Community helping historic Portland theater go digital - KPTV - FOX 12

Community helping historic Portland theater go digital

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A historic theater in Portland needs to raise tens of thousands of dollars to keep showing movies.

The Academy Theater, located on Southeast Stark Street near Southeast 78th Avenue, has launched an indiegogo campaign to raise money for the digital conversion.

The theater needs to replace three 35 millimeter projectors because movie studios will stop producing new movies on film at the end of this year.

"It's not necessarily a choice of ours to move in that direction, so it's kind of mandated by outside forces," said Heyward Stewart, the owner.

The Academy Theater originally opened in 1948, then fell into disrepair after closing in the 1970s.

A restored Academy Theater reopened seven years ago and staff hope the community will help it live through another era.

They hope to raise $75,000 through the Indiegogo campaign, which runs through Sept. 30. With less than a week to go, the theater has raised more than $35,000.

"It's amazing. The outpour from the immediate community in particular is touching," said Stewart. "It's almost shocking the support we have."

Unlike other online fundraising websites, the theater will get to keep all the money donated, even if they don't reach their goal.

Depending on the amount given, people can receive movie tickets, popcorn or even a private screening for donating.

For more information, visit

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