After closing for nearly two months for renovations Studio 35 is re-opening just in time for the release of The Avengers. Co-owners Eric Brembeck and Rita Volpi had been keeping fans of the 74 year old venue updated on the renovation progress through the theater’s Facebook page but pictures alone can’t convey the transformation that’s occurred within.
Last night after a private event, Studio 35 quietly opened their doors to let in a very enthusiastic crowd to see the midnight show of The Avengers. Everyone there was excited to see the film but that was almost a secondary concern. Most were more excited by the changes they saw inside.
If you were to just drive by Studio 35 you might not notice a lot of change unless you’re observant enough to notice some cosmetic changes to the box office. Once inside however it’s an entirely different story. Studio 35 has been reborn from entry way all the way to behind the screen.
The small concession stand is gone, in its place stands a square shaped “beer stand” which includes a double-sided island that has an amazing 40 beers on tap. Regular concession fare may also be purchased there but the beer is the crown jewel of the setup. The lobby area has been expanded creating a large space to accommodate the socializing audience before or after a film. Custom made “couches” line the walls directly to the left and right of the concession stand creating a comfortable sitting area. Visiting the bathroom will now be a more pleasant experience with the men’s and women’s rooms switching places and being completely remodeled as well. The entire lobby is sound proofed to prevent the guests at the bar from disturbing those enjoying a movie and vice versa.
Entering the auditorium now involves walking down a few steps in the soundproof foyer designed again to keep the theater and bar areas from disturbing each other. A handicapped accessible elevator is also available to assist those that have difficulties with stairs. Once inside the auditorium you’ll immediately notice the walk in freezer has been removed. New drapes, aisle lights, and sconce lighting have all been added and the seats have been reconfigured. Tables are now available in all three rows of seats near the back of the auditorium. A new screen has been installed along with new speakers and additional soundproofing. What you can’t see is one of the best improvements of all; upstairs in the projection booth sits a new NEC digital projector that is capable of delivering an exceptional picture to go along with their much improved sound capabilities.
While the theater has changed physically the theater’s character and charm has not only been retained, it’s been enhanced. Studio 35 is no longer just an aging theater with a good beer selection, it’s a state of the art theater with one of the best beer selections in Columbus that not only appeals to film lovers, beer aficionados, and neighborhood theater supporters but to a much wider audience that wants a unique and complete film-going experience. Only time will tell but Studio 35 might have been reborn as the most unique theater Columbus has to offer.