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New FAU Communication building will double as a cinema starting next fall

The construction of the new School of Communication and Multimedia Studies building is on schedule. And with no delays, this building, containing not only classrooms and departmental offices, but a large atrium, a beer and wine bar, and a movie theatre, should be ready by October.

Construction began in August after a donation of $1.5 million was made by Living Room Theaters, a company that focuses on independent films and filmmakers, and a matching $1.5 million state grant was given to Florida Atlantic University by the Courtelis Co, a real estate developer.

“This is one of the biggest and most exciting projects I’ve ever worked on,” said Joel Schultz, the FAU project manager. “The building process is going great. Everything’s going according to plan and we’re right on schedule.”

The 73,000-square-foot building, being built by Turner Construction, will include 14 College of Arts and Letters classrooms, and the movie complex will have four screens. A large glass atrium will separate the cinema and the classrooms.

Throughout the day the building will be used purely for educational purposes. The four screening rooms will be used for classes, allowing film students to be taught in a real cinema setting.

“This new cinema will allow students to take film classes in an actual theatre? That’s awesome!” said David Moss, an FAU junior studying film. “I think this is going to allow for some great opportunities in film to occur here at FAU. Perhaps maybe one day we can even have a student film festival.”

Because Living Room Theatres is donating such a significant amount, the company will operate the movie theatre at night and on weekends. The theatre will be open to the community and will show foreign, classic and independent films, which are rarely found at mainstream, high-volume theaters. Admission prices will range from $5-$9.

In addition to possible film festivals, supporters say the new complex could draw distinguished international movie directors to the campus. And the evening offerings will also allow local residents to enrich their cultural knowledge on the art of international film.

“I believe that this new campus theatre will be a gateway to a lot of different sorts of art,” said Susan Reilly, director of FAU’s School of Communication and Multimedia Studies. “People should definitely become aware this theatre is being built. It’s going to be of great benefit for us.”

The building will also include a bar above the theater that will serve beer, wine, and elegant cuisines. It will be open in the evenings during movie times.

“This new building is something that everyone should be looking forward to,” says Desiree Duarte, an FAU senior in business. “I can’t wait to be able to go to a theatre on my campus and watch independent films and then go for a drink in the bar upstairs. It’s going to be great.”

For more information about the new building being constructed at FAU, contact Joel Schultz, the FAU project manager, at 561-297-3153. For more information about Living Room Theatres, visit www.livingroomtheaters.com.




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