Netflix has acquired a lease to turn New York City’s iconic Paris Theater into a central brand hub for its events, screenings and theatrical releases.
The 1940s Midtown movie theater, the last single-screen in the city, was shuttered in August after its lease with City Cinemas expired. A Deadline piece preempting the closure noted the cinema occupies prime real estate and is held at the mercy of real estate developer Sheldon Solow.
The venue temporarily reopened to screen Noah Baumbach’s Marriage Story on 6 November, as part of the Netflix film’s awards push. Today (25 November) the tech band confirmed it had signed an ‘extended lease agreement’ with Solow’s estate to turn the space into ‘a home for special Netflix events, screenings and theatrical releases’.
“After 71 years, the Paris Theatre has an enduring legacy, and remains the destination for a one-of-a kind movie-going experience,” said Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s chief content officer.
“We are incredibly proud to preserve this historic New York institution so it can continue to be a cinematic home for film lovers.”
The news has seen Netflix hailed as a savior of both old New York and a piece of cinematic history. The cinema was first opened in 1948 by Marlene Dietrich and was known in the city as a home for foreign and arthouse films.
Aside from claiming a PR win, the deal will give Netflix greater control of its brand environment when it comes to screenings and consumer-facing experiences – a marketing platform it’s been spending more on in recent years.
Last week saw the brand take to the streets of Manhattan to ‘de-age’ Little Italy back to the 1970s in a stunt for its latest blockbuster, Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman. It turned a Burbank Baskin-Robbins into Stranger Things 3’s 1980s Scoops Ahoy in July.