking!
Judy adds that Gardena Cinema has always catered to budget conscious families. Dealflicks is the perfect medium to reach out to those consumers, as well as bring in younger, tech-savvy adults. Dealflicks web presence has helped Gardena Cinema gain needed exposure. It helps attract people who otherwise wouldn’t have known about the theater.
Also, the young adults or “hipster millennials” Judy jokes tend to like the feel of the theater. With the profits from Dealflicks, Judy would like to eventually make the Theater more green, and do some water conservation for the theater and install solar panels.
Overall, Dealflicks has been a true success in Gardena Cinema, and we are happy you were the first to give us a chance!
Written by: Isabella Gradney