Long Beach Cinematheque to Program Fiesta Twin Theatre in Downtown Santa Ana, Furthering the Area's Gentrification

For years, the Fiesta Twin Theatre on Fourth Street in downtown SanTana has shown English-language films in Spanish and Spanish-language films in Spanish.

But there's a new film programmer coming to the cinemas--direct from El Long Beach--to fulfill indie-, student- and LGBT-movie dreams.

Long Beach Cinematheque, a nonprofit group of movie lovers who participate in charity events, screen films on the sides of buildings in the LBC and organize a festival in and around the historic Arts Theatre on that town's 4th Street, reportedly was contacted by the Fiesta Twin property owner about programming the space.

That would be the Chases: father Irv and son Ryan, who have received mucho criticism from downtown merchants and longtime SanTana residents for pushing out longtime Latino tenants in favor of hipster ones--which is exactly what's happening in this case. Nothing against the LBC cinephiles, mind you!

Logan Crow, the Long Beach Cinematheque executive director, received what he described for Long Beach Post* as a "dream email" from someone associated with the Chases (the article doesn't specify who) about running a permanent, full-time arthouse cinema. (*Link restored.) The plan is to show indie films, student films and LGBT fare on the two screens that face a total of 650 seats, building up to daily programming by September.

Acknowledging his nonprofit's Long Beach base, Crow explained for the Post how he sees the Santa Ana opportunity with helping to ensure mobile programming continues on the LA County side of the 605 freeway. Shows in the LBC are already expanding due to new mobile projection gear, he noted.

"I see this as where I've always wanted to see the Cinematheque go--this is my dream," Crow tells the Post. "I don't want them to see it as an exodus because it's anything but that. It's a cultivation."

While we love indie cinema as much as the next geek, this announcement is sure to further enrage anti-gentrification activists. Let's see how this one turns out . . . after the trailer for UCLA's Brokeback Portlandia mash up.

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