Indian Hills Theater

Discussion in 'Omaha, NE' started by banthagrl, Jun 23, 2001.

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  1. banthagrl Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 21, 2001
    star 1
    FYI to all, I don't know if anyone saw the story in today's paper, but there is going to be rally tomorrow looking for support to save the Indian Hills theater from destruction. It's 1 p.m. (Sunday) on the Gene Leahy mall, 10th and Farnam, by the slides. I think it's organized by Steven Dawes of the Indian Hills Preservation Society.

    I don't know about everyone else, but I can't think of the Indian Hills without thinking Star Wars - I saw Jedi, SW Special Edition and Phantom there on either opening day or opening weekend, and I can't imagine going anywhere else for the first look at Ep. 2.

    The theater is significant as having the biggest screen in the country, and is also the only still existing theater built to show Cinerama movies. There was a lot of big-name (Spielberg) outside interest in saving the theater, but Methodist Hospital has decided it would rather have a parking lot. This rally may be the last ditch effort to generate local support for saving the theater, slated for demolition later this summer. Hope some of you can attend, or at least spread the word to others who might be interested.

    - Lisa
  2. LuneKell Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jan 20, 2001
    This is Omaha....

    I am sorry for all of you who honestly believed Methodist Hospital would not tear down the Indian Hills and turn it into a parking lot. (I am not being the least big sarcastic about the "I am sorry" statement. I've lived in Omaha now for over twenty five years.) This was a typical hypocritical Omaha maneuver. The powers-that-be at Methodist put on their little show of pretending to actually consider returning the Indian Hills to its former glory. They strung along anyone credulous enough to actually believe them. (I'll bet they still get goosebumps thinking about how they had some real big Hollywood names groveling to them.) Then they "regretfully" said it would cost too much, and pulled the plug. Then they retreated to their little gated West Omaha yuppie-clone enclaves and patted themselves on the backs for saving Omaha from the fate of rising above the lowest common denominator. Mediocrity Omaha-style wins again!!!!!

    Kate
  3. craigrr Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 8, 1999
    star 4
    The fact remains, Indian Hills IS an Omaha landmark. From it's unique architecture to it's history, not to mention the world's largest Cinerama screen. While I'm not going to hold my breath, things could change and IH will be spared. THe fat lady hasn't sung yet...
  4. LuneKell Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jan 20, 2001
    Craig, sweetie -- let's watch the fat lady remarks, huh? <VBG>

    Yes, I agree, Indian Hills is a landmark, and, yes, I'm going to be extremely disappointed when it comes down. Believe it or not, my husband and I had our first real date there way back in 1969. He took me there to see 2001, and it was an incredible experience -- even for me, the girl from New Jersey who'd grown up with the Fox Theater in Philadelphia (Ben Hur, El Cid, Sound of Music -- all those incredible motion picture events.)

    I didn't stand in line to see ROTJ there because I was stuck home with four small children. But friends of mine did stand in line and skip the first showing so I could join them for the second showing after my husband got home. Fifteen years or so later, I did the intelligent thing and plunked a kid with a cell phone in line to get tickets for ANH when it came back. I plunked the same kid in line for tickets to Phantom Menace. (If you're going to have kids, they might as well make themselves useful.)

    So, yes, I have very good memories of the Indian Hills, and I wish I could share your optimism for its future. But like I said yesterday, I've lived in Omaha now for twenty-five years. In all honesty, I cannot see Methodist Hospital rising above Omaha's traditional mindset of penny-pinching mediocrity. They bought that property with every intention of razing the building to create a parking lot, and a parking lot it will be. They are not going to spend the money to revamp the Indian Hills, and they most certainly will not buy a different piece of ground upon which to build their parking lot. The only real hope the Indian Hills has is if someone will buy the property from Methodist for about twice what it paid for it.

    Kate
  5. craigrr Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 8, 1999
    star 4
    I have no doubt the theater will end up as a pile of rubble. That's just the reality of the situation. The dream would be for Methodist to change their minds and choose to preserve the place, but we all know what'll happen. There's nothing to lose by holding the demonstrations other than time. Will they honestly listen? Not likely. Will they watch IH being torn down with a maniacal gleam in their eyes? Most likely. I will definitely miss the theater once it's gone. I saw ANH there for the first time in 1977. I guess once the building's gone, we'll just have to go pour some Tatooine blue milk on the spot in memory of the fallen...
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