A good friend sent me the following email today:
“If you like the Light House cinema please help support it against greedy developers and keep it open. Come along to a film this weekend and if possible bring someone along who hasn’t been there yet so they can see how great it is too.
[There are lots of great films showing, including Submarine, Route Irish and True Grit. ]
If you feel more strongly drop an email to your local councillor or TD, especially if you live in Dublin 7. The landlord is looking for a crazy rent increase that was based on the Smithfield Regeneration being completed in two years, all the nearby retail units being let, and DIT moving into the neighbourhood, non of this went ahead. Plus the whole development only got the planning permission in the first place based on the developer agreeing to give a certain amount of space for cultural purposes.”
I had the pleasure of working with the owners of the Light House Cinema in 2008 in the run up to the opening of the cinema. It was a rare pleasure to work with two people so passionate about film in Ireland, global arthouse cinema and just jolly good movies and about their new cinema.
Apart from anything about protecting Irish culture and cultural venues this is a truly astonishing building. (I’ll add some of the photos I took at the opening later) and it would be a shame to see it left to decay or to be used for other intentions.
I remember well going to see a few films in The (original) Light House on Middle Abbey Street before they closed all those years ago and so was very excited to be asked to help them with some online work in 2008. The general sense I got through my online research about the imminent re-opening was that many people had very fond memories of the Abbey st venue. People wrote eloquently about how in the midst of the gloom of the 80s Neil Connolly and Maretta Dillon managed to find
gloomier films enlightening films from around the world to cheer them up, inspire them, stretch their imaginations and broaden their horizons at a time when there was precious little of that going on in many other aspects of Irish life.
In recent years I have visited the Light House Cinema on a number of occasions (but to be honest probably not enough). The highlights for me in those three years have been Persepolis, Kisses (but I’m biased!) and Precious. Where else would you see films like this in gorgeous, inspiring, state of the art surroundings?
Go now and book a ticket to see something in the Light House this weekend