Experience Guide | Tourism Medicine Hat

Your Cinema Needs You Historic downtowns are like outdoor museums, but

with ongoing memories living in the buildings. Not all are saved. Most are demolished, unless there is a plaque on the exterior stating it a Historic Resource, or a group of people who sustain its meaningful presence. The Monarch Theatre first welcomed guests in 1911, with a liveliness inviting people to shine their shoes and dress their best to attend a black and white film. A night many would build their week up to, for an evening out with their loved ones in Medicine Hat. For over a century, as both the walls and people aged, it would come to The Monarch Theatre is Canada’s oldest, surviving, purpose-built theatre, and while it presented movies and stories on the inside, the Monarch's own historic story had never fully received the spotlight, until Medicine Hat filmmaker Luke Fandrich picked up his camera to film his new documentary, 'Your Cinema Needs You'. Unlike his documentary about Medalta in the Historic Clay District (Clay, Cre ativity, and the Comeback), where the filmmaker had archives, museums, and known people he could draw informa tion from, The Monarch project was a story that was quite literally in the dark. be that many generations would wait in line to take a seat and be entertained for the evening.

"It was a totally different challenge to take on a project where it felt like so much of it was going to be discovered as I went looking for it. It was a lot of detective work. I'd uncover one thing and that would give me another clue that brought me to my next piece of information, and so on," says Fandrich. ‘Your Cinema Needs You’ is now in post-production, and Fandrich has found a story he hasn't heard anyone tell before. With 11 sold out screenings of the documentary that were presented inside The Monarch Theatre, Fandrich looks forward to what’s next for ‘Your Cinema Needs You’. "The story shows that emotional component. Why is the Monarch here in the first place? What were the other theatres in town, and how did the Monarch outlast all these other cinemas? It’s the heritage value, the architectural significance, and the human component that has been so compelling to discover," says Fandrich. Stay updated about ‘Your Cinema Needs You’ at @editingluke on Facebook and Instagram.

Scan to watch Clay, Creativity & the Comeback


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