The Rheem Theater opened in Moraga in1957. It has the East Bay's largest indoor movie screen at 60 feet and still shows movies on film. But by year's end, Hollywood will no longer print reels of film. Studios will send hard drives instead, forcing theaters to buy costly digital projectors in order to view them.
"Most independent film house like this are going out of business across the country," says Rheem theater co-owner Derek Zemrak.
"Digitally, it's much easier, but there's also more problems. This way, we know what's wrong and how to fix it," says manager Lindsey Pirkle.
The theater must also update structurally, providing an elevator for the disabled.
A sold-out Oscar party this Sunday will help raise part of the $200,000 needed for these upgrades.