NOTE: To any PR or media relations people out there: all future press events should include bottomless Champagne. Thank you.
Alamo Drafthouse's new Richardson location had its official ribbon-cutting/giant robot-unveiling last night. Founder Tim League and Chief Operating Officer Bill DiGaetano were joined by various local figures including Richardson Mayor Laura Maczka in festive hot pink. Maczka let her nerd flag fly when she wished the Alamo team to "live long and prosper."
"There are very few things in this community that have had more excitement and anticipation than this opening today," she said.
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After the ribbon-cutting, creative manager James Wallace pulled down an elegant sheet of Visqueen in the lobby to reveal a sculpture of a gigantic robot hand, with a faux-window behind it that shows a robot eye peaking in. It ties in with the Alamo's robot theme for their opening weekend, when they'll be playing films like Forbidden Planet, Fritz Lang's Metropolis and The Iron Giant.
Everyone present was divided into three groups to tour the theater and get a rundown of the "Alamo Drafthouse experience," and during the wait I started a social experiment to see how many tiny hor d'oeuvre pizzas I could accept from waiters before I started to feel either guilt or shame. (If the number exists I did not hit it last night, and to the gentleman who offered me prosciutto and spinach pizza every five minutes, you, sir, are a national treasure).
We were shepherded through a few of the theaters, with constantly replenished glasses of booze, where Alamo will screen mostly first-run movies, like We're the Millers and Elysium, which played there last night. The rest of the features will include classic, foreign and indie fare, as well as special events like "quote-alongs." A quote-along is pretty simple: You watch an easily quotable movie and yell the lines along with the actors (subtitles help). We got a trial run with a clip from Anchorman and a new drink to compliment it called "Sex Panther," which, while heavy on the triple sec, was hilarious.
I'm going to miss the free Silence of the Lambs brand chianti (totally real thing) but I'm eager to see what Alamo has lined up in the coming months, and the screens are simply gorgeous. And speaking of Silence of the Lambs, who do I talk to about getting that turned into a quote-along?