Post-production on my Monarch Theatre documentary has been through numerous stops and starts in 2023 in anticipation of the expected news about this historic cinema's reopening. A feature in the Calgary Herald in February highlighted this predicament and my "search for an ending" amidst the changing timelines I'd been experiencing in trying to wrap the project.While we are still without a public announcement about the Monarch Theatre's future in Medicine Hat, Alberta, I have to admit that I'm not entirely in the dark about what's been happening behind closed doors. This hasn't made the wait any less grueling, unfortunately. So much can still happen despite things seemingly moving in the right direction, and naturally, no documentarian wants to risk the reputation of their film on well-intentioned speculation.
If this already complicated timeline stretching back to 2021 has demonstrated anything, it's that a lot can change quickly. When production first started we were still in lockdowns, for example.
For what it's worth, this has been exhausting for everyone involved. I feel like I've been teasing this documentary for so long and disappointing people with the continued uncertainty about when they can actually watch it and what we can share. Point being, it's time to wrap this up.
I've come to realize that I need to end this story while it's still fresh in my mind and there isn't much point in waiting any longer. Whether an announcement is made a week from now or months from now, my biggest concern is in telling a good story. So, how do I strike a balance and end this documentary properly?
I'm happy to share that I have worked out an ending that I think will satisfy both the story and my increasing anxiety. I won't spoil anything here, but this does mean that completing the final stages of Your Cinema Needs You is currently my top priority.
I have to remind myself sometimes that I've already wrestled with just how much there was to fit into a single movie, already revised numerous times, and that a lot is going to continue to change surrounding the Monarch Theatre regardless of my efforts. Who's to say that there isn't room for a follow-up to this doc anyway? Here's to a story worth the 112 year wait.